Events

Jan
15
Fri
Die Fledermaus – Film showing of Glyndebourne Opera Production
Jan 15 @ 2:00 pm

 

 

NOTE: THIS EVENT IS NOW SOLD OUT

 

NOTE EARLY START AT 2pm

Die Fledermaus (literally Flittermouse) translates from the German as The Bat, is a delightful operetta composed by Johann Strauss II to a German libretto by Karl Haffner and Richard Genee.  This is the younger Strauss’s most celebrated and popular operetta so come and join us for an enthralling musical afternoon.

There is lots to enjoy as Die Fledermaus is a light-hearted story of revenge, featuring mistaken identities, flirtations at a masked ball, elegant frivolities and hilarious confusion all set to the most captivating music ever composed.

The cast includes Pamela Armstrong, Thomas Allen, Lyubov Petrova, Lyubov Petrova, Ragnar Ulfung, Malena Ernman, Håkan Hagegård and the Glyndebourne Chorus. Vladimir Jurowski conducts the London Philharmonic Orchestra.

Our opera expert Robert Ascott will be on hand to inform our members.  Robert studied choral conducting under James Gaddarn and has held choral conducting positions since he was 16, principally in London, Cologne and Hong Kong.   Although concentrating mainly on the chamber choir repertoire, he had the good fortune to conduct multiple performances of Britten’s, ‘Let’s Make an Opera’ and of Lloyd Webber’s ‘Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat’.   Most recently, he was conductor of the Cantemus Chamber Choir in Newbury for ten years, until he moved to Eastbourne.   He worked for EMI Music for many years, and through this he became familiar with the operas and operettas and got to know some of the major opera singers.

Due to coronavirus restrictions, tickets will only be available for this event in advance from the treasurer, Sir Philip Anson. There is restricted attendance due to social distancing.  Full details available click here

DVD in German with English Subtitles

Feb
19
Fri
Edwin Landseer by Dr Prasannajit De Silva
Feb 19 @ 2:30 pm

 

 

THIS EVENT IS NOW SOLD OUT

Edwin Landseer (1802-1873)  –  Fulfilling his early promise as something of a child prodigy, Landseer became probably the most popular painter in Britain in the 1830s and 1840s.  He achieved great financial success only for his career to flounder as he struggled with mental health problems.  Although some of his works remain familiar, he is now little regarded critically.  This lecture will review his career and explore some of the possible reasons for his shifting reputation.

Prasannajit De Silva is a published art historian and University Lecturer at Birbeck, University of London, an accredited speaker for the Arts Society, and a sessional lecturer for the WEA. His specialism is British visual culture of the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries.

Due to coronavirus restrictions, tickets will only be available for this event in advance from the treasurer, Sir Philip Anson. There is restricted attendance due to social distancing.  Full details available click here

Mar
19
Fri
Gwen & Augustus John by Peter Scott
Mar 19 @ 2:00 pm

 

THIS EVENT IS NOW SOLD OUT

For a long time, Augustus John was glorified, and his sister dismissed.  Then things reversed and Gwen was considered the greater painter.  Today they are equally praised and enjoy exhibitions together.  Augustus was well known for his love affairs.  Peter will take us into their world.

Drawing Together: The Art of Gwen and Augustus John

This pair of sister and brother artists rarely exhibited together.  Gwen was 18 months older than Augustus; she was born in 1876 and he in 1878.  They were born in South Wales and had a free and informal childhood.  They both went to the Slade School of Art, Augustus a year before Gwen.  The Slade’s aim was to develop skill in drawing and was unusual in giving almost equal opportunities to women and men.  Augustus was a star there; his drawing technique was brilliant and from then on suffered from the label of never quite fulfilling his early promise.  Gwen on the other hand shunned public life, but eventually came to be seen as the greater talent.

Augustus has been seen as a flamboyant, bohemian character, with his many lovers and his numerous children, while Gwen was regarded as the complete opposite.  This simple comparison does not stand scrutiny.  She was a pioneer in so many ways, an independent and passionate woman who sought perfection in her art.  She became the muse then mistress of Rodin, who was 36 years older.  As Augustus said in 1952, “Gwen and I were not opposites, but much the same really, but we took a different attitude.  I am rarely ‘exuberant’, she was always so.”

Gwen died in 1939, Augustus in 1961.

Peter Scott is a lecturer and guide at Tate Britain, Tate Modern, the Dulwich Picture Gallery and the Bristol Art Gallery.

Due to coronavirus restrictions, tickets will only be available for this event in advance from the treasurer, Sir Philip Anson. There is restricted attendance due to social distancing.  Full details available click here

Apr
16
Fri
Bringing India to Britain by Dr Geraldine Alexander & Dr Helen Rufus-Ward
Apr 16 @ 2:30 pm

 

PLEASE NOTE: THIS EVENT IS NOW SOLD OUT

Queen Victoria’s Indian Portraits and the Durbar Hall

This special Interest Day will focus on Victorian encounters with India.  The first lecture will focus on the Indian portraits decorating the corridors of Queen Victoria’s favourite palace, Osborne House on the Isle of Wight, at a time when she had been made Empress of India.  Austrian artist Rudolf Swoboda was commissioned by Queen Victoria to paint authentic portraits of her Indian subjects to represent ‘various types of the different nationalities’ of India.  Swoboda produced some extraordinary paintings during his two visits to India and the Queen was thrilled, calling them her ‘Beautiful Things!’  If Queen Victoria couldn’t travel to India – India had to come to her!

Swoboda’s royal commission was inspired by the success of the Colonial and Indian Exhibition of 1886 when Swoboda had painted the portraits of some of the Indian artisans who had been brought to London from India to be ‘live exhibits’ in the show.  At the heart of the second lecture will be the Durbar Hall.  Durbar is an Indian word meaning both a state reception and a hall in which gatherings were held. The lecture will centre around an exquisitely carved Durbar Hall created and shipped over from India to serve as a backdrop for the Colonial and Indian Exhibition.  It is now the centre piece of Hastings Museum and Art Gallery having been gifted to the town by the Brassey family.

Dr Geraldine Alexander is an art historian and researcher who is currently working on the archive of 20th century photographer Fay Godwin at the British Library.

Dr Helen Rufus-Ward is a published art historian and lecturer specialising in early Christian and Byzantine art.

Due to coronavirus restrictions, tickets will only be available for this event in advance from the treasurer, Sir Philip Anson. There is restricted attendance due to social distancing.  Full details available click here