Archives

7th Nov | The Blossom Appeal

1d2889e3-5328-4cc3-af40-4fe10a699902The main charity we are supporting this year is The Blossom Appeal, and at our November meeting the fund’s Community and Events Manager, Brian Taylor, came to update us on the progress of this worthwhile project.

The aim is for every breast care patient to have the best possible experience whether they go to the hospital for mammograms, biopsies or cancer treatment, etc. To this end they are planning to build a £2.5 million modern Breast Care Centre where state-of-the-art care can be delivered to all patients under one roof.

Brian brought with him a lady who has recently been through breast cancer treatment at Ipswich Hospital. She is now clear of the disease and volunteers for the charity as a way of showing her gratitude. One of our members is also a recovered breast cancer sufferer, and she remarked that, when she was undergoing treatment, she did indeed have to visit several different sites for each part of it, which was at times arduous and sometimes inconvenient.

To date, just under half a million pounds has been raised, and although there is still a long way to go, the Blossom Appeal Team are determined to meet their target at some point in the not-too-distant future!

Fund-raising is the mainstay of this project, and basically anything that can make money is being encouraged by the charity team, such as sponsored walks and bike-rides, coffee mornings, garage sales, car boot sales, quizzes, jumble sales – you name it, every little helps!

To donate to this worthy cause simply log on to the Blossom Appeal website to see the different ways in which you can contribute.

3rd Oct | Style Analysis – Helen Garth

20191003_193951Knowing that Helen Garth, an Image Consultant and Hypnotherapist, was coming to speak to Capel Ladies Club on Colour and Style meant that many of us had been slightly more selective than usual about what to wear for the evening! Mind you, we are a fairly personable crowd in any case, so we were interested to hear what new hints Helen might give us in her talk!

Helen began by passing round laminated sheets of a range of different styles as worn by women of all ages and body shapes, to illustrate the various possible ways that outfits can draw attention to our best features and distract from what we think of as our worst. The range of different styles went from City Chic and Dramatic to Creative, Romantic, Classsic and Natural.

Whichever style you choose, it’s all about creating a BALANCED appearance, and it’s important to know which body shape you are to help you dress stylishly. We had to pair up with someone else and, using a small weight on the end of a piece of thread we held the end of the thread to each other’s shoulders allowing the weight to hang free. We could then tell whether we were a triangle-shape, an inverted triangle shape, a pear shape, a circular shape, an hour-glass, an oval or a rectangle, and from that diagnosis we could be advised on which of our features needed accentuating with the style of our clothes.

This proved to be a fun evening, and although we took Helen’s hints and tips seriously everyone enjoyed a bit of a giggle, and there was a good atmosphere. One item of clothing which seemed to display the most versatility was the scarf. Helen showed several ways of wearing scarves, and various knots to tie in order to create some completely different looks with an outfit. She also said that many of her clothes come from charity shops which are full of surprises! All in all it was a very enjoyable evening!

For more information about Helen, see her Facebook page under “Helen Garth – Looking good, Feeling good”.

5th Sept | Morris Men – a talk by Mike Garland

Mike Garland talkingI had always believed that Morris Men were part of ancient British traditions, and that the costumes, music and dances associated with them were full of mystic symbolism and folklore.

Although some of this is true, much of it is not – and it was down to Mike Garland, ex-Squire of East Anglian Morris Ring and our speaker on the subject for September, to clear up some of these misnomers.

The oldest known records of Morris Dancing date from the 15th century and are associated with East Anglia. Caister in Norfolk has a medieval tapestry showing Morris Dancers, and there are cups from Bury St Edmunds with Morris Dancers on. At the Royal courts in Tudor times Morris dancing was enjoyed and performed, and Queen Elizabeth I even joined in energetic dances of this kind! Churches allowed Morris Dancing, and Craftsmen’s Guilds used it in their ceremonial processions. Even agricultural labourers performed dances in their villages, and sometimes for the local lord at the manor house, in order to boost their own wages by passing the hat round at the end!

Other known records of this style of dance come from the European courts of the fifteenth century when “moreys daunce” was a regular court entertainment. This may have been the dance form known as “morisco” on the continent, and it is easy to see how the name was changed over the years to what we now call “Morris Dancing”.

Mike Garland dancingOver the years and down to the nineteenth century, English Morris Dancing had all but died out, but the Victorian revival of folk songs, traditions and stories also included a new interest in it, and concerts were held in which both boys and girls performed dances which had been collected from researchers travelling the country to discover them. The many kinds of Morris Dancing countrywide included different costumes, different footwear (such as clogs), and using sticks, swords or handkerchiefs to show off the various moves and emphasize the rhythm of the music. Musicians played on the fiddle, the tambour, a three-hole pipe or an accordion.

Mike Garland’s talk not only told us about the origins of Morris, he actually performed one or two dances for us, including a very lively jig using handkerchiefs! It certainly proved that the dancers have to be fit! He was accompanied by his fellow Morris member Mick on the melodeon accordion.

Essentially, people enjoyed both taking part as well as watching these folk dances, and it was all in the name of FUN! No mystic connections or symbolic meanings – just simple fun and enjoyment that everyone, young or old, could appreciate! And that’s it – so why not find out where you can see Morris Men performing somewhere and go along to watch! For more info check this website:  www.eastsuffolkmorris.com

18th July | “My Life in Music” – a talk by Hattie Bennett

hattie-bennett-and-her-cello-e1564804595116.jpgMusic has certainly been an important ingredient in Hattie Bennett’s life, and as proof of this she brought along her favourite instrument – a cello – when she came to speak to Capel Ladies Club in July.

What a fascinating life she has had, too! Born into a musical family, with both her parents members of the Halle Orchestra under Sir John Barbirolli, she grew up always hearing music around her. Her father played the cello and her mother the double bass.

From the age of four she was encouraged to learn to play first a child-sized cello, and then a piano, while her brother learnt the violin. By the time she was ten years old she had progressed to the cello, following in her father’s footsteps. They lived in Manchester and her parents were constantly travelling around the country playing in orchestras and concerts wherever they could. At the age of twelve her father took Hattie to play in the Stockport Youth Orchestra, and she absolutely loved it! Playing with other musicians was what she wanted to do, and at nineteen she seized the chance to go to Scotland with her cello to join an orchestra there. Whilst there she became engaged to a trombonist whom she married three months later. They moved to London where she studied at the Royal Academy of Music.

Music was in their blood, but in order to earn enough money to make a living and support their children the couple had to find somewhere economical to live, and in due course they ended up moving to a house in Felixstowe which had an acre of land attached. For a few years they lived self-sufficiently, just like in “The Good Life”, and while Hattie stayed at home and looked after the family and their smallholding her husband went off countrywide playing in orchestras and concerts, and teaching music at local schools.

However, after a few years Hattie’s yearning to get back to music herself inspired her to start an organisation called “Music in Felixstowe”, now in its 23rd season, which brings top musicians to Felixstowe audiences. Part of her mission is to promote talented young local musicians, and she has also launched a string group in one of the town’s primary schools. which puts on an annual performance featuring over 100 local schoolchildren working with professional musicians. There are also a number of concerts in local churches and even occasionally in the open air, some of which are free, but all of which showcase the talents of skilled local musicians. Hattie herself was awarded a B.E.M. in 2016, much to her complete surprise, and the organisation she founded is now a registered charity!

Hattie’s talk was lively, amusing and at times sad, but it was a joyous experience listening to her – particularly as she illustrated the different periods of her life with little ‘taster’ tunes on her cello, including “Old McDonald Had A Farm” and “Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves” to name but two!

To discover more about Hattie and for information regarding her music concerts see the website: www.felixstowemusic.com

6th June | Summer Social

The theme for this year’s Summer Social was, appropriately enough, Europe, and our members had all made the effort to produce plates of food for the buffet with distinct continental connections! Flags and bunting were strewn across the tables, and there was a rather tricky European Quiz, devised by Rose Chiverton, our chairlady! She even managed to ask some of the questions in various European languages! The quiz was won by Di Barker who received her prize of Belgian chocolates! The tasty food and lively chatter made for a very jolly evening!

2nd May | CLC ‘In’ meeting

20190502_204147Unfortunately, the Speaker for our May meeting called off unexpectedly, but all was not lost! Our resourceful Chairlady Rose rose to the occasion and entertained us with some very amusing anecdotes about her recent holiday in India! Following this, one or two other members regaled us with interesting or comic accounts of their doings, and we even had a book review thrown into the mix! Then Sue Maynard asked for some volunteers – a few to be guinea pigs whilst others copied her in giving them an Indian Head Massage. This proved very successful and a second set of participants did the same again! It was evidently a very relaxing experience! Refreshments were then served and we had our usual social time chatting. What could have been a disastrous evening proved to be a very enjoyable one after all!

4th Apr | History of the Movies – a talk by Mark Mitchels

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20190404_192403It was an evening at the flicks for Capel Ladies and friends at our April meeting. Mark Mitchels took us through the origins of film-making and told us interesting facts and figures about movies through the ages, illustrated by film clips of each genre. Many of these were very familiar while some were new to us – and it was particularly interesting to be told some of the background stories and techniques employed by early film-makers.

20190404_211409 (2).jpgThere was a good turnout for this meeting and something for everyone’s taste. Many of us gasped at the antics of Harold Lloyd climbing the skyscraper and hanging from the clock-face – done without a stunt-man in sight! We were also amazed by the fast-moving high-speed chase involving Cowboys and Indians in the 1939 black-and-white film “Stagecoach” starring John Wayne, where there were some incredible stunts on and off horseback and stagecoach by fearless stuntmen who must have risked their lives during the making of that movie!

We learnt that the rainwater in that wonderful sequence from “Singing in the Rain” had to be souped-up by adding milk to it in order for it to give the desired effect and appearance for Gene Kelly’s famous dance scene. We also gasped in admiration at the amazing geometry of the violin-playing dancers in Busby Berkeley’s choreographed scene from the 1933 film “Gold-Diggers”. To achieve this perfection Berkeley developed the new technique of having the cameras above the dancers looking down on the action.

All in all, it was a very entertaining evening, which was enjoyed by everyone.

For more of the same why not come along for a taster visit on the first Thursday of the month in Capel Library. We start at 7.45pm and you will be assured of a warm welcome!

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