I give London art tours of St. James’s galleries and men’s fashion heritage tours of Jermyn Street and Savile Row. I also give talks on plays and host question-and answer sessions at Jermyn Street Theatre, where I am the Education Officer.
To support my work at the theatre, I began giving the tour called the Jermyn Street Experience in April 2014. The tour so stimulated my interest in the history of men’s fashion that I decided to research the history of Savile Row — its houses, traditional shops, its royal and Hollywood celebrities and, most importantly, what those celebrities wore and why they wore it. Since January 2015, I have offered the Savile Row Tour, which looks deeply into the craft of fine tailoring.
But there is much more to St. James’s, and for years I have longed to put together tours of the art and antique galleries on Duke, Ryder, Bury, and King streets, and likewise tell the 18th-century story of how the great British public finally gained access to the masterworks of European art and learned — awkwardly at times, and not without humour — to love their own painters. As of February 2017, I can now offer the St. James’s Art Tour and show my small groups around galleries displaying 16th-century armour, 17th-century Italian paintings, 18th-century porcelain and fine furniture, 19th-century French paintings and British maps, plus modern installations, abstract and pop art, political cartoons and children’s book illustrations.
Mastering the deep history of a few streets plus the individual shop and gallery histories and the histories of the exquisite products on offer is proving an exciting, ongoing challenge. I very much hope that the opportunity my tours provide to learn more about the St. James’s area will also encourage people to discover the delights of what is on offer at Jermyn Street Theatre.
Regarding my past theatre work, I have given talks and written articles and programme notes on dozens of plays, all of which are listed here under Theatre Talks. My programme notes are published here in full as well. I would love to hold casual introductory discussions on plays currently produced at Jermyn Street Theatre or indeed any theatre in London with private groups (as few as one or two people even). Simply contact me and ask.