We’re back for 2022 with a full day of talks at the Rose Theatre in Kingston Upon Thames.


Life Finds A Way

“If there’s one thing the history of evolution has taught us, it’s that life will not be contained. Life breaks free, it expands to new territories, and crashes through barriers painfully, maybe even dangerously, but, uh, well, there it is.”


Life, uh, finds a way.’


Jeff Goldblum was right, in Jurassic Park and his point is as relevant now as it was back in 1993.


The world has changed dramatically since our last event in January 2020. We’ve all had to evolve and find our way through life in different ways.


But life-changing events happen to people every single day. We’ve all been in situations where we can say to ourselves, ‘my life will never be the same again.’ Whether wonderful or devastating, by design or by accident, life finds a way to surprise, challenge and disrupt. 


‘Life Finds a Way’ is the theme of our 2022 event. We can’t wait to share 12 incredible TEDx talks with you.


Through a day-long event of live talks and performances, TEDxKingstonUponThames – entirely not-for-profit and organised by volunteers – strives to bring our community together with unique stories, opinions and experiences to spark meaningful discussion.

The full line up of talks and performances will be announced in due course.

Speakers and talks are subject to change. Timings are also subject to change however this is a full day event.

Accessible Seats

Please contact us for details of available accessible seats.

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Saturday 30th April 2022

Theatre Doors Open 11AM

Event Starts MIDDAY

Event Ends 7PM


Rose Theatre Kingston

Kingston upon Thames


Ticket Types and Restricted View Information

Front Stalls / Rear Stalls / Circle

Rear Stalls Side
Circle Side  (Side view. Seats may have a restricted view of the stage)
Upper Circle Centre (Seats may have a restricted view of the stage)
Upper Circle Side (Seats have a restricted view of the stage)

Unassigned Seat (Seat is unassigned)

Ticket and Event Terms and Conditions

Talks, Performances and Running Order

Part One - Midday

Owen O'Kane

Bombs, Bullets, Bullying and A Piano

Owen explores how a piano became his salvation whilst growing up in a war zone and dealing with bullying. His experiences of adversity taught him how life finds a way and he will share these lessons, alongside his piano.

Owen is a Psychotherapist, Sunday Times Best Selling Author and former NHS Mental Health Lead. He is also a lover of dogs and cake.

Natasha Donovan

Breaking Bad News

Natasha Donovan has gone from multiple life support machine experiences when battling cancer to becoming a leading voice of NHS patient empowerment. 

An effervescent optimist fired by determination, she has channelled her negative experiences of poor doctor-patient communication into a force for good to help others. Now Natasha teaches consultants, nurses and students how to clearly and sensitively communicate with patients at one of the world’s leading university hospitals.

(Content and Trigger Warning: This talk will include true stories about cancer and cancer treatment.)


Aiden Bex

Brandy Bex - The Joys of Nursing

Sister Brandy Bex is the nurse I would love to be if I knew I could get away with it. Created in 2020 during the Covid pandemic, Brandy is my first comedy character. 

“It takes a special kind of person to be a nurse.”

Brandy is sassy, as smart as a whip, and likes to call a spade a spade. Though she can sometimes be a tad unprofessional, Brandy is no less caring and always gets the job done – even if that does mean being a touch flexible with the Code of Conduct!

Dr Douglas Vakoch

Embracing Uncertainty: Searching for Life beyond Earth

Science isn’t just a dispassionate search for truth. It also provides lessons for living our daily lives in the face of uncertainty and the need for commitment.

Dr Douglas Vakoch is president of METI International, a San Francisco-based scientific organisation that transmits powerful, intentional radio signals to nearby stars, in the hope of eliciting a reply from extraterrestrial civilisations. As an elected member of the International Astronomical Union and the International Institute for Space Law, he explores the scientific and societal dimensions of the search for life beyond Earth.


Michael Maisey

Uncaged: From Prison to Purpose

From growing up traumatised, abused and neglected and left in a cell for 23 hours everyday at the age of 16, Michael shares his story of transformation and what he believes needs to change in our criminal justice system.

He is the author of “Young Offender” which tells his story of going from armed robber to becoming a local hero. He has been sober for 14 years and founded the CIP Project, a non profit organisation that helps people become the person they want to be.


Part Two - 3pm

Ali Hendry

Survivor's Guide to Jealousy

Where does jealousy come from, and how can we work through it? Unique observations and solutions relating to one of the most complex emotions us humans experience.

Ali Hendry is a Holistic Relationship Coach and journalist. Her personal and professional experiences of relationship designs (monogamy, polyamory, open) generated a comprehensive guide to working through jealousy.

Rob and Chantel Emery

One Day At a Time

Rob and Chantel share their extraordinary journey from the birth of their quadruplets, to dealing with loss, gratitude and learning to live for each day. 

They are on a mission to positively impact the lives of those around them through sharing their story, navigating being parents to children with severe cerebral palsy and their super siblings, all while trying to juggle everyday life.

Alex Hall

‘A genre-crossing songwriter with a gift for story telling at it’s heart’ 

An invite to record in Warner UK Studios, an inclusion on the prestigious BBC Introducing list of ‘Ones To Watch’ 2022, a sell-out show at The St Johns KINGSTON (Banquet Records) and even transatlantic radio play, it’s fair to say 2021 had been a ‘bust down the door and smile on the other side’  year for Maverick Singer -songwriter and Self-Producer Alex Hall. 

His Cinematic Pop – meets Lo-Fi – meets anthemic Indie Pop songs (such as Pterodactyl and Still Hurts) are dazzling explosive modern pop earworms, where cutting edge production chops fuse effortlessly with english sensibility and guy-next-door sentiments. As a songwriting he has been described a Ray Davis of our times’ by Glastonbury Emerging TALENT judge Tony Hardy, and has garnered avid praise from Grammy Award winning heavyweight engineer Jon Jacobs.

An adept multi-instrumentalist; his ambitious live show, incorporates VFX and a remarkable ‘one man band’ experience where alex unexpectedly roams between synths, guitars, drum pads, keyboards, pianos and trumpets.

Jamie Brown

The Language of Location

The more precisely we need to describe our location, the more humans turn to numerical systems. What3words is putting language back in the game – for as many people as possible.

Jamie is Head of Language Development & Localisation at what3words, where his mission is to ensure people across the world can use the product in a language that’s familiar to them. Quality, easy-to-use and carefully considered localisation is the key to unlocking a global audience.


Hazel Thompson

Beyond The Story: Exposing Trafficking, Slavery & Injustice Through Her Lens

Hazel’s career as an award-winning photojournalist and filmmaker has taken her to over 65 countries across the world, where she has covered stories about key justice and human rights issues particularly focussing on modern-day slavery and human trafficking. Often working in hostile environments and war-torn countries, she has personally witnessed and documented people experiencing great loss and tragedy.

As a storyteller, she has seen the transformational strength of individuals survive and journey through some of the most unimaginable situations, witnessing through her lens the redemptive thread of hope that weaves through peoples’ lives.

Hazel’s talk tells the personal stories that inspired the photojournalist behind the headlines sharing the experiences of ordinary people surviving the extraordinary, the power of hope of not only surviving but thriving beyond the story.



Part Three - 5pm

Simone Sistarelli

Turning a Symptom into a Superpower

In a world riddled with diseases that have no cure to date, it is necessary to find alternative methods of treatment and support for anyone going through challenging times. Dance can offer exactly that. 

What is science telling us about the power of dance? How does dance support people with Parkinson’s? How can you turn a symptom into a superpower? 

Join Simone Sistarelli, founder of Popping For Parkinson’s, as he unravels the potential that can be unlocked through movement. 


Tanya Obeng

Unconscious Bias: The Limitation of Labels

Labelling a child can lead to trauma and disempowerment. Tanya wants to empower the next generation to thrive.

Tanya is passionate about sharing a mindful approach through psychodrama as a tool to help others open up and tell their stories in an authentic way. Her approach is empowering, supportive, inspiring, and she aims to aspire to elevate people through her love of connection and storytelling.

Tanya taught drama for over 15 years in schools, youth theatres, mental health and care homes.

Charlie George

Charlie is an award winning stand-up comedian and writer.

LGBTQ New Comedian of the Year 2019.  So You Think You’re Funny & Funny Women Awards runner up 2019 & Leicester Square New Comedian Award & Pride’s Got Talent finalist 2018.

Charlie has performed stand-up on BBC Asian Network Live and the BBC’s No Country for Young Women Podcast, as well as appearing on Comedy Central in Rhod Gilbert’s Growing Pains.

A talented and accomplished writer Charlie was chosen to feature in Charlie Brooker’s writers room for Cunk & Other Humans 2019, The BAFTA nominated AntiViral Wipe 2020 and Death to 2020 & 2021 for Netflix. She has written for the C4 Election night special, 8 out of 10 cats, Hypothetical, Newsjack, The Now Show, Have I Got News For You, Joe Lycett’s Got Your Back & Frankie Boyle’s New World Order.

Shelley Bridgman

Dare To Be You


A lot of work in the personal development industry focuses on changing yourself to become successful and fulfilled. What if you already possess all you will ever need? What if the goal of life is to become who you already are? Shelley is a Performance Coach, Psychotherapist and Hypnotherapist. She specialises in working with Thought Leaders and in the field of Diversity.


Jamie Klingler

Reclaim Yourself: The Most Valuable Investment You Will Ever Make

Small but crucial investments in yourself can lead to unexpected and dramatic results and an entirely unexpected future.

Jamie Klingler is a co founder of Reclaim These Streets, an activist, a writer, and has a famous elderly Cavalier King Charles named McNulty.  She was named Number 9 in PR Week UK’s 2021 list of top Communicators of the Year.

Event Ends 7pm
Timings may change on the day.

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