Lauren Laverne launches "genius" Museums at Night 2011 at Kensington Palace

By Richard Moss | 31 March 2011
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a photo of a young woman in a room full of outsized puppets
Museums at Night Ambassador Lauren Laverne in the Enchanted Palace© Culture24. Image: Charlotte Macpherson
Broadcaster, DJ and Museums at Night 2011 Ambassador Lauren Laverne was at the former Royal residence of Kensington Palace last night (March 30 2011) for the official launch of Museums at Night 2011. 

The nocturnal programme of cultural openings takes place during the weekend of May 13-15, with hundreds of museums, galleries and historic properties opening their doors for special events and tours during the hours of darkness.

The Culture Show presenter said she was "absolutely thrilled" to be involved, predicting a vintage year for the campaign before warming to the nocturnal theme.

“What I love about the idea is that it is at night-time,” she said. “The human imagination is inherently nocturnal. We all think creatively and we’re all so much more open at night.

“I also think that night is the time when everybody is themselves. We’re not at work, we’re not being what we do, we are who we are, everybody is a kid again, everybody is receptive to new ideas and new experiences so I think Museums at Night is just a genius thing really."

The presenter also highlighted the sheer range of events already planned for May - from ghost tours and art house film screenings in unusual locations to sleepovers and city-wide museum and gallery celebrations.

“Absolutely anything you can imagine is going to be happening, and of course our imaginations are going to be primed to accept it, which I think is wonderful.” 

a blonde woman wearing a golden coat in a room filled with sparse birch trees and display cases
© Culture 24. Photo Charlotte Macpherson
She also confessed to being excited about an event in her native North-East.

“Durham Cathedral is doing storytelling – the spooky storytelling of MR James – in the cloisters,” she said.  “And then they have an art exhibition and all sorts of stuff including a concert.”

The Museums at Night Ambassador later joined guests for a sneak preview of what awaits visitors to Kensington Palace during the open weekend.

With the help of explainers and costumed characters, guests were led through the majestic Royal Rooms and apartments of the Historic Royal Palace for a special twilight tour of their acclaimed exhibition the Enchanted Palace. 

The interactive installation of mysterious objects includes dresses designed by Zandra Rhodes and Viviennne Westwood and gowns from the Royal Collection as well as giant puppets, enchanted forests and other weird and wonderful artefacts recalling the lives of seven Royal princesses.

More on the venues and organisations we've mentioned:
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