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Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful

Popular Culture Programs

Lecture/Seminar
Thursday, August 5, 2021 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

Artists, activists, and radio DJs transformed music into a political weapon and unifying force in the Civil Rights Movement, delivering powerful messages of hope to the Black community and beyond. Historian Leon Burnette explores how the music that grew out of a seminal era became an indelible part of America’s social and cultural heritage.

Lecture/Seminar
Thursday, September 2, 2021 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

For more than seven decades, Carl Reiner and Mel Brooks made America laugh—either through their remarkable solo careers or their legendary partnership. Discover the extraordinary comic talents of these giants of American comedy who conquered every medium they took on: television, films, Broadway, recordings.

Lecture/Seminar
Monday, September 13, 2021 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

Some moments in movies never leave us: the piercing eyes of a private eye, a raft hurtling down the rapids, that little black dress, the close-up of a fading movie star. In a 5-session film discussion series, documentary filmmaker and writer Sara Lukinson revisits some of our favorite movies and characters, setting them against the backdrop of their times, the people who dreamed them up, and the America they reflected—or asked us to imagine. This session focuses on Katharine Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor.

Lecture/Seminar
Monday, September 27, 2021 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

Some moments in movies never leave us: the piercing eyes of a private eye, a raft hurtling down the rapids, that little black dress, the close-up of a fading movie star. In a 5-session film discussion series, documentary filmmaker and writer Sara Lukinson revisits some of our favorite movies and characters, setting them against the backdrop of their times, the people who dreamed them up, and the America they reflected—or asked us to imagine. This session focuses on Humphrey Bogart and Paul Newman.

Lecture/Seminar
Thursday, September 30, 2021 - 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

He went from bobby-soxers’ dreamboat to the Chairman of the Board—and he did it his way. Music historian John Edward Hasse toasts the unmistakable voice that defined Sinatra’s stardom.

Lecture/Seminar
Monday, October 4, 2021 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

Some moments in movies never leave us: the piercing eyes of a private eye, a raft hurtling down the rapids, that little black dress, the close-up of a fading movie star. In a 5-session film discussion series, documentary filmmaker and writer Sara Lukinson revisits some of our favorite movies and characters, setting them against the backdrop of their times, the people who dreamed them up, and the America they reflected—or asked us to imagine. This session focuses on Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Charade.

Lecture/Seminar
Sunday, October 17, 2021 - 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET

Film music can inspire and romance us, salvage a bad movie and make a good one great. In this weekend series, speaker and concert pianist Rachel Franklin explores the many elements that go into creating an effective score and showcase the memorable work of some of the leading masters of the form. Fasten your seatbelts…it’s going to be a fabulous ride! This session focuses on film music from Jaws, Laura, and The Third Man.

Lecture/Seminar
Sunday, October 24, 2021 - 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET

Film music can inspire and romance us, salvage a bad movie and make a good one great. In this weekend series, speaker and concert pianist Rachel Franklin explores the many elements that go into creating an effective score and showcase the memorable work of some of the leading masters of the form. Fasten your seatbelts…it’s going to be a fabulous ride! This session focuses on film music from The Madness of King George, Chicken Run, and Dr. Zhivago.

Lecture/Seminar
Monday, October 25, 2021 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

Some moments in movies never leave us: the piercing eyes of a private eye, a raft hurtling down the rapids, that little black dress, the close-up of a fading movie star. In a 5-session film discussion series, documentary filmmaker and writer Sara Lukinson revisits some of our favorite movies and characters, setting them against the backdrop of their times, the people who dreamed them up, and the America they reflected—or asked us to imagine. This session focuses on Billy Wilder.

Lecture/Seminar
Thursday, October 28, 2021 - 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

Like a select few in music—Hoagy, Duke, Elvis, Wynton, Dolly—you recognize her by her first name alone. Join John Edward Hasse, co-curator of the long-running Smithsonian exhibition Ella Fitzgerald: First Lady of Song, as he draws on film and video clips, rare photographs, and original recordings to provide insights into her extraordinary journey from shy orphan to beloved international celebrity.

Lecture/Seminar
Tuesday, November 2, 2021 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

Since its very beginning, Hollywood has made audiences laugh in forms from slapstick to screwball, romance to social satire, musicals to gross-out teen films. Media expert Brian Rose looks at major highlights of screen comedy over the last 125 years, drawing on more than 40 examples from Hollywood’s funniest films. Prepare to LOL.

Lecture/Seminar
Sunday, November 7, 2021 - 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET

Film music can inspire and romance us, salvage a bad movie and make a good one great. In this weekend series, speaker and concert pianist Rachel Franklin explores the many elements that go into creating an effective score and showcase the memorable work of some of the leading masters of the form. Fasten your seatbelts…it’s going to be a fabulous ride! This session focuses on film music from The Red Pony, High Noon, and The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly.

Lecture/Seminar
Monday, November 8, 2021 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

Some moments in movies never leave us: the piercing eyes of a private eye, a raft hurtling down the rapids, that little black dress, the close-up of a fading movie star. In a 5-session film discussion series, documentary filmmaker and writer Sara Lukinson revisits some of our favorite movies and characters, setting them against the backdrop of their times, the people who dreamed them up, and the America they reflected—or asked us to imagine. This session focuses on Anatomy of a Murder and 12 Angry Men.

Lecture/Seminar
Sunday, November 14, 2021 - 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET

Film music can inspire and romance us, salvage a bad movie and make a good one great. In this weekend series, speaker and concert pianist Rachel Franklin explores the many elements that go into creating an effective score and showcase the memorable work of some of the leading masters of the form. Fasten your seatbelts…it’s going to be a fabulous ride! This session focuses on film music from To Kill a Mockingbird, Psycho, and Planet of the Apes.