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This blog is for English actress, cakemaker and writer Jane Asher, with many pictures and accurate information of one of the most beautiful rock muses from the 20th century.

Monday, 31 August 2015

The Asher children casting photos, 1956

THE ASHER FAMILY page from the SPOTLIGHT Casting Directory of Actresses and Children, January 1956. Peter, Jane and Clare Asher, all with red hair and plenty of talent photographed by David Sim. Photos would have been taken in 1955 a few months ahead of publication deadline.







Lady Jane group at yahoo!

Friday, 28 August 2015

Flour power starlet is still having her cake and eating it, 2014

Deirdre Reynolds

Published 11/04/2014 | 22:52

Looking dishy: Deirdre Reynolds and former model and actress Jane Asher at Town Bar & Grill in Dublin.

From Beatles ex to cupcake queen, British flame-haired beauty admits she’s not too posh to penny pinch.

Jane Asher has just celebrated her 68th birthday this week. And the British queen of baking is sure to have marked the occasion with a cake made by someone else for a change.
Mind you, jetting into Dublin to launch her new bakeware range recently, the glamorous actress certainly doesn’t have the look of a woman who scoffs too many cupcakes.
“Although I love baking, I don’t have a particularly sweet tooth,” says Jane. “I’ve always been skinny.
“I know, I know, it’s annoying, isn’t it?”

With her tiny waist, flame-red hair and infectious grin, Asher has hardly changed since her star-making turn in Alfie, and of course, on the arm of Beatle Paul McCartney back in the Sixties.
As she floats into Town Bar & Grill in a form-fitting cream frock and freshly blow-dried tresses, the mum-of-three is still turning heads too.

“I’ll answer to anything,” jokes Jane as we peruse the menu at the Kildare Street eatery. “To some people, I’m the old bird from the Sixties, or it could be from the cake books.
“A lot of people think of Alfie because it was such a big iconic film,” adds the star, who played one of Michael Caine’s lovers in the 1966 movie.
“I don’t think, those iconic things, you realise at the time. It’s just like doing another job.
“When I first saw it, I thought: ‘This is going to be very important’.
“People tend to forget how it wasn’t just Michael Caine having all the girlfriends, ‘Oh isn’t it fun’.
“It was quite serious, the abortion scene and all.”

It was only after becoming a mum herself that Asher later put her acting career on the back burner, and embarked on another more family-friendly one as a celebrity cakemaker.

Today her ‘flour’ power empire includes a cake shop in Chelsea, where she lives with her husband Gerald Scarfe, and countless baking books, as well as her latest collection of kitchen accoutrements for Dealz.

Tucking into a platter of deep-fried prawn, however, Jane tells how it was all a complete accident.
“I can remember making gingerbread men with my mum and all that stuff,” recalls the doctor’s daughter with a cut-glass accent. “I’ve always enjoyed it.
“But if you’d said to me 30 years ago that I’d be running a cake business . . . it just sort of happened.
“When my children were small, I didn’t want to be away from home on location.
“That’s when really the other things became much more important. It’s not like I’m baking obsessed.”

Such protestations haven’t stopped the British media from painting Asher as a sort of Stepford wife, whose image is as artificially sweet as her cakes, occasionally sickly so.
“Press-wise, some sort of image will float to the top,” Jane accepts. “If mine is ‘Miss Perfect’ — ‘oh goody, goody, isn’t she annoying?’ — I could do a lot worse!”
“You know what it’s like with the press.
“Even if you say something like, ‘My kitchen’s a mess’, it’s shock! horror! ‘Miss Perfect’s kitchen’s a mess!’
“Of course I’m not perfect,” she adds.
“When you do press stuff, you doll yourself up, but I’m not like that at home — I’m slopping around in jeans.
“People think, ‘Oh God, these people always look well’.
“It’s very misleading because for photographs you’ve got hair and makeup and lighting and all that sort of stuff.
“We’re all basically the same,” continues Jane, whose daughter Katie has followed her into the business, “but as I say, that’s not how you get photographed.
“I’ve often looked at pictures of myself and thought, ‘I wish I looked like that!’
“You just have to go with it. If you worry about what’s written about you, you’d go mad.”

It’s a life lesson no doubt gleaned from her days as a ‘Beatles girl’.
Asher dated Paul McCartney for five years during the band’s heyday, breaking both male and female hearts everywhere when they got engaged in 1967.
But the wedding was infamously called off when the bride-to-be found the musician in bed with scriptwriter Francie Schwartz.
Unlike Schwartz, who told all in her biography, Asher has always maintained a dignified silence about the betrayal.
So it’s with well-practised poise that she talks about it without talking about it as the waiter clears our table.
“Years ago, I decided to talk as little as possible about my private life, which obviously included any boyfriends I might have been growing up with,” says Jane, who wed renowned cartoonist Scarfe in 1981. “It was definitely the right decision I think.
“Partly because, as I say, I have been happily married for 30-odd years, and I always think it’s quite insulting to talk about old-whatevers.
“I always say to people, ‘I completely understand if that’s all you want to talk about’,” she concedes. “Of course, I would expect [to be asked about it].
“But I wouldn’t want to mislead you. I mean, God, it’s 50 years ago, so it’s not as if it’s recently in my memory.”

When it comes to wedding cake, Jane says the secret is to follow the instructions down to the milligram.
As for marriage itself, there’s no recipe for success, she insists: “There’s no secret.
“Gerald and I have been together 43 years, and married not quite as long. It’s a long time. I suppose it helped that maybe he wasn’t an actor.
‘On the other hand, because he’s a political caricaturist for ‘The Sunday Times’ and did all the Pink Floyd [art] work, we both encounter similar worlds, so at least he sort of understood it.
“He’s incredibly successful in his own field.”

Most recently, Asher appeared on the big screen in romantic comedy I Give It a Year and on the UK stage in Moon Tiger.

Tousling her red hair though, which she’s confident means she’s got Irish roots, the actress reveals her dream is to work opposite Michael Fassbender on the Abbey stage.
“I’m afraid he’d play my son,” she laughs, “but still I’d be happy with that! He’s amazing.

“It is difficult,” a more meditative Jane agrees of the belief that there are no good roles for older women in Hollywood, “but we all like looking at beautiful young women.
“And yet, as we all know, men can soldier on into old age and get away with it.
“Of course there are things you’d love to do that you don’t get offered, but there’s always something that I can be doing.”

“I’d like to work in Ireland,” adds the actress.
“I remember a particularly wonderful holiday my husband and I had driving around Galway. We vowed we’d come back.”

Across the pond, many scoffed at news of the well-bred star teaming up with a budget brand to flog spatulas and cake tins for €1.49.
With her own eponymous London store not exactly rolling in the dough, however, Asher says she’s not too posh to penny pinch.
“It’s not an obvious tie-up,” she admits.
“But I liked the idea of producing a range that is very affordable, particularly at the moment when people’s money is very tight.”
“It’s a struggle,” adds Jane of her own business ‘Jane Asher Party Cakes & Sugarcraft’.
“It’s honestly never really made much money and I’ve recently had to take out another big loan, but I’m still there and it’s spun off to things which have made me money which have kept it going.”

Novel-writing and charity work are among Asher’s other well-known nixers.
As we toast her birthday though, Jane maintains: “Acting is my real job. If I had to choose, I would give up the others.
“I hope to drop dead on stage,” she jokes, “or in the wings, preferably. I don’t want to frighten the audience!”

The Jane Asher Bakeware Collection is now available from Dealz stores nationwide (www.dealz.ie).

Monday, 24 August 2015

Jane & Gerald, 1988

November 1988 - Domestic harmony for Jane and Gerald posing for Hello! magazine at their six-storey home overlooking the Thames in Cheyne Walk, Chelsea. Jane & Gerald agree that their children and the family must always come first. "Life would be very empty and meaningless without them," says Gerald. 




From Hello! magazine, Dec. 3, 1988 issue. Via Lady Jane group at yahoo!

Friday, 21 August 2015

"The Trojan Women", 1966

Jane Asher as Cassandra, with Dame Flora Robson, in the Pop Theatre production of The Trojan Women in the Edinburgh festival, August 27th 1966.









The Trojan Women (Ancient Greek: Τρῳάδες, Trōiades), also known as Troades, is a tragedy by the Greek playwright Euripides. Produced in 415 BC during the Peloponnesian War, it is often considered a commentary on the capture of the Aegean island of Melos and the subsequent slaughter and subjugation of its populace by the Athenians earlier that year. 

The Trojan Women was the third tragedy of a trilogy of dealing with the Trojan War. This trilogy was presented at the Dionysia along with the comedic satyr play Sisyphos.
The four Trojan women of the play are the same that appear in the final book of the Iliad lamenting over the corpse of Hector. Taking place near the same time is Hecuba, another play by Euripides.

As for Cassandra, Jane's role, (Greek: Κασσάνδρα, also Κασάνδρα), also known as Alexandra or Kassandra, was the daughter of King Priam and Queen Hecuba of Troy.
A common version of her story is that Apollo gave her the power of prophecy in order to seduce her, but when she refused, he spat into her mouth cursing her never to be believed. In an alternative version, she fell asleep in a temple, and snakes licked (or whispered in) her ears so that she was able to hear the future. Cassandra is a figure of both epic tradition and of tragedy.

Photo 1) Ebay auction listing.
Photos 2 & 3) Associated Newspapers/REX.
Photos 4 to 6) Newscom.com
Photo 7) From the much missed Meet the Beatles For Real tumblr blog.

Monday, 17 August 2015

"Prince and the Pauper" event, 1961

April 12th, 1961 - Jane Asher looks at the script of Disney's TV series "Prince and the Pauper" in which she'll play the role of Lady Jane Grey, with co-star Guy Williams (who'll play the role of Miles Hendon), and they celebrate it with a toast.








Photos 1 to 3) Ed Zimmerman / Associated Newspapers /REX
Photo 4) Lady Jane group at yahoo!
Photo 5) TopFoto.
Photo 6) Associated Newspapers/REX

Saturday, 15 August 2015

Indian Love

The 15th August is India's Independence Day, and to celebrate it, I've posted pictures of Jane in India and wearing sari.


The Beatles visited Rishikesh in India in 1968 to attend an advanced Transcendental Meditation training session at the ashram of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.
The Maharishi's compound was across from Rishikesh, located in the holy "Valley of the Saints" in the foothills of the Himalayas, and the home to many ashrams. The Beatles arrived there in February 1968, along with wives, girlfriends, assistants and numerous reporters, joining about 60 other TM students.
The Starrs left on 1 March, after only a short stay; Paul McCartney and Jane Asher left mid-March due to other commitments; while The Lennons and The Harrisons plus Jenny left abruptly in April 12th following financial disagreements and rumours of inappropriate behaviour by the Maharishi, accusations which were made public.






 



Lady Jane group at yahoo!

Women of the Beatles blogspot








 








Lady Jane group at yahoo!

Lady Jane group at yahoo!


Lady Jane group at yahoo!

Lady Jane group at yahoo!

Lady Jane group at yahoo!


Lady Jane group at yahoo!

Lady Jane group at yahoo!


Last 13 pictures are from George Harrison's 25th birthday.





Lady Jane group at yahoo!


My scan from the 2002 book ”At The Apple’s Core” by Denis O'Dell, Peter Owen Publishers.


My scan from the 2002 book ”At The Apple’s Core” by Denis O'Dell, Peter Owen Publishers.

My scan from the 2002 book ”At The Apple’s Core” by Denis O'Dell, Peter Owen Publishers.


  


My scan from the 2002 book ”At The Apple’s Core” by Denis O'Dell, Peter Owen Publishers.

 
Lady Jane group at yahoo!
 


Lady Jane group at yahoo!


Lady Jane group at yahoo!




 





My scan from the 2002 book ”At The Apple’s Core” by Denis O'Dell, Peter Owen Publishers.
 



My scan from the 2002 book ”At The Apple’s Core” by Denis O'Dell, Peter Owen Publishers.
 


My scan from the 2002 book ”At The Apple’s Core” by Denis O'Dell, Peter Owen Publishers.
My scan from the 2002 book ”At The Apple’s Core” by Denis O'Dell, Peter Owen Publishers.
  


My scan from the 2002 book ”At The Apple’s Core” by Denis O'Dell, Peter Owen Publishers.

My scan from the 2002 book ”At The Apple’s Core” by Denis O'Dell, Peter Owen Publishers.

My scan from the 2002 book ”At The Apple’s Core” by Denis O'Dell, Peter Owen Publishers.


My scan from the 2002 book ”At The Apple’s Core” by Denis O'Dell, Peter Owen Publishers.




Lady Jane group at yahoo!

Lady Jane group at yahoo!

 

  

 




Pattie's 24th birthday.

Pattie's 24th birthday. Lady Jane group at yahoo!




2008, May 5th - British actress and cookery writer Jane Asher (with Gerald Scarfe) attending the Asian Women Of Achievement Awards 2008 at the London Hilton, Park Lane, London. The event aims to recognise the achievements of Asian women in eight catagories including Arts and Culture, Business and Media.