TOWN HALL Experience

2020 will mark the 40th Anniversary and installment of the TOWN HALL Lecture Series.  Over the past 40 years 200 speakers have participated in TOWN HALL.  Our presentations have included some of the most engaging, influential, entertaining and educational speakers in the world, which we welcomed to Sarasota to stimulate, inspire and inform EVERY season.

In an area known for its arts and culture, TOWN HALL is among the many assets and known for producing presentations that are innovative, compelling and often “one and only” events that can’t be seen anywhere else.  This rich history means our patrons have incredibly high expectations for each new season, and we do our best to bring in speakers who bring something unique and special to Sarasota.

Many times our speakers are controversial, but we strive to bring speakers whose subject will cause you to think and maybe even get excited about the topic, whether pro or con.  We have also observed that over the past 40 years, and especially most recently, discussing contrary opinions, mostly political, in normal voices feels like a lost art.  TOWN HALL helps us all embrace our experience in hearing what others think, whether we agree or not.  We are honored to be in a community where can we come together at events like this and experience countless new perspectives.   This is TOWN HALL!

TOWN HALL’s Opening Act Student Animation

Past attendees of our TOWN HALL presentations know that to arrive on time to the Van Wezel means one is treated to the amazing and often award-winning computer animation of Ringling College students. If you came late, missed a lecture, or just need a pick-me-up watch below some of the featured videos beloved by our audience. We promise you’ll enjoy them so very much!


Shattered a film by Suyoung Jang, Class of 2019 | Featured before General John F. Kelly’s Presentation


Wanderlust a film by Regina Cicone and Kat Smith, Class of 2019 | Featured before Rick Steve’s Presentation


Game Changer a film by Aviv Mano, Class of 2018 | Featured before Shaquille O’Neal’s Presentation


Don’t Lose Heart a film by Christine Arnold, Class of 2018 | Featured before James Comey’s Presentation


First Comes Love a film by Daniel Ceballos, Class of 2018 | Featured before Jimmy Wales’ Presentation


Mind Games a film by Jiaqi Emily Yan, Class of 2018 | Featured before Caroline Kennedy’s Presentation


Regifted a film by Eaza Shukla, Class of 2018 | Featured before Ian Bremmer’s Presentation


Plush Assassin a film by Anca Mihai, Class of 2017 | Featured before John Brennan’s Presentation


Love on a Balcony a film by Joshua Hyunwooo Jun and Kun Yu Ng, Class of 2017 | Featured before Jon Meacham’s Presentation


In a Heartbeat a film by Esteban Bravo and Beth David, Class of 2017 | Featured before Michael Lewis’ Presentation


The Wishing Cranes a film by Kaiya Telle, Ellen Arnold, and Thomas Anderholm Class of 2017 | Featured before Siddhartha Mukherjee’s Presentation


Extinguished a film by Ashley Anderson and Jacob Mann, Class of 2017 | Featured before Ali Wentworth’s Presentation


Hola Llamigo a film by Charlie Parisi and Christina Chang, Class of 2015 | Featured before Dick Cheney’s Presentation


The Bookworm a film by Richard Wiley, Class of 2016 | Featured before Geena Davis’ Presentation


The Wishgranter a film by Kali Athannassov, John McDonald, and Echo Wu Class of 2016 | Featured before Jared Cohen’s Presentation


Last Shot a film by Aemilia Widodo, Class of 2016 | Featured before James Balog’s Presentation


Rupee Run a film by Taran Lakshminarayanan, Class of 2018 | Featured before Felipe Calderon’s Presentation