African

Black Ballerina

 

Sixty years ago, while pursuing their dreams of careers in classical dance, Delores Brown, Joan Myers Brown and Raven Wilkinson confronted racism, exclusion and unequal opportunity in segregated mid-century America. In 2015, three young black women also pursue careers as ballerinas, and find that many of the same obstacles their predecessors faced are still evident in the ballet world today. Through interviews with current and former ballet dancers along with engaging archival photos and film, the one-hour documentary uses the ethereal world of ballet to engage viewers on a subject that reaches far outside the art world and compels viewers to think about larger issues of exclusion, equal opportunity and change.

 

POV
Raising Bertie

 

View an intimate portrait of three African American boys coming of age in rural North Carolina. The young men navigate unemployment, institutional racism, violence, first love, fatherhood and estrangement from family members and mentors.

 

Nasser’s Republic:
The Making of Modern Egypt

 

This is the first film created for an American audience about Gamal Abdel Nasser, one of the Arab world’s most transformative leaders. In 1952, as an unknown, young, Egyptian colonel, Nasser led a coup that became a revolution. Over the next 18 years he challenged Western hegemony abroad, confronted Islamism at home, and faced deep divisions among the Arabs. He emerged a titanic figure but also established the region’s first and much emulated military authoritarian regime.

 

Korla

 

Korla is the amazing story of John Roland Redd, an African American from Columbia, Missouri who migrated to Hollywood in 1939 and reinvented himself as a musician from India. As one of early television’s pioneering musical artists, Korla Pandit’s life was one of talent, determination, ingenuity and racial passing, a story not fully realized until after his death in 1998.

 

MUSIC VOYAGER
The Bahamas: Junkanoo Celebration

 

Their journey to the The Bahamas begins in Nassau, the capital city, during the annual Junkanoo celebrations that take place between Boxing Day (December 26th) and New Year’s Day. During this period the city explodes with vibrant color and celebratory music, as revelers dressed in elaborate costumes parade down the streets dancing to the African-rooted rhythms of Bahamian music. The energy is infectious and the Music Voyager team find themselves wanting to learn more about the roots of Junkanoo and what it tells about the history and people of The Bahamas. They visit the Junkanoo Museum, try on a traditional costume, and even join in a rehearsal, trading licks with the Colours marching band. An exploration of Junkanoo takes them into the mysteries of the past, yet also demonstrates how the people of today’s Bahamas are working to keep their own unique traditions going strong far into the future.

 

Deep City: The Birth of the Miami Sound

 

Learn how two musical geniuses, producers Willie Clarke and Johnny Pearsall, created the first black-owned record label in Florida. Explore the early days of 1960s soul music in Miami, the pioneers of that era and their lasting contributions to the broader American musical landscape.

 

INDEPENDENT LENS
Birth of a Movement

 

Learn how D.W. Griffith’s 1915 film The Birth of a Nation unleashed a battle still waging today about race relations and representation, and the power and influence of Hollywood. This program features commentary by Spike Lee, Reginald Hudlin, Dr. Henry Louis Gates Jr. and others.

 

GLOBE TREKKER
Caribbean Islands: St. Lucia, Martinique

 

Trekker Zoe Palmer visits the spectacularly beautiful Caribbean islands of St. Lucia, Martinique and Montserrat. Surrounded by stunning rainforests, mountains and volcanoes with a hybrid of English, African and French heritage, these islands deserve their reputation as one of the top tourism spots in the world.

 

BLACK AMERICA SINCE MLK: AND STILL I RISE
Keep Your Head Up / Touch the Sky

 

Henry Louis Gates, Jr. explores America’s changing racial landscape-celebrating how far we have come toward equality and asking why we still have so far to go. Features conversations with Attorney General Eric Holder, activist DeRay Mckesson and television producer Shonda Rhimes.

 

BLACK AMERICA SINCE MLK: AND STILL I RISE
Out of the Shadows / Move On Up

 

Dr. Henry Louis Gates Jr. takes a personal journey through the last 50 years of African American history, charting the incredible progress made – as well as the obstacles that remain. The program features conversations with Jesse Jackson, Nas and Donna Brazile.

 

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