The Shakespeare Theatre Company’s legal affinity group, the Bard Association, unveils Expert Witnesses, a new series of interviews with prominent members of the legal community who have bridged the gap to the arts world. Former Senator and television star of Law & Order, Fred Thompson, will inaugurate a sequence of high profile, one-on-one interviews with Bard Association Chair Abbe David Lowell (Chadbourne & Parke LLP). Expert Witnesses will be held at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, March 18, 2013, at the Lansburgh Theatre (450 7th Street NW).
Before joining the cast of the critically-acclaimed and long-running series Law & Order, Thompson represented Tennessee as a U.S. Senator for nearly a decade. He experienced first-hand the drama of politics as a leader on the Senate committee investigating the Watergate scandal in the early 1970s. Thompson transitioned to the screen in 1985 by starring in the film Marie, which dramatized his real-life role in a Tennessee public corruption case. Since then Thompson has played authoritative roles in many legal and governmental film and television thrillers such as In the Line of Fire, The Hunt for Red October and Law & Order: SVU.
Lowell, a prolific attorney to high-profile cases and former counsel to the House of Representatives, has known Thompson since before his days in show business. “I have known Fred since he was a ‘real’ lawyer and a very good one in Tennessee,” Lowell said. He heralded Thompson as an esteemed first guest for the new series. “It is a real feather in the cap of the Bard Association to get Fred to be our first one-on-one interview. He represents the epitome of what we want to explore – a person with real legal experience who used that experience to launch an acting career, but did so in a way never to totally leave his legal roots. Fred can share a unique perspective on the law and the arts that few people in the country can.”
Following Lowell’s interview of Thompson, the pair will engage in a Q&A session with the audience. Patrons are also invited to round off their evening at a reception immediately following the discussion at STC’s second theatre in Penn Quarter. Attendees will have the chance to speak with Thompson and Lowell over light refreshments in Sidney Harman Hall (610 F Street NW).
Expert Witnesses mirrors Classic Conversations with Michael Kahn, in which STC’s Artistic Director conducted interviews with guests Sir Patrick Stewart, Kevin Kline, James Earl Jones, Stacy Keach and F. Murray Abraham. More than 2,300 audience members enjoyed these informal and entertaining discussions covering everything from the actors’ childhoods to their most challenging classical roles.
The Bard Association has already presented four successful Shakespeare and the Law panel discussions, which have laid a foundation for legally focused programming at STC, in addition to the ever-popular and star-studded events, Mock Trial and Will on the Hill. STC’s Chief Development Officer Ed Zakreski notes that the support of the Bard Association has been critical to the theatre’s ability to “conduct in-depth examinations into the roles of lawyers and legal issues in many of Shakespeare’s plays” through these events.
Bard Association Member tickets for Expert Witnesses: Fred Thompson are $35 and go on sale Wednesday, January 30. General Public tickets are $40 and will be available for purchase on Wednesday, February 6. Tickets can be obtained by calling the Box Office at 202.547.1122, option 1.