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London Culture Vultures Jan 2020: Advanced Edition

Let’s face it, there are certain people in your life for certain activities and not all of them have the same sophisticated cultural pallet as you. While some people are multifaceted and able to enjoy both extreme adrenaline sports as well as old silent film screenings, some activities are suited to certain friends more than others. So think carefully about who you would invite to some of these more unique cultural experiences for the true aficionado – because they may not be for everyone.

 

 

The British Library in Euston is hosting an exhibition entirely focused on the study of Buddhism until 23 February 2020. Few people outside countries with large Buddhist populations actually know what the beautiful religion entails as certain symbols and practices have been misappropriated. Upon my first trip into a Buddhist temple, I was rather shocked at the need for signs stating to tourists that it is highly disrespectful to portray depictions of Buddha in a tattoo or to display them in places like a pub. You would probably agree that that should go without saying. If you have the desire to be educated about the enlightenment of the Buddhist paths in order to have a true and respectful appreciation for its core tenants and admire the beautiful artefacts and iconography through which it is taught and honoured, the scrolls and palm leaf manuscripts that give you a glimpse into Buddhist philosophy and cosmology – then you know where to go. It’s a big exhibition, so you may want to budget a few hours to properly soak everything in.

 

Perhaps you are more tickled by the history and artefacts of Ancient Egypt? Tutankhamun is a name known worldwide from elementary school lessons about Egypt, but the full uncensored story of the young Pharaoh is much more entertaining and is told comprehensively in this exhibition entitled Tutankhamun: Treasures of the Golden Pharaoh. Almost 100 years after their discovery, the artefacts in this exhibition will conclude their trip around the world at the Saatchi Gallery in Chelsea on 3 May 2020 – marking the last time that they will be exhibited outside of Egypt. That should serve as enough motivation to get your act together and book your tickets!

 

If you’re looking for something brand new that is both beautiful and thought-provoking, there has been a lot of buzz about the show coming to the Linbury Theatre at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden by the name of Aisha and Abhaya. A co-production between contemporary dance company, Rambert, and The Royal Ballet, this show proudly exhibits its talented dancers on stage alongside brilliant film, animation, music and exceptional costumes. The plot is both fantastical and deeply relevant to today’s political climate. Running from 21 January until 9 February 2020, this is bound to be a one-of-a-kind dance experience.