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August 2015

Est. 1976


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Exclusive: Harry Shearer on Hurricane Katrina’s Legacy

Edinburgh Fringe


772045 596541

Christina Bianco leads the American charge

Tedeschi Trucks Band Derek Trucks Interview Rugby World Cup The Eagles Have Landed




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The American ®

Issue 746 August 2015 PUBLISHED BY SP MEDIA FOR

Blue Edge Publishing Ltd. Old Byre House, East Knoyle, Salisbury SP3 6AW, UK Tel: +44 (0)1747 830520

Departments: News, Article ideas, Press releases: Advertising & Promotions: Subscriptions: The Team: Michael Burland, Content Director + Motors, Music & Sport Sabrina Sully, Content Director & Community Contact Daniel Byway, Content Executive Virginia E Schultz, Food & Drink (USA) Michael M Sandwick, Food & Drink (UK) Mary Bailey, Social Alison Holmes, Politics Jarlath O’Connell, Theater

©2015 Blue Edge Publishing Ltd. Printed by Thames Print Ltd., ISSN 2045-5968 Main Cover: Christina Bianco; Circular Inset: Tedeschi Trucks Band, photo by Mark Seliger; Square Inset: USA Eagles, courtesy USA Rugby



e’ve made a change to the layout of the magazine this month, moving the A-List to the front pages (see page 2). That’s the directory of essential services especially for Americans over here in Britain. We’ve been told that the A-List, along with our regular features on living in the UK, like sorting out your financial affairs, are some of the most useful parts of the publication. This month we look at expat pension arrangements. The organizations listed in the A-List also help bring The American to you each month by supporting the magazine. If you need their kind of services, why not support them by contacting them too? Don’t forget to say you found them in The American. Check out the fun stuff too - it’s August, so it must be the Edinburgh Fringe, and we have a great feature by Harry Shearer, resident of New Orleans, on New Orleans, and articles on game shooting, and the London to Brighton Veteran Car Run among many more. Enjoy your magazine,

 ichael Burland, Content Director M

Among this month’s contributors

James Carroll Jordan The American actor who lives in England reviews his old friend David Suchet, now starring in The Importance of Being Earnest.

Miss Patricia The American’s undercover columnist casts a skeptical eye on the British way of life. This month she visits Althorp and meets Earl Spencer

Harry Shearer The Simpsons and Spinal Tap guy has a serious side - he is passionate about the postKatrina trials and triumphs of his beloved New Orleans

Read The American online at The entire contents of The American and are protected by copyright and no part of it may be reproduced without written permission of the publishers. Whilst every effort is made to ensure that the information in The American is accurate, the editor and publishers cannot accept responsibility for any errors or omissions or any loss arising from reliance on it. The views and comments of contributors are not necessarily those of the publishers.

August 2015 1

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The American


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Family, international private wealth, immigration and residential property teams advise international families and expatriates on relocation, wealth management, tax, immigration and all aspects of family law. Abacus House, 33 Gutter Lane, London EC2V 8AR T: +44 (0) 20 7457 3000 F: +44 (0) 20 7457 3240 @penningtonslaw

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US-licensed immigration lawyers advising on US citizenship, green cards, visa and US entry issues. Honest, straightforward advice and a high level of bespoke service. Third Floor, 6 & 7 Hatton Garden, London EC1N 8AD UK +44 (0)20 7092 6830 US +1 (312) 361-0581 Twitter: FlynnUSVisaLaw

To find out whether you’re eligible to advertise your products and services here, and for rates, call Dan +44 (0)1747 830520, or email dan@theamerican. You’ll reach Americans living in and visiting the UK as well as Britons who like American culture and products.

August 2015 3

The American






in this issue... 10 12 16 18 24 26

Edinburgh Fringe - the American acts Houses of Parliament family audio tour Wroxton Abbey, a Slice of America Here Finance: Arranging your expat pensions Miss Patricia visits Althorp The Glorious Twelfth, Game Shooting UK

2 A-List American

Products & Services

6 News 4 August 2015

28 38 48 50

9 Diary Dates

London to Brighton - the Veteran Car Run Derek Trucks - slide genius interviewed Harry Shearer on Katrina, 10 Years On American Sports: Sports News Mascots and Cheerleaders Golf - the legacy of Chambers Bay USA Rugby - the World Cup is nigh

41 Theater

30 Food & Drink

57 US Social Groups

34 Arts

64 Coffee Break

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The TheAmerican American


NFL Supports Wounded Vets


he National Football League (NFL) launched a partnership July 16 with the Walk Of Britain, the 1,000-mile expedition staged by Walking With The Wounded through August, September and October. The NFL will be the official walking partner for two of the ten weeks of the expedition, which will see six wounded veterans- four from the UK and two from the United States - walk the length and breadth of Great Britain. Events and activities throughout the ten weeks are planned, giving NFL fans the opportunity to engage with and show their support for the walkers. The Walk of Britain (Patron, Prince Harry) will climax on the morning of November 1, with the walkers heading straight to Wembley Stadium for pre-game ceremonies at the NFL International Series game between the Detroit Lions and Kansas City Chiefs.

American Civil War Brits Remembered


laques have been erected on both sides of the Atlantic to honor the Britons who participated in the American Civil War, which ended 150 years ago this year. More than 100,000 Brits took part in the war. Many were in the States when hostilities broke out but many more crossed the Atlantic specifically to take part. Some were looking for adventure, others joined up to be with their friends but others were motivated by a sense of duty. The majority fought for the Union but many took the rebel stand, fighting for the Confederacy. The plaques are the result of a four year campaign by an Englishman from Burgess Hill in West Sussex, Basil Larkins. His group, The American Civil War British Memorial Association (ACWBMA), raised the necessary

(L-R) Brig. Gen. Douglas Cox, USAF, represented President Obama and the US Ambassador to the Court Of St James, Bishop Tom Williams the Auxiliary Bishop of Liverpool, Councillor Mark Norris and Basil Larkins

funds and permanent monuments have been placed in the Museum of The Civil War Soldier at Pamplin Park, Petersburg Virginia and on Charleston House, Rumford Place, Liverpool.

(L-R) Ed Parker, CEO of Walking With The Wounded; Kansas City Chiefs kicker Cairo Santos, New York Jets center Nick Mangold, and Matt Fisher, wounded in Afghanistan

Jaguar Flips Burgers at Ed’s Easy Diner

6 August 2015

Ahead of the NFL International Series games at Wembley, Jacksonville Jaguars safety Sergio Brown swapped the pressure of the football field for the heat of the kitchen July 16 at Ed’s Easy Diner in London to help cook (and sample) a new Jags-themed menu. Sergio said: “Our team’s commitment to play one home game at Wembley Stadium each year means we’ve had fantastic support from people in London and across the UK. It’s great that Ed’s Easy Diner have joined this support and are creating something special for our fans in the lead-up to our game in October.” Sample dish: ‘Jaxson’s Jump’, a triple patty, triple bacon, triple cheese’, named for the team’s daredevil mascot.

Permanent Non-dom Tax Status to be Abolished


hancellor George Osborne has announced that the permanent non-dom tax status in the UK will be abolished, with the aim being to raise £1.5bn in additional tax, reports Alistair Bambridge (, From April 2017, anybody who has been resident in the UK for more than 15 of the past 20 tax years will be deemed UK domiciled for tax purposes. Furthermore, it will no longer be possible for somebody who is born in the UK to parents who are UK domiciled to claim nondomicile status if they leave but then return and take up residency in the UK. There are an estimated 114,000 UK residents currently claiming to be non-domiciled, of which 1,750 were born in Britain. The status allows many to only pay tax on UK earnings, and avoid inheritance taxes. UK residents have been able to avoid UK tax by owning UK assets such as homes and art collections through offshore companies in order to avoid any UK tax charge on increases in their value. If you will be caught by the new rules, from April 2017, the UK will have the right to tax you on your worldwide income and you will be subject to inheritance tax in the UK. There is still enough time to plan for the new measures – you will still be able to retain UK homes and send your children to school here, but you will need to spend a reduced number of days in the UK.

Cast Iron AGA Deal for US Firm


GA Rangemaster, maker of the quintessentially English cooker, has been bought by Elgin, Illinois based Middleby, the manufacturer or Viking ovens, in a deal worth £129m ($202 million). Shareholders will receive a cash sum of 185p per share. Below: a possible redesign?








The American

Independence Day


uly 2nd was the date for the US Ambassador’s Independence Day party. The setting was the garden of Winfield House, the Ambassador’s Residence in Regent’s Park, London (at twelve acres, the largest private garden in central London after the Queen’s at Buckingham Palace). Invited guests from the British and American communities, including diplomats, politicians - London Mayor Boris Johnson was on fine form - businesspeople, broadcasters and journalists (including envoys

Ambassador Matthew Barzun enjoys the party

from The American), enjoyed New Orleans- themed food and drink (the Bourbon Splash seemed to go down particularly well), with hot dogs and burgers served from Airstream trailers. Musical treats included the Star Spangled Banner sung by Glee actress Dianna Agron (in town to star in McQueen in the West End) and the UK national anthem by Katherine Jenkins, followed by a surprise set by one of Mr Barzun’s favorite bands, Duran Duran, who played old hits and


songs from their new album. The weather, while not New Orleans-hot, was sunny, showing off the ‘50s and ‘60s Cadillac convertibles parked outside the large marquee on the terrace, transformed for the occasion into the Winfield Diner, complete with vintage telephones and juke boxes. Mr Barzun diplomatically pointed out the day’s significance - American independence from Britain - while stressing the unique strength of our subsequent special relationship.

Veterans’ Epic Row Wounded military veterans are rowing as well as walking (see page 6). In the Great Cornish Gig Project they will train in boatbuilding skills, build a gig, a traditional rowboat, and row their craft to the Scilly Isles off the coast of Cornwall to compete in the 2016 World Pilot Gig Championships. To find out more or support them go to 8 August 2015

The American

The American

Highlights of The Month Ahead

There’s much more online at Doggett’s Coat and Badge Race London EC4 August 1 Held annually since 1715, rowers race between London Bridge and Cadogan Pier (Chelsea), with the winner receiving a crimson red coat with a silver badge depicting Liberty. Kids Week in The West End Various, London August 1 to 31 Children aged 16 or under can see a fantastic selection of shows for free when accompanied by a paying adult. Bristol International Balloon Fiesta Ashton Court, Bristol BS3 August 6 to 9 The largest event of its kind in Europe, with over 150 hot air balloons decorating the sky with a spectacular display. Cowes Week Cowes, Isle of Wight PO31 August 8 to 15 One of Britain’s longest running sporting events returns to the waters around the Isle of Wight as over 1,000 boats compete. An American’s Guide To Being Like, Totally British Camden Comedy Club, 100 Camden High St, London NW1 0LU August 13 to 15 Alexis Wieroniey presents her solo stand-up show about accidentally moving to

England and learning to be British. Perfect for ex-pats, nationalists, and everyone in between. It’s part of the Camden Fringe, London’s alternative to Edinburgh.

Worthing Birdman Worthing Sea Front, W. Sussex BN11 1EG August 15 to 16 Competitors throw themselves off the pier at Worthing using contraptions from wings and gliders to capes and balloons as they aim to reach the furthest distance. Notting Hill Carnival Notting Hill, West London W11 August 30 to 31 Held each August Bank Holiday since 1966, the Notting Hill Carnival is the largest celebration of its kind in Europe. Every year the streets of West London come alive, with a 20 mile parade of vibrant colorful costumes, over 40 static sound systems, hundreds of Caribbean food stalls, over 40,000 volunteers and over 1 million Notting Hill carnival revellers. Highland Games Lots going on in Scotland this month, with the Festival (see next pages) Highland Games at Ballater Aberdeenshire (www. and Cowal Argyll ( not forgetting the World Pipe Band Championships in Glasgow (

Magna Carta Medieval Weekend The College Green, Durham Cathedral, Durham, DH1 3EH 0191 3744070 August 8 to 9 Meet the Medieval townsfolk and craftspeople as they take up residence within the Cathedral grounds – encounter a delightful array of sounds, smells and sights from a bygone era. See demonstrations of pastimes and skills that filled their daily life, and be entertained with music, dancing and mumming plays. Join in with games and soldiers’ drill, or try your hand at rope making, candle dipping and striking your own coin. Tickets: A free event – no need to book. Saturday 8 August, 10.00am to 4.30pm & Sunday 9th August, 12.30pm to 4.30pm. Social media: Facebook durhamcathedral Twitter @durhamcathedral Instagram durhamcathedral

August 2015 9

The American

10 August 2015

Giant Leap Pleasance Courtyard, 60 Pleasance EH8 9TJ What would the scene have been like, almost literally, if the 1969 moon landings were actually in a studio on the West Coast of the US? Find out with this performance.

The Complete History of America, Abridged theSpace @ Venue 45, 63 Jeffrey Street, EH1 1DH A ridiculous romp through nearly 500 years of American history, by students from Stow Munroe Falls High School, Stow, Ohio.

             

Jurassic Park Assembly Roxy, 2 Roxburgh Place, EH8 9SU Superbolt Theatre company bring a ground-breaking take on Jurassic Park, as a dysfunctional family find their normal viewing of the original hit film begins to blur the lines between cinema and reality.

The Emperor of America C Too, St Columba’s by the Castle, Johnston Terrace/Victoria Terrace, EH1 2PW It’s 1860s San Francisco, the Wildest West meet Joshua Norton, a tramp who declared himself Emperor, and the whole city who played along, in this rapid fire physical theater production.

Assembly George Square Gardens Spiegeltent Palazzo “Bianco may be known for her impressions, but what audiences will take away from her shows are her humor, charm, and incredibly powerful voice rivaling the very divas she impersonates,” says BroadwayWorld. We agree, and so do 20 million viewers of her hilarious impressions on YouTube. In this new show, Christina shares her eclectic musical and artistic influences. From her New York roots, to global travels, to her love of celebrity divas, Christina will takes audiences on a musical comedy journey through an eclectic mix of your favorite pop, West End and Broadway tunes.

Christina Bianco - Party of One!

As Is 11 Bristo Pl, EH1 1EZ For the 30th anniversary of the play, As Is tells the moving story of Rich, a writer in New York in 1985 diagnosed with AIDS.

Winstons Wow The Boards, Playhouse, EH1 3AA Canadian Winston Spear is a hit in North America - in his Scottish debut he brings his unique comedy, dance routines and brilliant wit to the stage.

The Kinsey Sicks: America’s Next Top Bachelor Housewife Celebrity Hoarder Makeover Star Gone Wild! Gilded Balloon, Teviot Row House, EH8 9AJ After critically acclaimed runs offBroadway and in Vegas, The Kinsey Sicks make their much anticipated debut at this year’s Fringe with an unforgettable hour of ‘dragapella’ - a unique take on a capella!

Black is the Color Of My Voice / Nina Simone: Soul Sessions Gilded Balloon: Venue 14 (Billiard Room) / Assembly Checkpoint Edinburgh based singer and actress, Apphia Campbell, originally from Florida, has 2 shows. Black is the Color Of My Voice, a theater piece with music, portrays a jazz musician and civil rights activist inspired by the life of Nina Simone. Soul Sessions explores the parallels between the lives of Campbell and Simone.

The annual festival of art returns to Edinburgh, bringing international artists together for a special month of events, exhibitions talks and especially humor and performance. Here’s our selection of American acts at the Fringe Festival. For the Edinburgh Arts Festival see our arts pages.

The American 

Song Tales from the American Edge Acoustic Music Centre @ St Bride’s, 10 Orwell Terrace, EH11 Texan Kiya Heartwood performs original folk tunes with witty, poignant messages.

One Man Breaking Bad Gilded Balloon Teviot, Debating Hall, 13 Bistro Square, EH8 9AJ LA actor Miles Allen returns to the Ed Fringe this year with his incredible imitations of Walter White, Jesse, Saul, Skyler, Hank, Walt Jr, and the rest from the hit TV series.

All American Boy 65 Cowgate, EH1 1JW  Sid Singh’s brilliant stand up improv show challenges what we think of as ‘America’. Erich McElroy’s Imperfect Guide to Picking the Perfect President Laughing Horse @ Bar 50, 50 Blackfriars Street, EH1 1NE American comic Erich McElroy ponders the recipe for the perfect US President. David Sheeran: Lights, Camera... America! Laughing Horse @ Espionage, 4 India Buildings, Victoria Street, EH1 2EX A comedy show for fans of Hollywood take a fresh look at films from Back to the Future to Groundhog Day! Moby Alpha

One Man Breaking Bad

Bronston Jones: God Bless ‘Merica Laughing Horse @ Bar 50, 50 Blackfriars Street, EH1 1NE US comedian Bronston Jones discusses America - need we say more!? Flight Assembly Roxy, 2 Roxburgh Pl, EH8 9SU California based group Curbside create a whimsical world inspired by the classic children’s story The Little Prince. Through a combination of storytelling, physical theater and acrobatics

Tall Tales for Small People: American Folk Stories and Songs Pleasance Courtyard, EH8 9TJ Mike Willis and his band transport you to the smoky mountains with songs, folklore and very tall tales for the whole family! Tar Baby The Turret at Gilded Balloon, 25 Greenside Lane, EH1 3AA One of the Huffi Po’s “favorite female comedians”, Desiree Burch brings her acclaimed comedic solo show for its UK Premiere at this year’s Fringe, investigating race and capitalism in modern America. Tar Baby

Moby Alpha Assembly Roxy, 2 Roxburgh Pl, EH8 9SU Lit solely by LEDs in the space helmets, this is Moby-Dick in space, from the Pajama Men’s producers. Science fiction meets the great American novel. Who wins? Filthy Talk for Troubled Times Basic Mountain, 1a Hill Street, EH2 3JP A bar in Anytown, USA, populated by everymen (and two everywomen), and a series of frank exchanges exploring the innumerable varieties of American intolerance. August 2015 11

The American

Hear, Hear!

The Houses of Parliament’s updated audio tour is tested by Peter Lawler and family


s an AP Government and Politics student in high school, I giggled mirthfully at our teacher showing us the pugilistic exchanges that took place in the United Kingdom’s Houses of Parliament. Mr. G (names have been changed to protect the innocent) would roll an obelisk like television set in on wheels (blessed 1990s American classrooms), flick on C-SPAN, tell us to take notes, sit back and take out his marking. John Major was in power then, but his government and his popularity were in decline and it wouldn’t be long before a Scottish born MP for Sedgefield would lead the opposition to topple him in a landslide victory before leading the New Labour movement to two more decisive election wins. We were as impressed as we were amused though. Prime Minister’s Questions was raucous, loud, obnoxious as an accepted matter of procedure - the appellation, ‘right honourable gentleman’ almost always being used ironically, and our own legislature seemed positively tame and monotonous compared to the jeering, loud goading, the passion and the fiery volleys between various parties in those hallowed chambers in Westminster.

12 August 2015

It was hooliganism in suits. Although the issues have changed a lot since I graduated high school in 1996, the tradition of rhetorical combat is as strong as ever, and perhaps fiercer about certain issues than it was when I had my first exposure back in my younger and more vulnerable years, keeping British democracy healthy and robust. And there’s nothing like a self guided audio tour of the Palace of Westminster, specifically parliament, to bring that sense of history to life for the curious expat, the visiting tourist or just an avid history buff. The tours, recently updated to include commentary by knowledgeable contemporary politicians such as the current, Conservative Speaker of The House of Commons, John Bercow, begins in medieval Westminster Hall, the oldest surviving building from the whole palace, standing since 1097. Magnificently breathtaking in appearance and all 1547 square meters of its proportions, the impression of power and grandeur is no doubt as intentional today as it was for the traitors of the crown such as William Wallace, Sir Thomas More and Guido Fawkes were tried here in more internally turbulent Plantagenet and Tudor times as well as the

Junior Lawler loved the technology PHOTO: © PAULA LAWLER

stunning emotional impact the hall surely must make on visiting dignitaries attending functions, presentations or ceremonies, all of which still go on in this grand setting. Of course the acoustics of the cavernous 92 foot high hammer beam ceilings must have made for quite a vibrantly chaotic atmosphere amidst all the medieval markets that also took place here as well. As you progress on the tour, it feels like a genuine walk through history, perhaps partly because of the immersive experience of history aurally being pumped into your ears as you guide yourself through each chamber. Statues of various premiers such as Harold Wilson and Clement Attlee, who brought in the welfare state including the National Health Service, greet you just before you enter the chambers of either house. Even the Iron Lady herself, gestures towards you in a stone but lifelike

Houses of Parliament

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The American

Westminster Hall, the largest hall in Europe when it bulit in 1097

form, bidding you welcome to this centre of national power. It is just as you enter these chambers though that the embers of British Parliamentary history crackle around you. You are immersed in the totality of the experience, the cacophony of voices all around you as you stand in front of the green benches where Wilson, Blair, Brown and Cameron have all stood, attempting to bruise each other with politically barbed verbiage. Ascend a stair and you can just hear the timber in the voice of Churchill himself as he rails against the evils of tyranny. It is here that you can hear the sizzle and buzz of great watershed moments, of freedom and democracy being celebrated through discursive exchange in this the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta, England’s own Bill of Rights and Declaration of Independence all rolled into one.

14 August 2015

The juicy bits of historical pulp were particularly enjoyable: the wonderfully eccentric custom in The Lords of peers entering into a ‘not content’ hall if they wished to reject a piece of legislation was uniquely entertaining. That a British statesman should reject a bill not because it is abhorrent to their morals or they are disquieted by its legal and precedential ramifications but simply because it makes them ‘not content’ seems so very Anglo-Saxon, so very of this small island, that it could only happen in this country of benevolent eccentrics. That the monarch’s representative to parliament has a title, Black Rod, that sounds like the name of a 1970s American TV/film character I found (perhaps juvenilely) amusing. But it was these gems of knowledge, like Hansel and Gretel’s breadcrumbs, that added to the richness of the experience.


One of the new features is a family audio that my eight year old got to test drive. Young tour visitors get taken on a time traveling tour through the history of these hallowed halls, a handy one if you’ve got a precocious child who is also a religiously devoted fan of that Great British television phenomenon, Doctor Who, with you. Apart from being barked at by an officiously gruff and unpleasant guard who obviously hadn’t been told we were coming (“I ‘aven’t ‘eard anything, you’re going to have to go back”, after which we received a minideportation back to the first security check, at which our entrance into the building was promptly settled) the experience was meaningful, informative and a lot of fun. But bring your walking shoes. Walking through the annals of Parliamentary history takes a while, but is worth the walk!

Dr Johnson’s House Shakespeare in the 18th century: Johnson, Garrick & friends

Join us this autumn to celebrate the 250th anniversary of Johnson's critical edition of Shakespeare's plays and discover the works of two of the greatest wordsmiths in the English Language.

Randy Newman In Concert

MONDAY 26TH OCTOBER 2015 FREE after usual admission fee

Monday 10 August—Saturday 28 November Built c.1700, this atmospheric historic house was home and workplace to Samuel Johnson (1709—1784) who wrote his influential Dictionary in the Garret. 18th-century library with regular exhibits, historic interior, audio guide, foreign interpretation available (10 languages), 17 Gough Square, EC4A 3DE / 0207 353 3745 Please visit our website for more details about our extensive events programme and booking


The American

Wroxton, US in UK

Wroxton Abbey, nestled in the picturesque village of Wroxton near Banbury with its thatched roofs, village pond and cosy pub is quintessentially English … or is it? Wroxton’s Andrew Rose explains the Abbey’s very American connection. PHOTOS: ANDREW ROSE


ince 1965, Wroxton Abbey has been home to Wroxton College, the home away from home for students studying in England from Fairleigh Dickinson University, based in New Jersey. And this year, the College is celebrating its 50th anniversary. The Abbey itself is much older. Over the years it’s been a medieval priory, a Jacobean mansion, a family home, a warehouse during World War II and a set of private apartments. Ownership of the Wroxton manor is recorded as far back as 1089 when it was held by Guy de Reinbeudcurt, Lord of Chipping Warden. Michael Belet, a tenant at Wroxton founded an Augustinian priory in honour of St Mary in 1216 or 1217. Following the dissolution of the monasteries under Henry VIII, in 1537, Sir Thomas Pope purchased the lease to the lands and the monastic remains. Pope was the founder of Trinity College, Oxford and in 1556 he endowed Trinity College with the manors and lands of Wroxton. William Pope, Sir Thomas’ nephew, began work on the site of the former priory near the turn of the 17th Century. His house survives today as the

16 August 2015

centre section of the Abbey. The Abbey eventually passed from the Pope family to the North family in 1672 when Lady Frances Pope married Francis North. They made the north wing habitable and added some stables. The stables housed coaches, horses and later provided a brewhouse and laundry. I don’t know what Francis North would make of the coach house today. It was completely refurbished in 1974-1975. The stables have gone but a brewhouse still remains (sort of) in the shape of the buttery bar. Nowadays the coach house holds the dining room, the buttery, a lecture hall and various guest bedrooms. The Abbey’s most famous resident has to be the much maligned Prime Minster, Lord Frederick North. North was dubbed, “Britain’s worst Prime Minster” because he lost the American colonies. So there’s more than a little irony in the fact that his ancestral home is now an American owned University. The eleventh Baron, Lord North, managed the estates until he died in 1932 aged 96. In 1933 all the North effects were sold at a public sale and the North family relinquished

the lease of Wroxton Abbey. Trinity College leased the property in 1938 to Pawson & Leafs, who turned the Abbey into a residential warehouse during World War II. The Great Hall was the dispatch department, hosiery was stored in the Library and lingerie in the Regency Room. In 1948, the lease was given to Lady Pearson. She rented out large flats in the building and opened the house to visitors. Visitors could dine in the restaurant which was housed in the south wing. The maintenance of the building became too costly for Lady Pearson and in 1963 the Abbey and its fifty-six acres were sold to Fairleigh Dickinson University. In purchasing Wroxton College in 1965, FDU became the first American university to own a campus in England and perhaps the first American university to own its own overseas campus. As part of the dedication, the College arranged a three day conference in 1965. Amongst the guests in attendance was King Humbert II, the last king of Italy, who at the time was living in exile in Portugal. On the last day, the College held the official dedication with a fully-fledged academic proces-

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sion. The procession wound its way from the Abbey through the village streets and ended at the church. The students live and study in the Abbey and take a range of courses including classes on British Politics, British History, International Business, the History of Art and various English classes. The only class which the students must take is a class on “The Anatomy of Britain” which looks at various facets of British life. There are trips every weekend which the students can sign up to go on. Trips this semester have included visits to Blenheim Palace, Kenilworth castle, Stonehenge and a Premier League football game. Wroxton College is unique in so many ways. There can’t be many College students who get to sleep in a king or a queen’s bedroom but at Wroxton our students can do exactly that. We have the King’s bedroom where King James I and later King Charles I slept when they visited Wroxton and we also have the Queen’s room, where Queen Anne of Denmark, the wife of King James I, and Queen Henrietta Maria, the wife of Charles I slept when they visited with their husbands. These rooms are now student bedrooms. We’ve had 50th anniversary celebrations here at Wroxton and also over in New Jersey. They’ve been a great way for our alumni to reconnect, catch up with old friends, remember fond memories and make new ones. When our students bid farewell to Wroxton and watch the Abbey fade from sight as they pass through the Abbey gates, they’re never gone forever. In fact in many ways they’re not gone at all as their class photo graces our walls and we have class photos going all the way back to the 1960s. Here’s to the next fifty years.

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Returning pension T

he range of pension schemes in the UK is extensive. Individuals who have been in the UK for some time may have accumulated one or more different pensions. If you are heading back to the States, here is some information about QROPS, Qualified Recognized Offshore Pension Schemes, that you might want to consider, writes Sandy King of Alconbury Trust LLC. A UK pension can be acquired via employment or set up privately by an individual. There are three types of schemes in existence.

Defined benefit scheme

A defined benefit (DB) pension (sometimes known as a Final Salary scheme) is acquired through employment in the UK. It normally requires both employer and employee to contribute and will provide a defined sum based on earnings and length of service at a specified retirement age usually between 60 and 65 with the benefits adjusted for inflation annually.

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Defined contribution scheme

Most employers have switched to defined contribution (DC) schemes (also known as money purchase schemes) for their staff, (due to the rising cost of providing final salary benefits). In a Defined Contribution scheme, the employer makes a contribution to the employee’s pension (based on a percentage of the employee’s salary) which may or may not be matched by the employee. The employee can normally make additional contributions if they wish.

Personal Pension schemes

Individuals can set up their own arrangements privately and choose their own contributions. These frequently take the form of low cost stakeholder pensions, personal pensions or self invested personal pensions (SIPPs). Some employers may also set up Group Personal Pension schemes for their employees and these funds are then owned by the employee. Individuals who have been in the UK for a long time may have other types of money purchase pension, some of which may

contain important guarantees. With Final Salary schemes, the retirement benefits are known. However, the benefits of defined contribution and personal pension schemes are entirely dependent on contributions, charges and investment performance. Should you return to the US or leave the UK, these pensions remain in the UK and are subject to changing legislation in the UK. You cannot currently roll your UK pension into a 401K or IRA in the US. You may want to consider your options at this stage and QROPS could be worth considering:

What is a QROPS?

A QROPS is a Qualified Recognized Offshore Pension Scheme. The use of a QROPS to allow for the transfer, and subsequent management, of UK pensions to personal pension structures is becoming increasingly popular by those who have built up UK pensions and are now living away from the UK. It will allow you to consolidate all of your current pensions into a

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to the US with a UK plan? IMAGE ©KAREN ROACH - FOTOLIA

single pension structure as well as providing access to a wider choice of investments in different currencies. This may be important to avoid currency fluctuations if you are returning to the US and will be drawing your pension in USD. It is important to consider your options to a QROPS if your pension will be subject to the LTA (Lifetime Allowance) in the UK.

Lifetime Allowance

The Chancellor announced that the standard pensions lifetime allowance (LTA), which is the total value of pension savings that can be accumulated without a tax charge, will be reduced from £1.25 million to £1 million from 6 April 2016. This follows a reduction from £1.8 million to £1.5 million on 6 April 2012 and a further reduction to £1.25 million from 6 April 2014. Any excess over that limit will be taxed at 25% (if used to increase pension) or 55% (if taken as a lump sum) when the member starts to take their pension or benefits. It is expected that this will generate tax of approximately £1.92 billion by 2019/20.

Who will be affected?

Individuals who have undrawn pension funds in UK registered pension schemes and certain overseas schemes, where the aggregate lifetime savings exceed £1 million in value as at 6 April 2016. It will also affect some individuals who are already drawing pension benefits but who may have future benefits that need to be tested against the lifetime allowance (eg individuals under age 75 who are in drawdown). For an individual with a defined benefit (eg final salary) scheme, the reduction will take effect where the prospective pension entitlement is more than £50,000 per annum (assuming no lump sum or other pension benefits are taken).


The reduction is intended to take effect for pension benefits that are taken from 6 April 2016. It is due to be indexed in line with the Consumer Price Index from April 2018. If you’re working with a large multinational you may be surprised to learn that your transfer value is

high in relation to the pension that you will forgo. Therefore, you’ll still maintain the real value of your pension pot but, as mentioned above, gain the many advantages that come with making use of a QROPS structure, most notably being able to leave much more of your pension to your family. So, you still have the potential to generate a high pension income; but by transferring your pension you will gain all important ownership of your fund. Alconbury Trust LLC is a Registered Investment Adviser in the state of Florida USA. If you are returning to the USA or moving elsewhere and have a UK pension, contact us to discuss your options. w w w. a l c o n b u r y t r u s t . c o m Alconbury Trust LLC is a Registered Investment Adviser in the State of Florida and Texas. Alconbury Trust is not a tax advisor or a Lawyer firm. The above is for education purposes only and not intended as a solicitation of sale.

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Tax and Pensions: FTC Planning with a SIPP S

elf Invested Personal Pensions could be the answer if you have excess Foreign Tax Credits. The experts from Tax Advisory Partnership (TAP) and Tanager Wealth Management (TWM) give you an overview of the US taxation and investment opportunities when investing via a SIPP. As many US citizens in the UK know, the US/UK tax treaty allows you to claim a foreign tax credit for the UK taxes you have paid against the US taxes that are due on your income. While this avoids double taxation, it often leaves US taxpayers resident overseas with excess foreign tax credits. Foreign tax credit excesses occur because usually the UK tax paid is more that the US tax due on the income in any year. These excess foreign tax credits carry forward for 10 years at which point they expire if they were not used in the intervening period. The dilemma for a US taxpayer is how to utilize these credits without taking extreme steps such as moving to a lower taxed country! In this article we have focussed on one of the key tools for utilizing these credits, Self Invested Personal Pensions (SIPPs).

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Who can invest in a SIPP and how much can I contribute?

(TAP) In order to contribute to a SIPP you need to be UK resident and under the age of 75. While this does mean you could open accounts for a number of members of your family, you should carefully consider each person’s UK and US taxation before investing. In theory you can contribute up to 100% of your earnings, however, HMRC set a maximum annual allowance for contributions which is currently £40,000. There is also a maximum lifetime allowance of £1.25million which should also be considered. You should note that both the annual and lifetime allowances have been revised downwards in the March and July UK budgets and new limits will apply to certain taxpayers from April 2016. You may also be able to utilize unused allowance from previous years in order to maximise your initial contribution. You should discuss with your tax advisor before any contributions are made. (TWM) Pension advice is highly regulated in the UK, especially when it comes to consolidating multiple occupational pensions (which is a typical reason for

establishing a SIPP) and American expats should ensure they receive appropriately regulated advice before opening a SIPP. In the UK you can make Carry Forward contributions to a pension if you are already a member of a UK pension. From tax year 2011/12 onwards, unused annual personal allowances from the three previous tax years can sometimes be carried forward to the current tax year. This can allow pension contributions/ accrual in excess of the standard annual allowance to be made in a tax year without incurring an annual allowance tax charge. There are strict rules governing how carry forward works: • Unused annual allowance can be carried forward to the current tax year from the previous three tax years. • It’s only possible to do this once the current year’s annual allowance has been fully used up (ie. a person’s total annual contribution(s) from all sources to registered pension schemes with Pension Input Periods (PIPs) ending in the current tax year must be due to total at least £40,000 gross before carry forward can be used). • Unused annual allowance is

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used up starting with the earliest year first (when calculating how much annual allowance has been used up in a particular tax year it is necessary to add together all pension contributions made by, or on behalf of, the individual in any Pension Input Period ending in that tax year. It is not simply a case of adding the contributions paid in that tax year (unless the Pension Input Period(s) are aligned with the tax year). • The person had to have been a member of a registered pension scheme at some point during the carry forward year in question (a member includes an active member, a pensioner member, a deferred member or a pension credit member of a pension scheme). However,

there’s no need for any contributions to have been made to the scheme in that year. • If unused annual allowance is being carried forward, the usual tax relief rules still apply to any contributions made. • Tax relief on employer contributions is subject to the usual wholly and exclusively test; and tax relief on personal contributions is limited to 100% of the individual’s relevant UK earnings for the current tax year (or £3,600 if greater). It is also worth noting that, in light of FATCA, there are actually a relatively small number of SIPP providers who will deal with US persons (including US residents for when you go home) and who understand

the interaction between the UK and the US tax rules.

How does a SIPP use my excess Foreign Tax Credits?

(TAP) Your contributions to a SIPP in the UK reduce your UK taxable income in the year the contributions are made; however, the US does not generally allow the same deduction from your taxable income. You are therefore reporting more income in the US than you are in the UK. As your UK taxable income (and your UK tax liability) reduces you are able to use the excess foreign tax credits generated in earlier years on your US tax return to offset the US taxes which are due as you will be reporting more income in the US. At the same time,

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you are of course funding your UK SIPP account. (TWM) Utilising FTCs can be a great way of starting a SIPP given the initial and ongoing costs of owning a SIPP. We recommend that you ensure you have at least one year’s pension contributions available if you plan to start a SIPP. Lower value SIPPs can appear to be relatively expensive as most SIPP providers charge a one-off establishment fee plus an annual fee of around £300 to £500+VAT. We often suggest that clients look to maximise their employer pension before considering at a SIPP.

How will the IRS view the SIPP?

(TAP) The IRS has not yet clearly defined the taxation and reporting of a US investor in a UK SIPP and views on how such investments should be reported differ. Some argue that the SIPP is a Foreign Grantor Trust while others believe it should be treated as a Foreign Pension. Taxation of these two options is markedly different and each can have its advantages and disadvantages. As a Foreign Grantor Trust the IRS would seek to tax the income and earnings in the fund and you would need to carefully consider the investments held within the SIPP to avoid other reporting issues with the IRS. As a Foreign Pension, the growth would accumulate tax free and you may have a wider choice of investment opportunities within the SIPP. It is therefore prudent to seek advice before investing in a SIPP and discussing the report-

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ing methods with your tax advisor. (TWM) It is vitally important that your tax advisor and your investment advisor are on the same page in regards to how a SIPP will be accounted for IRS purposes. If a Foreign Grantor Trust is the method of accounting, the US taxpayer needs to ensure they are investing in US/ UK tax efficient securities. Passive Foreign Investment Corporations should be avoided. To the extent the SIPP will be treated as a pension there are more options though one would be wise to evaluate the cost of the securities in the portfolio and the account itself as not to subject themselves to unnecessary drags on the overall return.

What happens when I retire?

(TAP) The US taxation of the SIPP when you retire and take distributions is very much dependent on the reporting of the SIPP when contributions are made and throughout the life of the SIPP. The IRS will generally seek to tax the amount in excess of the basis you have in the SIPP. If reported as a Foreign Grantor Trust you will have paid tax on the growth each year and therefore have a higher basis in the SIPP which has been previously taxed. As a Foreign Pension you will have a lower basis which would mean that more of the distribution amounts will be taxed. As always, you should consult a tax advisor when investing in or receiving distributions from a SIPP. (TWM) It is also important to consider where you will retire. For

many expats this can be a difficult prediction. If your career or life plans take you back stateside, treating your SIPP as a Foreign Grantor Trust can be an attractive planning strategy. You may get to enjoy both a UK tax deferral on your contributions and, since you have been reporting income and gains to the IRS each year along the way, you could have a very tax efficient account from which to make withdrawals.

Sam Ashley is Senior Tax Manager at Tax Advisory Partnership 14 Devonshire Square, London, EC2M 4TY. T. 020 7655 6959 Tanager Wealth Management is staffed by US expat financial advisors who understand what it means to live and plan with cross–border tax issues. 020 7871 8440

Tanager Wealth Management LLP is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in the UK and is an SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Information provided in this article should not be construed as advice. You should seek specialist tax advice from a suitably qualified tax professional. Tanager Wealth Management LLP does not provide tax advice and the Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate tax advice.

What do Tanager Wealth Management clients have in common?

Peace of Mind

020 7871 8440 @tanagerwealth Tanager Wealth Management LLP is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Tanager Wealth Management LLP is an SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Registered In England and Wales No.OC377053. Registered Office: The White House, Mill Road, Goring on Thames, RG8 9DD

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Miss Patricia

Dispencers [sic] With Formality A

t the last minute, I managed to fluff myself up with the purchase of a scarf so fine that when I rinsed it later in the sink it threatened to disappear down through the weeny holes in the strainer. I wore it all squiggled to hide alien spider thingies in the neutral print: no one does color any more because it clashes with nude. Not that I was. There was a HUGE struggle to be on time because the silk had obnox-

ious labels weighing it down, where it was meant to float picturesquely in a breeze, and I refuse to go out in public as an effing advert for anyone, plus I had to glue fake hairs in the gap where my eyelashes fell out and sleep on my back to keep them undisturbed, so no one can say I didn’t make the supreme sacrifice. And yes, I did think of England. All this was to spend the day at Althorp, where I immediately had to give up my plan to become the

umpteenth Mrs Spender, I mean Spencer. [ahem, Countess, surely – Ed.] Princess Diana’s brother Charles is the kind of man you marry so you can brag about it to your friends back home, but not the kind of man you marry for fun …in fact, sharing in the maintenance of the old homestead looked like quite the chore. Charles was very gracious indeed about relinquishing his privacy. It was just another relaxing day in the country for him, strolling

Miss Patricia could see herself ‘Preserving Ideal Vistas’ at Althorp

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Earl Spencer in his radio days IMAGE COURTESY WNPR CONNECTICUT

around the house wired for a mic. There was a cracking lecture out in the gardens about brutal pruning to Preserve Ideal Vistas, from the type of older gentleman described in novels as ‘leonine’, with flowing gray locks, stunningly dressed all in white except for bizarre creepers growing up his jacket. He exhibited the fashion fearlessness of a man secure in his social standing. But the garden he was discussing looked like it could overgrow anyone’s assets. He said he liked to move his statuary around a lot, which made me nervous: wouldn’t it seem like that Doctor Who where the sinister statues creep forward when no one’s looking? I guess he won’t be marrying Mr Patricia’s single mother, who has divots in her carpeting where her furniture sits in “the right places”. A walk around the oxymoronic “oval circle” to view Diana’s gravesite revealed that her brother had missed the pruning talk. It was a bushy lump indeed. My visions of Charles rowing out for silent communions had to be edited to include a scythe, which altered naturally sad thoughts into unnaturally grim ones. I began to think a dab hand at “Preserving Vistas” might be useful at Althorp. But as everything on the place radiated intentionality, I finally realized that the overgrowth was a very deliberate decision to protect privacy that came too late to a girl truthfully unknown, but adored regardless, by Americans. The decision to bury Diana at her childhood home felt very right. It’s quiet; it’s private, and surely her family was correct in believing that a public grave would have become

a circus shrine in the Elvis style. But an ex-pat thought crept into mind: what about moving day?! We had a bit of trouble with buyers one time, until it was made clear that our marked graves were those of pets. But it turns out resale value is hardly an issue with a family home owned twice as long as the US has existed. And there’s no shortage of heirs to squabble over Althorp. Rumor has it that Mr Spencer is a devoted dad, and it’s a good thing too, because like most wealthy men he’s dispensed quite a lot of himself, with mini-Spencers all over the place (allegedly). One is reminded of farmers of yore, frolicking with leather seed bag at the hip, joyously scattering corn hither and yon…all part of enjoying life to the fullest, and there has to be some reward for spending years hounded by the press and ex mothers-in-law. Mr Spencer welcomed guests to a terrific picture gallery, accompanied by a silent and smiling model daughter with hair like satin ribbon and legs like an engineer’s dividers. Except later she turned out to be his stunning latest wife, and the stunning was done when a previous

engagement was scandalously broken off due to her dazzling arrival on the scene. I pictured him leaning against their bedroom door jamb, twirling the belt of his dressing gown. “Who’s your daddy?” he might chortle ...or perhaps not, in this case. I wanted him to be horrid to provide better anecdotes, but instead, time with him was hardly a hardship: he was tall, trim, pleasant with a relaxed manner, had taken the correct stance on plastic surgery (con), and was interesting as well, having written a stack of nonfiction, mostly about the property which he obviously manages with diligence. The family’s fortune came from sheep, and there were some fuzzy flockers dotting the fields on the interminable drive in. It looks like they escape from their pastures at times, because there wasn’t a blade of grass left in front of the house, leading Giles the Gardener to give up and put in white gravel, as Americans do in mobile home parks in Arizona. So, see? The rich may not be so different from you and me after all.

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The Glorious 12th I

t may sound like a historical anniversary, but The Glorious 12th represents the start of the six month Game Bird Shooting Season in the British Isles, the opening day of the Red Grouse Shooting Season, explains James Chapel of William Powell Sporting. The date, August 12th, was established by the Game Act of 1773. To the UK shooting community the Glorious 12th is symbolic. Grouse shooting is at the pinnacle of game bird shooting here. For most, the date is merely an encouragement that the Open Season for the more common pheasant and partridge shooting - from September/October onwards- is on its way, but an invitation to shoot grouse on the opening day is anticipated for months in advance. August 12th also represents the opening day of the shooting season for the common snipe in the UK. However, snipe are rarely found in any numbers and 99% of the quarry shot on the day will be the Red Grouse.

Bring your own guns

American Citizens wishing to bring a gun (or guns) into the UK for game shooting need to plan their trip well in advance. Having established where you will be shooting, you need to liaise with the UK resident sporting agent who runs the opera-

tion there, or the owner of the land in question, so that they can obtain a UK Visitors Shotgun Permit. You’ll need to provide them with details of the guns - gauge, make, model and serial number - together with your name, address in the US and date of birth. The final piece of the jigsaw is a copy of your current US Hunting Licence or Licence to Carry a Weapon. The latter is used as bona fides with the Licencing Authority in the UK to prove that the applicant is really wishing to bring a weapon over to hunt responsibly and that you’re experienced in the handling of such weapons. The agent or owner will apply to the Licencing Authority. The process can take anywhere between 2 and 8 weeks, depending on the Regional Authority, but it’s best to plan for the longer period to avoid disappointment. Once the Permit has been processed it’s sent to the US and the paperwork’s completed with your signature. You can then pack your guns and head for the British heather moorland and the grouse that await you there. There are useful custom forms to sign before departing the US, including the Declaration of Ownership and CBP Form 4457, to avoid any misunderstanding when the owner of the guns returns to the US with them.

Hire or buy in the UK

This is relatively easy to arrange. You will still need a UK Visitors Shotgun Permit, but there is no need to supply details of guns or for the Permit to be sent to the US. However, it’s always worthwhile sending the

dimensions of your own guns in the US, if any, so that guns you hire or borrow will be as close as possible in terms of length, cast, barrel length, number of triggers, etc. to ensure you have the most enjoyable shooting experience. It is possible to purchase guns in the UK to shoot there. They can be left in the UK until your next visit, with one of the many storage facilities operated by UK Gunmakers, such as William Powell.

Experience necessary?

Rock pigeons in South Africa, sandgrouse in Namibia, wild bobwhite quail in Georgia and cinnamon teal in Argentina are all fantastically sporting birds with their advocates, but for out and out high speed adrenalin bursts, driven grouse shooting when the birds come downwind over undulating heather clad moorland hills, has to be one of the most exciting and testing moments in any true sportsman’s life. It is therefore important that you have some knowledge of shooting, as it is not a skill which can be learnt there and then. However, in our own experience anyone who can shoot 25 ex-25 on a skeet range will undoubtedly have a successful time on a driven grouse moor. The concept is often harder for those European Shooters who have started out their career shooting driven game such as partridge and pheasant, where the bird is flying high up in the sky and they are taught never to shoot low to the ground. As the driven grouse rarely flies more than 3ft above the

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ground and hugs the contours, it is a completely different mind-set. Those who are used to walkedup shooting – for instance quail – will find the birds easier to shoot once they are passed the line of butts and can be taken as a going away bird. Tuition on clay pigeons is available for newcomers and we recommend skeet shooting or even down the line as practice, before getting up onto the moors. For those wishing to walk-up grouse over dogs, we have found one of the most useful ways to practise is to find a clay pigeon shooting range with a simulated rabbit clay (a clay rolled out on its edge across the ground), then stand at different angles some 10 yards away from the target and shoot it as a going away rabbit. Tuition whilst actually shooting the birds can also be arranged. There are a number of ‘in-field’ instructors in the UK who specialise in spending the day with a sportman, standing next to you and assisting with your shooting. They are extremely knowledgeable and great fun to be with. It can be quite an expensive option but it yields good dividends in terms of the increased ability to shoot birds and therefore the increased amount of enjoyment! We thoroughly recommend having an instructor on your first ever grouse day.

Where is shooting available?

The Red Grouse only lives on the heather moorlands of Northern England and Scotland, with the odd pocket in Wales, so all August shooting has to take place in these

regions. There are less than 200 moors left in the UK with sufficient birds to drive, decreasing a little every year due to the diminishing area of heather habitat. Traditionally the English Moors of Yorkshire, County Durham and Northumberland have been the heartland of the grouse populations and are usually the areas where the most stable numbers are found. However, the Scottish Moors up in the Highlands and some of the Western Pennine Moors in England produce some very exhilarating wild birds, even early in the season. To really test yourself against the best, it is worth looking in these areas for an August day.

slightly low) as it approaches your butt. Ideally start to shoot as the bird reaches a point 60 yards from you. If you leave it too long in doing so the whole covey will be on you and past before you have even fired a shot. This is something that happens more regularly than even the most experienced grouse Shots would wish to admit!

How to shoot driven grouse

Driven grouse shooting is unique and unlike almost any other form of game shooting. Instructors talk of a controlled, yet aggressive style shooting instinctively and trusting yourself to pull the trigger on “first aim” without hesitation. It certainly requires a different approach than that taken for driven pheasants. The old adage says that “pheasants have top hats, grouse have spats” – you need to shoot in front of and just above a driven pheasant but in front of and below a driven grouse. Unlike any other game bird the grouse can fly in an almost unpredictable fashion, twisting and curling as they hug the contours. The timing of when you start is of paramount importance to the success of the shot. Pick a bird (they often fly in tight coveys of 10, 20 or even 50 birds), and “shoot its legs off” (meaning aim in front and

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A Great Vintage Celebrating US car marques at the Bonhams London to Brighton Veteran Car Run


n 1896, 30 motorists set off to drive the 60 miles from London to Brighton in the UK to celebrate the lifting of the 1865 Locomotion Act which required a motor car to travel at no more than 4 mph and to be preceded by a man on foot with a red flag. This Run was known as the Emancipation Run and formed motoring as we know it today. This celebration of early motoring continues today as the Bonhams London to Brighton Veteran Car Run and remains a ‘must do’ event for owners of veteran cars worldwide. In 2015 the 119th anniversary of the very first Run is celebrated on November 1st, representing a rare opportunity for participants to take their extraordinary veteran cars on this historic 60-mile journey as well as the chance for spectators to line the route and enjoy the spectacular sight

28 August 2015

and a slice of motoring heritage. The Run is open to all cars built before 1905, making the youngest on the Run 111 years old; it is a moving history show, with both familiar and more obscure car names – Cadillac and Oldsmobile number the lion’s share of the American entries and are typically joined by other US marques including Pope, Stanley, Rambler, Northern, Pierce, Waverley and Ford. In recognition of the large number of American veteran cars regularly taking part in the annual Run as well as the significant number of US entrants, this year’s event has a distinctly stars-and-stripes theme. Organisers of the Run already have a great representation of US entries – the best represented country outside the host nation – but for those thinking about taking part

who haven’t entered yet, there is still time! Some really useful advice has been put together for “First Timers” who may be thinking about taking part from across the world covering everything from ensuring a vehicle is eligible for the event, to applying to enter the Run itself. It also covers how to get a veteran car to the startline, insurance considerations, and for those who don’t already own a veteran car, it even helps with tips from Bonhams on buying a veteran car at auction. The Guide is now available for download from the event website (www.veterancarrun. com/file-download/150604065732_ first_timers_guide.pdf) and makes the entire process of planning, entering and taking part as easy as possible – worth a read for anyone thinking about getting involved.

The American Sir Ray Tindle taking a breather in the passenger seat of his veteran Speedwell Dogcart

For those without a veteran car, there are plenty of places to enjoy the Run along the route and fly the (US) flag for compatriots taking part. Spectators can even stay close to the action as it unfolds and join in with the fun of the day by following the cars on the route on an open top bus from London to Brighton which also provides paddock access. Full details about the open top bus tour are on the event website at: Many classic car clubs also gather along “their spot” on the route to cheer through the veteran cars and their crews. The most popular locations are typically around Handcross and Staplefield, just south of Crawley. Outside the local primary school in Handcross, the Lotus 7 Club traditionally set up early on the Sunday morning of the Run and a little further down the route in Staplefield, the MG Owners Club and the Morgan Sportscar Club combine along the roadside outside the Jolly Tanners pub whilst the Bentley Drivers Club have now joined with the Rolls Royce Enthusiasts Club in the car park of the Victory Inn to enjoy the Run from this picturesque Sussex village. The options are endless!

The American Connection S

ir Ray Tindle is a half-century veteran of the London to Brighton Veteran Car Run. In 2014 the founder and original publisher of The American completed an amazing 50th ‘London to Brighton’. Even more remarkably, every one of those 60 mile adventures was undertaken in the same automobile, a 1904 single-cylinder Speedwell Dogcart. Sir Ray told Michael Burland, the current publisher, that as a child he saw the veteran cars – three decades old even then – driving to Brighton through the London suburb of Streatham Common where he grew up. “I remember thinking how wonderful it would be to ride on one of those cars,” he said. A war veteran, he used his ‘demob’

money to buy his local newspaper and grew it into one of the most successful publishing companies in Britain, enabling him to make his motoring dream come true. In 1980 his passenger in the 6 horsepower Dogcart was Kingman Brewster, the US Ambassador. His Excellency reportedly enjoyed the trip, even though he was called upon to leap out of the car and push up one of the steeper hills! Tindle Newspapers, Sir Ray’s company, was for many years the main sponsor of the London to Brighton Run and this year The American is the event’s media partner. We’ll be there – we hope to see you enjoying the fabulous vehicles with their enthusiastic owners, drivers and passengers.

The Bonhams London to Brighton Veteran Car Run is the pinnacle event in a week of motoring nostalgia in the capital during “London Motor Week” - a series of events hosted by the world famous Royal Automobile Club which also includes a Literary Festival, Motoring Forum, and the Regent Street Motor Show.

August 2015 29 Blue Moon - an after-dinner libation

3-9 Heddon Street, London W1B 4BE


King Crab Thermidor

The American


Reviewed by Michael M Sandwick


ondon has a food quarter! Who knew? The whole town has become foodie heaven, so how Heddon Street managed to win the title is a mystery, but it has, and not without reason. Away from the power-shopping crowds, this delightful pedestrian passage is an oasis of restaurants. Heddon Street Kitchen, part of the Gordon Ramsay group, is the latest addition, and it’s an example of teamwork at its best. Maria Tampakis, born in Brooklyn, learned about food from her Greek family, trained with French guru Jean Georges and English superstar Heston Blumenthal before joining Ramsay. Talk about pedigree! Her food is one big “melting pot”. Greek, Asian, French, English…. delicate, complex and flavorful all at the same time. Flawless. Our waitress Maria is from Bulgaria. Another divine immigrant. Absolutely charming, her recommendations were spot on every time. So too, Sommelier Angelika Oparczyk from Poland. Her wine list

30 August 2015

is spectacular. For us she suggested a wine that was created specifically for the Asian market by a Japanese chef and a French vintner. Gyotaku Gentil is an Alsatian blend of Pinot Blanc, Riesling, Pinot Gris and Gewürztraminer. Brilliant. Last, but far from least is Englishborn bar manager, Dan Berger. Dan discovered his mixology skills when he emigrated to Australia. He just won the UK final of Bombay Sapphire’s World’s Most Imaginative Bartender competition and will soon attend the global final. His drink, Age of Discovery (£10) is amazing. Emphasis on zing! Gin, chestnut honey infused with coriander seed, Darjeeling tea syrup, lemon, olive oil and marjoram. I am infusing chestnut honey as I write! The dining room is warehouse chic. The upstairs has a fine view of Heddon Street and you can eat al fresco dining too. The message is fine food for a laid back crowd. At the bar we had the best popcorn I have ever tasted. Spicy

Mexican. Even my guest who hates popcorn ate a whole bowl of it! Soy and sake cured salmon with yuzu avocado purée and lotus root and spicy tuna tartare with chilli, garlic, sesame oil and won ton crisps, both £12, both fabulous. This is Tampakis at her best. She melds a lot of flavors together but still lets the fish shine through. Dried lotus root was the jewel in the crown; the wine, a perfect match. Oven roasted lobster, garlic parsley butter, mixed leaf and hand cut chips (£40) was a stunner and duck with pink peppercorns, watercress purée and fondant potato (£25) was also cooked perfectly. Pineapple carpaccio was a beautiful, light dessert and bread and butter pudding was one of the best ever. Even so, an adult milkshake of Earl Grey infused gin with strawberries and vanilla ice cream was so good, drinking dessert is definitely an option. Not an easy choice. Perhaps they should change the name to Heddon Street Bar & Kitchen!

The American A selection of the Sunday Brunch

12a Berkeley Square, London W1J 6BS


ll you can eat, all day Michelindian Sunday Brunch for £45 pp, including a glass of sparkling wine or a lassi. The food is divine, the wine list stunning and the service impeccable. At the moment, my number one recommendation. Atul Kochhar was the first Indian chef to receive a Michelin star and Benares represents his second. I’m sure it won’t be his last. His brilliance lies in his use of spice. Always intricate, always balanced and always packed with flavor. His brunch is over 20 small dishes served in 4 courses and you can have more of anything, just for the asking. If you can! I wanted more of everything, but I couldn’t. I was tempted to just sit there until I could! The first nine dishes are hors d’oeuvres. Small bites of heaven. Spicy potato in a toasted bun, steamed gram flour cake, spiced fish salad… The only dish evocative of a “western” brunch was the Anda

Masala Omelette. Oddly enough, it was also the only dish that lacked wow factor. Everything else made me stop, savor and relish. Pickled prawns with root vegetables was the first stand-out. A beautiful take on traditional English potted shrimp; sweet, savory and spicy. Tandoori grilled broccoli with Paneer Tikka, the Indian version of cottage cheese, was another favorite. Perhaps the best broccoli ever. For the third course, four small pots appeared on the table along with nan, rice, dal, raita, and a vegetable biryani. Everything was exceptional but the pinnacle was the fish dumpling curry from Kerala. Flavored with coconut milk and lemon grass, it was reminiscent of a Thai curry, but much more complex. Should I have had more of something it would have been this and I found myself lamenting the fact that I only have one stomach. For £10 pounds you can drink unlimited soft beverages and for

Reviewed by Michael M Sandwick £25 white or red wine. We chose one of each and had wonderful mango lassi and Atul’s signature Sauvignon Blanc, Nyakas Budai, Hungary, 2013. Intrigued by this wine from Hungary, I was not disappointed. Full, balanced and with just a whisper of sweetness that complimented the spicy food perfectly. By the glass it is only £6.50. A better bargain unless you are going to drink 4 glasses or more. For dessert, a lemon torte didn’t stun me as so much else did. The Indian classic ras malai, curd in sweet cream, was wonderful. A perfect bit of light sweetness to end a spicy meal. Pineapple lime sorbet and lychee kulfi (Indian ice cream) were also full of flavor. I first reviewed Benares for dinner and it became my favorite restaurant. After this it is still my favorite. Atul Kochhar has just launched The Benares Cookbook, a collection of the restaurant signature dishes.

August 2015 31

Engawa A

esthetics: “the principles that deal with beauty and taste.” In Japan, there are nine of them. Transient beauty, grace, subtlety, simplicity and discipline are just a few. To understand Japanese aesthetics properly would require years of study. For a crash course, book a table at Engawa. The presentation of the food is nothing short of magnificent. The mind boggling array of porcelain, wood, bamboo and slate on which each course is served, provides a glorious framework for the works of art that taste every bit as good as they look. The five chefs that work in the open kitchen are exceptionally talented. Watching them is a privilege. The place itself is an enigma. Engawa means veranda, or rather, a narrow strip of wooden flooring. An apt name for the restaurant. It is small and so are the tables which can’t quite accommodate all the lovely dishes. The floor staff, flawless and extremely well informed about the food, have also developed an impressive agility that enables them to serve with grace. The tight space and open kitchen give

32 August 2015


Reviewed by Michael M Sandwick

a sense of immediacy. On the other hand, it feels a bit like watching grand opera on a cabaret stage. A stinger of sake, sugar and lemongrass (£12) was delicious and refreshing as we perused the three menus, three, five or eight courses at £60, £80 and £100. I felt duty-bound to choose the latter! All the menus feature sashimi, sushi and the absolute star of the show, Kobe beef. Each of the four Kobe courses offer a choice of two or three dishes. A flight of three sakes made an excellent pairing. There is also a small, expensive wine list as well as a fine choice of sake by the bottle. Our first course was perhaps the most impressive. Two great blocks of ice arrived, in each an embedded small glass dish. Finely chopped Kobe, yam and spring onion, like a fine Japanese tartare and slow-cooked Kobe with ponzu jelly, rich and flavorful with the zing of citrus. There were four more courses before we got to “mains”! Chawanmushi, an egg custard made with Kobe beef stock and shaved truffle

Kobe - star of the show MAGES © DAISUKE SHIMA, NACASA & PARTNERS

2 Ham Yard, London W1D 7DT

Embedded in a block of ice

TheAmerican American The

was a real treat. Agemono, deep fried prawns and asparagus with shiso and kumquat. Light and tasty. The sashimi course was impressive. A wooden box of nine compartments, each containing a fine porcelain dish of tuna, scallop, Kobe, salmon with roe, yellowtail, squid and sea bass. Sensational. Course 5 was Kobe sukiyaki, sweet and succulent, and slow cooked Kobe with daikon, tender and savory. Then the mains: two Kobe steaks, one lean, the other, the most marbled steak I have ever seen. All that fat gives a taste that can, literally, stop your heart. Served with white asparagus, watercress, courgette and three “dips”: rock salt, wasabi and ponzu. Hands down the highlight of the evening. I dream about that steak! As if that wasn’t enough, there followed a brilliant sushi course then one of the best Asian fusion desserts I have ever had, Deluxe Engawa Fondue: tofu cheesecake with seasonal fruits and a green tea infused white chocolate dipping sauce. Western taste with Japanese aesthetic. Transient beauty indeed! !

The American

Cellar Talk Easy Livin’

By Virginia E Schultz A Hemingway Daiquiri


n August, I usually have visitors, mainly friends from the States or France. I like to make Americanstyle mixed drinks which I mix in a punch bowl or a huge green pitcher I inherited from my mother. Then it’s hot dogs or hamburgers on the grill and home made potato salad and slice tomatoes from my petite garden. Many of my drink recipes are made with vodka, although whiskey, bourbon and tequila are other favorites. Preparing ahead of time makes it easier for the host or hostess than depending on some friend later, which is almost as much a worry as help. Of course, I always have cans of beer in a bucket filled with ice, which my late husband preferred. Hamburgers are made ready to grill as well as hot dogs with catsup, mustard, relish and onions in small dishes in the refrigerator. Dessert is cup cakes, vanilla and chocolate. Don’t ask me why but for some reason most people prefer cup cakes to cake. At my last barbecue, I put out chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry ice cream along with chocolate sauce, peanuts, cherries and whipped cream and let everyone make their own sundaes. Champagne glasses make great dessert dishes for this, I might add. The important thing is to make it

easier for yourself. Too many people spend too much time worrying about what to serve and it ends up not being fun for anyone. One

friend, who hates to cook, had her husband run to McDonald’s and bring back hamburgers and French fries for her guests.

DRINKS OF THE MONTH MOSCOW MULE /2 oz of freshly squeezed lime juice 2 oz vodka Ginger beer to top Lime wedges for garnish 1

Squeeze lime juice into a mug, preferably copper. Add ice and then vodka. Top with ginger beer and then garnish with lime. HEMINGWAY DAIQUIRI Ernest Hemingway described drinking daiquiris like skiing downhill on a glacier through powdered snow. Frankly, having done both, I think you’d feel easier if you had this drink before you took to the slopes: 2 oz white rum 3 /4 oz fresh lime juice 1 /2 oz fresh grapefruit juice 1 /2 oz maraschino liqueur Ice 1 lime wheel for garnish In a cocktail shaker, combine rum, lime juice, grapefruit juice and maraschino liqueur and shake well. I usually have Latin American music in the background! Strain into chilled daiquiri or coupe glass and garnish with lime. August 2015 33

FESTIVAL Jupiter Artland

Bonnington House Steadings, Nr Wilkieston, EH27 8BB to September 27 This is the first large-scale solo show in the UK for American artist and sculptor Tara Donovan (b. 1969, New York) who produces artwork derived from recognisable everyday items: Scotch Tape, drinking straws, paper-plates, pins, plastic rods and toothpicks. Thousands of identical items are stacked, glued, cut and assembled, transformed through repetition into majestic installations and sculptures. What initially look like precious stones and minerals often turn out to be quite ordinary materials, such as plastic buttons or polyester film (Mylar). She lives and works in Brooklyn.

John Chamberlain Inverleith House, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, Arboretum Place/Inverleith Row, EH3 5LR to October 4

The first solo exhibition in a UK public gallery of American sculptor John Chamberlain (1927–2011). Best known for his vibrantly colored metal sculptures made from salvaged materials and car parts. Born in Rochester, Indiana, he grew up in Chicago, and after the US Navy studied at the Art Institute of Chicago and Black Mountain College, before moving to NYC in 1956. He has been exhibited worldwide and is represented in many public collections including the Dia Art Foundation and the Guggenheim, New York.

Above: Tara Donovan, Untitled (Mylar), 2011 (detail). Mylar and hot glue, dimensions variable PHOTOGRAPH BY MICK VINCENZ © TARA DONOVAN, COURTESY PACE GALLERY

34 August 2015

John Chamberlain, Miss Lucy Pink, 1962 Painted and chromium-plated steel PHOTO ©SOLOMON R. GUGGENHEIM FOUNDATION, NEW YORK

ARTIST ROOMS Roy Lichtenstein

Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art (Modern Two), 75 Belford Road, EH4 3DR to January 10, 2016 A great opportunity to see a special three-room ARTIST ROOMS exhibition dedicated to works by American artist Roy Lichtenstein (1923-1997). Lichtenstein was one of the most ground-breaking and influential artists of the twentieth century. With integrity to his materials and techniques, and an intellectual rigour and wit, Lichtenstein created visually striking works that continue to provoke questions about how images permeate our lives. This display brings together a newly assembled group of works by Lichtenstein recently placed on long-term loan to ARTIST ROOMS thanks to the generosity of the Roy Lichtenstein Foundation.

Roy Lichtenstein, Reflections on Girl, 1990. Lithograph, screenprint on paper and metalised PVC on paper IMAGE © ESTATE OF ROY LICHTENSTEIN/DACS 2015

The American

Agnes Martin, Friendship, 1963


Paul Strand, Norman Douglas, South Uist, Hebrides, 1954 gelatine silver print, 14.6 x 11.4 cm SCOTTISH NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY © APERTURE FOUNDATION INC., PAUL STRAND ARCHIVE

Agnes Martin

Tate Modern, Bankside, London SE1 9TG to October 11

Collecting Now (part)

Scottish National Portrait Gallery, 1 Queen St, Edinburgh EH2 1JD to September 20

This is Agnes Martin’s first retrospective since her death in 2004. Born in Canada in 1912, she moved to New York in 1931 and took US citizenship in 1940. Her work is most closely associated with Taos, New Mexico, where she moved to and built an adobe house. Often referred to as a minimalist, Martin considered herself an abstract expressionist, and subsequently became an inspiration to younger artists, from Eva Hesse to Ellen Gallagher.

Nine photographs by American photographer Paul Strand (18901976), one of the greatest photographers of the C20th, have been acquired by the Scottish NPG. Taken from Strand’s series of Hebridean photographs from South Uist (1954), the works are the first examples of his Scottish work to enter into a public collection in Scotland. The exhibition of nearly 50 paintings, drawings and photographs celebrates some of the modern works which have recently entered James Turrell the collection. Highlights include West Façade works by influential photographers Illumination, 2015 PHOTO ©HUGO Eve Arnold, Viviane Sassen and GLENDINNING David Peat, and portraits of key IMAGE COURTESY OF THE Scottish figures like poet Edwin ARTIST AND HOUGHTON HALL Morgan and actor Alan Cumming.

LightScape: James Turrell at Houghton

Houghton Hall, King’s Lynn, Norfolk PE31 6UE to October 24 The work of American artist James Turrell (b. 1943), is primarily concerned with light and space. Nearly 15 years after the installation of James Turrell’s meditative ‘Skyspace’ at Houghton, home of David Cholmondeley, 7th Marquess of Cholmondeley, he has created a site-specific light work illuminating the entire west façade of Houghton Hall in Norfolk as part of a major exhibition. The show is centred around works from the Houghton collection, which also includes projections, a ‘Tall Glass’, holograms and prints. The exhibition is complemented by further loans to help cover the broad spectrum of Turrell’s work. The spectacular slowly evolving light show can be seen for 45 minutes at dusk and will be visible on Fridays and Saturdays. LightScape follows three highly acclaimed exhibitions in 2013/14 at the Guggenheim, New York, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.


The American

DON’T MISS ... Transfiguration

The House Mill, Three Mill Lane London E3 3DU to August 28

M.C. Escher, Reptiles, 1943


Bill Viola, Transfiguration, 2007 IMAGE ©KIRA PEROV

Derived from his monumental installation Ocean Without a Shore, which was shown at the 52nd Venice Biennale (2007), works by American contemporary video artist Bill Viola (b. 1951) are exhibited in a Grade I listed, 18th-century tidal mill on The Line in London. They are Three Women (2008), Transfiguration (2007) and Howard (2008). Within the videos, apparitions slowly emerge from complete darkness and move towards us through an imperceptible wall of water – emerging into the earthly realm, where they reveal their incarnate forms in high definition. From obscurity to clarity – from death to life.

36 August 2015

The Amazing World of M. C. Escher Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art (Modern Two) 73 Belford Road, Edinburgh EH4 3DS to September 27

Another one to catch in Edinburgh is the UK’s first ever major retrospective of Dutch graphic artist Maurits Cornelis Escher (1898-1972), more commonly known as M.C. Escher. The creator of fascinating and often impossible worlds, such as staircases with no beginning or end (Ascending and Descending, 1960), landscapes with illusory dual perspectives (Still Life and Street, 1937) and scenes where both two-and three-dimensional planes seamlessly meld into each other (Reptiles, 1943). He worked primarily in the media of lithographs and woodcuts, though the few mez-

zotints he made are considered to be masterpieces of the technique. Surprisingly, given his oeuvre, Escher did not have mathematical training –his understanding of mathematics was largely visual and intuitive – and more than a few of the worlds which he drew were built around impossible objects such as the Penrose triangle and the Penrose stairs, and his work is especially well liked by mathematicians and scientists. With over 100 works, including original drawings, prints, mezzotints, woodcuts and lithographs, lent by the Gemeentemuseum, Netherlands. Truly an artist of astonishing ingenuity and originality, a one-man art movement who created some of the most famous and popular images in modern art whilst operating quietly at the fringes of the art world.

Fascinated by art, literature, music and history? Then join The Course and experience our range of lectures, guided museum visits & London walks. For further information, call Mary Bromley on 020 7266 7815


Back pain? Expert assessment, enhanced recovery Hamstring assessment also available Professional, thorough evaluation and diagnosis


Tel 020 7563 1234 Email Web The Home of


The American

Keeping On Trucking H

eading across the Atlantic in November for the Prudential BluesFest is Derek Trucks, formerly of the The Allman Brothers Band and now playing with the Tedeschi Trucks Band. The first part of the name being his wife Susan, a blues star in her own right. The American spoke to Derek in between tour dates, but there wasn’t much relaxing going on chez Tedeschi-Trucks. “It’s a pretty full summer,” Derek says, “We’ve just finished recording a new album. Once the kids are out of school, that’s usually when we we hit it hard, we take them on the road with us and we can all be together. We have a big band too” Derek was born in Jacksonville, Florida, so there’s another reason for him to make the pond-crossing in the Fall – the NFL International Series games at Wembley. Britain has taken the Jacksonville Jaguars to its heart as the Jags are playing regular ‘home’ games in London. “We were actually there last year. We played the Albert Hall the same weekend the Jags were in town so we stayed and went to the game. We’ve seen the Jags get blown out in London twice now!” Derek laughs. “But they’re turning the ship around – I’m a Shahid Khan fan, he’s gonna do it right. I like that he’s taking the team over there regularly.” We discovered a (tenuous) connection between Derek and The American. A certain blues Hall of Famer called Eric Clapton recently bought a house near our office, in a small village in the rural West of England, and rumor has it that Derek was named after Old Slow-

38 August 2015

hand’s ‘70s band, Derek and The Dominos. “That’s true. My parents were massive music fans. My Dad was at the Fillmore East for those Allman Brothers concerts, and the Atlanta Pop Festival when Hendrix landed in the helicopter. The Dominos album was a big record then and my name came from that – certainly the spelling did.” [Derek’s also recorded an album with Clapton, The Road to Escondido, and toured with him.] That’s a very human example of how rock and blues has a two-way flow across the Atlantic. “It’s an amazing thing that music that essentially started in the Mississippi Delta went to Chicago, then made its way over there. Then when it was kinda being forgotten here it was reintroduced in a whole new light, plugged into Marshall amplifiers. It really did reawaken it over here. BB King and those guys inspired Clapton, then Eric inspired Duane [Allman], then Hendrix headed across the water to make his name. It’s like the neo-soul thing, with Amy Winehouse and Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings, music keeps bouncing back and forth across the pond. And it always comes down to things that are good, and things that are honest, and things that are real. They’re sometimes not appreciated where they are born, but they have a way of surviving and lasting. You hear a lot of stories about the great jazz and blues artists that had to move to be appreciated.” Is that movement one of the reasons that the music evolves, as artists find new influences and inspira-

tions? And should purists keep the oroginsl form, well, pure? “There’s certainly something to keeping the original form alive, but for me, if you’re born in the world we live in now, you can’t sing about the same things Charlie Patton or John Lee Hooker sang about. It’s not going to mean the same. I’ve had an eventful life and there’s been a lot of twists and turns, but I wasn’t born on a cotton plantation. For me to pretend I was would be dishonest, But you can take from the honesty and the brutal truth of it all, the way they made beauty out of their situations. You can borrow that, and carry on that spirit, but in your context. That separates real artists from people that are playin’ at it.” We should talk about BB King, a perfect example of someone who made beauty from a heard life that started in sharecropping. “There’ll never be another like BB. It’s an impossible story to repeat. He carried the torch for everyone, and shouldered the weight of being that guy for a good 50 years. It never fell on Jimi or Duane or Eric or anybody later. He allowed the rest of us to do our own thing without that burden. BB was always there, with that tone and that note. Even to the very end when his powers were diminished, no-one else could do that BB thing! It’s a different world without him.” You and Susan played with BB at the Albert Hall in London. “We were very lucky. That was the first time I got to play with him and after that there was another dozen times. It was magic every time, to hang out with him and be on stage.

The Tedeschi Trucks Band

Susan toured with BB for years. When I first met her she had just come off a tour with him and Buddy Guy. That was life and career changing. He was a big part of our lives. He was very generous to everybody, but he went out of his way for us.” Do you think of yourself as a blues player? You can also play Southern Rock and jazz. If I had to pick one it would be the blues – that’s the base of it for sure. Southern Rock? I like what the Allman Brothers did, but I don’t feel it was Southern Rock, although it spawned it. After that I don’t really care for it very much.” [laughs] I have influences from soul, folk, jazz ...but I don’t mind being in the realm of blues.” You’re only 36, but you’ve had a long career. When did it start? “Well, somebody gave me a flyer from a show I did in Jacksonville when I was nine! So I guess at this point I’m 27 years into it.” You’ve become known for your

unique slide guitar playing. Is it true you used a slide when you were a child because you had small hands? “That was part of it. And I was listening to a lot of Duane and Ellmore [James – both slide gurus], they really moved me. Chords were pretty easy to grab, but the single note stuff made more sense to me when somebody showed me a slide. It came really naturally.” Many guitarists try slide after they’ve played guitar for years. With you it’s almost the other way around. Did that affect your distinctive lyrical, singing slide sound? “For me it was slide from a very early point. My dad was a big influence too. He really had a low bullshit threshold! If something didn’t move him he had no time for it. He would tell me about seeing Duane and Dickey Betts playing together, firing on all cylinders. Or when someone sitting in with BB started playing notes all over the place, flashy guitar


hero shit ...pointless. Then BB lays out one note and it was obvious who the hero, the real musician, was. He would talk about that all day – how it’s the space between the notes, the story you tell, and the way it makes you feel. Not how much time you spend in a room practising. Even when I was nine or ten, sitting in with people or traveling around playing, he would tell me after a set how many times he got chills, or was physically moved by the music – that’s how he rated a show. That always stuck with me. It’s about making people feel things, not think things – that’s what we do all day long. It’s that wave that comes over you when you hear a piece of music, or somebody’s voice. I feel like that part of it is lost in the equation a lot of times. With so many musicians, singers and record labels these days, you feel like they’re manipulating your emotions: ‘This what works, this is how to make people scream’, it’s pretty formulaic. Even guitar players,

August 2015 39

The American

there are so many paper tigers out there. In blues and folk, if you don’t have that emotion, it’s not valid.” You formed the Tedeschi Trucks Band in 2010 with Susan, who had her own successful career before, with five Grammy nominations and you’re completely focused on that now. I have to ask - what’s it like to work with your wife? “I guess it depends who your wife is! [laughs] Interviewers sometimes say they can’t image it, but maybe they shoulda married somebody else! We waited a good ten years and had two kids before we considered putting a band together. After a decade we knew each others’ ticks and we were sure we could make it work. Even so, it’s surprising how well it’s worked. We’re brutally honest and deal with everything when it comes up – it helps it work, and it’s made our relationship better. We both put our

solo bands aside for this and we’ve both made this thing grow. We’re equal partners. An 11-piece band is unheard of these days. How do you make it work financially? “You gotta gig. And sacrifice some things – it’s a labor of love. It would be a lot easier with a smaller band, with bigger pay checks at the end of the year, but there’s something about the way that it sounds... We’ve always been stubborn that way. It started working within the first year – we thought it might cave under its own weight. We’re playing the same theaters Susan used to play with her four piece band and I used to play with my five piece band, at the same ticket price but now we’ve more than doubled the number of band members – instead of eight hotels rooms we need 24. But you can’t control a big band – it has a life of its own. And

we’ll all be there at the BluesFest.” Finally what’s the best thing about being Derek Trucks? Well, playing music for a living is not a bad way to go. My dad was a roofer and he put us to work when we were kids. Now, if we’re on the road and it gets to me, I think, it’s better than being on a roof in Jacksonville, Florida, when it’s over 100 degrees!

Read the extended interview at www. to find out how Derek handled taking the great Duane Allman’s place, why he left the Allman Brothers Band, his favorite guitars, and life on the road with a big band – and the family. The Prudential BluesFest is a weekend of top-line blues music at the O2 in East London, November 7 and 8. Other headliners include the Dave Matthews Band and Tom Jones & Van Morrison ...together.

The family that plays together, stays together: Derek and Susan at play PHOTO BY VIKAS NAMBIAR

40 August 2015

By Austin Pendleton Southwark Playhouse, London Reviewed by Jarlath O’Connell


n 1960 two giants of 20th century culture, Orson Welles and Laurence Olivier, were hired to direct and star in a production of Ionesco’s absurdist drama Rhinoceros at London’s Royal Court Theatre, then at its peak as a hotbed of theatrical innovation. This play by US actor turned director Austin Pendleton, which premiered in LA, explores this fascinating encounter between the giant egos at a time when Olivier was trying to painfully extricate himself from Vivien Leigh and set up with the more grounded Joan Plowright, his co-star here. It is thus a play that requires you to care about theatrical history and these luminaries and blaming it for being about luvvies is like blaming Ascot for being about horses. At this stage Welles was well into his pill popping decline. His whole career was, sadly and unfairly, perceived as one long trailing off after the heights of Citizen Kane. Olivier too was feeling like a has-been, although his clever re-invention via The Entertainer had just taken place. They both, it turns out, hated the play but saw it as the next card they needed to play to keep relevant, or at least solvent. The third giant who features is the legendary critic Ken Tynan who became Olivier’s dramaturg at the new National Theatre. Here, and this is a diversion from the facts, he convinces both to bury the hatchet of old Hollywood enmities and to collaborate. He then acts as peacemaker in the inevitably rocky rehearsals where

Welles accuses Larry of not being able to dispense with his old externalised style of acting and of lacking the guts to disappear in the role of this ‘little man’. The play starts out in Dublin and Welles’ gormless young Irish sidekick Sean (Ciaran O’Brien) accompanies him to the Royal Court as a gopher/ASM. Welles wittily ploughs him for evidence of his own and others’ celebrity currency. Edward Bennett perfectly captures Tynan’s combination of archness and languid superiority while John Hodgkinson booms like a sealion as the giant Welles. Adrian Lukis succeeds in the unenviable task for any actor of incarnating Olivier and gets the cocked neck, the slight hiss of the voice and that habit of always being “On”, just right. Louise Ford struggles though in the underwritten part of Plowright, a Northern woman who, one imagines even at this tender age, was no shrinking violet. We get diverted from the play within the play, in more ways than one, with the arrival of screen legend Vivien Leigh, played here in a ravishingly glamorous performance by Gina Bellman. In a difficult role she manages to elicit our sympathy for the tortured star, who had what would now be termed bi-polar syndrome. As a manic phase slowly erupts she seduces Sean, who gets more than he bargained for. We first see her in a rather clumsily blocked phone scene, typical of director Alice Hamilton’s in-theround staging, which never really liberates the piece. The play itself is an actors’ play, packed with gems for the leads. In a very witty early section Tynan breaks the “fourth wall” to fill in the back story but after that it never really coheres as a drama beyond a series of anecdotes, some of them fictional. We don’t get a clear take

on where Pendleton is going with the material and too often he gets distracted down byways, albeit sparklingly witty ones. It is a wonderful wallow for fans of theater and film history though. Above: Gina Bellman (Vivien Leigh) and John Hodgkinson (Orson Welles) Below: Louise Ford (Joan Plowright) and Adrian Lukis (Laurence Olivier) PHOTOS: SIMON ANNAND

August 2015 41

The American



ast night I went to a play. A grand thing to do on a warm London evening. I was especially interested in the show because my old buddy from The Old Vic and Poirot was staring in it as Lady Bracknell. The incomparable David Suchet. Having worked with David for a good six months on a Spaceydirected play called Complicit, I thought I knew his moves and tricks (in acting terms) quite well as we rehearsed and chatted a lot together as we built that show. I have never learned so much about acting as I did from that six months. Still it was with mixed feelings that I went to this show. Was I going to see a drag show? A pantomime dame turn? What? I had never seen The Importance of Being Earnest. When I told my theater partner, West End director/ producer/performer Malcolm McKee, that I had never seen the show he was amazed. I could tell by his look that he thought he was partnering a philistine to the theater. He has seen it at least 12 times and played Algernon in his youth. I found myself thoroughly enjoying the banter between Algernon and Jack or John or rather Earnest. The two actors were charming, smooth and very efficient. Phillip Cumbus as

42 August 2015

Algernon reminded me of the swash of Robert Stevens in his heyday. Michael Benz’s John was a perfect opposite personality and together they worked Wilde’s magic. As did the two girls who played Cecily (Imogen Doel) and Gwendolyn (Emily Barber), two high maintenance characters acted to perfection. Doel was daffy and ditzy and Barber was perfectly over-bred and full of herself as a society girl. Both were equally charming. Of course being a farce, everyone is slightly connected to one another and there are various mad scenes of misunderstanding, outrage and fast thinking on the boy’s parts, all handled wonderfully. Happily after about twenty minutes, Lady Bracknell made her entrance. Pow! Suchet took over everything - the stage, the scene, and the audience. Now here I looked for all the flaws and clichés I was half expecting. I watched David’s performance closely at first, marking his choices and vocal techniques. To my great pleasure and not so much surprise, he played her magnificently with clear high placed diction and a wealth of innuendo that only David can throw in so smoothly. All was set up for the myriad one liners that make Oscar Wilde

By Oscar Wilde Vaudeville Theatre, London Reviewed by James Carroll Jordan

so charming and famous. In any case, Suchet was superb. When I worked with him at the Vic he used a flawless American accent. On Poirot he did that strange Belgian voice that he made so famous, and now in this, he really did sound like a woman. Albeit a battle-axe of a control freak who brooked no opposition at any time. Soon I found myself forgetting to notice technique or choices (like when he did not use the usual “A Hand baaaaaagggg??” delivery). I was just wrapped up in the joy of watching first class English actors doing a first class farce at a blistering pace. At times the actors had a hard time coming in after laughs because they were so frequent and went on far longer in places than one would expect. I haven’t enjoyed a farce so much since I saw Maggie Smith and Robert Stephens do The Beaux’ Stratagem at Olivier’s fledgling National Theatre in ’69. There were other lovely character turns that left me quaking with laughter. Michele Dotrice who played Miss Prism was absolutely hysterical. Completely over the top, but this is a farce and over the top really works. If you do it like she did. I highly recommend anyone, American or otherwise to go see it.

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The Motherf**ker with the Hat National Theatre, Lyttleton, London Reviewed by Jarlath O’Connell


hat’s why I shot the motherf**ker with the hat’s hat”. That’s the key line in this gloriously profane and profound play from New Yorker Stephen Adley Guirgis. So the title is no mere juvenile provocation, for that hat is the crucial lynchpin around which the action revolves in this tale of two couples’ romantic infidelities. We’re in a New York of crumbling Puerto Rican tenements and Jackie (Ricardo Chavira), on parole and not drinking, is attempting to go straight. He is finding himself torn between his fiery, coke-addicted, girlfriend Veronica (Flor De Liz Perez), who might let him fail again and his smug Addicts Anonymous sponsor, Ralph (Alec Newman), offering a life of yoga and tofu and “turning the page”. Guirgis’ characters are far more multifaceted than on initial inspection and he explores with great wit and insight how life might be more complicated than a 12-step Programme. He reminds us that often those proffering solutions might

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be less genial than they would first appear and that everyone is making excuses. His text, despite displaying profanity of a Shakespearean grandeur, is structurally a ‘well-made-play’, a perfect fit for the Lyttleton. Ideas set up in one act are resolved in the next and there are numerous twists and turns which keep us riveted but prevent me from divulging plot spoilers. The romantically entangled quartet is completed by Victoria (Nathalie Armin), who regrets swopping a life as a financial trader for one of purveying “nutritional beverages” with the slippery Ralph. The play is stolen however by Jackie’s gay cousin Julio, played with an eloquent nobility by Yul Vazquez, Tony nominated for the role. What could, in less talented hands, have been a queenie portrait in exotic Latino campiness, is instead a complex fully rounded character. Part hairdresser, part Jean Claude van Damme, his

devotion to Jackie is in repayment of Jackie not disowning him when they were kids. Indhu Rubasingham, artistic director of Kilburn’s Tricycle Theatre and one of the young stars of the British theater scene, brings an exhilarating energy to this rollercoaster production, wisely running 1 hour 45 without an interval. It is as meticulously polished as a great mosaic and she draws out pitch-perfect performances from the whole cast. Only two are British and you’d be hard pressed to guess which. Chavira (ex Desperate Housewives) is a revelation in the lead, perfectly capturing the contradictions in the essentially decent Jackie and Perez, without ever resorting to cliché, letting us see the intelligence beneath the fireball that is Veronica. Robert Jones’ masterly design condenses that cavernously-wide Lyttleton stage. The three cramped city apartments where the action is set roll in and out of the darkness in a fluid motion and above them all hangs that symbol of New York – those long, red, zigzag fire escapes. As for the language. The title should be enough to prevent you bringing Aunt Agatha but if you do you will both revel in the most expressive cursing ever known to man. The decision of the NT to use asterisks is utterly ridiculous. [sorry Jarlath, us too - The American is available to pick up in public places ...if you know what I mean – ed.].

The American

After Dark

The Playboy Club, London Reviewed by Michael M Sandwick


ow many people get the chance to fulfil their teenage fantasy after reaching the age of fif…29!? Drinks, dinner and a show at The Playboy Club. My pubescent dream, the world of Hugh Hefner was about to come true. Playboy Bunnies, Champagne and glamor. Well, two out of three ain’t bad! We were met at the door by a Playboy Bunny. To say welcomed would be an exaggeration. There was no warmth or charm, just cleavage. My guest who had never been on a review in his life decided to contribute and gave our reception a 4 out of 10. Still, we felt swelegant sipping bubbles at the bar. Baroque, the clubs’ cabaret room, is pure '60s decadence. Red velvet everywhere, white linen and table lamps. I kept looking for the cast of Madmen! (I could have said my parents, but at the age of 29 that would be an impossibility!) £65 includes the show and a 3 course set menu. Green pea and mint soup, Chicken breast stuffed with goat cheese and basil with potato and caramelized onion gratin followed by chocolate caramel mousse. There is a small and very inexpensive wine list. £20 to £40 for a bottle of white, red or rosé and £35 to

£120 for sparkling and Champagne. I asked our Bunny for a recommendation but she hadn’t seen the menu. In fact, she knew nothing about food or wine but she was very decorative. I recalled the basic principle of form following function as I followed her form. The food was decent but with everyone served at the same time The divine Chrys Columbine, burlesque with Chopin

it all felt a bit “tour group”. For £45 one could expect a bit of choice and food made to order. I enjoyed the potato gratin and the shape of the dessert, a chocolate breast, was a nice touch. The entertainment on the other hand, was fabulous. David Julien, a finalist on The Voice opened with a bang. An accomplished vocalist, he mostly performed his own material but ended with a fine rendition of Adele’s ‘Someone Like You’. The Tootsie Rollers, a vintage girl group were ab fab performing American Songbook favorites with a few modern twists. Their six part harmony is very tight and beautifully arranged. Changing Gershwin’s brilliant ‘S’wonderful, S’marvellous’ to ‘it’s wonderful, it’s marvellous’ however was neither wonderful nor marvellous and the bit of tap dancing that was thrown in was more hap dash than flash. Otherwise, full marks. Two strippers added the obligatory burlesque to the evening. Jolie Papillion was classic, stripping to '40s big band. At first her musicality was spot on but by the end her sizzle fizzled. Chrys Columbine did her stripping while playing Chopin’s Nocturne in C# minor with her tongue in her cheek the whole time. Divine! And she never missed a beat!

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he summer graduate productions from musical theater students of the Royal Academy of Music are always a treat. Here, in the elite Conservatoire’s excellent theater, you can see stars of tomorrow and it being the RAM, the standard of the singing will be top class. For musical fans you can revel in hearing a show sung at its optimum, natural best. No ‘X-Factor’ melismatic wailing allowed. This year they presented Carousel and a curious oddity called Amour, which received its UK premiere. Composed by the legendary Michel Legrand, this slight charmer ran just 17 performances on Broadway back in 2002. You can understand why. Its

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wispy delicateness is not to the taste of current musical theater audiences. It is however positively dripping in gloriously lilting melodies, which could only be from Legrand. You can see too its appeal to teachers. The many multiple harmony numbers stretch the students’ vocal abilities and there are enough good roles to share around. Adapted from a 1943 short story Le Passe-Muraille by Marcel Ayme and set in Paris shortly after World War II, it centers on a shy, unassuming clerk, Dusoleil (Chris McGuigan), who develops the ability to walk through walls. Having daydreamed about the beautiful Isabelle (Josie Richardson), who is kept under lock and key by her evil husband (the Prosecutor-General no less), he gains the self- confidence to woo her. He also develops a Robin Hood syndrome and soon becomes the notorious thief Passepartout. When he admits his identity he is put on trial, where Isabelle saves the day, by revealing that her dastardly husband was a Nazi. Having been pardoned, our hero gets to spend one romantic night with his love but their romance is short-lived. After mistakenly taking tablets,  which had been prescribed for him by a dubious doctor, he loses his magic powers and is left embarrassingly stuck, mid-leap, in a wall. So, it would appear we’re in a familiar musical theater realm here - all about being true to yourself and having the nerve to get the girl, rather than depending on magical interventions. The acclaimed librettist and translator Jeremy Sams did rework the book again for this production

Royal Academy of Music, London Reviewed by Jarlath O’Connell

but he is ultimately defeated by the flimsiness of the material. The court scenes for example degenerate into a wild can-can number to no obvious benefit. Fantasy is fine but we don’t engage emotionally with the characters and if it wasn’t for Legrand’s glorious melodies we’d too drift out through the walls. Sams seems to have a ball though with the difficult task of translating the rhymes. They gush forth like a waterfall and by the time we hear ‘fantasy’ rhymed with ‘man to see’ we wish he’d choked on his rhyming dictionary. Production values are solid. Adrian Gee’s designs and Matt Eagland’s lighting are exemplars in doing more with less, however director Hannah Chissick possibly overcompensates for the thinness of the material by directing it to within an inch of its life. There are tableaux by the dozen and enough “business” to keep everyone on their toes. One is reminded of Sir John Gielgud’s exasperated direction once to a method actor “Don’t just do something, stand there”. As for the promising newcomers: McGuigan is blessed with a beautiful voice and can command a stage (even playing a drip); Richardson is an appealing romantic lead, if at times wobbly in the upper register. It Maeve Curry as the Whore, however, steals the show. OK, whores with a heart of gold are easy, but Curry proves a “triple threat” here. I commend Chissick and choreographer Matthew Cole too for moulding the cast of nine into a proper ensemble, no doubt aided by the fact that this cast had a whole year to bond.

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New Orleans


The American

The Crescent And The Shadow

Harry Shearer, long-term resident of New Orleans and London, looks at the legacy of Hurricane Katrina exclusively for The American


s we approach the 10th anniversary of (take your pick of appellations) Hurricane Katrina/the federal flood, journalism rubs its hands together with anticipatory glee. No story is as easy to plan for, nor as likely to be filled with clichés, as the anniversary story. The saga of the New Orleans flood of 2005 is, unfortunately, filled way past the brim. There’s even a trickle of think pieces which attempt to examine, with a distant, ironic glint of amusement, the battle over the nomenclature of the event – as if the issue of whether the catastrophe was a natural disaster or a concatenation of frightful human errors is merely the stuff of idle wordsmithing. So, an attempt at some factual clarity needs to come first. ‘Katrina’, as it happened on August 29, 2005, was two events: a powerful hurricane coming out of the superwarmed Gulf of Mexico and slamming into the Mississippi Gulf coast, and a flooding of 80 percent of New Orleans, caused by more than 50 levee breaches and failures, some of which occurred before the storm even made landfall. The difference between the two events is visually obvious: on the coast, houses were flattened, literally horizontalized, by high winds; in the city, houses were smashed, moved blocks away from their foundations,

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and had cars impaled in their roofs, but still stood – wrecked, distorted, crazily vertical (you can see the result in Robert Polidori’s beautiful but disturbing book of photographs, After the Flood). The persistence of the ‘natural disaster’ explanation in the case of New Orleans has at least two causes. First, there’s the nature of modern American journalism, in which news institutions have endured a progressive hollowing-out, leaving the front side – the well-paid anchor, the haughty front page – intact, supported by only a skeleton crew of reporters who parachute in and out of trouble spots, remaining only long enough to chat with cab drivers and stand in the wind/rain/gunfire for an institutional selfie. By the time separate forensic investigating teams at two universities had issued their detailed reports on the factors that caused the breaches and failures, the news caravan had long since packed up and moved on. Second, the agency that built the protective system – ordered by Congress after Hurricane Betsy flooded 20 percent of New Orleans in 1965 – was busily retailing the “humungous hurricane, overwhelmed a system built to withstand the normally expected storm” story to the public and reporters alike. That agency, the US Army Corps

of Engineers, exhibited a curious suite of behaviors for an organization whose handiwork had just succeeded in killing a couple of thousand Americans. It made early access to the breach sites difficult for the independent investigators, while it bankrolled its own investigation and even paid the American Society of Civil Engineers $2 million to lend its imprimatur to that study (a fact which led the ASCE in 2007 to change its rules for such participation); and the lead investigator for the Louisiana State University study was ultimately fired by his institution, on the grounds that his public criticism of the Corps was threatening the school’s ability to get federal grants. And the Corps blamed local officials for stymieing its preferred design for a crucial part of the system, a claim that was authoritatively swatted away in a recent report by four of the academics involved in bird-dogging the agency’s work. Nonetheless, the two independent investigations – ILIT from UC Berkeley and Team Louisiana from LSU – stand unrebutted, as of 2006, as the authoritative studies of what went so horribly wrong. They’re online.

Everyone suffered

When a major US city is almost

The American

Two faces of NOLA: St Bernard Parish in 2005, the French Quarter in 2015

totally inundated, everyone suffers – black, white, Latino, Asian, Other. Yet the public perception of the 2005 flood was dominated by the pictures – gut-wrenching, agonizing – of suffering black people, on the overpass, in the Dome, in the Convention Center. Not on television or on the front page were the thousands of working-class white people on their roofs in 100-degreeplus heat for days, no food, no water. They had the misfortune to be doing their suffering in St Bernard Parish, the suburban county just east of New Orleans. Unlike the Dome and the Center, they were not conveniently located near an interstate offramp. The visiting journos probably didn’t even know St Bernard existed, let alone that it lost its entire housing stock in the flood. The event became racialized,. Of course, it also became politicized. A Democratic Mayor (he had


switched party affiliations just before running for the office in a heavily blue city) and a Democratic Governor trading potshots with a Republican President – why wouldn’t the city become a political piñata? The Mayor is now in prison, the Governor and President are retired. Yet the myths that battle generated persist: city below sea level (actually half the populated city is at or above sea level, and some of the most flooded areas were the highest), people waiting for the government to help (actually, most recovery was done house by house, business by business, by individuals and their support networks, with great help from volunteers). The week of the flood was a festival of lack of preparation: the city’s buses, famously idled while people needed evacuation, less famously, the sandbags that weren’t at the ready when breaches occurred. Even less famously, all of

the finger-pointing levels of government had participated in Hurricane Pam, a tabletop exercise imagining the disaster that didn’t happen, a direct hurricane hit on New Orleans, just a year before Katrina.

Crescent City is back

The city is back, welcoming conventioneers and tourists, and facing, not the problems of failure, but the problems of success – gentrification chief among them. A hundred thousand New Orleanians were evacuated by the government, and nobody bothered to keep track of how they’re doing. But newcomers are attracted by the opportunities, by the relaxed way of life, by the sense of actual, not virtual, community, by the always amazing food, and the always evolving music. Ten years ago, I never would have dreamed I’d be able to write those words.

August 2015 49


The American

SPORTS NEWS Touchdowns at Tottenham

The NFL’s growing stature in the UK is showing no signs of abating as Premier League Soccer team Tottenham Hotspurs announce a 10 year partnership which will see at least two NFL matches played at their new North London stadium, due to open in Summer 2018. The new stadium, set to replace Tottenham’s existing White Hart Lane, will be designed with American Football in mind. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell enthused that he and the NFL are “committed to hosting NFL games in world-class venues and are excited to partner with Tottenham Hotspur to play games at their future stadium.”

Inaugural World Rugby Club 7’s The USA is the most successful nation in Olympic Rugby history but it hasn’t featured since 1924. Club sides from New York and Seattle compete against clubs from Argentina, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Wales, Russia and England (Gloucester). Hosted by Twickenham August 16 - 17.

Robb Holland Returns

US driver Robb Holland, from Denver, Colorado, is returning to the British Touring Car Championship for three events this summer.

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C Grade Death Stars get into the spirit of being the Orioles

He replaces regular racer Simon Belcher, who is stepping back from active participation for budgetary reasons. Holland will compete in rounds at Snetterton (August 8/9), Knockhill (August 22/23) and the American inspired Rockingham (September 5/6), before Belcher returns for the final two events of the season. Holland said he’s “very excited to be back in the Championship”, where he will be driving a Toyota Avensis.

US Men’s U-23 Soccer Team

The American Under-23 Men’s Soccer Team are to train in England this September in preparation for 2016’s Olympic Games in Brazil. As part of their training, the squad will face England’s U-23 Men’s Team on Thursday, September 3rd, followed by a match against Qatar’s U-23 Team on Tuesday, September 8th.

American Cindy Ofili to represent Team GB in Athletics

American athlete Cindy Ofili has opted to represent Team GB in Athletics, following in the footsteps of her older sister Tiffany Porter. Both Ofili and Porter grew up in Michigan, but due to their Mother’s birth in the UK are eligible to represent Great Britain. When The Daily

Telegraph asked if she felt British, Ofili responded “I do, definitely. Obviously I don’t have the accent but I feel ties here. My mum was born here … My brothers were also born here, in Birmingham and Plymouth.”

UK MLB Tournament again July 18-19, Farnham Park: 38 co-ed slowpitch teams across A, B and C play grades competed in the first MLB Tournament held since 2002. Organised by BaseballSoftballUK, ( with support from Major League Baseball International the teams ditched their kits to play as iconic MLB teams for the weekend, with fully-fenced fields, a number of carnival-style games, plus a guest entry from Stan Doney’s Dutch team, the Haarlem Toucans.

RESULTS: C Grade Final: Mariners (Bristol Creamers) v Brewers (Lucky Strikes) 21-3 3rd place: Pirates (Misfits) v Braves (Maidenhead Royals) 7-3 B Grade Final: Brewers (KKs) v Yankees (SPAM) 11-7 3rd place: Braves (Mescalitos Ninos) v Giants (Blitz B) 13-3 A Grade Final: White Sox (Chromies) v Yankees (H2O) 22-18 3rd place: Blue Jays (Blue Steel) v Pirates (Bristol Bees A) 9-8

The American Jaxson de Ville descends from the Wembley Roof PHOTO: GARY BAKER

Richard L Gale rambles on themes of rowdiness and red...


chool Sports Day: Yellow Team emitted a confident cheer, Green Team roared their own effusive enthusiasm, Blue Team managed an indifferent ‘yeah’, more agreement than optimism. Once-great Red Team – my own daughter amongst them – exhaled a low moan that wouldn’t have been out of place in a zombie flick, resigned to the fact that, with spelling bees not factored in, they were in for a long afternoon. And so things played out, despite the best efforts of my daughter in the skipping rope race, and her best friend in the egg-and-spoon race. I have yet to witness my daughter in a competitive sprint – I suspect she could be moderately rapid if left unfettered by the need to put on hats, hop, juggle bean bags and the like. Such is the sporting world of the British seven year-old. Still, the way things are going, it isn’t impossible that running backwards makes it to Olympic demonstration status before gridiron football. Simultaneously amused and disquieted by Red Team’s now annual belly-flop, my mind forged a plan to improve their 2016 fortunes by (1) creating flags and signs to ‘egg on’ the kids, and (2) organise some cheerleaders and a team mascot from the ranks of the living Red. I know for a fact that some of them study drama, dance and/or cheer (Lea Michele as honorary president wouldn’t be wide of the Red Team mark). A grand plan, but do flags, mascots and cheerleaders matter? I firmly believe so, and it isn’t

coincidence that the vocal ferocity of the teams matched their performance on the day. If not, why would we shout ourselves hoarse every week, and why would teams employ cheerleaders (that’s employ, Oakland Raiders), or pay some guy to dress as a pirate/ cartoon cat/hooter-nosed muppet? These things matter, if only in the pretense that the outcome of the event matters, or that such color and spectacle keeps the audience and even participants engaged... rather than stretching out and making daisychains when its time to queue for a shot on goal (my daughter aces both of these, by the way). Take the Jacksonville Jaguars (no, please...). Possibly one of their most famous members retired this offseason, and I don’t mean MJD. After 19 years, Curtis Dvorak has retired from the role of ‘Jaxson de Ville’, the mascot who bungeed from scoreboards, found new uses for Terrible Towels, invaded endzones, and even caged himself after the No Fun League enforced rules for ‘mascot conduct’ (a league-discussed highlight reel of mascot mischief-making was 90% Jaxson de Ville). The former HokieBird sure made an impact. Jaxson will be back at Wembley this year, but he’ll be new on the inside. The NFL is increasingly talking ‘when’ – not ‘if’ – for a London franchise, with Tottenham’s new stadium

being specced out to suit, but don’t assume that Jaxson’s longterm London residency is a done deal. If a franchise rises in London, it’ll be looking for some young guy or gal to dress as a regal lion and don a fabric Monarch’s crown (ah, c’mon, you know it’s gonna happen). It’ll be a kid who’s into fitness, fun, and understands both British silliness and American enthusiasm. In other words, maybe you or yours. The hearts of Londoners will be won over not by a 6-6 dude in shoulder pads, but by endless personal appearances by cheerleaders – locally sourced or transatlantic – and by the mascot. Although cheerleaders aren’t alien to the British sports landscape, it was only 2013 that the English Premiership League gained its first cheerleading squad, in Crystal Palace, though it’s worth noting that when Palace entered a playoff to gain promotion to English football’s top tier, they were told the ‘Crystals’ couldn’t cheer as it would give the team an ‘unfair advantage’. So there you are: Cheer IS an advantage! It’s official. Which just leaves the question of what the Red Team cheerleaders and mascot should call themselves. Red Razz and the Razzmatazz? Perhaps Red Team itself needs to rebrand for a new era of greater success. If you think of anything red-appropriate, please send it to: Daniel Snyder, c/o FedExField, 1600 FedEx Way, Landover, MD 20785.

August 2015 51

The American

The Legacy of Chambers Bay F

or what will the 2015 US Open be remembered most? There’s no shortage of candidates: Jordan Spieth’s ascension to superstardom at age 21, Dustin Johnson’s epic meltdown on the 72nd green, Jason Day’s stirring fight against vertigo, and the confirmation of Tiger Woods’ descent into sad irrelevance are all strong contenders. However, I fear the tournament’s most lasting impact will silently reverberate around American golf courses for years and keep the game more expensive and less accessible to the golfing public than it ought to be – a legacy for which the United States Golf Association only has itself to blame. This legacy centers around the site for this year’s tournament. Chambers Bay was always going to be a controversial venue: opened in 2007, this public course near Seattle designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr. is 40 years younger than the secondnewest course to have held the US Open. (The Highlands Course at the Atlanta Athletic Club, which hosted the 1975 event and hasn’t been asked to repeat the feat, opened in 1967.) I applaud the USGA’s willing-

52 August 2015

ness to move away from traditional clubs with dull courses like Baltusrol, Hazeltine and Southern Hills to public-access venues like Pinehurst, Bethpage and Torrey Pines, and moving the US Open to a modern site like Chambers Bay was a logical progression which will continue in 2017 at Erin Hills, a public course in rural Wisconsin which only opened in 2006. I loved watching the best golfers in the world grapple with Chambers Bay’s sweeping terrain and sprawling, multi-sectioned greens, but the course’s putting surfaces were clearly not of major championship quality. I’ve not played Chambers Bay myself, but I was fortunate to play a lot of golf during my childhood at the Links at Spanish Bay, another Trent Jones Jr. course near Pebble Beach with greens which – like those at Chambers Bay – were originally seeded with fescue grass. Fescue is a wonderful grass to play and putt on, but it is easily infested with poa annua, a weed often transported from one course to another in the spikes of one’s golf shoes. Poa annua itself can be harnessed and groomed to make high-quality

greens; the greens at Pebble Beach are pure poa annua, and those at Spanish Bay have since become pure poa as well. However, I played numerous rounds at Spanish Bay during the transition period when poa had begun creeping in but hadn’t yet fully displaced the fescue, and the greens were not good: bumpy to putt on, and unattractive to look at. This is exactly what we saw at Chambers Bay. Poa and fescue grow at different speeds, and when that difference is exacerbated by mowing practices designed to keep the grass as short and the greens as fast as possible, uneven surfaces and golfer complaints are inevitable. The real shame is that three of the greens were dug up and reseeded following the 2010 US Amateur at Chambers Bay, an event at which nobody complained about the conditions, and this year those three surfaces – nearer to the fescue ideal and not yet infested by poa – putted quite beautifully, which suggests someone at the USGA messed up badly by not insisting that every green be treated identically. Agronomy lessons aside, the

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Chambers Bay at the 2015 US Open

Darren Kilfara ruminates on grass reason this matters so much is a question of sustainability. Over the past half-century, the American golfing public has learned to idolize the lush, green opulence of courses like Augusta National, and to believe their short-iron shots into greens should spin backward because that’s what they see PGA Tour pros routinely do on television. Because of this, many American golf courses are over-watered to the point of absurdity, thereby making the game more expensive, wasteful of water, slower to play (because carts have to stay on paths lest they churn up the overly sensitive fairway turf), and actually significantly less interesting insofar as you’re always leapfrogging the ground in front of you instead of engaging and interacting with it. Links courses here in Scotland play slow and soft when it’s been raining for a while, but they play faster and firmer after periods of dry weather; that variability makes the game so fascinating, but this lesson is lost on too many golfers who still demand lush, manicured perfection in a climate change-threatened, postLaudato si’ world.

I believe the USGA has quietly but openly been pushing an agenda to make golf courses less green and more brown. More US Open courses now feature native grasses off the fairways, giving even inland courses like Merion (host venue in 2013) and Oakmont (next due to host the event in 2016) a rough-and-ready look full of pleasing contrasts between green and brown. Brown grasses are essential to the everyday aesthetic of both Erin Hills (2017) and Shinnecock Hills (2018). And thanks to the dry spells before each event, Pinehurst (2014) and Chambers Bay (2015) both looked as brown and played as firm and fast as any Open Championship links course in recent memory. This is absolutely the direction in which golf should be headed, but the last two US Opens have not had the desired evangelical effects: Martin Kaymer’s eight-shot win at Pinehurst was the least-watched US Open in history, while the disastrous putting surfaces at Chambers Bay will have pushed many casual golfers firmly into the “green is good” camp. You can’t fight the good fight with the wrong ammuni-


tion, and the USGA cannot afford another Chambers Bay-sized fiasco when the very future of American golf is at stake, even if most golfers don’t realize it yet.

Future US Open venues 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023

Oakmont Erin Hills Shinnecock Hills Pebble Beach Winged Foot Torrey Pines The Country Club Los Angeles Country Club

US expat Darren Kilfara formerly worked for Golf Digest magazine and is the author of A Golfer’s Education, a memoir of his junior year abroad as a student-golfer at the University of St. Andrews. His latest book, a novel called Do You Want Total War?, is also now available online at Amazon and elsewhere.

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Where USA Eagles Dare Gary Jordan looks forward to the Rugby World Cup


20 teams competing over 43 days, all with the lofty ambition of being crowned World Champions, a title held currently by the all-conquering All Blacks of New Zealand. The USA Eagles, as they are formally known, may not have the same goals as the leading Nations, but their desire and passion will be no less once they set foot on the fields of Brighton, Leeds, Gloucester and the Olympic Stadium in London. Given the fact they have 3-18 record in their previous six World Cup outings, they will be hoping they can add at least another, if not two wins from their Pool B games to prove that they are a team on the rise. They have a growing reputation in Sevens format of the game and coming off a successful season they have qualified for the Olympics

in 2016 in what will be the first time it’s played at that level. Two of those previous three wins have been against Japan (1987, 2003) and it just so happens they have been placed in the same Pool as them this time around, however it is the last game they are due to play and it could be a dead rubber for both, but history will be on their side at least. The other win came against Russia in 2011.

Build Up

In preparation for the tournament which starts on September 18th, the Eagles will play several warm up games including the Pacific Nations Cup in late July when they play Samoa, Japan, and Tonga. All three games will prove very worthwhile for Head Coach Mike Tolkin’s men


very four years the World’s leading Rugby playing Nations pack their gum shields, tape up and set up camp in one country ready to compete for the Webb Ellis Cup. It just so happens that this year’s Rugby World Cup returns to the sport’s birthplace and the home to which the Cup is named after. Little did William Webb-Ellis know when he first handled the ball during a game of football back in the late 1800’s that he had created a game that would go on to become a worldwide phenomenon that culminates in this celebration. Since 1987 and the first tournament played in New Zealand, the games popularity and its showcase tournament has grown into one of the leading sporting attractions and this year is no different with

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especially as the first two will serve somewhat as a dress rehearsal for the real thing as they are in the same World Cup Pool. There will be a further game in the Pacific tournament as Finals Day is on August 3rd. After this the Eagles will make their final squad selection that will compete in England, and then have three more matches to bed down together and get their game plan set, these will come in the form of Canada first, the English club side Harlequins, and finally Australia. Captain for the Pacific Nations Cup is Chris Wyles who had a whirlwind end to his domestic season helping Saracens to win the Premiership in England, before turning his hand to the Sevens and helping them qualify for Rio next summer. “Chris has been one of the most respected and successful Eagles of all time and has been a selfless and proud Eagle for nearly a decade” Tolkin told .“His success as a professional player with Saracens, matched with the respect he has garnered with his team-

mates throughout his career, makes him a natural choice as captain.”

USA Eagles Games Schedule

The draw isn’t particularly kind for the Eagles this year and they could struggle to make history for themselves in their quest for two wins in the Pool stages for the first time. They open up with a tricky test against Samoa. The Samoans are a team that are powerful and should not be underestimated at this early stage as they will aim to get off to a strong start and put pressure on the Eagles next two opponents, Scotland and South Africa. These two are more than likely to progress but should the Eagles win their first game they will push the Scots hard as they had a hard fought 24-6 loss to them last June. The Springboks will prove way too strong for our Eagles in every department, they start as one of the tournament favorites and it would be no surprise if they are lifting the Cup at the end of October. Lastly, wouldn’t it be great if the Eagles

could make it 3-0 against Japan and have progress to the knockout stages on the line. Stranger things have happened and a lot will depend on that first encounter in Brighton. Should the Eagles defy the odds and progress they will face the winners or runners-up from Pool A, a group of teams that will see one big Nation fall. The three big teams here are England, Wales and Australia and with only the top two from each Pool moving on to the Quarter-Final stage one will miss out. Whoever progresses should put an end to any upstart Eagles further hopes, but maybe we are looking too far ahead.

The Coach

Mike Tolkin was appointed Head Coach in February 2012, promoted from his position as Defensive Coach which he had held for three years. During that time he helped restrict top level teams Ireland and Italy to under 30 points in the 2011 World Cup and Russia to just

The USA Eagles Games Schedule DATE





September 20th


Brighton Community Stadium, Brighton

12.00 noon

September 27th


Elland Road, Leeds


October 7th


The Stadium, Queen Elizabeth Park, London


October 11th


Kingsholm, Gloucester


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6 points during their last win at the Pool stages. He was successful at club and school level helping New York Athletic Club to three National championships (2005, 2008, 2010). He was named Coach of the Year in 2010 by We Are Rugby magazine and RugbyMag.

Current USA Eagles captain, Chris Wyles, giving the Russian team a run for their money in the Churchill Cup, 2010 IMAGE © MICHAEL BOYER

Speaking ahead of the Pacific Nations Cup, Coach Tolkin said, “It’s all a process and part of this process is getting guys back into match fitness and trying the things we want to try ahead of the World Cup, testing them, we reviewed the things we started in South America; we pulled all the good stuff out and we want to keep working on that. For us its getting guys game time, getting them back in shape, and whoever comes out at the end of the round are guys who are putting their best foot forward to move on to starting roles in the World Cup.”

Ones To Watch

Who are the men that carry the Eagles’ expectations in the World Cup? We look at five men that could be key players:

Hayden Smith – Lock Smith has been capped 22 times and plays for English Champions Saracens. The 6”7 giant earned his first cap back in November 2008 against Uruguay and should have had more appearances under his belt but he went off to ply his trade in the NFL for a year with the New York Jets.

Todd Clever – Flanker 32 year old Clever has been capped 62 times and is one of the Eagles' genuine superstars. He currently plays in Japan for NTT Shining Arcs. A veteran of the past two World Cup campaigns he is the player most look up to for setting a standard. He was the first American to play and score a try in Super 14 Rugby. STOP PRESS: Clever was sent home from the Pacific Nations Cup due to “Breach of Conduct” - his return


status is unclear at this stage.

Cam Dolan – No.8

Cam is one of the new breed and has just 10 caps to his name having made his Eagles debut against Fiji in June 2013, during the Pacific Nations Cup in Japan. He captained an Eagles Select XV to a 2-1 record in the IRB Americas Rugby Championship in 2013 with wins against Canada and Uruguay.

Takudzwa Ngwenya – Wing Born in Zimbabwe “Zee” has had great club success with Biarritz in France, helping them in several Heineken Cup outings. Starting with the Sevens in 2006, he progressed to the Eagles World Cup squads of 2007 and 2011, the speedy wing won “Try of the Tournament” when he raced away from Springbok Brian Habana. He has also played for the Barbarians, a touring team made up of players from differing Nations.

Chris Wyles – Full Back The 6”0 Saracens star made his first Eagles appearance back in 2007 against England in the Churchill Cup. He has scored 14 tries in his international career, and amassed 212 points. His recent success at both club and Sevens level has elevated him to Eagles captaincy. With the many warm up games coming up there is still plenty of time for others to make an impact and force themselves into the starting XV for that opening game against Samoa, but there is already a good mix of veterans and younger players that any good team needs, add to this some of the dynamic Sevens team – the squad is shaping up nicely.


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BUNAC Student Exchange Employment Program - Director: Callum Kennedy, 16 Bowling Green Lane, London EC1R 0QH. 020 7251 3472

US Merchant Marine Academy (Kings Point) UK Chapter President: Allison Bennett, Facebook: Kings Point Alumni - London/United Kingdom

Butler University, Institute for Study Abroad 21 Pembridge Gardens, London W2 4EB 020 7792 8751

The American

Centre Academy London 92 St John’s Hill, Battersea, London SW11 1SH Tel: 02077382344,

Harlaxton College UK Campus, University of Evansville, Harlaxton Manor, Grantham, Lincs. NG32 1AG. 01476 403000 Huron University USA in London 46-47 Russell Square, Bloomsbury, London WC1B 4JP Tel +44 (0) 20 7636 5667

Centre Academy East Anglia Church Rd, Brettenham, Ipswich, Suffolk IP7 7QR Tel: 01449736404

Institute for the Study of the Americas Director: Professor James Dunkerley. Tel 020 7862 8879

Central Bureau for Educational Visits Director: Peter Upton, The British Council , 10 Spring Gardens, London SW1A 2BN, 020 7389 4004. Wales 029 2039 7346. Scotland 0131 447 8024.

International School of Aberdeen 296 North Deeside Rd, Milltimber, Aberdeen, AB13 0AB 01224 732267

Council on International Educational Exchange Dr. Michael Woolf, 52 Portland Street, London WIV 1JQ Tel 020 7478 2000

International School of London 139 Gunnersbury Avenue, London W3 8LG. 020 8992 5823,

Ditchley Foundation Ditchley Park, Enstone, Chipping Norton, Oxon OX7 4ER Tel 01608 677346

International School of London in Surrey Old Woking Road, Woking GU22 8HY, 01483 750409,

Dwight School London Formerly North London International School 6 Friem Barnet Lane, London N11 3LX 020 8920 0600

Ithaca College London Centre 35 Harrington Gardens, London SW7. Tel. 020 7370 1166

European Council of International Schools Executive Director: Jean K Vahey Fourth Floor, 146 Buckingham Palace Road, London SW1W 9TR 020 7824 7040

Marymount International School, London Headmistress: Ms Sarah Gallagher George Road, Kingston upon Thames, KT2 7PE 020 8949 0571

European-Atlantic Group PO Box 37431, London N3 2XP 020 8632 9253

Missouri London Study Abroad Program 32 Harrington Gardens, London SW7 4JU. 020 7373 7953.

Florida State University London Study Centre Administrative Director: Kathleen Paul 99 Great Russell Street, London, WC1B 3LH. 020 7813 3233 Fordham University London Centre Academic Coordinator: Sabina Antal 23 Kensington Square, London W8 5HQ 020 7937 5023 Fulbright (US-UK Educational) Commission Dir. of Advisory Service: Lauren Welch Battersea Power Station, 188 Kirtling Street, London SW8 5BN 020 7498 4010 Halcyon London International School Co-educational International Baccalaureate (IB). 33 Seymour Place, London W1H 5AU +44 (0)20 7258 1169 ,

Regent’s University London Inner Circle, Regent’s Park, London NW1 4NS. 020 7486 9605.

Richmond, The American International University in London Queen’s Road, Richmond-upon Thames TW10 6JP Tel: +44 20 8332 9000, Schiller International University Royal Waterloo House, 51-55 Waterloo Road, London SE1 8TX. Tel. 020 7928 1372 Schiller International, Wickham Court School Layhams Road, West Wickham, Kent BR4 9HW. Tel 0208 777 2942,

Sotheby’s Institute of Art Postgraduate Art studies, plus day /evening courses 30 Bedford Square, London WC1B 3EE Tel: 0207 462 3232, Southbank International Schools Kensington and Hampstead for 3-11 year olds; Westminster campuses for 11-18 year olds. 020 7243 3803, Syracuse University London Program Faraday House, 48-51 Old Gloucester Street, London WC1N 3AE, TASIS England, American School Coldharbour Lane, Thorpe, Nr. Egham, Surrey TW20 8TE. 01932 565252, UKCISA - Council for International Education 9-17 St. Albans Place, London N1 0NX 020 7354 5210 University of Notre Dame London Program 1 Suffolk Street, London SW1Y 4HG 020 7484 7811, Warnborough University International Office, Friars House, London SE1 8HB. Tel 020 7922 1200 Webster Graduate Studies Center Regent’s College, Regent’s Park, Inner Circle, London NW1 4NS, UK. 020 7487 7505, Wroxton College Study Abroad with Fairleigh Dickinson University, Wroxton, Nr. Banbury, Oxfordshire OX15 6PX 01295 730551,

ALUMNI ASSOCIATIONS Alliant International University (formerly United States International University) England Chapter Alumni Association Chapter President: Eric CK Chan c/o Regents College London, Inner Circle, Regents Park, London, UK. Amherst College Bob Reichert, Andover/Abbot Association of London Jeffrey Hedges ‘71, President 07968 513 631, Association of MBAs Leo Stemp, Events Administrator Tel 020 7837 3375 (ext. 223),

August 2015 61

The American

Babson College Frank de Jongh Swemer, 020 7932 7514 Barnard College Club Hiromi Stone, President. 0207 935 3981, Berkeley Club of London Geoff Kertesz groups/223876564344656/ Boston College Alumni Club UK Craig Zematis, President +44 7717 878968 chapters/home.jsp?chapter=41&org=BTN Boston University Alumni Association of the UK Will Straughn, Snr International Development Officer, University Development and Alumni Relations, 43 Harrington Gardens, Kensington, London SW7 4JU 020 7244 2908 020 7373 7411 Brandeis Alumni Club of Great Britain Joan Bovarnick, President Brown University Club of the United Kingdom President: Tugba Erem. Communication: Patrick Attie Alumni Club & Liaison: Vanessa Van Hoof Brown Club UK, Box 57100, London, EC1P 1RB Bryn Mawr Club Lady Quinton, President. Wendy Tiffin, Secretary/Treasurer, 52 Lansdowne Gardens, London SW8 2EF Claremont Colleges Alumni in London Hadley Beeman, Colgate Club of London Stephen W Solomon ‘76, President 0207 349 0738 Columbia Business School Alumni Club of London 6 Petersham Mews, London SW7 5NR Columbia University Club of London Cornell Club of London Dartmouth College Club of London

62 August 2015

Delta Kappa Gamma Society International,

NYU Alumni Club in London Jodi Ekelchik, President

Delta Sigma Pi Business Fraternity London Alumni Chapter. Ashok Arora, P O Box 1110, London W3 7ZB 020 8423 8231,

NYU STERN UK Alumni Club

Delta Zeta International Sorority Alumna Club Sunny Eades 01543 490 312

Ohio University Alumni UK & Ireland Frank Madden, 01753 855 360

Duke University Club of England, regional-programs/groups/london

Penn Alumni Club of the UK w home.jsp?chapter=4&org=UPN

Emory University Alumni Chapter of the UK Matthew Williams, Chapter Leader 079 8451 4119,

Penn State Alumni Association

Georgetown Alumni Club Alexa Fernandez, ,

The London Association of Phi Beta Kappa @phibetakappaldn

Gettysburg College Alumni London Britt-Karin Oliver,

Princeton Association (UK)

Harvard Business School Club of London

Rice Alumni of London Kathy Wang 07912 560 177 a,

Harvard Club of the United Kingdom, Indiana University Alumni club of England

Skidmore College Alumni Club, London w

KKG London Alumnae Association w

Smith College Club of London

LMU Loyola Marymount Alumni Club London Alumni Relations: 310.338.4574

Stanford Business School Alumni Assn. UK overview/?group_id=0038990048

Marymount University Alumni UK Chapter President: Mrs Suzanne Tapley, 35 Park Mansions, Knightsbridge, London SW1X 7QT. 020 7581 3742 MIT Club of Great Britain Mount Holyoke Club of Britain Notre Dame Club of London

Syracuse University Alumni UK Texas Tech Alumni Association - London Chapter Scott Dewar 077754 35877 Texas Exes UK (UKTE) England: Carra Kane 0778 660 7534 Scotland: Corey Cripe

The American

Texas A&M Club London The John Adams Society Tufts - London Tufts Alliance UConn Alumni Association UMass Alumni Club UK President, Renu Singh, University of California 020 7079 0567 University of Chicago Alumni Association, w University of Chicago Booth Alumni Association President: University of Colorado Alumni University of Georgia Alumni Association 07919 057 538 chapters/london_chapter University of Illinois Alumni Club of the UK Amy Barklam BUS 1994, President, 07796 193 466 University of North Carolina Alumni Club University of Michigan Alumni Association 0788-784-0941,

University of Rochester/Simon School UK Alumni Association Julie Bonne, 0118-956-5052,,

US Merchant Marine Academy (Kings Point) Alumni UK Chapter Facebook: Kings Point Alumni - London/United Kingdom USNA Alumni Association, UK Chapter President: Tim Fox ‘97 Facebook - USNA Alumni Association, UK Chapter Vassar College Club Sara Hebblethwaite, President 020 8788 6910 Warnborough Worldwide Alumni Association 01227 762 107 Washington University UK Alumni Club Steven Leof, Wellesley College Club wellesley_uk_club Wharton Alumni Club of the UK 020-7447-8800 Williams Club of Great Britain Ethan Kline:, alumni., Yale Club of London President, Secretary Zeta Tau Alpha Alumnae Kristin Morgan 07812 580949

CIVIL WAR SOCIETIES American Civil War Round Table (UK) Civil War historical soc., Southern Skirmish Association (SoSkan) The oldest American Civil War Re-enacting Society outside the USA.


University of Southern California, USC Alumni Club of London Walter Ladwig, President

American Actors UK 07873 371 891

University of Virginia Alumni Club of London 020 7368 8473

Savio(u)r Theatre Company Britain’s American theatre company

SPORTS English Lacrosse Wenlock Way, Manchester M12 5DH 0843 658 5006 British Baseball Federation / SoftballUK 5th Floor, Ariel House, 74a Charlotte Street, London W1T 4QJ 020 7453 7055 British Morgan Horse Society 01981 500488 Ice Hockey UK 02920 263 441 Infinity Elite Cheerleading (founded by CAC) 077 9132 0115 Herts Baseball Club Adult & Little League Baseball Lakenheath Barracudas Swim Club Open to all military affiliated families. LondonSports American flag football, baseball, basketball and soccer, boys/girls, 4-15 all nationalities, new or experienced players. London Warriors American Football Club

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We rely on you to keep us informed. Every effort is made to ensure that these listings are correct but if your entry requires amendments please tell us. Send profiles, news or articles about your organization for possible publication in The American. email, tel +44(0)1747 830520 Twitter @TheAmericanMag

August 2015 63

The American

Coffee Break



Torquay, Devon is part of a stretch of coast known as the English – what? a) Riviera b) Strait c) Reef?

Greenway House, near Torquay, was the Summer home of which crime writer?

7 1 6

It’s “Summer”, but can you name the language in each case? a) Sommer b) Verano c) été d) Aestas

1 3 2 3 1 8 2

➍  Campobello Park in New Brunswick was the Summer retreat of which Presidential family?


Which UK holiday resort has a stretch of beach known as “The Golden Mile”? a) Plymouth b) Dover c) Blackpool


Queen Victoria used to spend her Summers at Osborne House on which island?

The aria ‘Summertime’ was written in 1934 by George Gershwin for which of his operas?

➑ ’Summer Nights’ was a hit for which musical? ➒ Buffy Anne Summers, the main character of TV series Buffy the Vampire Slayer, was played by which actress?



6 1 5 8 7 9 9 8 1 7 4

➓ Which Summer did Bryan Adams famously sing

about? Complete this saying, “Make ___ while the sun ⓫ shines”.

What is the scientific name for Sunflowers? a) Solanaceae b) Helianthus c) Hylocereus

⓭  Where was Vincent Van Gogh when he painted “The Sunflowers”? An extra point for the city.

Which UK TV series is set in the fictional village of Midsomer Worthy? Quiz answers and Sudoku solution on page 65.

64 August 2015




Whose home was Greenway House? See question 3

Where was Van Gogh? See question 12


Where was Queen Victoria? See question 6

It happened 150 years ago...

➊ August 30, 1990: Ken Griffey and Ken Griffey Jr

August 22, 1865: William Sheppard receives the first US patent for what kind of soap? a) solid soap b) liquid soap c) bubble bath soap

It happened 200 years ago...

It happened 25 years ago...

become the 1st Father & Son to play on the same Baseball team – what was the team?

➏ A ugust 9, 1815: Napoleon Bonaparte sets sail for exile

It happened 50 years ago...

August 14, 1965: Sonny and Cher topped the Bill board 100 in the US, with which song?

It happened 75 years ago...

It happened 100 years ago...

famous for her role in Casablanca?

It happened 300 years ago...

➐ A ugust, 1715: Which rowing race in London is cel-

A  ugust 20, 1940: Which wartime figure famously quoted “Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few”?

on which island?

➍ August 29, 1915: Which Swedish actress was born,

ebrating its 300th anniversary this year? Hint: Check your Diary!

It happened 800 years ago...

➑ A ugust, 1215: Pope Innocent III declared which

famous document invalid, just 12 weeks after it was first sealed?

Coffee Break Answers HISTORY QUIZ: 1. Seattle Mariners; 2. ‘I Got You Babe’; 3. Winston Churchill; 4. Ingrid Bergman; 5. b) liquid soap; 6. St Helena; 7. Doggett’s Coat and Badge Race; 8. The Magna Carta. QUIZ: 1. a) German (or Danish), b) Spanish, c) French, d) Latin; 2. a) Riviera - it even has its own species of palm tree; 3. Agatha Christie; 4. The Roosevelts, Franklin and Eleanor; 5. c) Blackpool; 6. The Isle of Wight, just along from Cowes; 7. Porgy and Bess; 8. Grease; 9. Sarah Michelle Gellar; 10. ‘The Summer of ‘69’; 11.Hay; 12. b) Helianthus - from the Greek words ‘helios’ (sun) and anthos (flower); 13. Arles, in the South of France; 14. Midsomer Murders.



















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Redhill & Gatwick

Profile for Blue Edge Publishing Ltd.

The American August 2015 Issue 746  

The leading cross-media publication for Americans in the UK - and anyone interested in American culture

The American August 2015 Issue 746  

The leading cross-media publication for Americans in the UK - and anyone interested in American culture