Guild Hall’s Hamptons Institute Returns

I am so enthusiastic about the upcoming second Hamptons Institute, being held in East Hampton at the Guild Hall John Drew Theater on July 15, 16, and 17, that I would stand in front with a placard to promote it if they would let me. Sponsored jointly by Guild Hall and the esteemed Roosevelt Institute, the idea is to bring an intellectual stimulus to the Hamptons summer scene.

Last year when I attended the initial event sponsored by the Hamptons Institute, I listened to George Soros and Elizabeth Warren describe their views on what was facing President Obama, the nation, and the whole world. It was simply brilliant live programming.

Before the 2010 event, Andrew Rich, President and CEO of the Roosevelt Institute, held a meeting in the Wasserstein Family Green Room at Guild Hall. He explained that participation in the Hamptons Institute was part of a plan to empower the Roosevelt Institute and once again make relevant Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt’s understanding of how “the nation’s economic welfare and its cultural prosperity are inextricably linked.” Or, as Guild Hall’s guiding light Mickey Straus put it, this programming will be “a unique opportunity to hear and engage in a cross-pollination of a variety of ideas from a variety of disciplines.” [expand]

Ellen Chesler, a Senior Fellow at the Roosevelt Institute, was instrumental in putting this year’s great line-up of insiders together. After speaking with her, I can promise that this year’s Hamptons Institute will be even better than last year. Here is why:

The first offering, entitled “The Producers,” will take place on Friday, July 15, from 2:30-4:00 p.m. The discussion will include Broadway insiders Jeffrey Seller, Roy Furman and Daryl Roth, moderated by actor and producer Bob Balaban. Later that Friday afternoon, from 4:30-6 p.m., there will be a presentation on “America’s Top Economic Challenges: Jobs, Debt and China,” featuring Byron Wien with Jared Bernstein (former top Obama advisor) and Zachary Karabell. Wrapping up Friday’s schedule will be cocktails in the Minikes Garden from 6 to 7 p.m. for all participants!

On Saturday, July 16, the first session is scheduled between 11 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Entitled “The Outlook for the Middle East,” this session  presents an outstanding panel of brilliant minds on the subject, including Karen Greenberg, Daniel Yergin, Jane Harman, and Hisham Melhem. Then following from 2:30 to 4 p.m. comes “Perspectives on the Obama Presidency,” with Bob CaroH.W. Brands and staff writer at The New Yorker, George Packer (Lynn Sherr moderating). From 4:30 to 6  p.m., the Institute will present “The Evolution of Digital” (this one’s for the tech wizards in the family). This presentation will be moderated by Michael Gutkowski, with Christine Cook of The Daily, Chris Cunningham of Appssavvy and David Steward of 20×200|Jen Bekman Projects, Inc.

The last day of this year’s Hamptons Institute will be Sunday, July 17, starting off with the 11 a.m. Annual Pollock Krasner House & Study Center lecture, given by Gail Levin, Ph.D., on “Lee Krasner in East Hampton.”

Ellen Chesler said that this year’s Hamptons Institute includes programming that was selected to attract not only the sage intellectual prowess of summer Hamptonites, but also the promising young minds, those individuals who are “eager to get out from behind their computers to get at the pressing issues in all the world.” She explained that she personally knows that after coming out to summer in the Hamptons for over 30 years, the collection of brilliant minds, successful careers, and artistic genius out here always makes a Hamptons audience engaging when it comes to weighty discussions on the issues that will shape the future of our country.

The Institute is made possible in part through the generous support of the Tarr Family and the Lead Corporate Sponsors, Chubb Insurance and Dayton Ritz & Osborne. Tickets are $20,$18 Guild Hall members for general admission per session. $250 Cum Laude price includes donation to Guild Hall and admission to all programs. $1,000 Fellow price includes V.I.P. admission for one person to all programs, reserved seating, and V.I.P. dinner and luncheon. $5,000 Senior Fellow price includes V.I.P. admission for two people to all programs, reserved seating, and V.I.P. dinner and luncheon. Sunday only: $15/$13 GH members for Pollock Krasner House & Study Center lecture. Tickets available at Guild Hall Box Office, 631-324-4050, www.theatermania.com or 1-866-811-4111. [/expand]

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