Visit London Blog » rock http://blog.visitlondon.com Enjoy the very best of London Fri, 22 May 2015 17:44:12 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.3 The Scariest Theatre Shows in London: Ghost Stories, The Woman in Black and more… http://blog.visitlondon.com/2010/10/the-scariest-theatre-shows-in-london-ghost-stories-the-woman-in-black-and-more/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2010/10/the-scariest-theatre-shows-in-london-ghost-stories-the-woman-in-black-and-more/#comments Mon, 25 Oct 2010 08:30:10 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=14941 How much can a play affect you… surely not enough to really frighten you? That’s what I thought before going to see Ghost Stories and The Woman in Black recently. These shows claim to be the “scariest” currently on in London… and both succeeded in scaring me, but in different ways.

The Woman in Black is currently celebrating its 21st year in London’s West End; the rather dingy building and dangerously intimate Fortune Theatre has become its home. The performance combines theatrical illusion and trickery with a disturbing narrative, scaring even the coolest of hearts.

Ghost Stories was written only recently and is more contemporary in every way. The production feels more like an experiment in fear, presenting archetypal myths and using clever technology to make them come alive. As you take your seat, there is no light or programme sellers to welcome you in, instead the dimly lit Duke of Yorks Theatre is haunted with a soundtrack of drips and rumbles and eerie screeches. There is no interval, which builds up tension and you are warned: if you leave the theatre during the performance you will be unable to return.

What both shows have in common is a real talent for inducing terror through all the senses. Employing mostly sound and sight, but also touch and smell as scare tactics.  As for taste, I know I left both theatres with the taste of fear in my mouth.

More spooky shows to see in London:

Halloween is only a week away, so book your tickets to London’s scariest shows now!

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Hard Rock Calling in Hyde Park http://blog.visitlondon.com/2010/07/hard-rock-calling-in-hyde-park/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2010/07/hard-rock-calling-in-hyde-park/#comments Thu, 01 Jul 2010 09:26:35 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=11318

The spectacular Hard Rock Calling took place over the weekend in London. The concerts entertained thousands of rock music lovers.

There was a great atmosphere as legends Pearl Jam, Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney took to the stage in the middle of Hyde Park. Other main stage performers included Jamiroquai, Corinne Bailey Rae, Elvis Costello and Crowded House, with the Bandstand and Pepsi Max Stage providing additional acts to entertain the crowds.

London truly sizzled in the scorching summer heat and we could not have hoped for more perfect weather! Even the giant screen showing England’s World Cup dream being shattered on the Sunday could not spoil the occasion as revellers settled back with a beer or two to enjoy the show. All were welcome and almost 50,000 fans came to enjoy the laid-back vibe of the festival.

Some of my many highlights included Pearl Jam’s Alive and Stevie Wonder’s Superstition. Paul McCartney kept the fans happy as he sang Beatles classics Let It Be and Hey Jude then surprised fans with a spectacular firework display at the end.

Hard Rock Cafés are known throughout the globe for their ability to bring music to the public and this festival was no exception. With the perfect line up, sunshine and crowd, Hard Rock Calling 2010 was truly unforgettable.

Check out the other great Music Festivals in London this summer.

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Bon Jovi at The O2 http://blog.visitlondon.com/2010/06/bon-jovi-at-the-o2/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2010/06/bon-jovi-at-the-o2/#comments Tue, 15 Jun 2010 09:23:00 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=10460 Bon Jovi’s sell-out London gig at The O2 last Thursday was a real treat for their many fans and with a 27-year history they gave an unforgettable show!

The band have sold more than 120 million albums to date and performed for more than 34 million fans. 

It’s clear how much Bon Jovi appreciate their fans, as they played for almost two and a half hours and seemed to genuinely love every minute of it.

The eternally young Jon Bon Jovi, guitarist Richie Sambora, keyboardist David Bryan, and drummer Tico Torres gave spectacular performances.

Bon Jovi performed their classics including Sleep When I’m Dead, Bad Medicine and Livin’ on a Prayer as well as new material. The experience of being among so many appreciative and loyal fans while being at an incredible venue like The O2 was superb.

Bon Jovi has a summer residency at The O2 and are playing until 26 June 2010. Book tickets

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Wanda Jackson at the Luminaire http://blog.visitlondon.com/2010/04/wanda-jackson-at-the-luminaire/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2010/04/wanda-jackson-at-the-luminaire/#comments Thu, 22 Apr 2010 10:30:10 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=8486 The queen of rockabilly Wanda Jackson played at the Luminaire in Kilburn last night, and I was there.

Although she’s in her 70s,  wonderful Wanda’s still got the pipes that made her one of the biggest female rock’n’roll stars of the 1950s and beyond.

Her career was helped along by a certain Elvis Presley, whose “ring she wore” (she was his girlfriend) for about year back in the day. And that’s just one of the entertaining stories about her life Wanda recounts as enjoyable stage banter throughout the show.  Another is how popular her hit Fujiyama Mama was in Japan – the song contains the lyrics “I can cause destruction just like the atom bomb”, which you’d imagine might have been rather confronting in 1957.

Imelda May was the support act and she also joined Wanda on stage to belt out a few tunes together, including one of my faves: Hard Headed Woman.  Other standouts were Let’s Have A Party and Funnel Of Love. And, proving she’s not stuck in the past, Wanda did a cover of Amy Winehouse’s You Know I’m No Good from her new album, which was produced by the White Stripes‘ Jack White.

The Luminaire is a real music-lovers venue. It’s intimate, with great sound, and it’s just a shame Wanda’s so tiny, we could barely see her on the low stage. We could hear her perfectly though, because even after 50 years in the biz, Wanda can still wail!

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The British Music Experience in London http://blog.visitlondon.com/2009/06/british-music-experience-in-london/ http://blog.visitlondon.com/2009/06/british-music-experience-in-london/#comments Fri, 19 Jun 2009 12:14:11 +0000 http://blog.visitlondon.com/?p=206 You can play the instruments in the Gibson Guitar Studio at the British Music Experience in London

The British Music Experience at The O2 in London is a tribute to great modern British music. Check out Humphrey Lyttleton’s trumpet and Bat For Lashes’ sequinned cape!

My five favourite things about the British Music Experience:

1. You can play real instruments in the studio. Try a Gibson guitar – even if you haven’t played before, you’ll be strumming along with a rock classic in no time. There are tutorials for every level and they’re really good.

2. Who’s your favourite singer? See stage costumes from all the greats – Dusty Springfield, David Bowie, Boy George, Adam Ant and more.

3. Gaze in awe at instruments played by your favourite musicians. Being in the same room as the drum Brian Bennett played so many of The Shadows hits on made me feel giddy. What’s the best music memorabilia you’ve ever seen in London?

4. Learn to do the birdie dance. Step into a special booth which will take you through the steps from famous dance crazes and then video you. You can use the id on your ticket to check out your dancing online at home. Yes it’s cheesy, but there’s a fine tradition of cheese in British pop!

5. Re-discover music you love but haven’t heard for years. You’ll be inspired to put together some memorable playlists after a trip to the British Music Experience. Dig out those cassettes!

Need more rock? Check out Visit London’s Music guide

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