John Lithgow to speak at January STEAM event
Be Creative, Be Useful, Be Practical, Be Generous – this is the philosophy of actor John Lithgow, who will be the keynote speaker for the Palm Beach State College Foundation’s STEAM fundraiser Jan. 30.
The event, titled “Inside the Mind of John Lithgow” is expected to attract more than 600 guests and is presented by Bank of America. It will be held at 11:30 a.m. at the Kravis Center for Performing Arts.
The goal is to raise money to support STEAM scholarships, STEAM academic programs and to increase the number of student internships and partnerships with local businesses. Lithgow is passionate about the role creativity and the arts can play in expanding the traditional approach to education, literacy and life.
“He is the perfect fit to continue the STEAM dialog,” said Yvonne Boice, event chair and foundation board member. “The initiative includes the arts because we understand the integral role and basic contribution art makes to science, technology and engineering.”
Best known for his iconic roles in theatre, film and television, Lithgow is an actor with a broad range of interests and talents. In show business since the early 70s, he has achieved stunning success in wildly varied venues, but at heart, Lithgow is a theatre actor.
He was nominated for Oscars in back-to-back years, for “The World According to Garp” and “Terms of Endearment” and “Twilight Zone.” In the years before and after, he has appeared in more than 30 films. In recent years, he has been in “Shrek” (as the voice of Lord Farquaad) and “Rise of the Planet of the Apes.”
For his work on television, Lithgow has been nominated for 11 Emmy Awards and won five. One was for an episode of Amazing Stories, and three for what is perhaps his most celebrated creation—the loopy character of the alien High Commander, Dick Solomon, on the hit NBC comedy series “3rd Rock from the Sun.”
Since 1998, he has written eight New York Times best-selling children’s picture books, including “The Remarkable Farkle McBride,” “Marsupial Sue,” “Micawber” and “Never Play Music Right Next to the Zoo.” In September 2011, Harper Collins released his memoir “Drama: An Actor’s Education.” He is passionate about the role creativity and the arts can play in expanding the traditional approach to education, literacy and life.
In January, the Foundation will be entering the second year of its five-year initiative to impact the projected shortage of local, skilled professionals in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) fields. The Initiative was launched at a luncheon featuring computer icon Steve Wozniak in January 2013.