This week on Director’s Cut, it’s all about family, as director Mac Smith joins me to discuss Scouts Honor: Inside a Marching Brotherhood. It’s a solid film about a world I admit I knew very little about. Smith, a Hollywood sound professional, took on this passion project to tell a poignant, insightful and heartfelt story.
The full-length documentary looks at the competitive world of drum and bugle corps, where performers must be offered a contract in order to be part of the team.
Smith knows his topic well; he was a Scout himself. The experience was so enriching that, years later, he dedicated a couple years of his life to telling this story.
What does solitary confinement sound like? In the short film below from our colleagues at FRONTLINE, experience a solitary existence that is anything but silent. Then, join us Tuesday night at 8 on Wisconsin Public Television for the powerful new FRONTLINE documentary, “Last Days of Solitary.” In the film, producers take us inside a Maine prison to learn what happens when prisoners from solitary confinement try to re-enter society, and why leaders in that state are trying to decrease its use of this isolating correction tactic.
When he visited Wisconsin this past October, American Experience Executive Producer and UW-Madison alumnus Mark Samels talked with us to give a behind-the-scenes perspective on the making of the PBS series’ new film, The Great War – a three-night event that begins 8 p.m. Monday, April 10 on Wisconsin Public Television.
Watch his behind-the-scenes perspective on the film’s creation and then watch a trailer for this powerful three-part documentary, below.
And tune in Monday at 7 p.m. for Polka! with musician and host Mollie Busta — better known as Mollie B. — as she explores the history and culture surrounding the often misunderstood dance, the memories it conjures, the people who enjoy it … and the fun it invokes across Wisconsin. Watch the preview and read our interview with Mollie B.
Ready to get out your dancing shoes? Find polka across Wisconsin by exploring this map that lists venues with weekly music and annual festivals.
Funding for Polka! is provided in part by the Stanley J. Cottrill Fund, International Polka Association, Wisconsin Dells Polka Fest, and Friends of Wisconsin Public Television.
Over the past five years, WPT producer Mik Derks has been sharing the stories of beloved Wisconsin author, historian and storyteller Jerry Apps with television audiences. This month, the tradition continues with a new documentary: Jerry Apps: Never Curse the Rain. Reflecting on water’s importance throughout his life, Apps shares why his father told him, “Jerry, never curse the rain.” Continue reading Behind the Scenes – “Jerry Apps: Never Curse the Rain”→
When he visited Wisconsin recently, American Experience Executive Producer and UW-Madison alumnus Mark Samels talked with us to give a behind-the-scenes perspective on the making of the PBS series’ new film, Command and Control, which premieres the evening of Tuesday, Jan. 10, immediately following PBS NewsHour coverage of President Obama’s Farewell Address.
Watch his behind-the-scenes perspective on the film’s creation and then watch a trailer for this powerful documentary, below.
A new season of Wisconsin Public Television’s Tribal Histories premieres Thursday, Dec. 15 at 7:30 p.m.
Recorded in the natural settings of the regions that native people have called home for centuries, these films feature tribal members sharing the triumphs, challenges and time-honored traditions that have shaped their vibrant communities across generations.
The series premiered in 2014 with the Menominee, Oneida and Potawatomi stories. In 2015, the Ho-Chunk, Stockbridge-Munsee Mohican and Bad River Ojibwe stories followed. The series continues with stories from the five other sovereign nations within Wisconsin’s modern boundaries, as well as the Brothertown Indian Nation, whose sovereign status is no longer recognized by the federal government.
All premieres air at 7:30 p.m., following Wisconsin Life.
Thursday, Dec. 15: Red Cliff Ojibwe History
Featuring Marvin DeFoe, Red Cliff Ojibwe Tribal Elder, teacher and master canoe maker; and Andy Gokee, director of the Native American Center at UW-Stevens Point
Thursday, Dec. 22: Lac du Flambeau History
Featuring Ernie St. Germaine, Lac du Flambeau Tribal Elder and American Birkebeiner Co-Founder
Thursday, Dec. 29: Brothertown History
Featuring Joan Schadewald, First Nation Brothertown Elder, Cowgirl and Peacemaker
When he visited Wisconsin recently, American Experience Executive Producer, Wisconsin native and University of Wisconsin-Madison graduate Mark Samels talked with Wisconsin Public Television to give a behind-the-scenes perspective on the making of the PBS series’ new film, The Battle of Chosin, which premieres 8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 1.
To some, the choice of Bob Dylan as the 2016 Nobel laureate in Literature might be surprising. To others, who have followed the path of his lyrics since before he went electric, it’s an honor many years in the making.
Public broadcasters have often captured Dylan’s long career in film and discussion. Here are some WPT-approved options for reacquainting yourself with the wide scope of Dylan’s life and legacy.
Got any stories about Bob Dylan and how his words have made an impact on your life? We bet you do. Please share them in the comments!
As we learned the names of the new MacArthur Fellows yesterday – winners of the so-called “genius grants” – we celebrate members of the class of 2016 with Wisconsin roots and those whose work has appeared on WPT.
Some names (like last year’s winner Lin-Manuel Miranda) may seem more familiar than others, but all offer fascinating things to think about – which makes them perfect for WPT and WPR. It’s no surprise, then, that you may have seen or heard them on the air.