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Patron saints of the modern artist

The Tate Gallery's celebrity friends are meant to encourage new art. But do they control it? Rose Aidin investigates

Visitors at Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens, 1744. Originally designed to appeal to wealthier tastes, pleasure gardens soon became visited by rich and poor alike: both aristocrats and tradesmen enjoyed the entertainments side by side. The entrance price to Vauxhall gardens was just one shilling throughout the century and therefore remained affordable to most people. 12,000 people arrived at Vauxhall gardens in 1769 to watch Handel rehearse his Fireworks Music.

Mamma Mia!

I think this is one of my favorites! I love the music, and I was not an Abba fan before seeing this show (before the movie came out). It's so fun and silly! A must see!!!

The interactive zone for under 5s at the Tate Modern is small but a lot of fun (it can be found on the 5th floor). Kids can have a go on the musical violin slide. The music changes depending on how fast you go down the slide. There are also computer based games and a mini 'hall of mirrors'.

Paris and London have long held a mutual fascination, and never more so than in the period 1750-1914, when they vied to be the world's greatest city. The reach and influence of both cities was such that the story of their rivalry has global implications. By borrowing, imitating and learning from each other Paris and London invented the true metropolis. Tales of Two Cities examines and compares five urban spaces-the pleasure garden, the cemetery, the apartment, the restaurant and the music…

This stunning and steamy debut chronicles the adventures of Nan King, a small-town girl at the turn of the century whose life takes a wild turn when she follows a local music hall star to London. "Readers of all sexes and orientations should identify with this gutsy hero as she learns who she is and how to love."--"Newsday."