News And Events

News And Events

Wrench Lecture: The Duke and Duchess of Windsor in Exile - After the Abdication

Welcome Back to the Refreshed English Speaking Union of the United States National Headquarters in New York City

Hosted by the New York City Branch please join former ESU Exchange Scholar and National Wrench Speaker Andrew Lownie for an interesting talk on The Duke and Duchess of Windsor in Exile - After the Abdication.

144 East 39 Street (bet Lexington and Park) 

Date: September 20, 2023 6 to 8

Reception at 6PM with brief presentation on highlights of ESU activities for 2023-2024 year followed by the lecture and Q&A at 7PM in Garden Lounge. 

Members $25 Non-members or Guest $30 (all proceeds from the event will go to support our Educational Programs in the New York Area.)

Register Here

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40th Anniversary ESU National Shakespeare Competition Winner

Congratulations to the New York City Branch's own Nicole Beverly Chien, who took third place at the 40th Anniversary ESU National Shakespeare Competition at Lincoln Center in New York City on April 24, 2023. Nicole, a student of John Anderson at the Rudolph Steiner School, was one of forty-one semi-finalists who came from all over the country, along with parents, branch coordinators, teachers and supporters for this exciting weekend-long event.

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NYC Student named winner of the 39th English-Speaking Union National Shakespeare Competition

12 finalists 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.

Watch the 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 about the competition

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Join us at the 2022 Annual Conference in Charleston, South Carolina

The English-Speaking Union welcomes its members to Charleston, South Carolina, for the 2022 ESU Annual Conference. The conference, under the theme of "Setting the Stage for Growth," will cover diverse and enriching approaches for organizational growth in the ESU's second century of programming. The conference program will include the ESU 2022 Annual General Meeting, social events, including receptions and meals, breakout sessions, panel discussions, and local tours. We invite you to partake in the camaraderie and help us to advance our programs that support teachers, students, and recent immigrants.

Read More and Register

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Gala 2022

Host a virtual Gala watch party with your local ESU Branch!

If you or your Branch would like to register for virtual access, we encourage you to do so. Branches that opt for virtual access can submit a greeting that will be played for all attendees during the gala.

Register Here

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Evelyn Wrench Speaker Program

Former British Ambassador to China
Wednesday, March 16 at 6 PM EDT


Will China Rule the World?

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 saw its transformation into the superpower it is today. In his lecture, he gives a first-hand account of China's rise and asks whether today's resurgent China is a threat or an opportunity for the world.

Admission pricing:
  • $20 for ESU members
  • $25 for non-ESU members. 

This will be an in-person event at the English-Speaking Union, located at 144 E 39th Street, New York, NY 10016. The event will be held at 6pm EDT.


Register Here


Seats are limited for this event.
Proof of COVID-19 vaccination is required for entry. Masks will be required at all times during the event.

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2022 National Shakespeare Competition New York

The ESU National Shakespeare Competition New York City Branch is proud to announce the following winners:

Sasha Fedderly

First Place: $300
student of Margaret George
at Lycee Francais

Taylor White

Second Place: $200
student of Leslie Kohn
at The Scholar's Academy

Esona Peacock Andrew Edelmann

Third Place (tie): $100 each
Esona is a student of John Anderson
at The Rudolph Steiner School
Andrew Edelmann is a student of Alexander Thorp
at The Bronx High School of Science

Our winner will go on to compete at the ESU National Shakespeare Competition Semi-finals to be held digitally in the coming weeks.

The top semi-finalists will go on to the finals on April 25, 2022.

We thank all of our participants, their teachers, families and school communities for their support of the ESU and the National Shakespeare Competition. We hope you will join us in 2023 when we celebrate our 40th anniversary!

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Welcome Message

Dear Fellow New York Branch Members,

With the summer of 2019 winding down, we turn our attention back to the ESU New York Branch and what the fall season will bring.  Again, the Branch will offer monthly Mystery Book Cub meetings (see calendar for titles the group will read), and the ESU Players are pulling together a series of staged readings of plays that will continue to engage a diverse group, including current and former ARNIC (Andrew Romay New Immigrant Center) members, with the English language. 

In addition to these regularly scheduled members' events, there will be a few lectures as well as a film screening, and a special curated tour of the Treasures from Chatsworth: The Exhibition at Sotheby's.  The Branch is continuing its partnerships with the Art Deco Society of New York, Royal Oak Foundation and Historic Royal Palaces.  And in December, (save the date: December 5, 2019) we will hold our annual Yuletide Party in collaboration with the British Schools and Universities Club.

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Noël Coward: Design for Living

Monday, February 24, 2020
6:30 p.m.
The English-Speaking Union
144 East 39th Street,New York City

Join us for an engaging illustrated talk on Noël Coward, inspired by the exhibition Coward: Art & Style, which will open at London's Guildhall Art Gallery in July 2020. In Noël Coward: Design for Living, Brad Rosenstein explores the central role of design in Coward's life and work. The pre-eminent British playwright and songwriter, renowned for his verbal wit, was also visually acute, seeking out the finest artists and designers of his time to craft the sets and costumes for his original productions, the décor of his homes, and his iconic personal style. Rosenstein's rich presentation interweaves images, audio, and video with lively and insightful commentary on Coward's collaborations with a gallery of brilliant talents, from designers Cecil Beaton, Oliver Messel, Gladys Calthrop, and Doris Zinkeisen to couturiers Edward Molyneux and Norman Hartnell and decorator Syrie Maugham. The result is a fresh and unique glimpse into Coward's personal and theatrical world.

Click here to register online. 

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Yuletide Party

Register online here. 

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