Life on the inside: 9 ways to get your culture fix this Easter
PUBLISHED: 18:11 10 April 2020 | UPDATED: 18:11 10 April 2020
The ongoing countrywide lockdown means this year’s Easter weekend feels very different for many.
Faced with four free days to fill at home, families will have to find inventive ways to keep everyone entertained.
Luckily for those looking for a good culture fix, there are a whole host of online options available.
Here are a few recommendations:
1. Delve into the National Archives
Staff at the National Archives have compiled a series of Boredom Busters to keep Easter thumb-twiddlers entertained.
They have downloadable activity packs for children, tips on how to date and care for those treasured family photographs and guidance on how to start researching your family tree.
Of course you can also get lost in their enormous online archive itself, where there are nine million records available to download via: discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk.
2. Tour an exhibition (virtually)
Need an art injection this weekend? Fortunately some of the country’s premier galleries are providing a window into their latest shows online.
The Tate Modern has a virtual tour of its Andy Warhol exhibition available on its YouTube channel: youtube.com/tate/videos.
Meanwhile, on Monday a new online tour of Tate Britain’s Aubrey Beardsley exhibition will be launched on the same channel.
The Royal Academy is also running a video tour of its Picasso and Paper exhibition on its website: royalacademy.org.uk.
3. Embrace religious traditions
Sadly for Christian worshippers, a traditional trip to church is out of the question this weekend.
But the Church of England hopes to still bring everyone together through a virtual Easter Sunday service broadcast on BBC Radio 4 from 8.10am and the church’s website from 9am at www.churchofengland.org.
The Archbishop of Canterbury will deliver a special sermon for the occasion recorded on an iPad in his kitchen.
4. Enjoy some Shakespeare
Lovers of the Bard can log on to the Royal Shakespeare Company’s website this weekend to stream some of its productions.
Signing up for a free trial of its Marquee TV will give you access to versions of Hamlet, Richard II and King Lear.
Interactive online backstage tours and free educational resources for young people are also available on its website at www.rsc.org.uk.
5. Take on a historic quiz challenge
Ever wondered what Easter folk tradition you are? Well this weekend could be your time to find out.
Historic England has created an online quiz where you can learn about everything from egg rolling to Morris dancing.
Check it out here: historicengland.org.uk/whats-new/features/easter-traditions.
6. Watch Fleabag for charity
The stage version of hit TV show Fleabag, created by Phoebe Waller-Bridge, is available to stream on demand through the Soho Theatre’s website: www.sohotheatreondemand.com.
Viewers can choose different purchase amount options, with the money going to charities helping to stop the coronavirus pandemic.
7. Get stuck in to a creative Easter challenge
The teams at Sunderland Culture have pulled together a whole two weeks’ worth of family fun and creative challenges.
Every day they are uploading a new activity, with downloadable instructions available on their website: sunderlandculture.org.uk/easter-family-online-programme.
Challenges so far have included putting together your own stained glass Easter egg and a dinosaur knowledge test.
8. Make a tiny revolution
Fun Palaces, a campaign aiming to support the creation of cultural and community events, has been collating a joyful list of “tiny revolutions of connection” for people to try out.
The activities suggested on its website (funpalaces.co.uk) from around the UK will help keep you entertained during the long lockdown hours.
They include making your own table tennis game, learning Scots Gaelic, creating a community quilt or even putting a message in a bottle.
9. Stream a play or musical online
Theatre fans can tune in to the National Theatre’s YouTube channel to watch a production of Jane Eyre: youtube.com/user/ntdiscovertheatre.
A collaboration with Bristol Old Vic, the free performance is available until April 16 and is part of the National Theatre’s At Home programme.
If musicals are more your thing, Lord Andrew Lloyd-Webber has launched The Shows Must Go On! channel online: www.andrewlloydwebber.com/the-shows-must-go-on.
It plans to regularly broadcast Lord-Webber’s hit shows, and on Good Friday it will stream for free a production of Jesus Christ Superstar at 7pm.
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