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What's on in London this August 2016 near Kensington

It's summer in London and we've got plenty of reasons to be outdoors this month, and some great entertainment too.

THE PROMS

On until 10 September at the Royal Albert Hall, this is the 122nd season of The Proms. Proms is short for Promenade Concerts and all about the best classical music made accessible to all with reasonable prices and an informal atmosphere. Promenaders (Prommers) pay just £6 for a standing ticket in the central Arena or high-up Gallery of the Royal Albert Hall, with up to 1,350 standing places available. To ensure all tickets aren't sold months in advance more than 500 standing tickets are usually available to buy on the door before each concert.

The Rio Olympics have influenced the music this year with Latin America represented by the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra and Jazz Symphony Orchestra. And the new 'Proms at…' feature means there are concerts at Shakespeare's Globe, Camden Roundhouse and the Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich too.

BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY'S

Pop star Pixie Lott is starring in the West End show Breakfast at Tiffany's on at Theatre Royal Haymarket. Booking until 17 September, this adaptation of the Truman Capote novel is the tale of vivacious, good-time girl Holly Golightly in 1940s New York City. Audrey Hepburn will always be associated with the role from the 1961 movie so it will be interesting to see this Richard Greenberg stage production.

DAVID HOCKNEY PORTRAITS

On until 2 October at the Royal Academy, David Hockney RA: 82 Portraits and 1 Still Life is The Royal Academy of Arts' big exhibition this year.

The show offers an insight into the artist's life in Los Angeles and those dear to him as his subjects range from friends and family to his office staff, fellow artists and even a few curators and gallerists such as Larry Gagosian.

Each portrait took three days, is the same size and shows the sitter posing in exactly the same chair and against the same blue background. The works are hung chronologically within the Sackler Galleries to emphasise this development.

THE BODYGUARD

The Whitney Houston movie The Bodyguard has been turned into a West End musical starring Beverley Knight. Booking until 7 January 2017, The Bodyguard is the story of Frank Farmer, an ex-Secret Service agent turned bodyguard, who is hired to protect pop singer Rachel Marron from a mystery stalker. Both of them are used to being in control and in charge... but neither of them expects to fall in love.

The musical features some of Whitney Houston's greatest hits including One Moment in Time, Saving All My Love, I Wanna Dance With Somebody and the powerful smash-hit I Will Always Love You.

Note, Beverley Knight is currently scheduled to appear at the Tuesday to Friday evening performances and both performances on Saturday (so not the matinees).

ALICE OPERA

You can have no concerns about introducing children to an opera performance when it's as much fun as this. Holland Park Opera has Alice in Wonderland this month. It's performanced on the Yucca lawn and is a fabulous outdoor production where the audience get up and move quickly to the different sets then sit on the grass to watch and enjoy.

A bored and daydreaming 11 year old Alice meets a talking rabbit who insists she follow him to a mysterious Wonderland. In this fantastical place Alice meets peculiar characters including a happy cat, a romantic duchess, a mad hatter and a very cross Queen of Hearts. I've seen this show before and I'll be going again this year as it's truly wonderful.

CLARENCE HOUSE

As well as the Buckingham Palace State Rooms summer opening, we can also visit Clarence House – the official residence of the Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall and Prince Harry – from 1 to 31 August.

Previously this was the home of the Queen Mother and her art collection is worth seeing. Visitors get a 1 hour guided tour and can see five of the ground floor rooms used for official engagements plus the garden. As well as the standard tickets there are Exclusive Guided Tours on offer which include a glass of Champagne.

NOTTING HILL CARNIVAL

Britain's biggest street party is back on 28 and 29 August when Notting Hill Carnival returns so get ready to dance for hours to the sound of steel bands and calypso music.

Sunday is Children's Day but there's still a parade and good fun, and Monday means 60 bands and a Grand Finale with elaborate floats and colourful costumed performers.

The music continues at 38 sound systems on side streets along the route so the best DJs can keep you dancing. Enjoy the Caribbean food (it's not 'carnival' without jerk chicken) and don't worry about the crowds as long as you can feel the music.

BFG DREAM JAR TRAIL

The BFG Dream Jar Trail is a celebration of Roald Dahl’s 100th birthday and supports the new Steven Spielberg film. Look out for 6ft high 'dream jars' near to a host of key London landmarks such as Trafalgar Square, St Paul’s Cathedral, The Tower of London and Leicester Square.

The childhood dreams of celebrities, such as film director Steven Spielberg and illustrator Quentin Blake, have been turned into sculptures for the dream jars. The trail is available until 31 August and then the dream jars will be auctioned for charity.

By choosing to stay at Fraser Suites Queens Gate, you will be in the heart of Kensington, and a short ride away from some of these great events happening in August. Check out our Special Offers and we hope to welcome you soon! 

You can also explore what is happening near Canary Wharf by clicking here

Laura Porter writes AboutLondonLaura.com and contributes to many other publications while sustaining an afternoon tea addiction to rival that of our Queen. You can find Laura on Twitter as @AboutLondon and on Facebook as @AboutLondonLaura.

 

Image credits: David Hockney at the Royal Academy of Arts © David Parry/ Royal Academy of Arts, The Bodyguard: Beverley Knight – Dominion Theatre, Photo by Paul Coltas