News And Events

News And Events

Brexit – Do or Die?

Thursday, September 26, 2019
6:30 p.m.
The English-Speaking Union
144 East 39th Street, New York City

ESU National Patrons: $20
ESU Members: $25
Non-members: $30
ESU National Patrons are invited to enjoy a private champagne reception with Ms. Scheppele in the Executive Director's office at 6 p.m.

Click here to reserve online. 

No issue in recent memory has consumed the United Kingdom like the move, known colloquially as "Brexit." With yet another deadline fast approaching, there still remains much confusion and speculation about the ramifications of the UK's departure from the European Union. In this riveting and informative illustrated talk, Kim Lane Scheppele reprises and updates her fascinating presentation on Brexit, which she initially delivered in two separate talks for the ESU Princeton Branch. For those who don't fully get all the fuss about Brexit, Scheppele covers the basics and explains the potential repercussions for the United Kingdom. How does a "soft" Brexit differ from a "hard' Brexit? Explaining these and myriad other Brexit-centric terms and concepts, she clearly illustrates the potential impact of this "divorce" on all aspects of the British economy as well as on the UK's relationship with Europe and the world. More importantly, her presentation includes updates reflecting recent developments, including the ascension of Boris Johnson as UK prime minister, who has held out the threat of a "no deal" Brexit on October 31, 2019, which will create a complete break. She outlines anticipated outcomes and impacts of the withdrawal of the UK from the EU clearly and succinctly. Boris Johnson has claimed that "Do or Die, Come What May" Brexit will happen by October 31. Can he keep his pledge?

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Treasures from Chatsworth: The Exhibition

Chatsworth, the fabled estate in the United Kingdom, is home to the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire and has been passed down through 16 generations of the Cavendish family. Rich with thousands of objects, spanning four centuries, the Devonshire Collection is widely celebrated as one of the most significant collections of art and objects in Europe.

Click here to register online

Thursday, September 12, 2019
Sotheby's, 1334 York Avenue
3:00 p.m. Sant Ambroeus Reception
4:00 p.m. Docent-led Tour

ESU National Patrons: $40
ESU Members: $45
Non-members: $50

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England’s Forgotten Queen: The Life and Death of Lady Jane Grey

Tuesday, October 1 | 6:15 p.m. 
reception following lecture

Abigail Adams Smith House Auditorium,
417 East 61st Street, New York, NY

In July 1553, Tudor England plunged into political and military crisis. Henry VIII's young son, Edward VI, died at the age of just fifteen, leaving no male heir. For the first time, a woman would wear the English crown, but who: Edward's Catholic half-sister Mary, or his Protestant cousin Jane Grey? On his deathbed, Edward named sixteen-year-old Jane as his heir. As fierce a Protestant as Edward, Jane was proclaimed queen and taken to the Tower of London to await her coronation. But Mary would not accept her disinheritance - and neither would the country. Nine days later, Jane's brief reign was over, and seven months after that, she lost her head on the block. Author and Historian Helen Castor explores this dramatic story, examining key events, documents and characters, and assessing Jane's role in the coup that cost her life. The tragic tale of the Nine Days' Queen is a breathless political thriller as well as a defining moment in the history of England.

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The Red Shoes

While not a mystery nor a classic suspense film, The Red Shoes is a 1948 British drama film written, directed, and produced by the team of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, known collectively as The Archers. The film is about a young ballerina who joins an established ballet company and becomes the lead dancer in a new ballet called The Red Shoes, itself based on the fairy tale "The Red Shoes" by Hans Christian Andersen.  Then, after falling in love, she becomes torn between the man she loves and her pursuit to become a prima ballerina. Regarded as one of the best films of Powell and Pressburger's partnership, it was voted, in 1999, the 9th greatest British film of all time by the British Film Institute. In 2017, a poll of 150 actors, directors, writers, producers and critics for Time Out magazine saw it ranked the 5th best British film ever.

Friday, October 4, 2019
6:30 p.m.
The English-Speaking Union
144 East 39th Street, New York City

All ESU members and friends are invited to enjoy the screening of The Red Shoes, but a cash donation of $5.00 is requested at the door to cover the cost of refreshments that will be served.

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Thursday, July 11, 2019
6:30 p.m.
The English-Speaking Union
144 East 39th StreetNew York City

This classic suspense film finds New York City ad executive Roger O. Thornhill (Cary Grant) pursued by ruthless spy Phillip Vandamm (James Mason) after Thornhill is mistaken for a government agent. Hunted relentlessly by Vandamm's associates, the harried Thornhill ends up on a cross-country journey, meeting the beautiful and mysterious Eve Kendall (Eva Marie Saint) along the way. Soon Vandamm's henchmen close in on Thornhill, resulting in a number of iconic action sequences.

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Celebrate the Commonwealth


 invites you to its annual reception to


at the historic

in the financial district

From 6.30 – 9.00 p.m.
Tuesday, May 21, 2019

 In accordance with tradition, the Consuls General of the Commonwealth, in New York, have been invited

Prior to the reception guests may wish to visit the Queen Elizabeth II Garden in Hanover Square. The reception commences at 6.30 p.m. in the Pearl Suite which looks over the Garden.

Click here to download reservation form. 

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The British Invasion of Broadway

During the twentieth century many theatrical adventures from Great Britain made their mark on Broadway. In this fascinating talk about her new book, The British Invasion of Broadway Continues, Elizabeth Sharland follows on from her best-selling book on historic theatrical London with a similar approach to the theatrical heritage of New York. Her new book features chapters written by Richard Eyre, former Head of the National Theatre of Great Britain, and John Miller, biographer of Dame Judi Dench, as well as chapters on Glenda Jackson, Mark Rylance and some of the earliest British actors to come here. She discusses the places where the British legends, such as the Oliviers, Sir Noel Coward and the great impresarios were wined and dined when staying in New York, including the famous Algonquin Hotel, which British actors still call home. Elizabeth Sharland endeavors to keep those great memories alive, recording the early days when the first British actors went to New York, and when a transfer of a play to Broadway was something special.

Thursday, May 30, 2019
6:30 p.m.
The English-Speaking Union
144 East 39th Street, New York City

$20 for ESU National Patrons
$25 for ESU Members
$30 for Non-members
ESU National Patrons are invited to enjoy a private reception with Ms. Sharland in the Executive Director's office at 6 p.m.

Click here to register online

Click here to download the registration form. 

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An Evening With Anton Chekhov

Wednesday, May 15 - 6:00 to 10:30 PM

The Amateur Comedy Club's spring production, features two one-acts and one monologue of three chestnut farces.  ACC has secured rights for the latest 1993 updated translations of the one-acts The Marriage Proposal and The Boor (also known as The Bear for some quirky reason), providing the actors with the most current and pithy jib jab bon mots. Smoking Is Bad For You: A Monologue, a husband's lament prompted by his "thoughtful wife," was penned in 1889 in ink. Where is Chekhov's gun?  You'll need to book now to find out!

We will gather for the reception between 6:00 and 6:30 pm at the ESU and walk over as a group to the
 Amateur Comedy Club at 7:15 pm for an 8:00 pm curtain.

$15 for ESU Members     $20 for Non-members

Register by mail using this form or online at this link

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Art Deco Chicago: Designing Modern America

Join The English-Speaking Union and ADSNY for an engaging illustrated talk that will highlight Chicago's role in bringing revolutionary modern design to the American marketplace.  Focusing on the critical period from the 1930s to the 1950s, Bruegmann explores issues of design and aesthetics within the larger social, economic, and cultural context of the period. His talk discusses the ways in which the city's industries, advertising firms, and mail order companies advanced modern design on the local, regional, and national levels. In addition to seeing how stunning Art Deco towers set trends for skyscrapers throughout the country, highlights of this presentation include iconic decorative arts and industrial designs for products such as Schwinn bicycles, beautiful Deco radios by Motorola, streamlined coffee makers from Sunbeam, an entire universe of products from Sears and Montgomery Ward…and more!

Click here to register online or download the paper registration form here. 

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Dana Ivey

Person Place Thing is an interview show hosted by Randy Cohen based on the idea that people are particularly engaging when they speak, not directly about themselves, but about something they care about.  Cohen's guests talk about one person, one place, and one thing that are important to them. The result: surprising stories from great speakers. This installment of Person Place Thing will be a conversation with Dana Ivey. It will be recorded and, about six weeks later, broadcast across Northeast Public Radio, a 23 station regional network, and made available as a podcast on

Register online here, or download the paper form to mail in your registration. 

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