▶︎ February Science of Health seminar

Monday 25 February 2019

Professor Irene Leigh : What happens when genes go wrong in the skin
 
Professor Leigh’s talk brings together her research and experience in dermatology spanning a period of nearly 50 years, with her research in molecular medicine since 1981. Her research focuses on the molecular mechanisms of skin cancer, genetic tissue and tissue engineering and she is recognised as an international leader in those fields, holding positions in Prevention Research in London, Dundee, Lyon and Tanzania. One of her significant achievements has been the establishment of Research centres wherever she has been.
 
Professor Leigh is Dean for Global Engagement and Professor of Cellular and Molecular Medicine and Dentristy. She has been honoured with an OBE and CBE.

The seminar will be held between 11.30 a.m. and 1 p.m. at the Union Church and Community Centre at the junction of Ferme Park Road and Weston Park, N8 9PX. All members welcome. No need to book in advance.

► Films of the Sixties

Love was all around for the films of the 1960s discussed in the February 1960s Group meeting
Michael Caine was the subject of Carl’s presentation. A six-time Oscar nominee and winner of two, Caine has been Academy nominated in each of the last five decades. Throughout his acting career, he has shown versatility and in the 1960s was an English Army Officer (Zulu), a secret agent in The Ipcress File (a world apart from James Bond’s 007), a loveable rogue in Alfie (Oscar nominated) and audacious robber in the iconic The Italian Job.
 
Ian was our guide to the British New Wave directors, most with a background in TV and theatre, who delivered a gritty realism on screen. They were young, ambitious and challenged the established order of film makers and film making. They got out of the film studio and into the real world. They made landmark films which have stood the test of time, including This Sporting Life, The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Runner, A Taste of Honey, Saturday Night and Sunday Morning, A Kind of Loving, Billy Liar (of whom, more later) and The L- Shaped Room.
 
Suave, sophisticated and dangerous: that was James Bond, the subject of Nicci’s talk. The first outing for Sean Connery in the role was in the early 60s with Dr No, followed by From Russia with Love and Goldfinger, for many people still their favourite 007 film. Fifty years on and 24 films later, the franchise shows no sign of losing its box-office appeal.
 

Stephen talked about Julie Christie, who starred in five of the decade’s biggest films and gained worldwide fame and an Oscar for her performance in Darling. Her others being Billy Liar, Doctor Zhivago, Fahrenheit 451 and Far from the Madding Crowd.
 

The piecing blue eyes had it for both Vivien and Linda who remembered the heart-fluttering effect of Peter O’Toole and Paul Newman respectively. Both fine actors who along with Omar Sharif made a lasting impression on them and the rest of the group.

▶︎ How to join the 1960s Group

▶︎ U3A London Region Summer School 2019

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The U3A London Region Summer School 2019 on Tuesday 23rd to Thursday 25th July at St Bride Foundation, Bride Lane, Fleet Street. This is the popular annual non-residential event. Members can choose to attend for one, two or three days. There will be a wide range of subjects on the themes of Art, Current Affairs, History, Literature, Music, Science and Travel, a choice of 27 different talks, 5 workshops, and 6 guided walks around the City of London. This year, we are including some talks which will explore the theme of Celebration of the Sea.

▶︎ Download the programme
▶︎ Book online
▶︎ Download a postal application form

▶︎ Science of Health

The next Science of Health seminar will take place on 25 February 2019 at the Union Church and Community Centre, Weston Park, at 11.30 a.m. All welcome. No need to book in advance. We welcome Professor Irene Leigh, the subject of her presentation: What happens when genes go wrong in the skin, bringing together her research and experience in dermatology spanning a period of nearly 50 years, with her research in molecular medicine since 1981.

► 99½ won’t do!

John Withington : Living to 100 – The Secrets of the Centenarians
 

 
Those who came to a very well attended monthly meeting in February were treated to an entertaining talk by author and TV producer John Withington on living to 100: he was delighted to meet our very own centenarian, Betty Romary (pictured above, with CEDU3A Vice-Chair Sally Whitaker) who recently reached this milestone. Drawing on a wealth of studies and statistical analysis John outlined the factors that could lead to living to one hundred – being female, a good diet (Mediterranean, of course – and avoiding a full stomach), no smoking, no or low intake of alcohol, education, affluence (a higher than average number of centenarians live in Monaco!), a working life that did not involve heavy manual labour, perhaps being a member of the Royal Family, and of course, genes. John illustrated his talk with the stories of centenarians – from all walks of life, including the Labour MP Manny Shinwell (the only centenarian to speak in the House of Commons), cigar-smoking comedian George Burns, the film star Olivia de Havilland, the singer Vera Lynn, song writer Irving Berlin, architect Oscar Niemeyer and aircraft designer Thomas Sopwith, among others. At the beginning of the meeting John asked for a show of hands to ascertain how many would like to reach 100 (not many, it transpired). By the end of the meeting perhaps a few more thought that becoming a centenarian might not be such a bad idea after all …

▶︎ Find out more about the Monthly Meetings

▶︎ Fringe Theatre news

19 February 2019

▶︎ The Thrill of Love at the Tower Theatre
 
“Based on a true story, The Thrill of Love is a stylishly atmospheric “film noir” style drama. Located amid the seedy glamour of 1950’s West End “gentlemen’s” clubs, it’s a masterful blend of humour and tragedy, set against a soundtrack of Billie Holiday’s bruised and yearning voice. Nightclub hostess Ruth Ellis works hard and plays hard in search of fame and fortune, but ultimately pays a high price to achieve it. In 1955, the self-styled “blonde bombshell” is found guilty of the murder of her violent upper class lover and Ruth finally becomes famous – as the last woman to be hanged in England. In a desperate race against time to save Ruth from the hangman’s noose, Ruth’s crime and the events leading up to it are re-examined through the eyes of the investigating detective, Inspector Gale, and the three loyal friends who knew her best – cynical nightclub manageress, Sylvie Shaw; aspiring “actress” Vickie Martin; and naïve charwoman, Doris Judd.” – Tower Theatre website.

26 March 2019

▶︎ Mary’s Babies at Jermyn Street Theatre
 
“Mary Barton, a pioneer of fertility treatment, thought her husband was perfect. And doesn’t every child deserve the perfect father? So Mary used her husband’s sperm to impregnate up to a thousand women, and then burnt all the records. A thousand resulting children, the ‘Barton Brood’, with no idea about their shared father. Meeting each other. Making friends. Having babies. Maud Dromgoole’s play is based on the true story of Mary Barton and the Barton Brood, researched through surveys and interviews. Provocative, funny, and fascinating, it imagines a series of encounters between these unknowing half-siblings.” – Jermyn Street Theatre website.

16 April 2019


 
▶︎ Little Miss Sunshine at the Arcola Theatre
 
“The Hoover family has more than a few troubles, but young Olive has her heart set on winning the Little Miss Sunshine beauty contest. When an invitation to compete comes out of the blue, the Hoovers must pile in to their rickety yellow camper van. Can it survive the 800-mile trip from New Mexico to California – and more importantly, can they?” – Arcola Theatre website.

14 May 2019

▶︎ White Pearl at the Royal Court
 
“In Singapore, Clearday™ has developed from a small start-up company to a leading international cosmetic brand in less than a year. But when a draft of the company’s latest skin cream advert is leaked, the video goes viral globally for all the wrong reasons. YouTube views are in the thousands and keep climbing; anger is building on social media; and journalists are starting to cover the story. This is an international PR nightmare; the company cannot be seen to be racist, they’ve got to get it taken down before America wakes up.” – Royal Court Theatre website.

30 May 2019

▶︎ Beneath the Blue Rinse at the Park Theatre. Matinée performance.
 
“Quentin Tarantino meets Last of the Summer Wine in this wickedly funny, high octane comedy about growing old passionately and disgracefully. When unscrupulous, over-confident salesman Simon Sudgebury comes knocking on the door of the seemingly timid Flora Parkin, hoping to scare her into buying an expensive alarm system, little does he realise what he is about to let himself in for. Feisty, charismatic 75 year old Flora and her gentle 72 year old ‘toy boy’ lover George are not what they first appear! Produced by comedy-based theatre company KEPOW! Beneath The Blue Rinse explodes stereotypes associated with ‘senior citizens’ and questions how society views and treats the elderly.” – Park Theatre website.

Review of past productions

Seventeen of the Fringe Theatre Group gathered at the back of the Maynard Arms on Thursday 31 January 2019 to talk about anything theatre related. We chatted about what we have seen and what we could see in the future, thank you to all who came for all your suggestions and constructive input.
 
We have now seen four productions in four different venues. Our first production was The Sweet Science of Bruising at the Southwark Playhouse, a tale of four women who entered the Victorian sub culture of boxing. Those of us who saw it all enjoyed the venue and the play and can recommend going to see it when it‘s on at Wilton’s Music Hall in June.
 
Our next production, on a very wet evening in November at the Kiln Theatre in Kilburn, was White Teeth, An adaptation of Zadie Smith’s book written in 2000. A very apt play for the newly refurbished theatre. The play was full of narrative and the actors were very versatile, taking on different character roles.
 

In December, on yet again a wet evening, we met in a very busy pub before going to Jermyn Street Theatre to see Burke and Hare. For those that have never been to this theatre, it’s a small basement theatre in the West End, so small it doesn’t have a bar and the toilets are behind the stage. This is a story about two scheming men who decided to enter the world of body snatching for financial gain. Nearly all of us found it entertaining and a bit of fun before Xmas. One of our party joined the cast as a “Dead Body”, she played her part so well that I overheard people deliberating as to whether she was officially part of the cast.
 

In January, the group yet again braved the elements, (I think there’s a pattern emerging here), this time it wasn’t rain but snow and went to see In Lipstick at the Pleasance. They all agreed that the venue was brilliant and buzzing. The play’s plot was confusing but well acted.
 

We have a varied programme planned for the next few months including a couple of matinées. Please keep the suggestions coming for future productions that might be of interest to the group.

By Jane Saunders

► How to join the Fringe Theatre Group

▶︎ AGM

The first Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Crouch End & District U3A will be held on 11 April 2019, at 12.00 noon at the Union Church and Community Centre, Weston Park, N8.
 
Among other matters items on the agenda will include approval of the CEDU3A Constitution, election of Trustees and non-officer Trustees to the CEDU3A Executive Committee, and a financial report covering the period September 2017 to December 2018 by the Treasurer.
 
▶︎ Download the Agenda
 
Election of Trustees and non-officer Trustees to the CEDU3A Executive Committee
 
Any CEDU3A member may stand for election, following nomination by another member. Nominations must be seconded by another member. Neither proposer nor seconder may be current Officer or non-Officer Trustee members of the CEDU3A Steering Committee. However, current Officer and non-Officer Trustees are eligible to stand for election.
 
Prior to taking any action proposers, seconders and candidates are advised to read the Charity Commission guidance document
 
▶︎ The essential trustee: what you need to know, what you need to do.
 
► Download the Trustee nomination form and supporting documentation
 
The supporting documentation sets out the broader background to the election process and person specification, and guidance on filling in the form.
 

All nominations must be submitted to the CEDU3A Secretary to arrive by noon on Monday 11 March 2019.

The AGM should last no longer than one hour. It is very important that as many people as possible come to the AGM, as we need a minimum of 60 members for it to be quorate – so please come along at 12 noon. You do not need to attend the monthly meeting preceding it. All you need is to be a member. We look forward to seeing you there.
 

Sally Whitaker
Vice Chair, CEDU3A

▶︎ An Angelic outing

Behind the Seams at Angels Costumes
 

 
An intrepid group of Outings Group members ventured to the wilds of Hendon to visit Angels Costumes (thanks to Maggi Hutchison for suggesting it). They’re the main costumiers in the business, servicing the film, tv and theatre industries and this family firm has been in business since 1840, counting one Charles Dickens among their customers. We were taken to various departments, meeting several longstanding members of staff, and learned much from our ebullient tour leader, Mark, which turns traditional thinking upside down. One example was the common supposition that costumes had to be kept in a pristine state, but this isn’t the case as quite often the costume designer working for the production needs tat. Also the use of metal hangers, which goes against the received wisdom of padded/wood being much better for garments. But the the bottom line dictates metal, so more can be packed into the thousands of rails we saw from the upper floors.
They’re not allowed to talk about current productions they have customers working on, except if they’re in the public domain, like the film Stan and Ollie, which was one of the only three photo opportunities allowed. Altogether a fascinating tour and one, which guarantees (if we didn’t already) that we will look at costumes a bit more closely from now on!
 

▶︎ How to join the Outings Group

▶︎ West End Theatre Group update

Winter and spring 2019 programme

Thursday 21 February 2019

Songs for Nobodies at the Ambassadors Theatre
 
This show has had rave reviews and stars the amazingly versatile Bernadette Robinson in a musical play featuring music from 5 iconic singers, Judy Garland, Patsy Cline, Billie Holiday, Edith Piaf and Maria Callas.

Thursday 7 March 2019

Company at the Gielgud Theatre
 
Directed by Marianne Elliott is at the Gielgud Theatre, starring Patti Lupone, and Rosalie Craig.

Wednesday 3 April 2019

The Price at Wyndham’s Theatre.
 
The story of two estranged brothers who learn the cost of dividing the family spoils. Starring David Suchet, reputed to be his stage perfomance

Thursday 11 April 2019

Special one-off U3A matinee of The National Theatre production of Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time at the Piccadilly Theatre, followed by Q&A with the cast.

Wednesday 1 May 2019

Emilia at the Vaudeville Theatre.
 
An exciting all female cast in a fictional account of Shakespeare’s outspoken muse and inspiration Emilia Bassiano.

▶︎ How to join the West End Theatre Group

▶︎ Films Group : London calling

11 February 2019

A Hard Day’s Night (1964)(Richard Lester)

25 February 2019

The Ipcress File (1965)(Sidney J. Furie)

11 March 2019

What a Crazy World (1963)(Michael Carreras)

25 March 2019

Blow-Up (1965)(Michelangelo Antonioni)

8 April 2019

Cathy Come Home (1965)(Ken Loach)

13 May 2019

Bunny Lake is Missing (1965)(Otto Preminger)

10 June 2019

Repulsion (1965)(Roman Polanski)

To be scheduled

The Knack (1965)(Richard Lester)
Deep End (1970)(Jerzy Skolimowski)

► Find out more and join the Films Group