News And Events

News And Events

An ESU Tea Party Celebrating the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee

All ESU Members and Friends of ESU are cordially invited to attend a special English Tea celebrating HRH Queen Elizabeth II's Platinum Jubilee and 96th birthday. In 2022, Her Majesty The Queen, who has held the record for the longest reign since 2015, will become the first British Monarch to celebrate a Platinum Jubilee after 70 years of service. This will be quite a special milestone and a celebration you will not want to miss.

This Platinum Jubilee Tea Party will be held at Anna Marie's Teas in Liberty, Mo., in a stately 3-story, 5,000 square foot home built in 1913. The house boasts Frank Lloyd Wright details--oak trim, 3 fireplaces and large open spaces. Its large wraparound porch and period American, French and English antique furnishings create the perfect setting for tea parties--served on a special collection of china and silver.

The tea will include a variety of tea sandwiches, sweets, Brenda's signature scones, mock Devonshire cream, fine fruit butter or fruit jams and premium tea.  Our tea will include a special champagne toast to HRH Queen Elizabeth II's 96th  birthday. We will again have our popular Trivia Quiz as well as some special door prizes.

Brenda Hedrick, the owner and proprietress of Anna Marie's Teas proudly proclaims, "This is not just any tea party--our tea experiences are delightfully extravagant!"

When: Saturday, June 11, 2022 at 10:30 am

Where:  Bohnet House, 343 W. Liberty Dr., Liberty, MO.

Directions and parking: Click here

Tickets: $33 per person. This price is all-inclusive, including taxes and gratuities.

Reservations & Tickets

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Let’s Celebrate Molière’s 400th Birthday

SUNDAY, MAY 1, 2022, 2:00 to 4:30 PM

 Theatre! Dance! Music! Laughter! CAKE!

ESU members and Friends of ESU are cordially invited to a FREE 400th Birthday Celebration for the famous French playwright of the 17th century, Molière. There will be music and performance, participatory demonstrations, a Children's Corner, some special guests, and cake for all. This special celebration is free and open to the public. Sunday, May 1, 2022, 2 - 4:30 PM at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kirkwood Hall. This is a birthday party you will not want to miss! Bring the whole family! Read More.

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Winners Announced in 2022 National Shakespeare Competition and the People’s Choice Awards

Twelve finalists out of 43 ESU Branches were brought together virtually for the 39th annual National Shakespeare Competition, making it the third-ever virtual competition in the program's history.

People from across the country came together on Monday, April 25th on Zoom to watch as the 12 finalists performed for 5 judges. The virtual competition utilized various technologies across multiple platforms, including Zoom, Youtube, and text-to-vote, all of which enabled thousands of engagements, and hundreds of viewers from across the globe. Click here to read about the three National Competition winners and the three People's Choice Award winners.

Watch the Recorded Competition Here!

Sasha Fedderly of the ESU New York City Branch won 1st Place with her captivating and thoughtful renditions of Lady MacBeth from MacBeth and Sonnet 35. Sasha has won attendance at the BADA Midsummer Conservatory Program in Oxford, England this summer (Midsummer Conservatory Program – BADA).

Her teacher, Margaret George at Lycee Francais de New York High School will receive the $1000 Teacher Recognition Award. Read More.

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ESU Happy Hour

Wednesday, May 18, 2022, 4:00 PM Central Time

Lusitania was the pride of Cunard's fleet when she entered service in 1907, the first of three great four-funnel liners built for the company.  She was to become the fastest and most luxurious ship on the cross-Atlantic crossing and was popular with British and American passengers because of her speed and life-style onboard.


However, her last voyage from New York to Liverpool in May 1915 is a story of tragic loss, deception, and possible conspiracy. The talk follows the circumstances and mystery surrounding that fatal crossing. As well as considering those circumstances and Cunard's decision to sail her despite warnings, we shall follow the fate of a number of British and eminent American passengers. Don't miss this free Happy Hour. Register now. Read more.

Register Here


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Added Membership Value for First-Time Members!

Even though our new membership year doesn't begin until July 1, 2022, there is an opportunity starting in the fourth quarter (April, May, June) for new members to take advantage of bonus months during their first year of membership. 


If a new member enrolls during the fourth quarter of the membership year, that is, during April, May or June, their membership will carry over into the new membership year. That means the new member gets one, two or three extra months in their first-year membership depending on which month in the fourth quarter they enrolled. Read More.


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Watch the National Shakespeare Competition Finals

Calling all Shakespeare Competition Friends and Family: Come Join the Fun for Free!


Monday, April 25, 2022 at 1:00 pm Central Time via Zoom


The 2022 ESU National Shakespeare Competition has some of the finest young Shakespeareans you'll see anywhere! Show your support by joining us at the competition Zoom program.


Watch the competition live via Zoom! Tickets are free, we just ask that you register before Sunday, April 24th. Let's spread the word to family, friends, neighbors, and colleagues.

Watch Here

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Vote for Your Favorite Performer

Cash Prizes for Winners!


Second place will receive $500!

Third place will receive $250!

An event for the whole ESU Shakespeare community! Like last year, friends, families, teachers, classmates, and communities will be able to vote for their favorite performance. Let's keep the fun going and vote for our Kansas City Branch winner, Maggie Herber!


Click here to watch the video performances of 43 students who entered the 2022 National Shakespeare Competition. As you watch each of the students perform, be sure to watch Maggie Herber, she is #18


How to join in the fun and vote: Read More.

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ESU Happy Hour

Wednesday, April 27, 2022, 4:00 PM Central Time

Our next Happy Hour is a fascinating discussion and historical look at notable African-Americans who have played the Bard including Ira Aldridge, Paul Robeson, James Earl Jones, Denzel Washington, Morgan Freeman, Frances Foster, Audra McDonald, & Fran Dorn. Happy Hours are free online programs open to ESU members and the general public. Invite your friends to this Happy Hour program. Registration is required. Read more

Register Here

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ESU Happy Hour

Join Us for Our Next Happy Hour

When did people start to eat out? When did the restaurant as we know it today actually come into being? Join us by whetting your appetite with an April Cocktail – The Lion's Tail -- from the first true restaurant in London, the Café Royal, published in its book of cocktails in 1937. Our hour together will be an illustrated talk with emphasis on the US and England. Join us for this fascinating ESU Happy Hour on Wednesday, April 6, 2022 at 4:00 pm Central Time. Happy Hours are free online programs, but registration is required. When you register, you will receive a link to join the program. Read more.

Register Here

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ESU Wrench Speaker Program

Sir Christopher Hum, KCMG

A Lecture by the Former British Ambassador to China

Sir Christopher Hum, former British Ambassador to China, will present an intriguing and timely lecture in Kansas City on Wednesday, March 9, 2022. This special lecture program is in partnership with The English-Speaking Union of Kansas City and the International Relations Council and is part of ESU's Evelyn Wrench Lecture Series. The ESU and IRC are pleased to welcome Sir Christopher Hum to his first visit to Kansas City.

On his first visit to China, during the tumult of the Cultural Revolution, Christopher Hum watched Chairman Mao receive the adoration of his Red Guards. He lived there in all for ten years, as a diplomat and as British Ambassador between 2002 and 2005 and had a ringside seat as China turned into the superpower it is today. What role does China aspire to play in the international community? Threat or opportunity? Will China rule the world?

When: Wednesday, March 9, 2022

            5:45 pm CT—Registration and networking

            6:30 pm CT—Remarks by Ambassador Christopher

                                   Hum followed by Q&A

            8:00 pm CT—Program ends


Where: Polsinelli Conference Center, 900 W. 48th Pl. Kansas City, MO


Registration and Tickets:

ESU and IRC Members--$10.00 plus $2.24 fee

General Admission--$15.00 plus $2.55 fee

Students—Free. If you are a student, please email Evan Verploegh at and attach a photo of your student ID to confirm registration. Read More.

Register Here!

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