2021 “Global Issues” series is January 5-March 30
2021 “Music Mondays” series is January 4-March 22
Both series will be offered free and presented virtually.
SILL launches its 50th season with its hard-hitting Global Issues series featuring acclaimed experts exploring topical issues. The popular Music Mondays series, after suffering the loss of its beloved host Edward Alley, will be led by Joseph Holt.
(Sarasota, Florida) 2021 marks the 50th anniversary of Sarasota Institute of Lifetime Learning’s (SILL) “Global Issues” series. This hard-hitting series features internationally renowned experts discussing a vast range of domestic and global issues. Before the pandemic, these mostly sold-out lectures were offered in Sarasota, Venice, Lakewood Ranch and Longboat Key. According to Beth Cotner, SILL’s president, this year’s series will be offered free of charge on a virtual platform, Tuesdays and Thursdays at 10:30 a.m. Guests will be able to interact with the speakers after each lecture. Registration is required at www.sillsarasota.org.
“SILL’s Global Issues series will continue to offer a broad overview of today’s complex world through our non-partisan, expert-based, factual lectures,” says Cotner. “Our lecturers will span the globe and address the challenges of China, Japan, Russia, Iran, Syria, Turkey, and the Middle East. Due to its topical interest, several lecturers will also investigate the impact of the pandemic on diplomacy, politics, food security, and medicine. We will also present on the debates about artificial intelligence, cyberspace, drone warfare, Presidential leadership, and America’s strategic future in a world of rival authoritarian powers.” Cotner adds that in SILL’s 50-year history, the organization has presented 2,300 lectures and events. “That’s probably more than any other Sarasota-based organization,” she says.
Highlights of SILL’s 2021 season includes: author and diplomat Amb. Dennis Ross, who will explore the current state of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict; former chief of naval operations Admiral Gary Roughhead, who will discuss the evolving role of the U.S. military as an agent for the promotion of democracy; author and historian Jeremy Suri, who will address presidential leadership in crisis; Susan Spaulding, former undersecretary for Cybersecurity and Critical Infrastructure at the Department of Homeland Security, who will discuss the U.S. under electronic siege; and Amb. Robert Ford, who will discuss Syria and the Kurds. Such popular SILL speakers as Martin Walker, Baroness Margaret Jay, Dr. Moshen Milani, and Dr. Bob Barylski will return to illuminate their areas of expertise.
SILL’s popular Music Mondays series entitled “Musical Conversations with Great Performers” features informal performances and lively conversations with renowned and emerging performers, composers and conductors. In previous years, the series was held at Church of the Palms in Sarasota, and Venice Presbyterian Church in Venice; the 2021 season will be offered virtually on Mondays at 10:30 a.m. Cotner notes that the upcoming season will be dedicated to Edward Alley, the beloved host who died last summer.
“Our entire community suffered a great loss with Ed’s passing,” says Cotner. “Ed had taken over the music program from his wife, June LeBell, and had done a fantastic job of recruiting and interviewing musicians, composers and conductors. Music Mondays has been one of the most popular series in the region—with well over 600 people attending each event. We all miss him terribly.” She adds that Joseph Holt, artistic director of Choral Artists of Sarasota, will take over as host of Music Mondays.
Highlights for the 2021 season include: renowned pianist Olga Kern, who will be joined by her son Vladislav Kern; legendary jazz pianist Dick Hyman, who will team up with tenor Robert White; saxophonist Steven Banks, pianist Tetiana Shafran; singer Maria Wirries, and soprano Adelaide Boedecker.
To learn more about the programs in more detail, visit www.sillsarasota.org or call 941-365-6404.
About the Sarasota Institute of Lifetime Learning
The Sarasota Institute of Lifetime Learning (SILL) is a non-profit organization that offers an expert lecture series to provide information on and discussion of the arts and contemporary global issues. SILL is guided by an all-volunteer board committed to modest pricing and enhanced outreach. Visit www.sillsarasota.org.