FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: December 21, 2011
CONTACT: Sylvia Plumb, Director of Communications, 802.262.2626 x302

Vermont Humanities Council Presents First Wednesdays Lecture

PBS Filmmaker Ken Burns Returns to Brattleboro's Latchis Theatre 


Brattleboro ~ Acclaimed PBS filmmaker Ken Burns will make his third appearance at Latchis Theatre in Brattleboro and discuss his projects in a talk on January 4 at 7:00 pm. The event, "An Evening with Ken Burns," is part of the Vermont Humanities Council's First Wednesdays lecture series and takes place at 7:00 p.m.   

Burns has spoken at the Latchis on two previous occasions, both times to several hundred people, as part of VHC's First Wednesdays series. On this visit he will discuss past, present, and future projects to better understand who we are as Americans by examining our collective past.

Ken Burns has been making documentary films for more than thirty years. Since the Academy Award nominated Brooklyn Bridge in 1981, he has gone on to direct and produce some of the most acclaimed historical documentaries ever made, among them The War, The Civil War, Baseball, Lewis and Clark: The Journey of the Corps of Discovery and other films. Stephen Ambrose, the historian, has said of his films, "More Americans get their history from Ken Burns than any other source." 

Burns's films have won numerous awards, including the Peabody Award, the Erik Barnouw Prize, the Emmy, the Grammy, the CINE Golden Eagle Award, the Clarion Award, the Producer of the Year Award from the Producer's Guild, the People's Choice Award, and the $50,000 Lincoln Prize, among many others. He is a sought-after public speaker, appearing at colleges, civic organizations and business groups throughout the country. His latest film is Prohibition, which premiered on PBS in October.

The Vermont Humanities Council's First Wednesdays series is held on the first Wednesday of every month from October through May, featuring speakers of national and regional renown. Talks in Brattleboro are held at Brooks Memorial Library.

Upcoming Brattleboro talks include "Willa Cather's Prairie Landscapes" with Amherst professor Michele Barale on February 1; "The Book of Kells" with Dartmouth professor Jane Carroll on March 7; and "An Evening of Latin American Poetry" with Amherst professor Ilan Stavans on April 4.

The Vermont Department of Libraries is the statewide underwriter of First Wednesdays. Brooks Memorial Library is sponsored by Brattleboro Savings and Loan, Downs Rachlin Martin PLLC, Friends of Brooks Memorial Library, and Windham World Affairs Council of Vermont.

"An Evening with Ken Burns" is sponsored by Dakin & Benelli, P.C.

For more information, contact Brooks Memorial Library at 802.254.5290 or contact the Vermont Humanities Council at 802.262.2626 or [log in to unmask], or visit

First Wednesdays is also presented in eight other communities statewide: Essex Junction (at Brownell Library); Manchester (at First Congregational Church, hosted by Mark Skinner Library); Middlebury (at Ilsley Public Library); Montpelier (at Kellogg-Hubbard Library); Newport (at Goodrich Memorial Library); Norwich (at Norwich Congregational Church, hosted by Norwich Public Library and Norwich Historical Society); Rutland (at Rutland Free Library); and at St. Johnsbury Athenaeum. The program is free, accessible to people with disabilities and open to the public.  

The Vermont Humanities Council is a private nonprofit working to bring the power and the pleasure of the humanities to all Vermonters-of every background and in every community. The Council strives to make Vermont a state in which every individual reads, participates in public affairs, and continues to learn throughout life.

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