Museum lates in February

  • 29 January 2014

From dinosaurs to musical tours, poetry readings to film screenings, we bring you some of the most exciting after-hours events taking place at museums and galleries this February.

1. Brighton Museum & Art Gallery

Love Late, 6 February

Reduced price with National Art Pass

BMAG teams up with Brighton Dome to host a special Valentine's-themed party exploring the science of attraction​. Sup on cocktails, listen to live music or dance at the silent disco before getting decked out in finds from the fancy dress box or taking on one of the drop-in salsa classes. Also on the night, writer Emily Dubberley reads extracts from her latest book, Garden of Desires: The Evolution of Women's Sexual Fantasies.

Open 7-10pm. Tickets £4 with National Art Pass if bought in advance. (£5 for standard advance, £7 on the door.) To book, call 03000 290902 (Mon-Fri) or buy in person at the venues.

2. The Hepworth Wakefield

Standard Deviation, 20 February

Free to all

The Standard Deviation Quartet – led by former Young Jazz Musician of the Year, saxophonist Matt Anderson – will be performing live at the gallery as part of its late-night opening. The group's highly melodic, song-based approach includes fresh interpretations of standard repertoire by composers such as Cole Porter and Irving Berlin.

Gallery, shop and cafe open 6-8pm.

3. Keats House

Late Night Keats – Valentines, 14 February

Standard entry charge

What could be more romantic than spending Valentine's night in this beautiful Regency House, former residence of poet John Keats? The evening's entertainment includes a torch-lit tour exploring the writer's work, romance and heartbreak as well as live readings that reveal the more surreal side of love poetry.

Open 6.30-9.30pm. Tickets £8 (including a glass of bubbly). Booking essential via Eventbrite.

4. Manchester Art Gallery

Musical tour of the gallery, 6 February

Free to all

Performing lyrical witty-ditties inspired by the gallery's Victorian collection, singer-songwriter Black Jack Barnet guides visitors through the stories of some of Manchester Art Gallery’s best-loved paintings.

Open 7-8pm. No need to book.

5. National Portrait Gallery

Late Shift, every Thursday and Friday

Free to all

Live music, drop in drawing classes, guest DJs and gallery tours are among National Portrait Gallery's late night offerings, which take place every Thursday and Friday evening. Particular highlights for February include a Valentine's Day recital of alternative love poetry by Jeremy Reed, who will be accompanied by sonic soundscaper Itchy Ear. Meanwhile, on 20 February a special screening of Michelangelo Antonioni's Blow-Up will celebrate the newly opened photography exhibition, Bailey's Stardust.

Events from 6.30pm. See the website for full programme.

6. Natural History Museum

Wildlife Photographer of the Year After Hours, 28 February

50% off with National Art Pass

Miss the throng of schoolchildren and see the exhibition after hours at the Natural History Museum's monthly late night opening. As well as pop-up bars and restaurants, special tours of the permanent displays will introduce you to dinosaurs, whales and important treasures, while other entertainment includes speed-sketching and and live performances from a roster of open-mic-night musicians​. ​

7. Royal Academy

Sensing Spaces Friday Night Late, 21 February

Standard entry charge for late event

To celebrate the Sensing Spaces exhibition, Royal Academy invites Mercury Music prize nominees Portico to perform a live set inspired by the display. The evening will also include clay face-mask meditation, crowd-sourced poetry, a roaming violinist and tubist, live performance art and edible sandcastles​.

Open 6.30-10pm. Tickets £14 (includes one free drink). Booking essential via the Time Out website.

8. V&A

Hackney Wick Takeover, 28 February

Free to all

The third in a series of V&A lates that invite London's creative communities to take over the Museum for an evening. This instalment comes from the community of artists and designers who work behind the factory walls of Hackney Wick and Fish Island, where rocketing land values, partly fuelled by the Olympic Park, now mean that the makeshift, DIY occupation of the area is increasingly under threat.

Open 6.30-10pm.