Upcoming Events: Good Lit

Thu 9/22

Image - Alan Cumming

Spend the Night with Alan Cumming

Date: Thu, September 22, 2016
Time: 7:00 PM
Star of stage, screen, and TV

Alan Cumming, Actor; Activist; Author, You Gotta Get Bigger Dreams
Cleve Jones, Founder, NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt; Human Rights Activist; Author—Moderator

This program is part of our Good Lit series, underwritten by the Bernard Osher Foundation.

We’re thrilled to welcome Alan Cumming to the INFORUM stage for the very first time!

Alan Cumming has made movies with everyone from Stanley Kubrick to the Spice Girls. He’s mastered Snapchat. He was named an Officer of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth. You may recognize him as wily Eli Gold from the CBS drama "The Good Wife," or from his Tony-winning turn in Cabaret on Broadway. He’s played roles including the devil, the pope and God—we can’t wait to see what he manages to pull off next. Stage, silver screen, books, behind the camera: Alan Cumming can do it all.

When he’s not onstage, in front of the camera or writing away, Alan’s a vocal advocate for causes, including LGBT rights and AIDS charities. He has received both the Vito Russo Award at the Annual GLAAD Media Awards and Human Rights Campaign’s Humanitarian Award in recognition of his many efforts.

Alan’s latest book, You Gotta Get Bigger Dreams, shows off many of his personal photographs and shares insider stories from his long, shiny career in show business as well as his fascinating life away from the limelight. So put on your Broadway best and join us at the Castro Theatre for a fun-filled evening with this quirky, talented and charming quadruple threat.

Mon 9/26

Image - Ayesha Curry
This event is Sold Out

Ayesha Curry: The Seasoned Life

Date: Mon, September 26, 2016
Time: 12:00 PM
Recipes for the whole family

Ayesha Curry, Food Network Host, "Ayesha’s Homemade"; Author, The Seasoned Life: Food, Family, Faith, and the Joy of Eating Well
In conversation with Chef Michael Mina

This program is part of our Good Lit series, underwritten by the Bernard Osher Foundation.

In The Seasoned Life, Ayesha Curry will share 100 of her favorite recipes and invite readers into the home she has made with her two daughters and her husband Stephen Curry. Ayesha knows first-hand what it is like to be a busy mom and wife, and she knows that for her family, time in the kitchen and around the table is where that balance begins.

She has something for everybody. The simple, delicious recipes include Cast Iron Biscuits, Smoked Salmon Scramble, Homemade Granola, Mom's Chicken Soup, Stephen's 5 Ingredient Pasta, and plenty of recipes that get the whole family involved—even the little ones!

Image - Elizabeth Lesser and Isabel Allende

Elizabeth Lesser in Conversation with Isabel Allende

Date: Mon, September 26, 2016
Time: 6:30 PM

Elizabeth Lesser, Co Founder, Omega Institute; Author, Marrow: A Love Story
In Conversation with Isabel Allende, Novelist and Human Rights Activist

This program is part of our Good Lit series, underwritten by the Bernard Osher Foundation.

The author of The New York Times bestseller Broken Open returns with a visceral and profound memoir of two sisters who, in the face of a bone marrow transplant—one the donor and one the recipient—begin a quest for acceptance, authenticity, and most of all, love.

Throughout her life, Elizabeth Lesser has sought understanding about what it means to be true to oneself and, at the same time, truly connected to the ones we love. But when her sister Maggie needs a bone marrow transplant to save her life, and Lesser learns that she is the perfect match, she faces a far more immediate and complex question about what it really means to love—honestly, generously, and authentically. They leave the bone marrow transplant up to the doctors, but take on what Lesser calls a "soul marrow transplant," examining their family history, having difficult conversations, examining old assumptions, and offering forgiveness until all that is left is love for each other’s true selves. Their process—before, during, and after the transplant—encourages them to take risks of authenticity in other aspects their lives.

Thu 9/29

Image - Tracy Kidder

Author Tracy Kidder: Profiling the Pied Piper of Geeks

Date: Thu, September 29, 2016
Time: 6:30 PM
"Money is meant to be moved"

Tracy Kidder, Pulitzer Prize Winner; Author, A Truck Full of Money
Becky Worley, Tech Contributor, ABC News’ "Good Morning America"—Moderator

This program is part of our Good Lit series, underwritten by the Bernard Osher Foundation.

Tracy Kidder has been called the “master of the nonfiction narrative.” His previous work, Soul of a New Machine, celebrated for its insight into the world of high-tech corporate America, earned a Pulitzer Prize and a National Book Award. His enormously influential book Mountains Beyond Mountains captured two global health crises—tuberculosis and AIDS—through the eyes of a single-minded physician bent on improving the health of some of the poorest people on the planet. In his latest work, A Truck Full of Money, he profiles Paul English, an unconventional entrepreneur and founder of Kayak.com, known as “the Pied Piper of Geeks”, who seeks to give away his fortune. Come hear a mesmorizing portrait of a man whose iconoclastic behavior could well influence the way we all think about materialism.

Image - Rorke Denver

Rorke Denver: U.S. Navy SEAL Commander

Date: Thu, September 29, 2016
Time: 7:00 PM
What does it mean to be a hero?

Rorke Denver, Navy SEAL Commander; Mentor, "American Grit"; Author, Worth Dying For: A Navy Seal’s Call to a Nation; Twitter:

This program is part of our Good Lit series, underwritten by the Bernard Osher Foundation.

Denver has run every phase of training for the U.S. Navy SEALs and led special-forces missions in the Middle East, Africa and Latin America. He starred in the 2012 hit film Act of Valor, based on real-life SEAL missions, and most recently served as a mentor coach on Fox’s "American Grit."

Denver shares his insights and experiences and addresses what it means to be a hero, why we fight and what can be learned from the battlefield.

Wed 10/5

Image - Michael Krasny

KQED’s Michael Krasny: Oy, Does He Have Jokes for You

Date: Wed, October 05, 2016
Time: 6:30 PM
Come ready to laugh a lot

Michael Krasny, Host, "Forum"; Author, Let There Be Laughter: A Treasury of Great Jewish Humor and What It Means
In conversation with Peter Coyote

This program is part of our Good Lit series, underwritten by the Bernard Osher Foundation.

Michael Krasny has been telling Jewish jokes since his bar mitvah, and it’s been said that he knows more of them than anyone on the planet. He has now put together a compendium of Jewish jokes that packs the punches with hilarious riff after riff and also offers a window into Jewish culture. Let There Be Laughter borrows from traditional humor and such Jewish comedy legends and new voices as Jackie Mason, Mel Brooks, Joan Rivers, Larry David, Sarah Silverman, Jerry Seinfeld and Amy Schumer. With his background as a scholar and public radio host, Krasny also delves deeply into the themes, topics and form of Jewish humor: chauvinism undercut by irony and self-mockery, the fear of losing cultural identity through assimilation, the importance of vocal inflection in joke-telling, and calls to communal memory, including the use of Yiddish. Above all, come ready to laugh a lot.

Mon 10/10

Image - Larry Brilliant

Larry Brilliant: Sometimes Brilliant

Date: Mon, October 10, 2016
Time: 7:00 PM
The inspiring life and journey of a local hero.

Larry Brilliant, Chairman, Skoll Global Threats; Former Executive Director, Google.org; Author, Sometimes Brilliant: The Impossible Adventure of a Spiritual Seeker and Visionary Physician Who Helped Conquer the Worst Disease in History; Twitter:

This program is part of our Good Lit series, underwritten by the Bernard Osher Foundation.

Brilliant’s life has taken him across continents and countercultural movements. He is responsible for some of the most significant medical, spiritual and social achievements of the past century, working with leaders and icons including Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Steve Jobs, Wavy Gravy, the Dalai Lama, and President Barack Obama.

Brilliant was the executive director of Google.org and chaired the Presidential Advisory Committee on Bio-Surveillance. He lived in India for more than 10 years working as a United Nations medical officer, where he played a key role in the World Health Organization smallpox eradication program in South Asia. He also co-founded The Seva Foundation, an international NGO whose programs and grantees have given back sight to more than 3.5 million blind people in more than 20 countries.

Learn more about Brilliant’s inspiring life and journey.

Wed 10/26

Image - Barbara Boxer

Senator Barbara Boxer: The Art of Tough

Date: Wed, October 26, 2016
Time: 12:00 PM
Senator Boxer's secret to success

Barbara Boxer, U.S. Senator (D-California); Author, The Art of Tough: Fearlessly Facing Politics and Life; Twitter

This program is part of our Good Lit series, underwritten by the Bernard Osher Foundation.

"One goal of this memoir is to inspire people to fight for change. It takes what I call the Art of Tough and I've had to do it all my life." —Senator Barbara Boxer

Barbara Boxer has made her mark, combining compassionate advocacy with scrappiness in a political career spanning more than three decades. Now, retiring from the Senate, she continues the work to which she's dedicated 30 years in Congress. Her memoir, The Art of Tough, shares her provocative and touching recollections of service, and cements her commitment to the fight for women, families, quality, and environmental protection—all in a peaceful world.

Sometimes lauded, sometimes vilified, but always standing tough, Boxer has fought for her values even when her personal convictions conflicted with her party or the majority rule.

Tue 11/1

Image - Frances Dinkelspiel

Frances Dinkelspiel: Greed, Murder, and Arson in California's Vineyards

Date: Tue, November 01, 2016
Time: 7:00 PM
Time for wine crime

Frances Dinkelspiel, Author, Tangled Vines: Greed, Murder, Obsession, and an Arsonist in the Vineyards of California

This program is part of our Good Lit series, underwritten by the Bernard Osher Foundation.

In 2005 a massive warehouse fire broke out in Vallejo, destroying 4.5 million bottles of California’s finest wine. The damage came out to be $250 million, making it the largest destruction of wine in history, and it included priceless bottles of Port and Angelica made by Dinkelspiel’s great-great grandfather. An investigation revealed that the fire was deliberately set by Mark Anderson, a skilled con man and thief. What’s even harder to believe is this wasn’t the first time wine was at the center of crime and destruction.

Dinkelspiel traces the history of California wine and unravels this story of greed, violence and obsession.

Tue 11/15

Image - Francis Ford Coppola

Francis Ford Coppola: The Program You Can’t Refuse

Date: Tue, November 15, 2016
Time: 7:00 PM
A cinema legend opens up

Francis Ford Coppola, Director, The Godfather; Author, The Godfather Notebook

Part of the Club’s Good Lit series, underwritten by the Bernard Osher Foundation.

Francis Ford Coppola’s The Godfather is universally praised as one of the greatest films ever made. The 1972 epic won best picture and best screenplay Oscars and was subsequently followed by two successful sequels. Join us for a rare conversation with Francis Coppola, who will take us behind the scenes of these legendary films, as spelled out in his just-published book, The Godfather Notebook. Here’s a chance to learn about Brando, Pacino, the casting and the filmmaking, along with the personal and professional qualities that turned director Francis Coppola into an American icon. An offer you truly can’t refuse.

Mon 11/21

Janet Napolitano Interviews Uri Bar-Joseph on Spycraft

Date: Mon, November 21, 2016
Time: 6:30 PM
Inside international espionage

Janet Napolitano, President, University of California; Former U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security; Former Governor, Arizona
Uri Bar-Joseph, Professor of Political Science, University of Haifa, Israel; Author, The Angel: The Egyptian Spy Who Saved Israel

The program is part of our Good Lit series, underwritten by the Bernard Osher Foundation.

The mystery of the death of Ashraf Marwan remains unsolved more than nine years after he plunged to his death from the balcony of his fifth-floor London apartment. But, drawing on once-secret archives and interviews with Israeli intelligence officers, University of Haifa Professor Uri Bar-Joseph has stitched together a riveting story about an Egyptian who betrayed his homeland as a spy for Israel. Bar-Joseph writes that intelligence provided by Marwan at the outset of the 1973 Yom Kippur War helped prevent the fall of the Golan Heights.

University of California President Janet Napolitano will interview Bar-Joseph about his book, the vagaries of intelligence interpretation, and the advantages and disadvantages of human spies vs. electronic espionage. This conversation will be the third in a series of interviews of authors by the former Secretary of Homeland Security.