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  • 🎞️ In celebration of these cinemas 🎞️

🎞️ In celebration of these cinemas 🎞️

...and loads more reasons to get up off the sofa and go out this week

Camdenist Culture Campaign is back in action this week, as we’ve been busy putting together a mini-directory of the neighbourhood’s silver screens. 

In these insanely atomised times, with their all-hours disposable digital distraction, the rare focus and hushed ceremony of a trip to a local cinema should not be underestimated - or forgotten.

Just like our previously featured cultural institutions:
🎭 Theatres 
🪩 Nightlife
🍺 Pubs
…cinemas are currently having to reinvent their relevance sharpish in the face of the post-pandemic-cost-of-living-WFH-streaming maelstrom.

It’s not like the flicks haven’t weathered previous storms via the arrival of television, VHS and then cable, but there is a clear and present danger of people falling out of the habit of movie-going right now, and that needs addressing.

So, Camdenist’s very own incognito cinema obsessive has been visiting a selection of the Borough’s key multiplexes and arthouse screens, meticulously rating everything, from ambiance to accessibility, and snack selection to date night potential.

We’ll add more screens to the list over the coming months, making the Camdenist cinema directory the most comprehensive resource for picking the best place to see movies based on your specific requirements, while also neatly reminding wider culture vultures of the communal joy a trip to the proverbial local (if rather plush, these days) ‘fleapit’.


📽️ The ever-innovative Castlehaven Community Association have just set up their very own regular Community Cinema, which operates once a month inside Clarence Hall, on Hawley Rd.

Next up on the big screen is a free showing this coming Tuesday night, 11th June, in association with local eco action group Transition Kentish Town, of an important film about food production. Watch the trailer and bag a seat here:


🥳 Summer’s street party season moves into gear with a bumper crop incoming this weekend

Marylebone Festival - back this Sunday

We’re really spoilt when it comes to alfresco dancing, eating, socialising and more ‘round here, but with so much going on every week from now through to the tail end of September, it can be easy to miss some real crackers of a simple day out.

Thankfully though, you’ve got your weekly edition of Camdenist in your inbox every Friday morning, here to highlight as many fiestas, fetes and fayres as we possibly can (although I have to admit we basically forgot to include Kilburn’s Into The Park last week 😬)

So let’s get the season firmly underway, with a particularly rich weekend of pickings:

🟨 Highgate Festival 2024 launches nine days packed with music events, history walks, art exhibits, open gardens and all manner of other free events starting from tomorrow. The centrepiece, of course, is the impressive Fair In The Square tomorrow afternoon (Sat 8th), where 10,000+ visitors descend on the leafy clearing at the heart of Highgate Village for a proper fete, complete with dog show, hog roasts, designer-maker stalls and loads of live entertainment.

😎 Hot on the heels of the area’s recent big season-starting street fair, it’s the Primrose Hill Summer Garden Party on Sunday 9th. The afternoon promises a more intimate urban village fayre vibe, with live music, top notch food and drink, children’s activities and something to do with masks…

🍸 Slight further afield, but basically just a pleasant stroll onwards through Regent’s Park, it’s also the 20th anniversary of Marylebone Summer Festival on Sunday, featuring a live music stage in Paddington Street Gardens, a wellbeing hub with free exercise classes, a quality farmers food and drink market, dog show, fairground rides and more from all the retailers on the High Street.

🦍 Tonight sees the start of the summer season of Zoo Nights at ZSL London Zoo, where you get to check out the animals, after hours and away from the crowds, with a glass of bubbles in hand. Real enthusiasts can spend the night in the ensuite lodges located inside the Land of the Lions via a VIP sleepover upgrade, which includes breakfast.

🚲 A truly global event with a happy local chapter also hits the streets this Saturday, as the annual World Naked Bike Ride returns to London. Head to Regent’s Park Outer Circle near Cumberland Green from 2.30pm, and prepare to get as bare as you dare before converging with disrobed riders from all over the city, all heading to Hyde Park Corner. The event highlights important issues around the continued vulnerability of cyclists on our streets, protesting against the global dependency on oil, all while celebrating body freedom alongside thousands of enthusiastic others.


More local gossip you might like to know

➿ A bit like the cool radio booth in The Standard hotel’s library bar just down the road, King’s Cross' radio station Voices Radio has just revealed they will be running a new venture called Voices Studio, inside the all-new Mare Street Market when it opens on Lewis Cubitt Square…imminently. DJs, podcasters, presenters and artists will be able to book slots to take advantage of the latest high end audio kit.

📦 Camden’s lacklustre shipping container market at Buck Street was taken over this week by Boxpark, which is quite funny, seeing as the whole place was basically a ripoff of the Boxpark concept from the start. The established streetfood and entertainment operator plans to reboot the whole place, including hosting 40 independent food operators, almost doubling the amount currently there.

🌮 Another tasty Mexican joint arrives in the ‘hood this weekend with the opening of CDMX Tacos in Soho. Their Al Pastor (marinated) or Chicharron (crispy) pork belly tacos already look the business, with cactus for the plant-based.

🚺 Local charity Women + Health are running a fundraising walk on Sat 8th, setting of from King’s Cross Station at 1pm and taking in local sculptures that resonate with their life-changing work for vulnerable and disadvantaged women. You can join the walk here, or simply donate to the cause here.

💍 Primrose Hill Designer Sale is a twice yearly nonprofit event celebrating the work of local artisans, designers and makers, and it’s back on Saturday June 8th at St Mary’s on Elsworthy Rd.

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📺 This week’s Camden video

Check this short documentary made as a college project back in 1995. Via interviews and street-level footage, it is a veritable time capsule of life in Camden Town, it’s characters and the iconic market nearly three decades ago.

Camdenist in partnership with

🪄 A rare chance to see a show inside the secretive Magic Circle HQ

James Phelan at The Magic Circle

🔮 Euston is home to the building often called 'the home of 10,000 secrets' - a.k.a the global headquarters of magicians society The Magic Circle. It's very rare that the public get the opportunity to peek inside the secretive HQ, which has its own museum and small theatre, but this month (select dates until July 25th), the self-styled ‘greatest magician’ James Phelan is performing his new mind-bending show The Dreamer - Live there. If you are foolhardy enough to sit in the all-too-participatory ‘VIP ringside seats’, your ticket gets you a guided tour around the museum, too.

🏠 Silent Houses is a play about a young couple navigating the cost-of-living crisis, chasing cheaper accommodation while dreaming about starting a family of their own. It’s on at Kentish Town’s Lion & Unicorn Theatre, Tues 11th - Sat 15th June.

🍼 Also on the theme of making babies, The Harmony Test, currently on at Downstairs at Hampstead Theatre, is a comedy exploring life’s positives and negatives, from starting families to ending marriages, and everything that comes in between. Runs until June 22nd

🎤 Following an Edinburgh fringe sell-out season, award-winning stand-up and viral sensation (100m views on TikTok, and counting…) Ali Woods returns to Camden Comedy Club this Sunday (9th) with a whole heap of new material to try out.

💘 Modern right-swiping romance is explored in Strategic Love Play, as we witness a first date where she’s being uncomfortable, and he’s a total bore. The vibe is horrific, the banter even worse. But something is making them stay… Until 15th June at Soho Theatre.

Stage highlights come to you each week in partnership with the TownSpot app: your ultimate guide to local events. Join over 1,000 locals discovering the joy of nearby happenings, combating loneliness, and feeling more at home than ever, with the support of Camden Council and Matthew James Estate Agents. Download TownSpot today.


🎶Celebrations of UK pirate radio, syths and Daft Punk

UCL Live Music present the Synthposium

📻 Tonight kicks off a four-week residency throughout June at the Jazz Cafe, in honour of the wealth of talent that owes a debt to being blasted out via the illegal airwaves of the late 20th century: A History of UK Pirate Radio. Roni Size and DJ Storm represent the D&B Scene tonight (but it’s return tickets only), before Spoony, Wookie and Lady Passion go full-on UK Garage on the 14th. Then there’s Slimzee & Flowdan, Coki, and Loefah repping for Grim and Dubstep on the 21st, and finally UK Funky takes centre stage in the closing event on June 28th with Crazy Cousinz, Roska, and Cooly G.

🎹 UCL Live Music are showcasing how technology has shaped modern music via the unique sounds and symphonies of the synthesizer, at an event they are calling the Sythposium, running today and tomorrow (June 7th-8th) at Bloomsbury Theatre.

🎻 Timeless, mesmerising and instantly recognisable pop-electronica is given the full live treatment tonight Fri June 7th at Lafayette when The Daft Punk Orchestra play the French duo’s epic greatest hits.

🪕 Expect a night of wild psycho-rockabilly-blues, home-grown in London as 80s heroes The Deltas bring their slap, twang and boom to West Hampstead Arts Club for a party this Saturday (8th).

🎙️ Camden’s fortnightly friendly folk club, Folk in the Cellar is back at MAP Studio Cafe this Monday June 10th with a double bill featuring Ophelia’s Willow and Hannah and the Buoys.


📊 This week’s 1-click poll

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