Category Archives: entertainment

Words of a cosplayer

In the millennial era, with a radical modernization of almost every industry. The entertainment industry has seen amass different categories of hobbies, jobs and interests.

Cosplaying is a fairly old practice starting from 1984, but with the help of social media applications like TikTok, YouTube and Instagram. Cosplaying is a hobby in which a person may recreate physical and verbal elements of a character in a movie, TV show or game.

There are now so many new cosplayers more than ever that, countries around the world are emerging in support of this new trend by hosting events and it has become a very lucrative industry.

Books for vaccines charity campaign begins

Thriller writer and editorial director at HarpersCollins, Phoebe Morgan, has set up a charity auction called “Books for Vaccines”. The writer is trying to accrue financial donations and prizes for the charity, and she has organised 50 prizes so far.

According to Morgan, “auction lots can be signed books, book bundles, 1-2-1s from literary agents for aspiring writers, Zoom mentoring sessions or phone calls from anyone in the industry who has time to spare to help someone trying to get a foot in the door, particularly tricky at the moment and basically anything of value that is book related.”

The auction will raise money for the global charity Care International which works with 104 countries. The money raised will go to places like India where the pandemic crisis is raining tragically in full swing.

This page is a simple guide to help you get involved.

The auction goes live today and will run until the 21st of May.

Live Reporting: Life at the ZSL London Zoo after lockdown

Various tourist attractions have finally opened their doors for visitors after a frustrating period of stagnation. One of them is the ZSL London Zoo, known as the oldest scientific zoo in the world. Today you will learn how this zoo operates after the lockdown.

Back in March last year, with the incoming of which would be the first of three planned national lockdowns, ZSL was forced to close the gates with thousands of animals inside. 

“We’ve been a part of our local community for almost 200 years, and with your support, are determined to be for at least 200 more.” Described ZSL Director General, Dominic Jermey when interviewed by the Hampstead Highgate Express.

Video from when they opened for the first time since lockdown was lifted in 2020:

Video Courtesy of ITV

The second lockdown once again affected the ZSL by cutting short their plans to bring in their winter finery and decorations. 

“We had been counting on Christmas to raise funds, and on December 4 we were excited to reopen as a festive wonderland with decorations and one-way trails. But as London plunged into Tier 4, we had to close again.” Told Dominic Jermey to the Hampstead Highgate Express. 

According to Metro, national lockdowns brought harmful financial issues to the ZSL London Zoo.

“Feeding the animals costs around £1 million a month, and the latest lockdown will cost the zoo another £1.8 million blow – on top of the £15 million pound loss last year.”

Sky News reported that in 2020, with visitors to the zoo declining due to the harsh months of continuous gate closures and persistent pandemic, the British bank Barclays decided to help the company with its debts, offering a £20 million loan to assist them. 
Nevertheless, the financial problems seem to persist and the inflow of new revenues is needed to move forward as soon as possible.

So now that the third and final lockdown is over, the most desired and definitive opening has come at the right timing. 

“Spending a second Easter break closed was a disappointment which has been keenly felt across the charity. By reopening day on April 12, London Zoo will have been closed for 29 weeks.” Said Dominic Jermey in his article with the Hampstead Highgate Express. 

Since 12 April 2021, the ZSL London Zoo welcomes visitors again. However, the ZSL official website announced some rules that people who want to come have to follow. Watch the video down below to find out about the new safety requirements:

Video Courtesy of ZSL – Zoological Society of London

On 27 April 2021, the newest addition, Asiatic lioness Arya joined the ZSL.

Arya was relocated from her previous home at Paignton Zoo in Devon to her new loving place at ZSL London Zoo.

This 4 year old lioness happens to be the daughter of a fellow lion who found his former home at ZSL, making this transfer a very special one for her. 

Her’s is an endangered species only found in India, with a total of about several hundred Asiatic lions in the wild.

Video Courtesy of Reuters

This sounds like exciting news for the zoo, but some people online have shared their opinions too. Here are some Tweets:

Now  there are a total of 20,329 animals and 438 species in the ZSL London Zoo, including eye-catching Asiatic lions, Okapis, Humboldt penguins and Two-toed sloths.

Some Humboldt penguins taking a swim this morning

The ZSL, which is 36-acre (15-hectare), was opened in 1828, and in 1830 received first additions from Windsor and the Tower of London menageries.

In 1849, the ZSL London Zoo introduced the first reptile house to the world and, in 1853, the very first public aquarium.

In Dunstable, Bedfordshire, the Whipsnade Zoo, a country branch of ZSL, was opened in 1931 by the Zoological Society of London. This branch of the ZSL is 600-acre (240-hectare) and currently has 9,694 animals.

A young lovely family of three, came to the ZSL London Zoo this morning. This is not their first visit, and they feel happy that the zoo is operating again.

“Definitely very beneficial for the kids. They enjoy the zoo and the animals very much” says Myat, and then she added that people should pay a visit as soon as they can.

Zoe, who has also visited the ZSL in the past, is satisfied with her experience today and recommends others to come.

“It’s definitely educational for children and adults. I love it.”

Despite the challenging period, the ZSL London Zoo operates again and welcomes the customers with unforgettable animals, hot pizza, sweet candy floss, spinning carousels and breath-taking experiences.

And will hopefully be able to recover, look after the animals and successfully continue to put smiles on people’s faces for the years to come.

Want to read more global COVID-19 news? Check out our interactive map.

by Daniele Kieraite and Saray Ramiro Fernandez

Wild Weather Weekend

We’re in for a weekend of mixed weather in London, with rain, clouds and some sunshine. Today is expected to remain sunny but chilly, with temperatures around 14 degrees.

Heavy rain is forecast for most of Saturday, so maybe it’s one for a day of staying inside and cosying up in front of the telly with a nice hot drink.

But don’t worry, it will be getting warmer. Sunday is expected to see highs of 19 degrees in London. If you’re making plans, we recommend holding out until then seen as all socialising has to be done outdoors.

But now that certain restrictions on outdoor hospitality have lifted, there are some great things you can get up to in London. Check out our interactive map of Fun things to do in London this weekend.

Photo by Chait Goli on Pexels.com

Fun things to do in London this weekend

With at least one sunny day coming up this weekend, it’s time to go out and celebrate our new freedom from certain lockdown restrictions.

Whether you’re a fan of thrifting in vintage markets or are looking to find some of the most peaceful parks to escape into, our interactive map should be your go-to guide.

As of April 12, pub gardens, outdoor attractions and gyms are now open, and London has some of the best to offer. Here are some of the highlights…

Greenwich Market

Fancy a bite to eat? Greenwich Market has loads of tasty options: from pizza to sushi, everyone’s tastes are met. Check out what this TikTok user got up to…

@theresriceathome

FOLLOW IG: @theres_rice_at_home for the specific food reviews 💛 #foryou #foryoupage #fyp #food #london #greenwich #greenwichmarket

♬ Food – Densky9

Hyde Park

What’s better than chilling with friends in a park now that the rule of six is back? When there’s parakeets! Who knew these birds would eat straight out of your hand! Check out Ariane Hine’s TikTok below…

Check out our interactive map below

From outdoor swimming to drive-in cinemas, you won’t run out of things to do

Now you know what’s in store for this weekend, we want to hear what you’re most excited for. Let us know by voting in the poll below…

Featured image credit to Lucas Peng on Unsplash

Grammys 2021: Top 5 looks from the red carpet

Awards season is finally here. With the Golden Globes just passed, and the Oscars and Emmys coming up – we’ve got a lot to look forward to.

The 63rd Grammy Awards kicked off on March 14 at the Staples Centre in California. 

In true awards ceremony style – the event wasn’t short of drama. Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion’s ‘WAP’ performance received 80 complaints from viewers, who called it “pornographic”, according to NME. Whilst Lizzo slipped out a swear word whilst presenting an award.

Everyone knows that the best part is the celebrity outfits – nothing beats the red carpet glamour. From Dua Lipa’s glittered gown to Chloe Bailey’s golden get-up – we’ve rounded up the best looks of the night: 

Harry Styles turned heads in a mint-green feather bower. The faux accessory was paired over a black leather Gucci suit. He received Best Pop Solo Performance for ‘Watermelon Sugar’. 

Dua Lipa stepped out in a shimmering Versace number that featured a sequin butterfly torso. The pink dress was teamed with square toe heels and purple glitter eyeshadow. The singer was awarded Best Pop Vocal Album for Future Nostalgia. 

Lizzo stunned in a pastel green dress with ruched detailing. The ‘Good as Hell’ singer accessorised the Balmain look with diamond jewellery from Bulgari. 

Chloe Bailey sported a golden Louis Vuitton gown that featured a thigh-high split and delicate spaghetti straps. To complete the look – the star wore sheer elbow-length gloves and platform boots. 

Jhené Aiko styled a baby pink two-piece by Monsoori with pearl jewellery. The tulle layered skirt had a five-foot-long train and ruffled detailing at the front. The R’n’B singer was nominated for Best Album.

Featured image credit: Pixabay

Art reporter: a journalist in art circle

Yaojie Chen

Chen Yaojie

Senior art media person

“Art reporters should first understand the history of art, and then be familiar with the circle.”

Chen Yaojie has been an art media professional for six years.

Studying in Sichuan Academy of fine arts, he majored in art history. With relevant professional background and teacher’s recommendation, Chen Yaojie came to Beijing to work for an art website.

At that time, the art media industry – even not limited to the art industry, in the whole press – was in the “best era”.

For a long time, the most important forms of media, namely magazines, newspapers and other print media, gradually declined under the impact of the Internet. At that time, wechat had not yet been born, and ipone had just reached 4. Compared with the mobile terminal, most people were still used to watching news on the PC.

Nowadays, people’s reading methods are rewritten by mobile phone, and more and more art and media based on app and official account are emerging in the industry.

The heyday of the “Royal three” online media has passed, but its influence is still on. Whenever there is a new exhibition that needs to be publicized, these websites are still the objects that organizations most want to cooperate with.

Six years ago, Chen Yaojie was an editor.

Chen Yaojie’s work. (picture provided by interviewee)

Journalists and editors need to contribute as well. However, unlike the original reporter’s manuscripts, editors mostly compile and integrate the existing materials on the Internet, or simply “move the news from other places to their own websites”. Chen Yaojie jokingly called himself an “Internet migrant worker”: “every day to the company, is to upload news, and then each channel update down.”

Although the work is basic, it is already in the industry. After a period of editing work, Chen Yaojie became familiar with this circle.

“To be an art media, there are two aspects of accumulation: first, we need to understand some basic concepts of art history, such as Impressionism and abstract performance. You need to know what they are. The second is to be familiar with the art circle. At least Zhang Xiaogang and Fang Lijun put forward that you should know who they are. “

Gradually, Chen Yaojie was sent to run some activities and write some simple reports on the exhibition site. After his writing ability was recognized, Chen Yaojie began to interview artists, critics, curators, institutions and auction houses.

At first, he was responsible for listing problems and arranging recordings. With more and more contacts and deeper qualifications and abilities, Chen Yaojie has been able to write the most difficult topics: industry observation and topical articles.

Among the topics of art media, a few topics are the hot topics in the industry that have entered the public vision, such as the “geyulu” event some time ago; or the hot exhibitions that have attracted attention from important institutions, such as the team lab exhibition in Beijing in Perth; or the influential art events at home and abroad, such as Venice Biennale, Cassel literature exhibition, major expositions, etc.; and other industries The major events and new tendencies of the press depend on the art fields that each reporter focuses on.

All about the Grammy: how the elite music awards began

Every year the Grammy Awards shake the media and provoke the people’s curiosity regarding which famous singer will win and how many musicians will rock the melody world.

Grammy (Gramophone Awards) or The Grammy Awards are the American music awards ceremony that takes place every year.

Initially, the creators of the celebration wanted to name it the Eddie Awards, in honour of Thomas Edison, as he invented the phonograph, but the final choice was Gramophone Awards after the gramophone, made by Emile Berliner.

According to Britannica, the first event dates to 1959, and then 28 rewards were given to significant figures like Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald, and the Kingston Trio.

The winners are gifted a tiny gilded gramophone as a prize. John Billings holds the company Billings Artworks that are responsible for making the Gramophone Awards prize. The process of production did not change a lot since the start, as trophies remain to be handmade.

Interview with John Billings. Source: TheMusicVoyager

Who is worthy of an accolade decides the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences (NARAS), known as the Recording Academy or Latin Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences (LARAS), often identified as the Latin Recording Academy.

The members of both Recording Academies remain a mystery. However, in 2020 The Rolling Stone claimed that there are 12,000 voters, who pick approximately 20 competitors for every category by a popular vote, but committees are only allowed to express their voice in their areas of knowledge.

Later five nominees are chosen for every award and a winner in the end. Victorious artists are selected from more than 25 music domains that include genres like pop, rock, rap, R&B, country, reggae, classical, gospel, and jazz also production and postproduction results containing packaging and album notes. Four general rewards are handed for a record, album, song of the year, and best new artist. More than 75 awards are given altogether during the ceremony, a highlight of the voting.

Artists who try to compete for an award have to release a song or music video in the US from 1 October last year, till the midnight of 30 September, because this period counts as the Grammy year. To fit for a Latin Grammy, a song could be released anywhere globally, but it must be recorded in the Spanish or Portuguese language between 1 July of the previous year and 30 June of the award year.

Submissions are sent by the record companies and the academy members and are inspected to decide eligibility and category placement. Successful contestants show up in The Grammy Awards TV ceremony, where the winners are announced.

Over the years, The Grammy Awards received criticism surrounding transparency and even racism. However, the event is still well-recognised by the media and music industry, and the ceremony catches the attention of the professionalism of presenters and iconic looks.

Featured Image belongs to Sudhith Xavier on Unsplash

Live music industry under major threat

In 2019 the music industry was worth £5.2bn to the British economy and the live music sector was breaking the £1bn barrier.

Revenues from different sectors in the music industry from Report Music by Numbers 2019 by Music UK https://www.ukmusic.org/assets/general/Music_By_Numbers_2019_Report.pd

The chief executive of UK Theatre and the Society of London Theatre, Julian Bird communicated that in their  “latest survey (…) 70% of theatres or production companies, both, would run out of cash and go out of business by the end of this year. That was consistent whether you looked at London, the rest of the UK – whether you looked at subsidised organisations or commercial organisations. It was consistently around 70% for everybody.”

In an open letter, more than 1400 artists are calling on the UK government to come up with solutions against the total collapse due to the coronavirus pandemic. Biggest names in rock and pop music such as Paul McCartney, the Rolling Stones, Radiohead, Muse, Eric Clapton, Iron Maiden, Bring Me The Horizon, Ed Sheeran, Rita Ora, Coldplay, Annie Lennox, The Cure, Phil Collins have decided to unite their voices and spread this message in the music world. They are warning that a lack of support and continued uncertainty is having a devastating impact in one of the world’s biggest live music market. 

In the joint letter, the artists say:

“UK live music has been one of the UK’s biggest social, cultural, and economic successes of the past decade. From world-famous festivals to ground-breaking concerts, the live music industry showcases, supports, and develops some of the best talent in the world – on and off-stage. As important as it is, our national and regional contribution isn’t purely cultural.

Artists urged their fans to post pictures and videos of the last shows they attended before lockdown using the hashtag #LetTheMusicPlay. 

During the lockdown, artists have found alternative ways of sharing their craft such as livestreams and digital content. In regards to this matter, Bird also mentioned that the in the streaming model it’s not the musicians who are put first. Majority of them are surviving on hardship funds.

As the fourth largest music market in the world, the appeal notes that state support for live music is way behind many other European countries. France and Germany for example have used public money to kickstart their concert industries post-Covid19. 

The UK music industry is asking for more information concerning the reopening of venues, big and small and without social distancing. Once these venues reopen, businesses demand a full VAT exemption on ticket sales. In the meantimes, a comprehensive business and employment support package and access to finance. The package should include a government backed insurance scheme  with rent breaks for venues to allow them to reopen and financial support for lost box-office income. 

Artists are wondering what the landscape is going to look like on the other side of this crisis. Many of them are afraid that if the government doesn’t step up “vital aspects of the british culture will be lost forever” says Emily Eavis, the organiser of the Glastonbury festival. A long term impact could be indeed, devastating. 

(Featured Image credit: UK Music)

How the fashion industry has assisted during the pandemic

The outbreak of the coronavirus is still lingering in the air. With the NHS on the frontline across the UK, there has been a drop in stock for medical garments.

We had begun this crisis in an ‘act-fast’ movement, whereby panic shopping was at its peak. The government have put in place various restrictions on buying goods that have now flat-lined. However, the shortage of supplies for precautious gear has seen to come as a demand, especially now that we are advised to use PPE (personal protective equipment); such as masks.

As the pandemic has caused most stores to close, this has affected the distribution for supplies. Although there are many online distributors still operating; receiving stock will be delayed or even cancelled due to less transfers depending on the departure location. This has taken a toll on the NHS, whereby there is a lack of scrubs and protective gear to ensure that they are equipped sufficiently.

It goes without notice that the fashion industry has adapted to this health crisis. Throughout this period, there have been fabric suppliers donating materials to make scrubs and masks for the NHS, along with the help of fashion students.

Interview with a Fabric Retailer – The Director of Classic Textiles UK Ltd, Aniza Meghani

Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

How have you been able to adapt to this recent pandemic?

Have you had customers approach you for help?

The Director of Classic Textiles explains that the Queens dressmaker, Stuart Parvin has been in contact with her for fabrics, to ensure scrubs and masks are made for the NHS.

Do you believe the lockdown has effected your business?

She explains that the store is open only for an hour for booked-in clientele, who wish to help the NHS during this pandemic.

After the lockdown is lifted are you going to take any further precautions when opening?

The help of online presence through retail

The fashion market have been able to make a statement even in lockdown. While their online presence still stands, they are pushing their creativity to build a foundation for the NHS and for charities across the UK; to give back to the community.

  • Pretty Little Thing: The PLT crew have designed T-shirts to support the NHS with 100% of proceeds to be donated to the heroes.
  • Trapstar London: The well-known brand are using their creativity to help out during this health crisis, by designing garments for their ‘Charity Collection’. All proceedings will be donated to support London based charities and key workers.
  • Boohoo: The online retailer have developed attire with the symbolic rainbow print to spread love and faith during the pandemic. All profits will go to the NHS Trusts.
  • Asos: Known for their ‘Asos Supports’ community, the British retailer have designed unisex charity T-shirts and hoodies in support for frontline heroes. 100% of sales from this collection will be donated to charities that are supporting local NHS trusts.

What about Europe?

Photo by Gustavo Fring from Pexels
  • Intidex: The textiles manufacturer commonly associated with Zara has produced medical garments for Spain.
  • Prada: In Milan, the co-CEOs and chairman of Prada have assisted three hospitals by donating intensive care and resuscitation units.
  • H&M: The Swedish retailer known for its fast-fashion market, have helped the EU through sharing purchasing operations and logistics to provide supplies via donation. As some retailers have cancelled orders for manufactured products, H&M is the first retailer to agree to pay its suppliers for cancellation according to just-style.

Featured Photo by Suzy Hazelwood from Pexels

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