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Lexicographer - Best Selling Author – Queen of Dictionary Corner
Take a journey into the curious, unexpected, and downright surreal origins of the words we use every day. Susie will retell the adventures that lie hidden within such words as lasagne (involving a chamber pot) and bugbear (a terrorising monster), and explain such oddities as the silent h in ghost and the mysterious disappearance of kempt, gormful, and ruly (and yes, you really can be gruntled). She will look to the lexicon of the past to fill some of today’s linguistic gaps – such as the frenzied fit of tidying we all do just as guests are about to descend (that’s a scurryfunge).
Alongside such forgotten stories you will hear Susie’s selection of the funniest moments from her 25 years on Countdown and 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown, as well as some startling results from eavesdropping on a group of waiters.
Each evening will include some of Susie’s favourite words from the towns and regions she visits, and she’ll be asking the audience for theirs. In fact, she’ll be welcoming any questions about word origins, usage irritations, the dreaded impact of Americanization, and the very future of our language in her very own ‘word surgery’.
WHY? 'Funny, fact-filled and delightful' Jonathan Ross
'Wonderfully clever and funny... a national treasury from a national treasure Richard Osman
'Susie Dent is a one-off. She breathes life and fun into words' Pam Ayres
Disclaimer: Susie explores the many meanings and origins of everyday words including a short section on swearing. Some may view it as unsuitable for the younger ears.
Following his floral extravaganza tour of The Tale of the Golden Goose last year, twelve-time medal winner at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show Mig Kimpton returns with his brand new show.
Mig combines 30 years of experience in the world of theatre as well as his extensive expertise working with flowers to present an evening of colourful stories and even more colourful arrangements.
You’ll laugh, you’ll learn a few things about what life backstage is really like and you may even go home with one of Mig’s exquisite floral designs.
You’ll certainly never see anything else quite like it!
Presented by WEA Maidenhead.
Eamonn Gearon explores this complex and contested period in the Middle East, from the imperial interests of the Ottomans and of Britain and France in 1900 to the present day via Nationalism and Islamism.
10.15am Competing Visions – Imperialism 1900-1956
11.40am Competing Visions – Nationalism 1919-1967
1.40pm Competing Visions – Islamism 1928-1979
3pm Power to the People? Democratic and Extremist Visions, 2011 and beyond
Please contact Steph Diggon (firstname.lastname@example.org or Tel: 01628 563676) for reading list and PowerPoint presentation.
Eamonn Gearon is an historian, author and lecturer who has spent almost of all his professional life working on and living across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).
Live stream from the Courtyard Theatre £40 per household
World Poetry Slam Champion Harry Baker had a lot of time to think about the important things in life during lockdown(s), and after initially penning reflective poems about missing hugging people he started making German pop bangers and reviewing toilet seats online.
He also very quickly realised how much he missed performing live to people! A show of new poems and realisations celebrating the little things in life that make us who we are, focussing on the connection at the heart of it all and what can happen if we lose that.
Including the story of how a spontaneous decision to run a marathon dressed as a falafel turned into a diss track to Chris Evans that raised £5000 for charity, it is his most playful, heartfelt, uplifting, unashamedly Harry Baker-y show yet.
'Simply put... The greatest performer on Earth' ★★★★★ Scott Mills Show, Radio 1
'The spell over the audience is tangible' ★★★★★ Broadwaybaby
'Spectacularly witty' ★★★★★ Whatsonstage
'Blistering word play' ★★★★★ Three Weeks
by Touching the Void’s Simon Yates.
On the remote Siula Grande in Peru in June 1985, mountaineer Simon Yates found himself in a desperately unenviable position. He was slowly being pulled off the mountain face by his injured partner, Joe Simpson, dangling on the rope 50 metres below. His decision to cut the rope saved both their lives in the epic of survival that followed and with the publication of the book Touching The Void, later film and stage play, both climbers became household names.
It was an experience that could have put many off the sport of mountaineering - but not Simon. Over 35 years later, he is still a very active exploratory climber and guide, making several expeditions to the mountains each year. From the Arctic to the Antarctic, Alaska to Central Asia there is hardly a significant range that he has not visited.
Come along and witness Simon’s tireless journey from that mountain in Peru to some of the remotest on the planet and share with him the drama, excitement and beauty of modern, lightweight alpinism. Told with wit, dry humour and lavishly illustrated with images and video collected on his great climbs.
'Simon is a totally engaging speaker, who both entertains and inspires.'