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Great-grandmother Bea Slater, 90, is face of Jewish online dating

She has never modelled or acted before

    This is Bea Slater. A 90-year-old great-grandmother, she is the latest face of Jewish dating website JDate.

    The New Jersey resident’s face is online and on billboards and bus shelters up and down Manhattan and in Brooklyn — but Mrs Slater has never modelled or acted before.

    “It’s a funny story as to how I was even cast,” she explains.

    “My son Mitch is a Bruce Springsteen fan, and he wanted to take me to a Steve Van Zandt concert on Staten Island. He came over one Sunday and he brought me a T-shirt to wear to the show.”

    Her son, who likes to record videos of his mother for posterity, filmed her in the T-shirt talking about the concert and put it on Facebook.

    It came to the attention of Van Zandt, who asked Mitch if his mother would introduce him at his concert.

    Mrs Slater says: “I thought ‘why not, it might be fun’. He wrote me a little script and I was worried I would get it wrong but Stevie was really cool.

    “He told me, ‘don’t worry, you’ll be fine’.”

    She introduced Van Zandt to a huge round of applause and after the show her son posted a video of it online, which went viral.

    The video caught the eye of a casting director looking for Jewish grandmothers to appear in JDate’s new advertising campaign and just days later Mrs Slater was at an audition.

    “There were all these older ladies in the room. I think I was the oldest. They said they had seen my video and loved it. It was really funny.”

    She says she could not believe it when the casting director called her to say they wanted her.

    “I hadn’t worked in years. I used to be a photographer before I had children but I had never done any modelling or acting.”

    As part of the campaign she and three women are used to sell the idea J-Date is like a “yenta” — working out the site’s algorithms to find that perfect match.

    In one advert Ms Slater is seen hard at work on a laptop, and the tag line reads: “Her dreidel game is filthy. But her code is clean.”

    “We had a day shooting and we had hair and make-up and food. It was so fun,” she says.

    The last time Mrs Slater received a pay cheque was in 1947 and she loved the feeling of earning money again.

    “It wasn’t a life changing amount of money. We’d call it pin money,” she says.

    “I’m not famous, but it was nice to get paid.

    “If I did it again I would ask for more.”

    She concedes that the world of dating has changed beyond recognition since she met her late husband 72 years ago, when dates would have to be arranged days in advance. “Now it is all so instant. I think online dating is fine if people are true about who they say they are.”

    “You do have to be careful I think. I have grandchildren who tell me about these things.”

    The secret to love for yenta Mrs Slater is having a unique connection.

    “When I met my husband in 1946, I knew he was for me.

    “After he passed away people said ‘why don’t you try and meet someone’, but I know there is no one out there like my husband,” she says.

    She will not tire of seeing herself on giant billboards.

    “I went into New York where there is a big billboard above Juniors, the cheesecake shop.

    “I stood in the road and looked up.

    “I couldn’t believe it. I said to a couple walking past, ‘that is me’.

    “We all laughed and took pictures.

    “It is amazing.

    “Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought that I could do something like this.

    “It has been so fun.”

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