Twelve actors travel across 28 US cities on a seven month journey to bring classical theater to America. The Acting Company, a classical touring ensemble founded by John Houseman and Margot Harley, started with members of the first graduating class of the drama division of the Julliard School. Kevin Kline recalls Houseman’s motivation being, “We couldn’t just let them go out there and do garbage.” In the Company’s 37th season, twelve actors spend seven months on a cramped bus, lose a leading man, play 71 roles, and learn to work in spaces that won’t hold their set. Throughout, they reconnect with their passion for performing, receive a great review in the New York Times, and teach high school and college students a new way to look at Shakespeare. As we follow the actors on tour and watch insightful conversations with Kevin Kline, Rainn Wilson and Harriet Harris, we learn that with the exception of Xbox and Wi-Fi on the bus, not much has changed – and that is just as it should be.
Tue, 12/17/2013 - 9:30pm
The Chitimacha, the 1,000-member tribe known as "the People of Many Waters," are heirs to an unbroken 8,000-year past. Living off the bounty of Louisiana's Atchafalaya Basin, one of the richest inland estuaries on the continent, this indigenous nation persists and rejuvenates its culture despite gradually losing its ancestral territory to environmental and man-made forces. NATIVE WATERS: A CHITIMACHA RECOLLECTION journeys into sacred places of the Atchafalaya Basin with author Roger Stouff, the son of the last chief of the Chitimacha Indians and a keeper of his family's oral tradition. Stouff shares native stories, beliefs and perspectives about this often overlooked people. An avid fly-fisherman, Stouff laments the certain demise of the river basin, the depletion of its sacred fishing and hunting grounds and the painful "vanishings" of the time-honored Chitimacha way of life.
Sun, 12/15/2013 - 9:00pm
The wild mustang: a living, breathing symbol of America's spirit...uninhibited, undaunted, free. The mustang is a true survivor, having outlasted most of its predators. As the range and resources shrink, the mustang's success could also be its demise. As the government searches for a solution, passionate people reach out to save these great animals...to save the wild mustangs...to save our untamed legacy
The documentary focuses on the wild mustang’s survival and struggles as resources diminish. It is shot in parts of Tennessee, Alabama, Nevada and New Mexico. UNTAMED LEGACY: America’s Wild Mustang chronicles a mustang named Charlie on his journey from the wild to his new home in Alabama, and all the people whose lives he touches along the way.
Sat, 12/14/2013 - 3:00pm
Today, 2.3 million people in the United States — an all-time high — call prison home. Nearly two-thirds of inmates will face re-arrest within three years, and nearly 50 percent will return to prison. In response to these disheartening statistics, one innovative program in Kansas aims to reduce the high rate of recidivism in an unexpected way — through the power of music. CONDUCTING HOPE reveals the story behind the East Hill Singers, the only secular prison choir in the country allowed to perform outside prison gates. During the documentary, choir director (and former opera singer) Kirk Carson works tirelessly to prepare the men — minimum security inmates at Lansing Correctional Facility — for an upcoming public performance alongside community volunteers and former inmates. Carson's passion never wavers despite the challenges of turning the novices into concert-ready singers capable of performing a repertoire ranging from traditional choral to contemporary music to a "rap of redemption." For many of the inmates, whose offenses range from drug-related crimes to burglary, rape and murder, the choir teaches valuable real-world lessons about discipline, responsibility and teamwork. These traits, along with a newfound self-esteem, confidence and pride, eventually may ultimately help ease the men's reintegration back into society.
Thu, 12/12/2013 - 6:00pm
UNDAUNTED: THE FORGOTTEN GIANTS OF THE ALLEGHENY OBSERVATORY tells the true but largely forgotten story of the scientific pioneers behind early aviation and the founding of astrophysics. Samuel Pierpont Langley, John and Phoebe Brashear, and James Keeler embarked on studies of the sun and skies in the 19th century, an era when scientists made their own research tools by hand and many dismissed the possibility of mechanical flight as "junk science." They endured years of enormous hardships, demoralizing setbacks and humiliating failures to ultimately make world-changing contributions to science and technology. UNDAUNTED features interviews with scientists, academics, historians and observatory archivists, including astrophysicist Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson of the American Museum of Natural History.
Wed, 12/11/2013 - 6:00pm
THE ASIAN AND ABRAHAMIC RELIGIONS: A DIVINE ENCOUNTER IN AMERICA explores the beliefs, practices and rituals of Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism. The documentary offers an in-depth look at the differences and surprising similarities among the Asian religions and the "Abrahamic" faiths of Christianity, Judaism and Islam. Also examined are the challenges of interfaith marriage, the younger generation's struggle to reconcile their families' traditional expectations with the desire to forge their own identity, and the difficulties in maintaining one's cultural and religious heritage in a largely Judeo-Christian environment. Cinema vérité- style scenes capture a variety of religious ceremonies, festivals, rituals and sacred dance: a Hindu holiday celebrating Ganesha's birthday; a service recounting the great Hindu epic, the Ramayana, at a temple in Maryland; a royal Hindu wedding; and the 300th anniversary celebration of the Guru Granth Sahib, the Sikh scriptures. In addition, cameras visit the oldest Buddhist temple in the U.S., located in San Francisco's Chinatown, and contrast a Buddhist monastery in West Virginia with its Catholic counterpart in Washington, D.C.
Tue, 12/10/2013 - 6:00pm
Writer, folklorist and anthropologist Zora Neale Hurston, a celebrated (and sometimes controversial) figure of the Harlem Renaissance, first rose to prominence with Mules and Men (1935) and cemented her reputation soon after with her 1937 masterwork, Their Eyes Were Watching God.However, few know about the woman behind this widely read and highly acclaimed novel — particularly the last 10 years of her life. THE LOST YEARS OF ZORA NEALE HURSTON delves into the writer's life, work and philosophies, concentrating on her very productive, but often overlooked, final decade. Interviews with Hurston experts and colleagues, letters from Hurston, and archival photographs piece together this fascinating chapter in the life of an American literary icon.
Mon, 12/09/2013 - 3:00pm
Have you ever wondered what’s going on inside an animal’s head? How do they see the world — and us? Is your dog really feeling guilty when it gives you that famous “guilty look?” Do pigeon brains possess “superpowers” that allow them to find their way home across hundreds of unfamiliar miles? David meets — and competes — with a menagerie of smart critters that challenge preconceived notions about what makes “us” different from “them,” expanding our understanding of how animals really think.
Fri, 12/06/2013 - 7:00pm
Patrick Henry's impassioned plea at the second Virginia Convention of 1775, "Give me liberty or give me death," defined the American Revolution. The one-hour docu-drama LIBERTY OR DEATH captures this seminal moment in American history by balancing experts' commentary on the events preceding the second Virginia Convention with dramatic re-enactments of the historic moments that followed. Actors portraying founding fathers George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Patrick Henry and other delegates bring the convention to life as another character, convention clerk John Tazwell, narrates the unfolding action. Historians also explain the lasting significance of the convention and Henry's stirring speech.