Fans of PBS nationally, and in the greater New York Area (WNET, WLIW, and NJTV) here are some of the PBS series and specials coming in September:
All-Star Orchestra(SERIES PREMIERE)
(Premieres nationwide September 2013 on public television stations through APT, check local listings; in New York, premieres Sunday, September 8, 12:30 p.m. on THIRTEEN and continues for seven consecutive weeks)
Classical masterpieces and new works by American composers performed by the All-Star Orchestra musicians and led by Music Director Gerard Schwarz. The series is distributed nationally by American Public Television. 8 one-hour episodes.
EARTHFLIGHT, A Nature Special Presentation
Wednesday, September 4 – Wednesday, October 9, 8 p.m. on PBS
A breathtaking voyage with the world’s birds, soaring across six continents, witnessing spectacular animal migrations and great natural wonders, swooping down to interact with life-and-death dramas on land and at sea. The series employs state-of-the-art technology and sophisticated camera techniques to show the world from the amazing aerial perspective of a bird’s-eye view.
PBS NewsHour Weekend (SERIES PREMIERE)
Saturday, September 7 on PBS (check local listings)
PBS NewsHour Weekend will feature a summary of the day’s national and international news, using renowned experts to provide in-depth analysis. Each weekend broadcast will contain original, in-depth field reporting on topics including education, healthcare, the economy, energy, science and technology, religion, finance and the arts. Anchored by Hari Sreenivasan. Weekly, half-hour episodes.
Billie Jean King
Tuesday, September 10, 8 p.m. on PBS
For the first time, American Masters profiles a sports figure: a determined woman who has been a major force in changing and democratizing the cultural landscape. To commemorate the 40th anniversaries of the King v. Riggs “The Battle of the Sexes” match and founding of the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) by King, the documentary looks back to the 12-year-old southern California girl who played tennis on public courts, observed disparity and, as she soared athletically, never stopped trying to remedy inequality. Her competitiveness on the circuit was matched by her efforts on behalf of women and her commitment to prove there’s strength in diversity. In new interviews, King presents her own story with perspective from Serena and Venus Williams, Hillary Clinton, Sir Elton John, Maria Sharapova, members of the Virginia Slims Circuit “Original 9” including Rosie Casals, Gloria Steinem, Chris Evert, Margaret Court, Bobby Riggs’ son Larry, family, friends, and many others. 90 minutes.
Brains on Trial
Wednesday, September 11 & 18 at 10 pm on PBS
The two-hour film, hosted by Alan Alda, explores the implications for the law of advances in neuroscience that enable us for the first time to get insights into how, and perhaps even what, people are thinking. The program is constructed around the trial of a fictional crime. The program is divided into two parts: the first hour takes in the guilt phase of the trial, conducted before a jury, and concludes with the defendant being found guilty of felony murder; and the second hour looks at the sentencing phase, when arguments for and against a severe sentence will be heard. While the defendant and witnesses are actors, the judge and the attorneys are real, playing the roles they have in real life. Mr. Alda will be observing the trial “live,” accompanied by Vanderbilt University’s law professor Nita Farahany who will be interpreting the legal issues being raised in the trial and how the neuroscience principles that Alda learns during visits into labs is relevant to a trial similar to the fictional one in the program. The fictional case will also allow viewers to explore some of the startling advances in neuroscience and its ability to literally see into people’s heads that may profoundly affect how trials like this are conducted in the future. Two, one-hour episodes.
Great Performances (SEASON PREMIERE)
The Hollow Crown
Friday, September 20 – Friday, October 11, 9 p.m. on PBS
This ambitious four-part mini-series assembles four of Shakespeare’s History Plays into a single chronological narrative-Richard II, Henry IV Parts I & II, and Henry V. The original “Game of Thrones,” these bold film adaptations will be a major television event, featuring an outstanding cast of leading Shakespearean talent. With Ben Whishaw, Rory Kinnear, Tom Hiddleston, Jeremy Irons, Simon Russell Beale, Michelle Dockery, David Suchet, Patrick Stewart, James Purefoy, John Hurt, and many more.
Friday, September 20, 9 p.m. on PBS
Henry IV, Part I
Friday, September 27, 9 p.m. on PBS
American Graduate Day 2013 (LIVE)
Saturday, September 28, 12 noon -7 p.m. on public television stations
Last September marked the first annual broadcast of American Graduate Day, a live broadcast and outreach event dedicated to helping all students stay on the path to on-time high school graduation and future success. This fall, broadcast nationally on September 28 at 12 noon from the Tisch WNET Studios at Lincoln Center in New York City, the seven-hour special highlights community partners, business leaders, youth, and celebrities involved in supporting at-risk students in school. Content strands include Early Learning, Career Readiness and College Completion, STEM, More and Better Learning Time, Dropout Recovery and Prevention, Mentoring and Family Support. Big Brothers Big Sisters, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, City Year, Horizons National, and United Way are among the community partners participating.