“Communicating Happiness:” a conversation with Richard Hutton

On Monday, May 13, Richard Hutton, Executive Producer of the PBS series “This Emotional Life,” will make an appearance at Southern Oregon University, concluding this year’s campus theme lecture series, “Exploring Happiness,” and also kicking off the 6th annual Southern Oregon Arts and Research conference.

Hutton’s lecture, “Communicating Happiness,” will be at 7 p.m. in the Meese Auditorium of the Art Building on campus.

The event is free and open to the public. Parking will be available in the lot off Indiana Street next to Cox Hall, as well as behind the Schneider Museum of Art.

According to Jackie Apodaca, an associate professor of theater and moderator of the event, Hutton’s unique perspective on happiness comes from his work on “This Emotional Life,” and his role as the senior vice president of creative development at Walt Disney Imagineering.

“Imagineers create the Disney experience, advertised as the ‘happiest Place on Earth,’” said Apodaca.

She said the event will begin with the showing of segments from “This Emotional Life,” followed by a discussion on the Hutton’s experiences working in the creative industry.

“Hutton has a unique and diverse career, and has worked at the top levels in many creative fields,” she said. “He has a lot to share about the entertainment industry as a whole.”

Apodaca emphasized that attendees are encouraged to ask questions and participate in the event.

“This is not a lecture,” said Apodaca. “It will be a conversation between Hutton and the audience, so the questions will lead the presentation.”

Hutton’s experience as a director of Vulcan Productions led him through the making of countless award-winning documentaries, shows, and feature films. According to Apodaca, it is this diverse experience that makes Hutton the perfect guest speaker for the event.

Attendees should expect “a lively conversation in which they are invited to take the lead,” she said.

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