May 2018 News

May 2018 Calendar

Special Event – Dinner with Maura Healey, Thursday, May 3

Attorney General Maura Healey

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey will join us for an informal discussion.  Born in New Hampshire, Healey is a 1992 Harvard College graduate (govern

ment).  She spent two years playing professional basketball in Austria before returning to the United States and receiving a Juris Doctor degree from the Northeastern University School of Law, in 1998.

From 2007, Healey served as Chief of the Civil Rights Division for Martha Coakley, where she spearheaded the state’s challenge to the federal Defense of Marriage Act. She was then appointed Chief of the Public Protection & Advocacy Bureau and then Chief of the Business and Labor Bureau.  She resigned in 2013 to run for attorney general in the 2014 election.

Come for drinks at 6 p.m., dinner at 7 p.m., and stay for Maura’s brief talk and plenty of Q &A.  Guests welcome, sign up with Tony Fay.   (617) 338-9682,

Gallery Opening, Monday, May 7, 5:30-7:00 p.m.
Murray Dewart – Sculptures

Murray Dewart

I will be exhibiting small and medium sized sculptures, mostly bronze, many of them maquettes for big outdoor works. I sometimes say our task as artists is to give the world metaphors. Mine is often the gate or the gateway, since life is about passage, “an interval of longing,” as the sculptor Barlach said, “between a where-from and a where-to.”  Mac Dewart

(Guests welcome to Opening; Members only for Monday Night Dinner)

Arts Round Table Lunch, Wednesday, May 9, Noon

Esther Nelson

The Arts Roundtable is delighted to welcome Esther Nelson, General and Artistic Director of Boston Lyric Opera.  Esther whose experience in opera and the performing arts spans three decades and many continents, will talk about Leonard Bernstein and his immeasurable influence on American music and culture.  August 25th is the 100th anniversary of Bernstein’s birth in Lawrence, Mass., and the Tavern, led by Esther Nelson, will join institutions around the globe in celebrating the life and career of this great musical legend.

Tavern Club Annual Meeting and Dinner, Monday, May 14

The Annual Meeting of the Tavern Club will be on the evening of May 14.  Come at 6 p.m. for drinks, 7 p.m. for dinner and the be-medaling of new members and for the Meeting in the theater at 8 p.m..  Medals, vests, black tie, full regalia.

History Lunch with Margo Miller, Thursday, May 17, 12:15 p.m.

Chateau Higginson

Until Henry Lee Higginson (beloved president of the Tavern) built the Hotel Agassiz on Commonwealth Avenue, Americans did not live in apartment houses where each family had a whole floor.  All that was to change in the 1870’s.  An Agassiz owner, Margo Miller, will tell tales of bygone Boston from her new book, Château Higginson: Social Life in Boston’s Back Bay 1870-1920.  Boston’s newest neighborhood was still so vacant that kids skated on excavated housing lots.  Transportation was by horse (there were some 6000 in the city) or by shanks’ mare.  The bicycle craze brought democracy on wheels.  John Singer Sargent was a house guest at the Agassiz and Sir Henry Irving and Ellen Terry came to dine. Life was rosy, except when plumbing and heating malfunctioned.  Poor Higginson!  He was not only landlord but himself an occupant: the tenants were not shy about informing him of stinking toilets, ceiling leaks, and soot-belching fireplaces.  Guests welcome.

The Committee on Elections will meet in the Library at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, May 21.

Book Club Lunch, Wednesday, May 23, Noon

Festina Lente Book

Bob Osteen will lead the Book Club discussion of his delightfully informative book Festina Lente: The Charting of the Mediterranean.  This historical account deals with the geographical, cultural and meteorological background of Admiral Smythe’s considerable accomplishment.  Bob has placed copies of the book in the hands of Tony Fay. Members taking a copy of the book might make a contribution to the Tavern Club. Guests welcome.

Film Night, Thursday, May 24, 6:00 p.m.
The Florida Project
Please come to the Tavern’s third Film Night to see The Florida Project, starring Willem Dafoe (Oscar-nominated for his role) and a talented cast of unknowns.  The film is an intimate, verite slice-of-life told mostly from the point of view of a six-year-old girl living in a housing project outside Disneyworld. What is the reality of this population so unseen to most people in the U.S? The film has won multiple awards, landing on many critics’ top ten lists.  Discussion will examine issues of economic stress and social resiliency, as well as filmmaking style and technique. John Finley who heads the Epiphany School, which focuses on children like the ones in the Florida project, will lead the discussion along with TV writer and producer P.K. Simonds. Movie starts promptly at 6 pm—with popcorn and drinks—followed by dinner and discussion. Guests welcome.

In case you missed it …

Carma Hinton, April 12
The month opened with Carma Hinton’s discussion of her film on the Cultural Revolution.  Taverners and guests heard about and saw documentary evidence of that era.  Working from a paucity of real-time news reports, Hinton used state-supported spectacles–ballet, opera, and filmed literary narrative–to delve into the underlying rationale and motivation of the time.  Hinton’s is a creative coup that made for a fascinating Tavern evening.

MeistUrsingers Concert, April 26
And the month closed with 40 or so Taverners lending voice to works by Dowland, Nanino, Bernstein, and our own Thompson, Hatch, and Terry.   Tom Kelly led again with grace, transcendent humor, and marvelous skill.  Jim Terry and Elaine Woo supplied accompaniment on the piano, and Mike Scott’s piano led Taverners and guests in after-dinner Gershwin singing, the only conceivable encore to the soaring MeistUrsingers’ concert.

Upcoming: Summer Shorts, Thursday, June 7

Summer Shorts, our annual show of short plays, will turn to matters of the heart and soul.  Four of Hearts comprises neighborhood scenes of love: tolerant, murderous, familial, and in loss.  East of the Sun sets out a fairy tale to mask (and then unmask) the heart’s damage and hope of repair.  Come for drinks at 6, the plays at 6:30, dinner and discussion around 7:30.  Guests welcome.

-Nancy Maull, Secretary

For a complete, downloadable copy of the May 2018 Tavern Club Newsletter, click here.


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