THEATRE: Romeo & Juliet like never before
The East London Shakespeare Festival is becoming an annual event, and its latest ‘festival-style’ production of Romeo & Juliet – which combines contemporary twists and turns, high-energy party numbers and audience participation – hits Leyton’s Jubilee Park tonight (June 22nd) and then all weekend, before touring Clissold Park, Springfield Park, Higham Hill Hub, Fellowship Square Walthamstow and Wanstead Park throughout July, more details and pay-what-you-can tix here.
FESTIVALS: Local LGBTQ Prides
This weekend (23rd-25th June) sees the brilliant annual Forest Gayte Pride, with most of the stalls and events tomorrow around the station area, and a party at the Forest Tavern in the evening (8pm), with drag artists, performances, speakers, DJs and more. Last year’s super-fun event is pictured below, and you can find out much more and book tickets here.
And a few weeks later at the end of July is surely East London’s best and biggest local Pride event: this year Waltham Forest Pride 2023 will be hosted by ELOP (East London Out Project), taking place in Fellowship Square.
Expect diverse talent and contributions from the borough’s local LGBTQIA+ community, including a range of stalls, from crafts to face-painting, taster sessions, performances, local speakers and top food and drink options. July 29th, 12pm to 8pm, more here
ART: Leytonstone Arts Trail 2023
Another annual event – in its 15th year now – this really is a brilliant excuse to piece together a weekend mooch around the neighbourhood, meet some locals and revel in the creativity of the area (main image by Jon Barker, above). Run solely by artists, the visual art festie is held across dozens of E10 and E11 venues, from the fast-rising Good Shepherd Studios (where Back To Ours is) to the fabulous Rear Window restaurant and Filly Brook, with over 60 exhibitions, workshops, and happenings. 1st – 9th July 2023, see the locations map and more details here.
FILM: Community Cinema pop-up
Speaking of Good Shepherd, the Davies Lane studios are inviting locals to pop by its first full feature cinema screening in partnership with the Barbican no less. Estate, a Reverie is a “spirited celebration of extraordinary everyday humanity made over seven years from within a Hackney housing estate,” say the organisers. The evening is on 6th July, 730m, with post-film discussion in the cafe with cast member Gillian McIver, director Andrea Luka Zimmerman & writer John Rogers. Standard Tickets: £7/ Concessions £5, more here.
Main image: thanks to Jon Barker/ Leytonstone Arts Trail