Last night was lovely. A quintessential #onlyinlondon occasion. A date. Me and my Lovely Boy. Tickets to the London Philharmonic Orchestra. In the courtyard of the Royal Academy of Arts. The programme was inspired by the current Impressionism exhibition (as yet unseen... bad, bad...) but was just so beautiful.
I don't have the lexicon to speak about the music with any sort of authority, but set within the breathtaking courtyard of the RA, between the Society of Antiquaries to the right and the Royal Society of Chemistry to the left, with the occasional A380 lumbering overhead, it was just so very lovely. Ambience at an all-time high as dusk fell with Pimms for me, beer for the boy and a free tote bag to boot. So civilised.
A lot of people don't realise that the Royal Academy is a privately funded institution and has been since it's establishment in 1768 by George III. What I love about it is that it's led by the Royal Academicians - artists and architects nominated by their peers - including currently Tracey Emin, Anish Kapoor and Grayson Perry, who apparently turned up to sign his name in the official register dressed as his tranvestite alter-ego Claire.
I love the RA, despite it's slightly fusty catering to the Dear Old Ducks Brigade. The romance and the history of the place never fails to inspire me. This isn't a plug for work but this is a short film we made, right back when the site launched, that gives a brilliant insight into the Academy via its archivist Mark Pomeroy.
But back to the concert. I'd read about it while idly "researching" at work and booked the tickets on an immediate whim, being the bargain price of £12 a piece. I'm trying to make sure we do as many of these iconic, memorable "London" things as we can before the time not so eventually comes when we pack up and move back to the beach. Not sure when exactly that will be but soon enough if time keeps flying like it is.
After the concert we ambled up through Piccadilly Circus to Soho and had a late, quick dinner at Tonkotsu, a little ramen bar that Lovely Boy had read about. It was good. Very good. And then it was home to bed.