GREAT PERFORMANCES, the longest-running performing arts anthology on television, continues to feature the best in the performing arts.
Upcoming airings of "Great Performances" on:
Why has the Broadway musical proven to be such fertile territory for Jewish artists of all kinds? From Broadway's golden age, names like Irving Berlin, Jerome Kern, the Gershwin's, Arthur Laurents, Jerome Robbins, Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim immediately come to mind. More recently, Broadway babies such as Stephen Schwartz, Marc Shaiman and Andrew Lippa represent a sampling of the Jewish talents who continue to leave their mark on musical theater. Filmmaker Michael Kantor focuses on this central question left largely unaddressed in his Emmy-winning Broadway: The American Musical, combining interviews with performance footage, including many of the rousing anthems and timeless ballads America has loved for a century.
Episode Number: #3806$
Length: 1 hour, 57 minutes, 43 seconds.
English, WidescreenReturn to Top
Unbelievably enough, Paul Simon's Graceland album is now a quarter-century old. Ordinarily, if it was remembered solely for the songs it brought into the world, that would be enough for most pop records. But it was also a musical triumph, an experiment in cross-cultural collaboration that also proved to be commercially popular, selling 14 million albums worldwide and generating three Top 40 singles, winning Grammys for both "Album of the Year" and "Song of the Year" for its title track. It still receives universal acclaim and is regarded today as one of the most significant recordings of its time. That says a lot about the record, but doesn't tell the whole story. Much of the world of 1986 has changed, and key elements of Graceland's history have receded into the fog of time. Why was it initially so controversial and why did Simon face such vehement criticism at the time? In 2011, acclaimed filmmaker Joe Berlinger accompanied Simon on his return to South Africa to reunite and perform with several of the musicians involved in the original album, capturing Simon's unique homecoming journey as he reflects on the landmark events as well as looks to the future.
Episode Number: #3807
Length: 1 hour, 56 minutes, 46 seconds.
English, WidescreenReturn to Top
A "ballet in sneakers" choreographed by the legendary Jerome Robbins in 1958, "NY Export: Opus Jazz" was a breakout success in its day, complete with a world tour and a broadcast on The Ed Sullivan Show. Set to a jazz score by Robert Prince, the five movements blend ballet, jazz and ballroom with Latin, African and American rhythms to create a style that remains expressive, sensual and contemporary. Co-conceived by New York City Ballet principal dancers Ellen Bar and Sean Suozzi, this film production takes the overlooked Robbins' masterpiece off of the stage and places it back into the landscapes that inspired it, filmed on locations all over the five boroughs of New York. The 16 emblematic characters are city kids drawn together by their youth, their energy and their hunger for life, but this "Opus Jazz" takes them out of the 50s and into today. Fashions and skylines change, but the experience of being young in New York belongs to every generation.
Episode Number: #3508H
Length: 56 minutes, 46 seconds.
English, Widescreen, Presented in High-DefinitionReturn to Top
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