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Commonwealth Club: Alan Alda

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

SPEAKER: Alan Alda -- award winning actor, director and author of "Things I Overheard While Talking to Myself."

VIDEO: Watch this Commonwealth Club event in its entirety in the media player above.

Oscar, Tony and Emmy winning actor Alan Alda -- perhaps best known for his role as "Hawkeye Pierce," the witty, charming and sympathetic doctor in M*A*S*H -- will share his life lessons and offer a candid account of what he considers some of the most significant moments in his life. He will discuss his early days in Hollywood, through the turbulent sixties, to his first Broadway play, "Only in America."

Most recently, Alda portrayed the conservative Senator "Arnold Vinick" on TV's "The West Wing" which earned him an Emmy. A career that has spanned television, film and theater, Alda is one of America's most beloved and prolific actors having starred with Leonardo DiCaprio in "The Aviator," Woody Allen in "Crimes and Misdemeanors" and Ellen Burstyn in the Neil Simon classic "Same Time, Next Year." He is the only actor ever who has also won an Emmy for writing, and directing. For M*A*S*H, Alda was nominated for 21 Emmy's and won a total of 5 as an actor, director and writer. He has won three Director's Guild of America Awards, six Golden Globe Awards from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and seven People's Choice Awards.

It was just two years ago, at the age of 69, as Alda was having a year he says most actors only dream of, that a near death experience left him reflecting on his personal adventures as an actor, husband, father, friend, and activist. He writes about this life changing episode in his new memoir Things I Overheard While Talking to Myself in which he examines some of life's important life questions. In 2005, Alda published his first batch of memoirs, Never Have Your Dog Stuffed: and Other Things I've Learned.

This program was recorded live on September 19, 2007.

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