This April marks 400 years since Shakespeare 's death, and Watermans is going all out to mark the milestone.

The riverside arts centre in Brentford is celebrating the Bard's life and works in its own quirky style, with a weekend of cabaret, hip hop and even a macabre twist on the classic word game Hangman.

Its Shakespeare Reloaded Weekender promises to dust off the wordsmith's oeuvre and give it a bit of a twist to make it accessible to modern audiences of all ages.

The Ruby Dolls Cabaret

One of the highlights of the weekend, from Friday, April 22 to Sunday, April 24, will be a Friday night show by the Hip Hop Shakespeare Company.

Founded by MOBO and BAFTA-winning rapper Akala the Hip Hop, the group has worked with the likes of Ed Sheeran and Sir Ian McKellan to make Shakespeare relevant and exciting to young people.

Their cabaret-style show in Watermans' bar promises to blend the boundaries between literature and pop culture with a medley of songs, raps and funky beats inspired by the great man's plays and sonnets.


The Hip Hop Shakespeare Company

  • Friday, April 22, 8.30pm

Hip Hop Shakespeare Cabaret (£15)

Shakespeare as you've never seen it before, with the Bard's works repackaged into an array of songs, raps and funky beats

  • Saturday, April 23, 9pm

The Ruby Dolls Cabaret (18+) with If Music Be the Food of Love… (£12.50)

More musical Shakespeare, with the wordsmith's works chanelled through tunes from the likes of Radiohead, Beyonce and Barbara Streisand

The Ruby Dolls Cabaret
  • Sun 24 April, 3pm

Comedy Club 4 Kids (6+) (£8)

The best on the stand-up circuit clean up their acts to provide family-friendly sets

  • Saturday and Sunday (various times)

Genetic Moo present Enter the Tempest (FREE)

A drop-in interactive play space where you can act out your very own island adventure, with sensors capturing your movements and projecting you onto a colourful animated landscape

Enter the Tempest, by Genetic Moo
  • Friday to Sunday, all day

Living Wall, presented by Squidsoup (FREE)

Interactive digital projection composed of animated Shakespeare texts and quotes

  • Friday to Sunday, all day

A Winter's Tale Treasure Hunt, presented by Wimbledon School of Arts (FREE)

Follow the trail in a magical world created using props and costumes from The Winter's Tale

  • Saturday and Sunday, various times

L_ve Hangman (all ages), by Mufti Games (FREE)

A life-sized 3D version of the classic game, reimagined as a macabre 70s light-entertainment gameshow, in which the fate of the condemned is in your hands

L_ve Hangman, by Mufti Games
  • Saturday, various times

Chickenshed Drama Workshops (children 4-16) (£6)

Shakespearean-themed drama workshops from this ever-popular company

CINEMA – all films just £5

  • Friday, April 22, 6.15pm

A Midsummer Night’s Sex Comedy (15)

Zany and off the wall comedy starring Woody Allen and Mia Farrow

  • Saturday, April 23, 11am

Gnomeo & Juliet (PG)

Animated fun and games loosely based on the famous play

  • Saturday, April 23, 1pm

The Taming of the Shrew (PG)

Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton star

  • Saturday, April 23, 3.45pm

Othello (15)

Kenneth Branagh and Laurence Fishbourne star in this chilling and erotically charged film

  • Saturday, April 24, 2pm

West Side Story (PG)

The classic film musical based on Romeo and Juliet

* For full listings, and to book tickets, visit the Watermans website .