Join us for our very first speaker series on the SPAC Stage! Attendees will sit in the orchestra chairs on the main stage of the SPAC amphitheater while renowned guest speakers lead captivating talks from the conductor’s podium on a variety of topics that bridge the worlds of art, science, and nature.
Presented in cooperation with the Academy of American Poets.
Dava Sobel is a science writer and author of Galileo’s Daughter and The Glass Universe. Diane Ackerman is a poet, science writer, and author of A Natural History of the Senses, The Human Age, and The Zookeeper’s Wife.
Dava Sobel, an award-winning former science reporter for The New York Times, is the author of several best-selling books, including Longitude, Galileo’s Daughter, and The Planets. She has also written a play, And the Sun Stood Still, which originally appeared as the centerpiece in her biography of Copernicus, A More Perfect Heaven. Her latest book, The Glass Universe, was published by Viking in December 2016. Sobel is a 1964 graduate of the Bronx High School of Science, where she had several memorable teachers. Unfortunately, none of them suggested she combine her interest in science with her ability to write good papers for English class, but, after five years divided among multiple majors at three colleges, she fell into a job with a newspaper just in time to chronicle preparations for the first Earth Day celebration. In addition to her B.A. from SUNY Binghamton (now Binghamton University), Sobel holds honorary doctor of letters degrees from Middlebury College, Vermont, and Bath University in England, as well as an honorary doctor of science degree from Bern University, Switzerland. She has a heightened respect for teachers after her experiences teaching science writing at the University of Chicago in 2006, and at Mary Baldwin College in 2011. From 2013 to 2016 she was the Joan Leiman Jacobson Visiting NonFiction Writer at Smith College.
Poet, essayist, and naturalist, Diane Ackerman is the author of two dozen highly acclaimed works of nonfiction and poetry, including The Human Age, The Zookeeper’s Wife, and A Natural History of the Senses, books beloved by millions of readers all over the world. In prose so rich and evocative that one can feel the earth turning beneath one’s feet as one reads, Ackerman’s thrilling observations urge us to live in the moment, to wake up to nature’s everyday miracles.