The English-Speaking Union

News and Events

Online Happy Hour Series

Welcome to ESU Happy Hour! The ESU has planned a series of programs to connect and reach out to our members through programs that are engaging, fun, and informative on a wide variety of topics. Happy Hour programs bring to you guest speakers live and free of charge.  Speakers may also suggest a unique cocktail for you to create and enjoy at home. These programs are designed so ESU members and guests can learn and interact with our outstanding speakers. Many speakers will provide exciting participation opportunities with fun give away books and products at the end of each program.

We invite members to suggest topics for future ESU Happy Hour Programs at this link. Cheers!

Watch Previously Recorded Programs

Ron Whitehead, Outlaw Poet
Write ON!
Wednesday, August 19th at 4:00 PM (EDT)

Ron Whitehead – Outlaw Poet, writer, editor, publisher, scholar, and activist is the author of 24 books and 34 albums. Named Kentucky's Beat Poet Laureate in 2019 he was also the first U.S. citizen to be named UNESCO's Tartu City of Literature Writer-in-Residence. 

Program 3: Write ON! Will be a literary feast for your mind and heart. Through his writings, photographs, and clips from his upcoming film, Ron will share how his ESU scholarship to Oxford, meeting with exalted persons, and general life connectivity has developed a deeper vision of a world where respect has led the way.  You can learn tips for your own writing and submit your own poetry to be enjoyed by all!


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Andrea Mays
Shakespeare Scandals and Scoundrels
Wednesday, September 2nd at 4:00 PM (EDT)

Andrea E. Mays, teacher and author, teaches economics at California State University at Long Beach and is the author of The Millionaire and the Bard: Henry Folger's Obsessive Hunt for Shakespeare's First Folio." In that award-winning book, she tells the miraculous and romantic story of the making of the First Folio, and of the American industrialist, Henry Clay Folger, whose thrilling pursuit of the book became a lifelong obsession. 

Program 4: Shakespeare Scandals and Scoundrels Will explore the American love story about Henry Folger and his obsession to acquire every copy of William Shakespeare's first folio. 


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Dr. Annie Gray 
Downton Abbey in the Kitchen
Wednesday, September 16th at 4:00 PM (EDT)

Dr. Annie Gray, food historian, chef, and broadcaster has published four books including the best-selling "The Official Downton Abbey Cookbook." 

Program 5: Downton Abbey in the Kitchen will explain how Dr.. Gray compiled many extraordinary recipes and stories surrounding the acclaimed TV series. She will also talk about her latest book, "Victory in the Kitchen—The Life of Churchill's Cook", the story of Georgina Landemare who was Churchill's cook during WWII. Attendees will be encouraged to wear a hat just for fun!


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Dr. Natwar Gandhi and Panna Naik
Still the Promised Land
Wednesday, September 30th at 4:00 PM (EDT)

Dr. Natwar Gandhi, retired independent Chief Financial Officer of Washington DC, has published a book about his personal story "Still the Promised Land."   He will be joined by his wife, distinguished poet, Panna Naik.

Program 6: Still the Promised Land. Dr. Gandhi program presents fascinating and deeply personal story of how an impoverished immigrant made his way to the new world, remade his life and ultimately became the chief financial officer of Washington, D.C. His life is an inspiring account of how to survive seemingly hopeless circumstances, with an uplifting message for present-day America.


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