UK in New York » British Consulate General New York

Shakespeare’s Big Four-Five-Oh

Feature image for:  Shakespeare’s Big Four-Five-Oh

His is an amazing name when you think about it. Something tremulous, something virile. Vulnerability and power in tension — or is it harmony? Like his characters, so recognisably real in their complexity, even the playwright’s signature seems to encompass a vision of humanity in all its strengths and failings. “What’s in a name?” Juliet famously asked. Well, in the case of her creator, rather a lot, for it’s his … Read more »Shakespeare’s Big Four-Five-Oh

The UK Celebrates Equality in Marriage

Feature image for:  The UK Celebrates Equality in Marriage

Today, 29 March, will be a particularly significant wedding anniversary for many couples in years to come. Today, England and Wales join the list of countries that have full marriage equality, and scores of same-sex couples across the country are celebrating their new rights by getting hitched. By request of the Deputy Prime Minister, a rainbow flag is flying above the Cabinet Office and the Scotland Office until Monday to … Read more »The UK Celebrates Equality in Marriage

Philadelphia & London: Cities of Revolution

Feature image for:  Philadelphia & London: Cities of Revolution

Sometimes it takes seeing your own national customs through the eyes of another to recognise their strangeness. I was honoured to join Mayor Michael A. Nutter of Philadelphia on his trade delegation to London at the start of November, and one night, as we were having dinner at a riverside restaurant, there was a brilliant fireworks display going on over the Thames. I explained to the mayor and his team … Read more »Philadelphia & London: Cities of Revolution

A Thanksgiving Carol – Or, How I Learned to Quit Grousing and Love the Turkey

Feature image for:  A Thanksgiving Carol – Or, How I Learned to Quit Grousing and Love the Turkey

Turkey is a dull meat, and for years I associated its blandness with my general apathy towards Thanksgiving. Granted, it’s a day off, but it is also marks the start of the holiday season in the US with the horrid mayhem of Black Friday. And while it has an edge over Christmas in that you are more likely to celebrate it with extended family and friends, which is nice, this tends to … Read more »A Thanksgiving Carol – Or, How I Learned to Quit Grousing and Love the Turkey

Doctor Who: Child of the Enlightenment

Feature image for:  Doctor Who: Child of the Enlightenment

This weekend Doctor Who celebrates his fiftieth birthday. “Ha!” cries my nine-year-old self. “Any Whovian can tell you that he’s actually somewhere between 900 and 1200 years old!” Current Who writer-in-chief Steven Moffat maintains that the Doctor probably lies when asked about his age. At any rate, 23 November marks fifty years since the show was first broadcast. Since then, eleven actors have played the Doctor, a roving alien who … Read more »Doctor Who: Child of the Enlightenment

The Importance of Being Costumed

Feature image for:  The Importance of Being Costumed

New Yorkers have long cultivated a reputation for being nonplussed. We may well see a fistfight on the subway, an inflatable rat in front of a construction site, and an A-list movie star in fewer than five blocks– but we’re not going to let on that we did. Because in a city of 8 million people, why wouldn’t that be normal? And when that guy walks past you dressed in … Read more »The Importance of Being Costumed

The lasting Olympic impression

Feature image for:  The lasting Olympic impression

Exactly a year ago tomorrow, I sat down with my twelve-year-old son in the Olympic Stadium to watch the Opening Ceremony. Extra tickets had become available about a month or so beforehand – they weren’t cheap, but as a Londoner the chance to be there was too good to miss. We’d got there early, long before the world’s television cameras started rolling. The stadium’s centre was an idyllic British rural … Read more »The lasting Olympic impression

Creating dementia friendly communities through art engagement

Feature image for:  Creating dementia friendly communities through art engagement

I was at New York’s Museum of Modern Art, better known as MoMA, immersed in a discussion with a dozen others about what the Ghanaian artist’s piece titled “Bleeding Takari II” was made from and what it was meant to represent. I felt like I had an upper hand on the rest of the group in this exercise as I had actually lived in Ghana. I’d worked out straight away … Read more »Creating dementia friendly communities through art engagement

Raising the Curtain on Brits On and Off Broadway

Feature image for:  Raising the Curtain on Brits On and Off Broadway

There’s a long and glittering history of traffic between the West End and Broadway. In a recent lavish exchange of gifts, London finally got The Book of Mormon and New York was introduced to the delights of Matilda the Musical, which promptly snaffled five Tony Awards from 13 nominations. One of Matilda’swinners on Sunday night was British playwright Dennis Kelly, who picked up Best Book of a Musical. In 2006, with the US premiere of his … Read more »Raising the Curtain on Brits On and Off Broadway

The Old Bill… in New York

Feature image for:  The Old Bill… in New York

If you were strolling into Central Park at the Columbus Circle entrance last Saturday morning you might have been surprised to see a Metropolitan Police car parked under the USS Maine monument. A hundred yards further in, you might have stopped short at the sight of three-score British police officers warming up for a light 14-mile jog round the southern loop. It was an extraordinary sight indeed, but one that … Read more »The Old Bill… in New York