As wedding season approaches, join Ada Calhoun for a funny (but not flippant), smart (but not smug) evening on marriage. Anyone who is married (or contemplating it) knows that in our most cherished institution, over the years there will be fights, there will be angst, and there may even be affairs; sometimes you’ll look at the person you love and feel nothing but rage. And still, with frank insight from experts, clergy and friends, Ada Calhoun demonstrates that we can put aside expectations of total marital bliss and arrive at an optimistic portrait of what marriage is really like. Inspired by a wildly popular New York Times essay, this talk will help and inform anyone interested in entering into, or improving a marriage. Read more.
Join us forty years on at the Tabernacle for a Bob Marley tribute evening, woven together – from the words of those who knew him best – by Roger Steffens, whose indispensable oral history, So Much Things to Say, appears in August. The childhood abandonment, the formative years in Trench Town, the meteoric rise to international fame, the assassination attempt and possible CIA cover-up, the devastating moment of his collapse while jogging in New York’s Central Park aged just 36 – it’s all here. As are the emotional dramas of Bob Marley’s brief life, and his unwavering commitment to the message of Rastafari, which combined to create the dazzling and idiosyncratic destiny of Bob Marley. In conversation with Linton Kwesi Johnson – known and revered as the world’s first reggae poet – Steffens will reveal extraordinary new details, dispel myths about the man, and let the voices speak for themselves: Rita Marley, Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer; band members, relatives and friends… All true gospels are shaped by the accounts of eyewitnesses, and ‘If Bob Marley is Jesus in these times, Roger Steffens is St Peter’ (Carlos Santana). So come along for the definitive Reggae Night on 4th September… Read more.
Since biblical times gardens have been horizontal, until Patrick Blanc starting greening the walls and courtyards of cities around the world. The inventor of the vertical garden, he is also the world’s leading expert. Blanc has created dozens of his botanical tapestries in public and private spaces: lush miniature forests of perennial plants, mosses, ferns and flowers, the key to whose success is the diversity of species used. The vertical garden is a new green vision for the interaction between cities, plants and people. As Frank Lloyd Wright said: ‘architects cannot bury their mistakes, but they can grow things over them’. Vertical gardening goes a step further, and has in turn given new stimulus to contemporary architecture both public and domestic. Originally inspired by the observation of plants in rainforest canopies or living on rocks around waterfalls, vertical gardening emulates natural ‘gardens’ on cliffs and mountain slopes that are fed by sunshine, wind energy, ambient moisture, dew and rain. The benefits include reduced pollution and flooding from rainwater run-off, additional insulation for buildings, and increased habitat for wildlife – as well as the vivid beauty of these living walls and their daily contribution to our concrete environment. Vertical space is empty and often free. For the urban gardener the vertical garden is practical, long lasting and even portable (Blanc has moved his own garden to three different addresses in Paris over a 28-year period). He will reveal with his unique authority the possibilities for greening our walls and courtyards, will explain the art of soil-less planting, and will show us how it is done. Read more.
In what promises to be a life-changing talk, the Norwegian adventurer Erling Kagge , whose new book on Silence has become an international publishing phenomenon, will take us on a journey to unlock the power of silence and show us how to find perfect silence in our daily lives, however busy we are. ‘Breathtaking and inspiring. Teaches us how to find precious moments of silence – whether we are crossing the Antarctic, climbing Everest, or on the train at rush hour‘ – Sir Ranulph Fiennes Read more.