8th Annual Don Wilmeth Endowed Lectureship in American Theatre

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] – On Monday, December 12, Brown University Library will host The 8th Annual Don Wilmeth Endowed Lectureship in American Theatre. For “Two Great Plays–a Clown’s View,” actor Bill Irwin will explore his experiences performing Samuel Beckett’s Endgame and Waiting for Godot, interlaced with performance examples–both Beckett and non-Beckett. The event will be held from 7 to 9pm in the Leeds Theater in Lyman Hall followed by a reception.

Bill Irwin is a director and choreographer, playwright, distinguished actor, dancer, and extraordinary clown.  A graduate of Oberlin College and Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey’s Clown College, he has been rewarded for his artistry and contributions to the performing arts with numerous recognitions, including Tonys for both his acting and his clowning, NEA Fellowships (in choreography), and Guggenheim and Fulbright Fellowships.  A major player in the revitalization of the circus arts in the 1970s, he was the first performance artist to be awarded a MacArthur Fellowship (1984). In his various clown shows, he has established the stage persona of the beleaguered but resilient all-American, versions of which appear in much of his work. In 2010 New York’s New Victory Theater presented Irwin with the first ever New Victory Arts Award for “bringing the arts to kids and kids to the arts.”

The Don Wilmeth Endowed Lectureship was established in honor of Professor Don Wilmeth and his monumental contribution to the study of theatre at Brown. The lectureship supports an annual lecture series on American theatre. Past visiting lecturers have included Laurence Maslon (2005), Jim Steinmeyer (2007), Christopher Bigsby (2008), Laura Linney (2008), and Lynn Nottage (2010).

This event is supported by Brown University Library and Friends.

Contact: Jennifer Braga |  401-863-6913