Up Your Street5 does World Book Night. March 5th

Posted on December 1, 2010 by admin at world book night official website 

20,000 passionate book lovers will give away 1,000,000 books on the inaugural World Book Night

The countdown begins. World Book Night will take place on Saturday 5 March 2011 and will be broadcast in partnership with BBC Two. This dynamic and unprecedented industry-wide initiative to celebrate adult books and reading will see one million free books given away on World Book Night by 20,000 passionate readers to other members of the public across the UK and Ireland. World Book Night will take place two days after World Book Day, the established nationwide reading campaign.

A growing list of high-profile figures from publishing, media and the arts are lending their support to this ambitious initiative by becoming Patrons of World Book Night including Damon Albarn, Dave Eggers, Colin Firth, David Gilmour, Antony Gormley, Seamus Heaney, Damien Hirst, Nigella Lawson, Mary Portas, J.K. Rowling and Tilda Swinton

Lucrezia Borgia SkyArts 1and 2

                                                                Was really looking forward to Sky Arts smashing it again with a premier.I could watch in the comfort of my home. Can’t be asked sometimes to sit with the white elite of London at the Opera houses  or share opera curiosity with fellow- punters in the satellite-endowed cinemas . The event on tv was quite luvvies. I can get over that. Then I had to get over the singing in English. Was perplexed for a time as didn’t recognize my language and waited for the sub titles. All dawned on me so I just concentrated on straining my ears.

Powwerful drama with all the film stuff going on too (Director’s cut). The story is the glorification of a hard line pathological bitch wielding power and viciousness from the festering cocoon of  her abusive family . The chosen diva wasn’t young enough for Lucrezia’s part; the lighting did nothing for her jowls so to me she was a sexual wash-out, sickening in her old woman urges and past glories. Then she went from that depraved being to a clucking mother-hen. All makes for lots of noise and drama.

Loved the costumes and the scenery, the black menacing shadow of a crowd, the staging especially the bunch of youngsters at the dining table. Very last supper. Could not get used to the songstrel in a trouser part. Loved her voice though.

Wouldn’t bother to watch it again.But the learning increases from this point. That is, I’ll check more about the opera and the times etc etc. Gotta place it in context.

All this making films of operas and bringing it into a cinema near you to increase the interest in what is seen as elite art and white is so patronising . Wouldn’t mind if it were free or cheap. It’s always a shock to pay more than a fiver for a film! Who goes to see opera and National Theatre beamings at Stratford Picture House? Not the community around there, that’s for sure. “Fela” recently pulled in a colourful non-GMT crowd but up to now I have no idea what the audience at Stratford thought about it all. Let us not forget that everything is business.

Well delivered SkyArts! From your most loyal fan.

Now to see on BBCi Player Spike Lee getting dahn to ‘is roots.

Events Feb 25th -Mar 11th

Up Your Street5       Feb 25th to March 11th

 Finding free events for seniors around the 5 London 2012 boroughs.

 Listing correct at time of publishing. Enjoy!

 ‘w’ denotes weekly sessions. Unless stated otherwise, just turn up.

 Fri Feb 25th Red Heart Day. Wear red!

Sat Feb 26th free  11-3pm St Mark’sCommunity Centre, Tollgate Rd E6 Spring Festival.Crafts etc

                        free 7pm treat for Open Stage 2012 TRSE volunteers. Seeing “The Graft” .

Tues Mar 1st    w      free    11-7pm at Old Spitalfields Market  JewelEast,

                                                                                             sales, workshops, catwalks!

 w free 1pm Seniors serene dancing exercises 55+ St John At Hackney,by Narrow Way

 Wed Mar 2nd free 1pm Lunch for over 50s at The Globe, 20,Morning Lane, Hackney.

Thurs Mar 3rd £2 7pm “Frida” the film at West Green Learning Centre, Phillip Lane N15. Biographical film about Frida Kahlo

 w free 7.30-9pm World songs . Join relaxed singers at St Joseph’s Hospice.Mare St, Hackney.

 Fri Mar 4th w free 1.30-3pm Join Hoxton Singers at Salvation Army building , Mare Street, Hackney

 Sat Mar 5th free   noon-4pm Newham Spring Festival event.Langdon Secondary School,  Sussex Rd

                                  free 2-5pm Spitalfields Music Festival chorus auditions.Hanbury Hall, E1 open to all. contact Caroline 02073770287

 Sat Mar 5th World Book Night. 

 Sun Mar 6th      £2 3-6pm Chats Palace, by Homerton Hospital. Family disco.

                              free   meet 9.30 am at 1 Connaught Close, Lea Bridge Rd by Water Works to  do same meadow management

Mon Mar 7th free 1-3.30pm Stratford Old Town Hall. Best tea dance in town.

Tues Mar 8th free/ £1 donation 6.30pm Pancake evening at St John’s at Hackney, by Narrow Way. Let Emily at the church know for numbers to get the Fair Trade goods in!

 free 6pm Tesco Bakers Arms. Meet for a short walk at dusk in a group in the locality ending up at Shoe Laces pub next to the Lagoon for a cuppa. Seniors hardly walk after the day has ended so we will do that! (Anyone else in any of the 5 London 2012 boroughs wanting to organise the same, email me for details. Just a fun get-together on International Women’s Day .) Women and men welcome….carers too.

 Wed Mar 9th free Leyton Community Action meeting. Ask at Cyberlink E10 for details.

Thurs Mar 10th w free 10-11am Line dance Priory Court Community Centre (W11 bus) for 55 Active Club

Fri Mar 11th w free 11-1pm Stratford Circus, E15. Creative dance for seniors. “Leap Of Faith”

Bi’ O’ Boris Jan 24th 2011

My Community Conversation with the Mayor in Waltham Forest

Sir, I run ‘Up Your Street’ and link to many isolated seniors who are scared to go

out of their houses. What strategies are you employing to enhance the lives of seniors in our

Borough in terms of reducing fear on our streets?


Fear of crime has an immense impact on older people in terms of isolation and loneliness. The

Mayor has pledged to identify and address the concerns of older people through monitoring of

crime figures. The GLA also supports inter-generational work as a means of breaking down fear

and mistrust between generations in local communities. The Mayor is also determined to award

appropriate importance to designing out crime when local planning and development decisions are

taken. He is also keen to encourage the presence of uniformed public servants in areas such as

streets, parks and stations, and sees visible police presence as both a deterrent to crime and to

provide reassurance to local communities.

Up Your Street5 Issue 8

Wed   23rd Feb free 6.30-8.30pm Join the Performance Group, Grassroots Community Centre

                                           Memorial Park, Canning Town( nearer West Ham Station)E15.

                        free 7pm The Lion, Stoke Newington Church St (106 bus) Local singer /songwriter

                                and novelist John Arthur performs.

Wed   2nd Mar     free     11-1pm  Songololo-Feet textiles at Methodist Church, Richmond Rd. Dalston. Weekly.

                             free   6.15pm – 8.00pm Hackney Central Library “Kosher Happiness”.An author speaks.

(Sat  5th March free World Book Night. More info later as Up Your Street5 is a book giver!)

Mon   7th Mar   free   1-3.30pm tea dance at Stratford Old Town Hall (No ballroom dance lessons at Round Chapel today)

Tues   8th Mar    free 10-noon  for 3 weeks at Cyberlink, Beaumont Rd E10. Flower arranging

                    …an introduction. Contact Jane

                       or starting Fri 11th March for 3weeks

Wed  9th Mar free film “Showboat” 1.35pm for 60+ folks and their carers too at the Rio Cinema, Dalston.                                          


Devised and published by Gillian Lawrence. Issue 8 22/02/11 Up Your Street5 an information-sharing service for seniors around the 5 London 2012 boroughs. All correct at time of uploading.

It’s half term week.  I will send other information about the last week in February this week ending.

 Don’t forget to check your Asda receipt to claim a prize of £1000.

Old is the new Black

“Popcorn: An Audio /Visual Thing” on Sky Arts 1 doing its run at present as in repeated every few hours showing Peter Clifton’s montage of 1960s performances including some Twiggy, Small Faces,  Otis, Stones and more. (1969!) Re-edited?

Vintage TV in serious competition may be and all this going on plus  “Saturday Night Live” on Sky Arts too and Neil Sedaka popping up and then Beeb showing a programme today revving up inter-generational projects with teenagers exploring their own prejudices about seniors (“oldies”) by working in a retirement lodge.

Now what’s happening in real life?  Regarding inter-generational projects where twenty somethings have to interact with 50+ people, that has been tried and tested at Streetlifefm and is a dismal failure which is not being addressed because no-one in charge knows how to change their or anyone else’s attitudes.

Tons is being focussed on seniors.   Well, not in Waltham Forest compared to Tower Hamlets and Hackney . Seniors are  being tapped for all they have in terms of memories and reminiscences but who’s reading all that stuff? Someone is afraid of seniors being left out like Black peeps in the 1980s were. Seniors will become alienated and invisible with no voice and representation. Oh that’s what AgeUk is for!

Best thing I’ve seen for ages on BBC2 : Birmingham Opera Company’s Verdi’s “Othello”. It so referred to my experience at the drama workshop at TRSE last Thursday. i e Shakespeare for the masses, engaging with the audience, bringing in the community through the use of local dance troupes and Birmingham people doin’ their acting thing. And Stephanie, the soprano… “Willow” and her prayer to Mary just blew us all away. Check it on BBCi player.

Drop in Drama and The Graft

Really good drama workshops happen in Newham at the Theatre Royal Stratford east. They cost a fiver and any more donations are welcome.Made up of theatre  professionals, teachers, social workers, youth leaders and interested others, the workshops created by Jan and Serena at TRSE explore facets of the theatre through drama techniques. Yesterday’s session was outstanding with Annie of Tangles Theatre who  led us through the ways into classical texts i e Shakespeare. Not bad for a fiver, eh? and typical of how Jan promotes theatre as an opportunity for all.

Read some reviews of “The Graft” playing at TRSE presently, after last night’s press night. Whoops, the reviewers I found were not impressed but hey! I was. I get what they say about the non-definition of characters and the missed opportunities: That’s why I said in my review which is as worthy as anyone’s that we should forget the socio-psychio analysing and take it all as an execrise in drama. Yes it is a bit “East Enders”. Corri is a bit Shakespeare.  Yes sordid criminal activities are brazenly highlighted and hardly gasped at. ‘S life. Read The Newham Recorder and weep. There are bits in the production which irritate with their cliche-ness, e.g the mother confessing on her knees. BUT it’s a play not a docu, not real life.

Can’t wait to see it again, myself, and to find more positives.. This is what keeps theatre alive and kicking butt in the east end. One reviewer rightly said that the lobby is always a buzz dahn at TRSE. That the audience is enthralled and excited. Now ain’t that just how Shakespeare and Marlowe and Soyinka wanted the common people to behave? The lobby is always alive and stinking, I mean stinking of curry goat  so bad that you can lick it off your cheeks. Yesterday the tension in the lobby was tangible as everyone was on guard what with Ms Press lurking. Upstairs the noisy Shakespeare text explorers were smashing what the white ruling class had ever told them about the mystery of Mr Shakespeare (” He smoked opium you know”) and how the plays were written just for the elite to understand. Thank goodness for TRSE which brings theatre to everyone with all its firebombs, slow-motion, fast motion, juxtaposed sets of action, fabulous use of language, facets of characters, revelations, an engagement with its audience, raw edges, polished rims…it’s all there.

Picked up a second-hand copy of Martina Cole’s “Maura’s Game” and there I have it..a signed copy no less.

A view or two

Today there was a massive and free event in London created by ‘ KT-Equal ‘(Sheffield)    to discuss issues around seniors and their engagement or not with digital stuff, all part of the new science. Seniors go from 50 to upwards which is a marketing dream of course.

Well, here’s the thing… Digital engagement can never be a solution to loneliness amongst,  in this scenario, the aged and infirm (often clumped together). Loneliness is a state, something like grieving where the subject is lonely for a life experienced through another, often a partner/spouse.  And/or loneliness can be a grieving for the person they once were. All part of the challenge of ageing. There is no way that tapping into Facebook, which is probably going to buy Skype by the way,  or pressing buttons directed at a Government given digital telly will alleviate loneliness. We should all know about “Facebook Suicide”, that wondering ” what is the point and how come no-one finds my crashingly inventive posts worth ‘liking’?” In the playground you’d poke out your tongue and find another skipping rope to turn.

This is not a time to feel sorry for lonely old people. Digital engagement is so not the the remedy. There’s a whole mass of population who need literacy-confidence or they’ll just abandon the remotes, key boards, touch-screens and all the fabulous apparati on the widening Broadband landscape on the sideboard. Digitalisation cannot compensate for society (Ref Bernstein “Education cannot compensate for society”)

The big guns need to get their marketing images right if they want to include we seniors and flatter the government before end 2012. Posed Anglo Saxon, white-haired couples snuggling together in cane furniture somewhere in 1950s Welwyn Garden City doesn’t do it for me anymore than the jolly West Indian senior photographed in a smiley state for diversity’s sake convinces me that we’re all included.

Still never mind, beside doin’ all that engaging we’ve got the Permaculture brigade ready  to charge money to show us how to gather and hunt. Be up for it all!

I have been out in one area and interviewed seniors about their take on computer classes. The results will be in the “Hackney Circuit” at Hackney Museum. The newspaper is the culmination of  ‘Mapping The Change’, a project to engage people with the coming Olympic and Paralympic Games. Right up my street that!

an afternoon well-spent

Attended the afternoon with Age Uk in King’s Cross . It’s a well-known fact that the government wants all seniors to be digitally included by end 2012. We don’t have to envisage all seniors in retirement homes balancing a lap-top, an aluminuim tray of food and a box of tissues on their polyestered laps. No, digital access can be through other means than a computer. So we discussed ideas. Not one person exchanged an email address with another of the 6 participants afterwards but we probably want online communities or do we?

On the tube home I practised my silent reading skills with Jennifer L. Schenker’s  (she must wear glasses) “What’s Next In Mobile?” all about big Internet players taking centre stage while mobile operators find their way. (Raconteur Media) There I was thinking I had the Metro in my hand as I sidled into the crowded carriage. I got it all.

Blow me down when I got on the bus and spied a text message next to me “Old people suck”. Well, yes they do young lady. They do.

Waiting for a ‘Blackberry’ to come up on ‘Mega Drop ‘ on Bid Up TV. With Groupon I bought a gorgeous Adidas watch for £20 instead of £50.Not bad eh? Not for me . I don’t do rubber. I may one day. Everything is possible.

Valentine’s Day 2011

Where did we all come from? How did we all get there? The Newham Valentine’s Tea Dance was jam-packed, rammed: You couldn’t move. Every senior was there, Asian, Caribbean, White, mix-ups, the whole caboodle. It was the best tea dance I’ve ever seen and I’ve seen many many. Must have been 300 people in that gorgeous venue and every one glammed up. Wolf-whistles to the siren with the Zimmer frame and doubles to her carer in the sparkly top. Men were in their seventies and their element, 6:1. Girls galore and in Carmen come-get-me reds. The DJ from East End Radio was ace as always; the volunteers led by Mary Patel superb. Just a handful of welcoming younger mainly women doing all the work. Dishing out cake, fruit and teas, juices and all. And you know what? We paid not a penny. We the  crowd coming via Up Your Street5 were showing off the footsteps we’d learnt 1-2-3, 1-2-3 at Malcolm’s FREE ballroom classes on Mondays at the Round Chapel. That’s Hackney Music who arrange that and Missy came down with promotional leaflets. She was amazed by the crowd. When the line dances came on , so did every woman worth her salt and the mass looked like a red blancemange moving synchronised across the room. Fabulous! There was nothing to fault today at all. There never is at Stratford Old Town Hall tea dance. It is always well-organised and we are welcomed properly. Much appreciated.

A few hours later I watched Puccini’s opera, “Tosca” coming from The Met via satellite (repeated from 2009). More bloomin’ red. Absolutely loved it. Luc someone was the producer and apparently the old guard booed on the first night because of his interpretation from the original script.

Before that Corrie. Hey! Superb script, acting, suspense etc. Peter had been given ‘looking dark’ shots about a month ago so I knew his devil would be exposed. Clever clever writing.

Am on the brink of not printing out “Up Your Street5”. Via the web is so the way to go and  seniors just have to get on that cybership.