Friday, March 23, 2012

Beginning March 25th — “Finding Your Roots” SUNDAYS at 7p

As I watched a preview of this program, FINDING YOUR ROOTS, I couldn’t help but think back to my past Christmas holiday.  The best present that I received was from my eighty year old grandfather.  With no help, he created a family photo album — a flip book of old black and white photos — for each of his grandchildren.  And on the back of each photo, he attached a label with a description, names of the people in the photo and their ages.  I sat with him that day and went through each photo, and although the description was on the back, he added so many other charming details to the story that I just would have never known if we hadn’t spent that time together.  I learned that my great, great grandfather moved from Germany to Africa, married a woman in South Africa, and although she died during childbirth, a family was created — one that I have never met and one (after researching online) that owns a coffee plantation in which you can tour.  So it’s no secret where my passport will take me next.

Whether it’s anecdotes about ancestors from generations past, or stories of recent relatives, each of us has a rich, unique genealogical heritage to share.  In all this research you find yourself, and it makes you cognizant of what kind of legacy you want to leave with this world.

If this fascinates you in the least, you will no doubt enjoy FINDING YOUR ROOTS, one of the newest PBS series airing Sundays at 7p.  The program examines the histories and family genealogies of a number of well-known personalities.  Renowned cultural critic and Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates, Jr. journeys deep into the ancestry of a group of remarkable individuals and provides new understanding of personal identity and American history. 


Monday, March 19, 2012

Raising the Curtain on another Great Performance, Tuesday, March 20

Growing up I wasn’t really ever introduced to musicals, operas and theater. And now that I’ve had the opportunity to experience a handful, I’m a total fan of live performances and excitedly jump at any chance to attend. It would be a dream of mine to watch live the Phantom of the Opera — the danger, the tragedy, the romance, the mystery and most of all, the magical element!

Like many, I try to be financially careful, and it’s nice to know that I can turn on the TV to my local PBS station and find arts programming.

This past year like never before, PBS reaffirmed its passion in delivering the arts, and it continues to impress with Great Performances: Phantom of the Opera, Tuesday, March 20 at 8p. In celebration of its blockbuster 25th anniversary year, Andrew Lloyd Webber presents The Phantom of the Opera in a fully-staged, lavish production, set in the sumptuous Victorian splendor of London's Royal Albert Hall.

If you are a fan of the Phantom of the Opera, I encourage you to check this out:

And for those who enjoy a bit of research, here are some interesting facts about the play: The Phantom of the Opera first opened in 1986. It has been produced in 145 cities in 27 countries and played to more than 130 million people. The show has won more than 50 major theatre awards, including seven Tonys and three Olivier Awards in the West End. In 2006, it became Broadway's longest running show ever, and it is currently showing in London, New York, Budapest, Las Vegas, and Kyoto.