Tag Archives: チケット

2012 Olympic National Hospitality Houses: Czech House @ Business Design Centre, Islington

五輪期間中、ビジターに自国の歴史や文化を紹介したり、自国の選手たちをサポートする、約30の「Olympic National Hospitality Houses(ホスピタリティー・ハウス)」が、ロンドン各地にオープン。欧米諸国や日本、韓国、ブラジル、ジャマイカ、ケニア、ナイジェリア、ニュージーランド、2022年ワールドカップのホスト国・カタール、そしてアフリカ53カ国共同のAfrica Village等、イベントやパブリック・ビューイング等で来客をもてなした。Africa Villageが資金難のために早期閉館したり(BBC)、ニュージーランドのKiwi HouseがBBQで火事騒動を起こしたり(The Telegraph)とトラブルもあったが、全体的には好評だったようだ。2020年東京オリンピック招致活動が目的のジャパンハウスは、入館がIOC関係者かJapan Society会員、日本人駐在員に限定されていたのが残念。震災・津波で激減した観光客を呼び戻す格好の機会だったのに。各ハウスを紹介するLondon Townウェブサイトで、ちょっと皮肉っぽい書かれ方をしていたのも当然かも。一般在留日本人はだめで駐在員だけオーケーだったのも不公平だし、オリンピック誘致という目的を考えても意味不明。

せっかくなので色々行きたかったのだけれど、結局、家から近い、エンジェルのBusiness Design CentreでやっていたCzech House(チェコ・ハウス)のみで終わってしまった。ほとんどのホスピタリティハウスはオリンピック閉会と同時に終了してしまったけれど、次回オリンピック開催国ブラジルのCasa Brasilは9月8日までやっているなので、行く機会があればまた報告します。

There were about 30 “Olympic National Hospitality Houses” opened around London during the Olympics to promote their countries and cultures as well as support their athletes. Many European countries as long with New Zealand, Brazil, Jamaica, Japan, Korea, Kenya, Nigeria, and Qatar who hosts 2020 World Cup had offered an array of events and activities for visitors. 53 African countries teamed together to  put on a Africa Village in Hyde Park, though it was forced to prematurely close due to debts outstanding (BBC). Another trouble was NZ’s Kiwi House got a fire incident caused by BBQ (The Telegraph), but overall, those hospitality houses added extra fun to the Games. Japan House was set up to promote Tokyo 2020 and an entry to the house was limited to IOC members and VIP, as well as Japan Society members and Japanese expats (I don’t understand what was to do with expats and Tokyo Olympic bid), and I agree with London Town website‘s sarcastic description about it. They should have also promoted tourism to Japan, which was largely affected by Japan earthquake and Tsunami! To me it is also unfair that only expats could come in but not other Japanese.

I wanted to try out as many hospitality houses, but we went only one, nearby Czech House at Business Design Centre in Angel. Although most of the hospitality houses have now closed, but next Olympic host country Casa Brasil at Somerset House is still open until September 8, and I will talk about it if I have a chance to go.


Entrance fee to Czech House is £5, though we got in for free with a favor from the house. After the entrance to the right was a basket ball court and on the left was a shop selling Olympic Czech national uniforms and accessories. There were canteen offered Czech food as well as tourist bureau and media room upstairs, surrounded the main area. Czech house was popular because hard-to-get Olympic tickets allocated to Czech Olympic committee were sold there (Evening Standard).

よく冷えたチェコのビールPilsner Urquellピルスナー・ウルケル)の生が味わえるカウンター。

Czech’s cold draft beer Pilsner Urquell was sold at the bar counter.


Main space with futuristic design, celebrating with the athletes, panoramic projection, music, and exhibitions. Pretty young ladies in tricolore costumes, inspired by Czech national flag were popular among male visitors.

チェコハウス前に設置された、チェコ人アーティスト・David Černý(ダヴィッド・チェルニー)が製作した「London Booster」。ロンドン名物・ルートマスターが腕立て伏せをするというユニークなコンセプトと外観で、かなり話題を呼んだ。本人曰く、この作品は、オリンピックに訪れた「太ったアメリカ人」にエクササイズを奨励するためのものだそうだが、イギリスをはじめとするヨーロッパでも肥満が問題となってるので、アメリカ人のみをターゲットとするのはどうかと思うが。

“London Booster”, created by Czech artist David Černý in front of Czech House. This London’s red double decker bus was doing push ups “to encourage ‘fat Americans’ to exercise”, according to him (The Telegraph), but it is too much to attack only Americans as obesity is a big problem in UK as well as other countries.

More Olympic Tickets To Go On Sale

売り切れとされていた人気の試合でさえ空席が目立つ試合もあったと批判されたことを受け、ロンドンオリンピック委員会は、国際競技連盟など関係者・団体と交渉して、配布された未販売・未使用のチケットを回収、再販することにしたと発表した(詳細)。今後もこれらチケット保持者と交渉を行いなるべく多くのチケットを回収、それらのチケットは毎日オリンピック公式サイトで販売されるそう(ガーディアン紙 / テレグラフ紙)。


After the empty seats ordeal at the Olympic games (some of which were filled with soldiers in uniform – didn’t look good at all!), London 2012 Olympic organisers have announced that unsold and unused tickets allocated to international sports federations are collected, and go on sale on the London 2012 website every day from now (the Guardian / the Telegraph).

I had almost given up to see the Olympic with my own eyes as I tried to buy a ticket on the Olympic ticket site but to no avail, and have been just watching on TV. However, I checked the website again after I saw the news, and there were many tickets of interesting games suddenly appeared that I’ve never seen before! Many of the tickets were more expensive classes, and the system didn’t work well as I assume that many people were trying to grab the tickets at the same time, but I managed to buy some finals with one of them for the game at the Olympic Park  (I wanted to experience the festive atmosphere at the main Olympic Park during the Games). Now I am so thrilled!!

The Tallest Building in Europe, The Shard Opens

イタリア人建築家レンゾ・ピアノがデザイン、カタールからの投資金£15億をかけて建設されたヨーロッパ一高いビル(309.6m)、The Shardシャード:破片の意)の落成式が昨日行われた。夜10時15分から始まったレーザーショーがロンドンの夜空を彩ったが、何かの問題で予定通りいかなかったらしく、その評判は芳しくない(independent紙)。ちょっと遠いけれど、うちのバルコニーからシャードのてっぺんが見えるのだけれど、確かに、ここから見てもテレビ映像を見ても、パッとしなかったかも(上のビデオ参照 / 写真)。

シャードは、上から居住フロア、シャングリラ・ホテル、レストラン、最下部はオフィスが入居している。地上約244mの68〜72階にある展望台「View from The Shard」からは最大64kmまでの景色が楽しめ、いつも大口をたたくボリス・ジョンソン市長によると、天気のいい日はフランスも見えると言う(本当か?!)。

展望台は来年2月1日から一般公開される予定で、今日から前売り券の販売が始まった。チケットの予約はシャードのウェブサイトまたは電話(0844 499 7111)で受け付ける。お値段は大人£24.95・子供£18.95と、London Eyeロンドン・アイ、スタンダードチケット£15、エッフェル塔(€14=約£11)、また世界一高いタワーで地上450mの東京スカイツリー展望回廊(3000円=約£24.15)より高い。それでも今日だけで1万7500人もの人が前売り券を購入したという。これはぼったくりだ!と思う方、ロンドン観光の予算が少ない方は、このウェブサイトで、もっとお安くロンドンの景色を楽しめる場所をチェックしてみて。

£1.5 billion funded by Qatari investors and designed by Italian architect Renzo Piano, the tallest building in Europe (309.6m / 1016ft), the Shard was inaugurated yesterday. A light and laser show to celebrate the opening started at 10:15pm yesterday night, but they failed to illuminate the skyline as planned and it didn’t seem to impress spectators (independent). We can see a tip of the Shard from our balcony, and I saw some laser light and also the footage on TV, but it was just ordinary and boring, not spectacular as they claimed… →more photo

The Shard houses residences, Shangri-la hotel, restaurants and offices (from the top to the bottom). From the View from The Shard observation platform in the 68th-72nd floors which some 244m (800ft) high, guests are able to see up to 64km (40 miles) away, and even France when is a clear day, according to the Mayor Boris Johnson.

The View from The Shard will be open to the public from February 1 next year, and from today pre-booking tickets are available through the Shard website or via the box office hotline (0844 499 7111). The tickets cost £24.95 for adults and £18.95 for children, which is much more expensive than London Eye (Standard Ticket £15), the Eiffel Tower (€14 = about £11), and even the tallest tower in the world, new TOKYO SKY TREE Tembo Galleria at 400m higher from the ground (¥3000 = about £24.15)! Over 17,500 people had already registered to secure tickets in advance of their release today. Wow. If you are a budget traveller or think this is a rip-off, check here for alternative ideas to enjoy London’s skyline.

Payment Time for London Olympic Tickets



The London Olympic committee has started to take payment for tickets which was deadlined on April 16 (related entry), after all ballots have been completed. About 1.8 million people made more than 20 million applications for the 6.6 million tickets. Winners will see the charge on their registered accounts from today May 16 until June 10, and will be notified which tickets they win sometime before June 24.

I applied only few cheap tickets and don’t mind to be charged, but people who applied many may be scared to death to see their creditcard or bank statements, without being informed in advance what kind of tickets they win, and how much and exactly when will be charged… Media again criticises the system is not considerate to applicants, and I completely agree that it is a bit annoying.

2012 Olympic Tickets Application Deadline





Hot and sunny Easter Holiday is over now, and London gets back to normal cool spring with usual white sky.

According to today’s news, the six-week application period for 2012 London Olympic tickets will be over at the end of today, and there has been a last minute surge in ticket sales since last Easter weekend. We don’t have any game in mind to see live, but applied the tickets for the opening and closing ceremonies via London 2012 official website, for fun (photo below. I blackened 2 digits for safety). Probably we won’t get it as demand is extremely high, but just trying.

6.6million tickets are available for 650 sessions across 26 sports and 17 days, with prices from £20.12 to £2,012, to be associated with year 2012. Tickets on strong demand are for ceremonies, athletics, swimming, rowing and track cycling (last two are UK’s strongholds). However,  there has also been heavy demand for finals for less popular events. Applications for over-subscribed events will go into a ballot, and applicants will be told whether or not they are successful by June 24.

However, nothing is criticism-free in UK. There is no guidelines available about how many tickets are allocated in each price band, and people apply more than they want to secure the tickets. Successful applicants will be charged on their registered credit cards (only VISA, the sponsor of the olympic) after ballot, but can’t return unwanted tickets to the organisers until next year. There are full of comments on Twitter from such people worrying that they would be in a financial trouble if they would win all the tickets they applied. Good luck to them…

How to Help Japan Earthquake Victims from UK

Vodpod videos no longer available.



↓ 以下は今日集めた支援情報です。その他の支援については昨日のブログもご参照ください。

Today a giant clock placed in Trafalgar Square started counting down 500 days until the start of the London Olympics (BBC news 1), and 6.6 million Olympic tickets became available this morning (BBC news 2). But when I think about the victims of Japan Tohoku earthquake and Tsunami, I am not in a mood at all to celebrate all these Olympic stuffs. The media coverage is still big here in UK, as problems at nuclear power stations haven’t been solved yet. However, strangely the media rarely talks about help that ordinary people can do, rather than official aid from each country. I think I saw more TV commercials and newspaper ads, as well as information for charity on news programs for Haiti earthquake and Boxing Day Tsunami. On the other hand, I feel like Americans, including celebs, are more supportive and helpful, and more information for aids in the US – probably because USA and Japan are important allies.

There are many Japanese living in UK, trying to help the victims, not only donating to charities, but also organizing charity events and concerts, fundraising on a street, exchanging support information on local web community boards and SNS such as facebook and Mixi (Japan’s largest SNS community). The video above was taken from BBC London news, covering Japanese students making Origami cranes and fundraising in front of LSE. I wish the circle of support will spread, not only within Japanese community in UK, but also to British public and people from other countries – yes, Japan is the third largest economy in the world and you may think help is unnecessary, but the damage is enormous with astronomical cost or recovery, and the government has huge debt and the country is still in long-lasting recession. Of course Japanese government and people must help with each other too, but I am afraid it is not enough. Many people in the affected areas are elderly as young generation left for bigger cities and can’t afford to pay 30-year morgage, and fishermen and farmers on the coast are not millionaires as well…

↓ Here is additional information for help. Please also check yesterday’s entry for more information.

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BBC Concert Orchestra – Discovering Music: The Rise of Minimalism


昨日も、その友人に譲ってもらったチケットで、サウスバンク・センター内のQueen Elizabeth Hall(クイーン・エリザベス・ホール)で行われた、BBC Radio 3の「Discovering Music」シリーズの「The Rise of Minimalism」収録に行ってきた。Discovering Musicシリーズは、毎回違ったテーマの音楽を解説する番組で、この日も約2時間半に渡り、指揮者のCharles Hazlewoodが、BBC Concert Orchestraの生演奏や録音した曲を交えながら、ミニマル・ミュージックの歴史やその代表的な作曲家と曲目を詳しく解説。Mがフィリップ・グラススティーヴ・ライヒのファンで、コンサートには何度か行っているのだけれど、この日までミニマル・ミュージックについては基本的な知識しかなかった。ミニマル・ミュージックの特徴である、微妙な変化を加えながら延々と続くリズムの反復に、時にふっと意識がなくなったりした瞬間もあったけれど、解説付きだと、そのジャンルや曲に対する関心も増すもので、とても興味深く聞いた。またこの収録に際して作られた、代表的な作曲家を詳しく解説した20ページに及ぶパンフレットも、ミニマリズムのスタイルでかっこよくデザインされている。

BBC Concert Orchestraによる演奏曲目は、フィリップ・グラスの「The Hours(めぐりあう時間たち)」のサウンドトラック(抜粋)や「Two Pages」、エリック・サティの「ヴェクサシオン(嫌がらせ)」(抜粋)、モートン・フェルドマンの「Structures’ for string quartet」、スティーヴ・ライヒの「ヴァイオリン・フェイズ」など。そしてトリは、この日のメインである、約40分に渡るテリー・ライリーの「In C」。まだオンエアの日程は決まっていなそうだが、放送日が分かったら、是非もう一度聞きたいと思っている。

I had never thought and had no clue about participating a BBC TV or radio program as an audience. But my friend took me to one of the classical music concert recording for BBC radio a while ago, and I was kind of impressed that we could enjoy such a decent live music concert for free. Application of free tickets can be done via online, by phone, fax, text, or mail. Tickets for popular programs can be sold out quickly, so it is a good idea to join their mailing list that send you program and event information via e-mail, and apply the ticket of your choice right away. BBC issues tickets more than its capacity, so you have to come to a venue more than 1 hour earlier of the start and be on the queue to secure your seat on the day of the recording.

I went to another recording of BBC Radio 3’s “Discovering Music: The Rise of Minimalism” program yesterday at Queen Elizabeth Hall in Southbank Centre, since my friend couldn’t make it and gave me the ticket. “Discovering Music” series explores pieces of music in detail. During the 2.5-hour recording, conductor Charles Hazlewood explored the history of Minimalist music and main composers and their works, with performance by the BBC Concert Orchestra and recorded music in between. I went to Philip Glass and Steve Reich concerts sometimes, since M is a big fun of these two minimalist composers, but I had very basic knowledge about minimalist music before this recording. The repetition-based minimalist music with slow transformation sometime made me loose consciousness few times, but it was quite intriguing with detailed explanation of the music and live performance followed. Also the 20-pages program brochure made for the recording with detailed information about minimalist composers, is well designed with the minimalist style.

The list of music in the recording includes; Philip Glass‘s Suite from the movie ‘The Hours‘ (excerpt) and ‘Two Pages’; Erik Satie‘s ‘Vexations‘ (excerpt); Morton Feldman‘s ‘Structures’ for string quartet; Steve Reich‘s ‘Violin Phase’; and ended with the day’s main music, Terry Riley‘s ‘In C‘. The broadcast of the program is not decided yet, but I would love to listen again if I can get the date.


A photo before the concert. Photo is prohibited during the performance. I couldn’t chose the seat but we were lucky enough to get the seats in the middle of 4th row.


Terry Riley (the photo above) looks more like an American west coast hippie than a minimalist…

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