Friday, 15 June 2012 2:13 PM
London really comes to life in the summer months, and this year music fans are in for a particular treat in the capital, thanks to a fantastic line-up of festivals, shows and unusual displays. Here are some of the top picks to consider for your summer in London:
London always has an impressive line-up of festivals, and this year is no exception. Among them is the Wireless Festival, which is set to take over Hyde Park between July 6th and 8th. A host of household names will take the stage, including Deadmau5 (headlining on Friday) and Rihanna (headlining on Sunday). Ms Dynamite, Drake and Metric - best-known for their 2009 album Fantasies - are just a few of the acts slated to play over the weekend.
There are also a number of music events running as part of the London 2012 Festival, including the BT River of Music. Being held on July 21st and 22nd, this event is free to attend - but you will need to reserve a ticket - and will see all the regions taking part in the Olympics and Paralymics have their own music stage.
Indeed, these will be set up at key landmarks along the River Thames, such as the Tower of London, which will host the Americas stage. Scissor Sisters and Noisettes are among those scheduled to perform, and the organisers promise a comprehensive mix of contemporary music from across the globe.
Bear in mind that when you order a ticket you will need to do so for a particular stage, so it is a good idea to review the line-up for each to see which most interests you.
While the most obvious music-based events to go to may be gigs and festivals, don't forget there are plenty of other performances to look out for too. Also running as part of the London 2012 Festival, Dean Rodney Singers is one example.
Being showcased at the Southbank Centre between August 31st and September 9th, the audio-visual work of this online band is unique and unusual, with each fusing music, drama and video, and involving a host of exciting characters. Dean Rodney is the musician, artist and rapper behind the idea, and has orchestrated collaborative works between 72 band members across seven countries. What's more, as you don't need to buy a ticket or even pay to attend, it is easy to squeeze into your trip.
Another option to consider is opera. The Royal Opera House's BP Summer Big Screens streams live outdoor relays, which you can watch free of charge. As well as the performances themselves, you can see backstage footage too. The screens will be put up at a number of locations across the country, but by heading to London you can see screenings of productions such as Falstaff and Metamorphosis: Titian 2012 in the impressive setting of Trafalgar Square.
Alternatively, book tickets to see Damon Albarn's Dr Dee. The Blur and Gorillaz frontman has written an opera about the life of the mysterious figure of Dr John Dee, who lived during the reign of Elizabeth I. It mixes traditional opera with acoustic pop, and is being performed at the London Coliseum from June 23rd to July 7th.
Whatever you decide to attend, remember to book one of London's cheap hotels to stay in - this is an easy way to reduce the cost of your trip if you're worried about going over budget. Don't forget to check the location and travel times as well as the price, though, as you don't want to reserve a room only to find it is a long way from your chosen festival or event.