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The Great Exhibition returns to South Kensington 2019

The Great Exhibition returns to South Kensington

By Maurice Shasha  //  Fri 21st June 2019
During a weekend packed with events, it brings together science and the arts in a unique programme of creative workshops, talks, exhibitions and performances.
The Great Exhibition Road Festival, taking place from 28 to 30 June, promises to be a celebration of curiosity and discovery - very much in the spirit of the Great Exhibition of 1851.

During a weekend packed with events, it brings together science and the arts in a unique programme of creative workshops, talks, exhibitions and performances.

You can build your own theremin (a musical instrument you play without touching it), take a LGBT tour of the V&A, have a go on a flight simulator or meet insects aboard the Royal Parks' bugmobile.

A series talks sheds light on the work scientists and experts – from astrophysicist to beetle curator. Another features human exploration from Antarctica to Mars. There’s music too, with live performances including jazz, classical, musical theatre and world music.

Children can have a go with a brass instrument – possibly one to avoid – build a 3D stegosaurus or hear what it takes to become an astronaut who searches for alien life.

The original Great Exhibition was an epic showcase of Victorian Britain’s industrial, engineering and technological might, all housed within a purpose-built Crystal Palace in Hyde Park. It even included the world's first flushing public toilets.

The whole Exhibition Road area was a lasting legacy of the event, built using profits from the original exhibition.

The 2019 festival brings together more than 20 organisations, based in the area, including the Natural History Museum, Science Museum, Imperial College and the V&A.

According to the organisers: “Since the Great Exhibition of 1851, this road is where engineers, artists, educators and scientists from around the globe have reimagined the future. Their common spark? Curiosity.

“The festival will celebrate this spirit of innovation by bringing the arts, science and culture out onto the road we share. Plus, there’s plenty to explore across the institutions, galleries and museums on Exhibition Road and beyond.”

Events are free but some require booking. Read more on the Great Exhibition Road Festival website and in the Londonist.

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