A crowd gathered outside the Shubert Theatre early in the afternoon and as the day went on the line snaked around the corner.
Shah Rukh Khan at Yale. Pic/IANS
Fans travelled from as far as Alabama and California to join with members of the New Haven and Yale community to hear Khan speak to a capacity audience of about 1,700.
Khan charmed the crowd as he spoke to them about success and failure and how to live life to the fullest. He encouraged young people to find fulfilment in creativity, to learn to laugh at themselves and to never become cynical about their lives.
"Failure is a fiendish friend that can lead to success by teaching one to be pragmatic, to work harder, and to be true to oneself," he said, adding that the true strength of one's friendships is tested in the face of strong adversity.
Khan emphasised the importance of young people appreciating and cherishing their parents' love. "Whatever you do, whichever mistakes you make, your parents are your best friends," he said.
The lecture took a light-hearted turn when Khan danced his signature 'Chammak Challo' moves with Yale student Natalia Khosla. "This is the most fun I have had in months!" Khan said.
Khan was introduced by Yale student Isha Ambani, who is president of the South Asian Society at Yale and participated in a conversation onstage with Jeffrey Brenzel, Yale dean of undergraduate admissions and master of Timothy Dwight College, the Yale residential college that administers the Chubb Fellowship; Yale College alumna Sarika Arya; and Yale Law School student Nihkil Sud.
As part of the Yale Chubb Fellowship, Khan attended a reception and dinner at Timothy Dwight College with over 120 Yale students including members of the South Asian Society at Yale, fellows of Timothy Dwight, and other members of the Yale community.
Each year three or four distinguished men and women have been appointed as visiting Chubb Fellows. Former Chubb Fellows include presidents George W. Bush, Ronald Reagan, and Jimmy Carter; authors Octavio Paz, Carlos Fuentes, and Toni Morrison; filmmaker Sofia Coppola; architect Frank Gehry; choreographer Mikhail Baryshnikov; and journalist Walter Cronkite.