The Brilliant Lecture Series, a 501(c)(3), works to provide transformational experiences and a forum for generating new ideas through lectures, direct in-school programs and cross-cultural opportunities. The mission of the Brilliant Lecture Series is to educate, inspire and entertain by presenting national and international leaders, role models, philanthropists, artists, humanitarians, performers, authors, and entrepreneurs to the great city of Houston.
The Brilliant Lecture Series is a not-for-profit organization celebrating our 10th anniversary whose aim is to amplify positive change in people of all ages and backgrounds through once in a lifetime experiences with the most influential, talented and iconic people in the world. Through lectures, interviews, workshops, and performances we create opportunities to amplify positive change in the lives of our audience and to present high quality performances with some of the most celebrated artists in the world.
We do so with affordable ticket prices many times further discounted through various collaborations with other non-profit organizations in the community. In addition, we provide hundreds of complimentary tickets throughout the year to various groups and individuals that are uniquely impacted by the philanthropic priorities of our speakers and artists. For example, we included all Sudanese refugees living in Houston and their families to join our Conversation with George Clooney. Mr. Clooney is very involved with helping resolve the genocide in Sudan. For our Conversation with Sidney Poitier, we provided complimentary tickets to students from 100 Black Men and College Connections so they would be able to experience this once in a lifetime experience with an American legend. We provide support, inspiration, and a forum for generating new ideas through our lectures, workshops and in-school programs. The organization was established and received its 501 (c)3 status in November 2005. Though primarily serving the greater Houston area, thus far we have made a direct and positive impact on more than 85,000 and indirectly millions of loyal patrons from all over Texas, across the country and from around the world.
Our programming includes:
Conversations with Brilliance Series
Traditionally every quarter, Conversations with Brilliance hosts someone ‘brilliant.’ From international leaders, prize-winning authors and actors, to eminent scientists and business leaders – the Conversations with Brilliance series offers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity with some of the world’s most inspiring role models and talents. Each speaker will take the audience through his or her life – followed by a question and answer session. Since its inception, the Brilliant Lecture Series has presented 85 luminaries and once in a lifetime experiences with: Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan, Sir Sidney Poitier, former U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan, CNN Hero Doc Hendley, Dame Julie Andrews, Diana Ross, Dr. Maya Angelou, Shaping Sound, Texas Tenors, President Gorbachev, George Clooney, Robert Duvall, Diane Keaton and Lauren Bacall to name just a few.
In 2015 we started to further expand and diversify our educational programs to include a performing arts series. Patrons had expressed great interest in us presenting unique and exciting performances that would be an addition to our Conversation with…series. We have successfully presented a variety of such programs including an Evening with Betty Buckley, Shaping Sound, Potted Potter, An Evening with Linda Eder, Marilyn Forever Blond, Texas Tenors and a Michael Jackson Tribute performance. Each program was beautifully executed and the audiences loved them. In light of this response and continued interest, we will continue to present these extraordinary artists throughout the year.
Brill Talks aims to engage middle and high school students in direct, interactive learning by inviting local, national and international members of our society to join us and speak about their own journeys through life, and what drove them to their own heights of success. This open dialogue is designed to inspire, improve interpersonal relationships, build cross-cultural understanding, and motivate students to stay with their dreams and goals while making a difference in both their communities and the world. With support from foundations, individuals and corporations, we are committed to reintroducing this program in local schools.
This program has featured Sidney Poitier at Houston Community College, CNN Hero Doc Hendley at Royal Oaks ISD schools; Global Colors Founder Barton Brooks at Spring Branch ISD schools; media careers with Comcast Cable and Fox26 at Houston ISD schools; NASA event at University of St. Thomas, Mayor Annise Parker, concert pianist Theresa Behenna and many others.
International Youth Leadership Exchange Program
With income generated through the Brilliant Lecture Series, we have established the International Youth Leadership Exchange Program. The first exchange visit was for a group of students from a Houston high school to The Jubilee School in Amman, Jordan. This came as a direct result of the lecture presented by Her Majesty Queen Noor of Jordan. With support from foundations, individuals and corporations, we are committed to reintroducing this program to students in Houston and partners in Africa and Russia.