A reader service: If the Olympics is all too much, you could try these things instead

Today (5 August)

Watch the battle between good and evil in the medieval setting of York. A new adaptation of the medieval cycle of Mystery Plays will be presented on an operatic scale (yorkmysteryplays-2012.com).

Monday (6 August)

Never mind London 2012, what about Edinburgh 2012, and the biggest arts festival in Europe? You can enjoy two hours of traditional Chinese opera and dance, performed today only by Young China Shines Beijing at the Queen's Hall (edfringe.com).

Tuesday (7 August)

One for the kids: discover what inspired Disney's The Lion King at an exhibition in Bristol's Royal West of England Academy. Take a look at the costumes and original models, and find out how the production of the musical evolved, before it hits the stage at the Hippodrome on 31 August (visitbristol.co.uk).

Wednesday (8 August)

Get out in the fresh air and discover one of London's hidden gems: The Northala Fields in Ealing, west London. As part of the Cultural Olympiad, the fields have been transformed into an environmental art and performance site during Games time (visitlondon.com)

Thursday (9 August)

Enjoy a glamorous late night at the Proms, and be part of celebrating one of Britain's most successful – and least heard – composers, Ivor Novello. Prom 36 brings old memories back to life, thanks to conductor Sir Mark Elder and tonight's master of ceremonies, Simon Callow (bbc.co.uk/proms)

Friday (10 August)

One definitely not for the kids: Queen of the Underground Penny Arcade's steamy cabaret show Bitch! Dyke! Faghag! Whore! At the Old Vic Tunnels near Waterloo Station in London (oldvictunnels.com).

Saturday (11 August)

Catch the final day of the Alnwick International Music Festival in Northumberland and see groups from all around the globe come together to perform traditional dances and music, all dressed in their colourful native folk costumes. (alnwickmusicfestival.com).

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