Release Date: Thu, Jan 17, 2013

Wisconsin Public Television to Launch Initiative to Explore Black History and Culture

For More Information:Lynn Brockmeyer, WPT publicist, 608-263-3364, [email protected] Erik Ernst, WPT promotion manager, 608-265-3853, [email protected]  As part of the national PBS Black Culture Connection interactive project, Wisconsin Public Television (WPT) is launching an initiative to highlight, explore and honor black culture from both a historical and contemporary perspective. A local website with resources at will link to the Black Culture Connection website at PBS, which focuses on national issues and offers further opportunity for engagement.  WPT's upcoming schedule offers viewers the following February programs that explore the experiences of blacks through social issues, civil rights, and contributions to music, sports, entertainment and American culture. At 11 p.m. Fridays, Feb. 1 and 8, Unforgivable Blackness: The Rise and Fall of Jack Johnson tells the story of the first African-American boxer to win the title Heavyweight Champion of the World. At 9 p.m. Monday, Feb. 11, Independent Lens "More Than a Month" introduces an African-American filmmaker who advocates ending Black History Month. At 1 p.m. Friday, Feb. 15, American Masters "Sam Cooke: Crossing Over" Explores how Cooke brought the spirit of the black church into popular music. Also that evening at 11, Freedom Riders: American Experience follows the stories of civil-rights activists who journeyed through the Deep South in 1961. At 9 p.m. Monday, Feb. 18, Independent Lens "The Powerbroker: Whitney Young's Fight for Civil Rights" explores Young's journey from segregated Kentucky to head of the National Urban League. At 11 p.m. Friday, Feb. 22, American Masters: Sister Rosetta Tharpe: The Godmother of Rock & Roll honors Tharpe as a key figure in the creation of rock & roll and as an inspiration for generations of black musicians.At 12 a.m. Saturday, Feb 23, In Performance at the White House: Red, White and Blues features President and Mrs. Obama as they pay tribute to the musical form that sprang from the Mississippi Delta and flourished in the Westside of Chicago with deep roots in Africa and slavery. At 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb 26, Pioneers of Television "Miniseries" focuses on personalities from the 1940s, '50s and '60s who were particularly innovative or who broke barriers in television miniseries. WPT is a service of the Educational Communications Board and University of Wisconsin-Extension. Wisconsin Public Television is a place to grow through learning on WHA-TV/Madison; WPNE-TV/Green Bay; WHRM-TV/Wausau; WLEF-TV/Park Falls; WHLA-TV/La Crosse; and WHWC-TV/Menomonie-Eau Claire.

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