Highlights 11/30 to 12/6

Celtic Thunder at 8 p.m. Sunday, 9 p.m. Thursday and 9 p.m. Saturday features five Celtic male vocalists celebrating their heritage with powerful ballads, popular hits, and heartwarming songs of love.

Johnny Cash: A Man and his Vision at 10 p.m. Sunday celebrates of one of the most important and innovative television variety shows in history and celebrates the musical genius of one of America’s greatest artistic treasures.

Monarchy: The Royal Family at Work at 7 p.m. Monday goes behind the scenes of a state dinner in Buckingham Palace, the Queen’s “official” birthday party and a royal garden tea.

American Soundtrack: Doo Wops Greatest Hits at 8:30 p.m. Monday presents a new best-of compilation of Doo Wop Favorites of even more greatest moments from Doo Wop 50; Rock, Rhythm and Doo Wop; and Red, White and Rock.

Brain Fitness Program at 10:30 p.m. Monday  and 8:30 p.m. Wednesday looks at a program to get your brain in better shape.

Panda Tales at 7 p.m. Tuesday tells the story of San Diego’s Giant Panda cub, Zhen Zhen, and the zoo’s persistent conservation effort of a once dwindling species.

Stay Rich Forever & Ever with Ed Slott at 8 p.m. Tuesday provides an innovative yet simple step-by-step process to take control of retirement savings and prevent looming personal financial disaster.

Roy Orbison & Friends- A Black and White Night at 9:30 p.m. Tuesday gives a triumphant performance for Roy Orbison by a remarkable cast of “A-list” fans who signed on as his accompanists.

David Fortney has captured the breathtaking, natural beauty inside the 18 National Parks of North America in Timeless: A National Park Odyssey at 11 p.m. Tuesday

Tapped in 1999, Three Tenors Christmas at 7 p.m. Wednesday features José Carreras, Plácido Domingo and Luciano Pavarotti performing popular Christmas songs as well as beloved carols.

Best-selling author, psychiatrist and brain-imaging specialist Daniel G. Amen, MD demonstrates how to optimize mental performance and overcome self-defeating behaviors in Change You Brain, Change Your Life at 10 p.m. Wednesday and  10:30 p.m. Friday.

Yanni: Voices at 11 p.m. Wednesday features a behind-the-scenes preview of the artist’s new CD and upcoming concert spectacular touring throughout the world over the next several years.

Celtic Women: The Greatest Journey at 7 p.m. Thursday and 11 p.m. Saturday provides a collection of memorable highlights taken from the vocalists’ acclaimed specials and reflects on their phenomenal success.

Love Train: The Sound of Philadelphia at 11 p.m. Thursday captures the live power of one of the most popular styles of music, featuring some of the recognizable songs ever written.

Magnificent at Any Age with Dr. Daniel Amen at 9 p.m. Friday explores the many natural ways that we can keep our brains healthy as we age as well as improve and enhance our brain power.

American Soundtrack: Doo Wops Greatest Hits at 7 p.m. Saturday presents a new best-of compilation of Doo Wop Favorites of even more greatest moments from Doo Wop 50; Rock, Rhythm and Doo Wop; and Red, White and Rock.

Review: Independent Lens "Atom Smashers"

Program: Independent Lens “Atom Smashers”
Date: Tuesday, Nov. 25
Time: 9:30 p.m.

Just the name alone made me want to see how and why scientists are smashing atoms. As far as I knew smashing atoms only resulted in big explosions that ended a world war. I was quickly put in my place as the scientists from the Illinois based Fermilab explained how destructing atoms can help identify questions like how and why matter even exists. That’s a pretty big question so I was hooked.

Do you remember a few months ago, reading “news” stories about how the Swiss were going to blow up the world with their own “atom smasher” or Large Hadron Collider? As far as I can tell, the world didn’t end when they flipped the switch on earlier this year and the LHC seems well on it’s way to making some amazing discoveries as a result of creating such a huge project. more

KLRU Family Choice

Program: Great Performances
Date: Sunday, Nov. 23
Time: 6 p.m.

Each month, KLRU identifies a Family Choice program from our schedule that will interest and engage family members, ages 7 and up. This month’s Family Choice program is Great Performances “Peter and the Wolf” at 6 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 23.

The musical tale Peter and the Wolf is given new life in this innovative new animated interpretation. Those coming to the story for the first time will be delighted with this comic modernization. This Academy Award-winning animated short personified instruments in the orchestra to tell the story of young Peter and his animal friends – the Duck, the Bird, and even a mischievous Cat (represented by an oboe, flute, and clarinet respectively).

Review: Austin City Limits with Gnarls Barkley/Thievery Corporation

Program: Austin City Limits
Date: Saturday, Nov. 22
Time: 7 p.m.
Also Airs: Wednesday, Nov. 26, at 10 p.m.
Preview the show: AustinCityLimits.org

It’s a point of pride at Austin City Limits to try to give space to as many genres as possible. So we’re always happy to have an artist who represents several genres at once. Both members of the mercurial duo Gnarls Barkley love to mix and match styles: hip hop, rock, electronica, psychedelic soul – anything, as long as it’s musical. Producer/instrumentalist Danger Mouse first gained attention with The Grey Album, a notorious mashup of the Beatles’ self-titled “white album” and Jay-Z’s The Black Album , before going on to provide the beats and backgrounds for pop/dance/hip-hop act Gorillaz. Singer/rapper Cee-Lo Green was a member of 90s hip-hop crew Goodie Mob, before embarking on a successfully eclectic solo career. The pair came together in 2003, releasing tunes through digital download before finally hitting the shelves in 2006 with the Grammy award-winning St. Elsewhere and its worldwide smash single “Crazy.” Now, in the wake of the pair’s second album The Odd Couple and second stop at the ACL Music Festival, Gnarls Barkley brings its colorful, booty-shaking show to studio 6A. more

Highlights 11/23 to 11/29

Nature at 7 p.m. Sunday retells the confrontation between Ernest Thompson Seton and outlaw wolf Lobo and how they set in motion a change in American hearts and minds.

To mark the centenary of Alistair Cooke’s birth in 2008, Masterpiece Special at 8 p.m. Sunday tells the story of one of the most celebrated broadcasters of the 20th century.

Masterpiece Theatre at 9 p.m. Sunday reveals “The Secret Life of Mrs. Beeton,” author of “Mrs. Beeton’s Book of Household Management” and the most famous cookbook author in British history.

Rape of Europa at 8 p.m. Monday tells the epic and miraculous tale of how Europe’s art treasures survived the systematic theft and deliberate damage perpetrated by the Third Reich during World War II.

Chihuly in the Hotspot at 10 p.m. Monday offers an intimate, close-up view of the artist’s process, from initial design to completed piece.

Nova at 7 p.m. Tuesday investigates how warming seas and man-made pollutants are combining to unleash toxic algae blooms decimating whales, sea lions and other marine mammals.

Frontline at 8 p.m. Tuesday looks at Venezuela’s controversial and outspoken president Hugo Chavez and the revolution he claims is turning his country into an anti-capitalist beacon for Latin America and the world.

Independent Lens at 9:30 p.m. Tuesday examines 15 months at Fermilab as it scours the subatomic world for the Higgs boson particle in “The Atom Smashers.”

Amazon: Super River at 9 p.m. Wednesday explores the exciting life story of the river with the world’s most diverse ecosystem.

Austin City Limits at 10 p.m. Wednesday brings Gnarls Barkley’s eccentric hip-hop and R&B sounds to the stage followed by psychedelic worldbeat electronica from Thievery Corporation’s new album, Radio Retaliation.

Texas Monthly Talks at 7 p.m. Thursday talks to Rick Riordan, best-selling children’s author of The Lightning Thief series.

Novelist Sarah Bird talks about her books and her career on Writers @ Work at 7:30 p.m. Thursday.

Downtown at 8 p.m. Thursday learns how influences from live music venues such as the Vulcan Gas Co. and the Armadillo World Headquarters are such a part of Austin’s culture today.

In Context at 8:30 p.m. Thursday focuses on the creative process as artists share their stories.

Kenny Chesney presents contemporary country at its finest in an intimate studio setting in Soundstage at 9 p.m. Thursday.

America’s IRA expert Ed Slott gives financial tips on Stay Rich Forever and Ever at 9 p.m. Friday.

The Brain Fitness Program at 10 p.m. Friday gives tips for getting your brain in better shape and through beneficial chemical, physical and functional change in the brain.

NPR journalist lecture 11/20

The School of Journalism at The University of Texas at Austin presents the Mary Alice Davis Distinguished Lecture in Journalism featuring Michele Norris  of National Public Radio’s All Things Considered. Norris will speak on “Listening to America in an Election Year: Did the Press Get It Right?” on Thursday, November 20, from 7 – 8:30 p.m.  in the AT&T Executive Education and Conference Center  Ballroom (3rd Floor), 1900 University Avenue.

Public parking available in the AT&T Center underground garage (entrance on 20th Street on north side of bldg.) or at the Dobie Center  Parking Garage (21st Street @ Whitis)

Review: Austin City Limits with Aimee Mann / Iron & Wine

Program: Austin City Limits
Date: Saturday, Nov. 15
Time: 7 p.m.
Also Airs: Wednesday, Nov. 19, at 10 p.m.; Friday, Nov. 21, at 11 p.m.
Preview the show: AustinCityLimits.org

It may not seem like it these days, but in the music business, perseverance pays off. Consider Aimee Mann. The Virginia-born, Berklee School of Music-trained musician had a hit in the 80s right out of the box with her band ‘til Tuesday’s debut single “Voices Carry,” but it’s her journey as a solo artist that’s ultimately gained the most attention. After 1993’s Whatever and 1995’s I’m With Stupid, her first two solo albums, attracted reams of critical acclaim but few sales, Mann left the major label system behind for good. Befriending film director Paul Thomas Anderson, she made significant contributions to his infamous movie Magnolia, including the Grammy- and Oscar-nominated “Save Me.” Mann then started her own label Superego Records, through which she’s released three studio albums, a Christmas record and a live CD/DVD set. She’s found more success than ever before and become a model for artists who want to do it themselves. With her colorfully-titled latest LP @#%&*! Smilers in hand, at long last Mann brings her intelligent, intricately arranged modern pop to the Austin City Limits stage. more

Highlights Nov. 16 to Nov. 22

Nature at 7 p.m. Sunday hosts a special on the continent’s most recognizable aerial predator, the bald eagle, and provides an intimate portrait of their lives in the wild.

Oliver Dimsdale stars as Louis Trevelyan, a handsome man of high principles and deep insecurities, in part two of Anthony Trollope’s “He Knew He Was Right” on Masterpiece Theatre at 8 p.m. Sunday.

Masterpiece Contemporary at 9:30 p.m. Sunday tells the surprising story of Mary Whitehouse and her David-and-Goliath type struggle with the BBC in the 60s in “Filth.”

American Experience at 8 p.m. Monday sheds light on John and Abigail Adams and the tumultuous times through which they lived.

Independent Lens at 10 p.m. Monday gives viewers an intimate look at war through the eyes of the first women in U.S. history sent into direct ground combat, despite a policy that bans them from doing so.

Nova at 7 p.m. Tuesday breaks exciting new ground in investigating the origins of the ancient Israelites, the evolution of their belief in one God and the creation of the Bible.

Independent Lens at 9 p.m. Tuesday follows the journey of three teens from the Swinomish Tribe who have been asked to make a film about the threat their people face from two local oil refineries.

True Whisperers: The Story of the Navajo Code Talkers at 10 p.m. Tuesday explores the personal and heartfelt story of the men who were recruited to devise an unbreakable code during combat against the Japanese.

Singer/songwriter Aimee Mann debuts with tunes from her latest album and folk rockers Iron & Wine showcase their acclaimed The Sheperd’s Dog CD on Austin City Limits at 10 p.m. Wednesday and 11 p.m. Friday.

Texas Monthly Talks at 7 p.m. Thursday speaks with Susan Orlean, author of best-selling novel The Orchid Thief and writer of perceptive magazine profiles, a cookbook for dogs and now a children’s book called Lazy Little Loafers.

Docubloggers at 7:30 p.m. Thursday gears up for Thanksgiving with a profile of UT’s mascot just in time for the big game.

Downtown at 8 p.m. Thursday takes a look at some of Austin’s most iconic independent businesses.

Soundstage at 9 p.m. Thursday delivers a high energy, rousing performance of Bon Jovi’s new album, Lost Highway.

Austin City Limits at 7 p.m. Saturday brings Gnarls Barkley’s eccentric hip-hop and R&B sounds to the stage followed by psychedelic worldbeat electronica from Thievery Corporation’s new album, Radio Retaliation.

Docubloggers features inspiring artist & more

Program: Docubloggers
Date: Thursday, Nov. 13
Time: 7:30 p.m.

See more Docublogs or post your own: klru.org/docubloggers/

Meet artist Jared Dunten who sets an inspirational example of hope as he shares his dream of overcoming paralysis through painting.  Super Pal Universe and Make Productions share their community docublog about the pizzazz it takes to put together a rock ‘n’ roll band consisting of a group of talented kids plus mentor Sara Hickman.  Witness some of the mind-boggling inventions from this fall’s maker faire, and hear from some of the inventors. Author Alison Moore and musician Phil Lancaster present Riders on the Orphan Train throughout Texas communities, and they share how their personal lives resemble this historic event.

Review: Monarchy-The Royal Family at Work

Program: Monarchy – The Royal Family at Work (part 1 & 2 back-to-back)
Date: Wednesday, Nov. 12
Time: 7 p.m.

Part 3 & 4 airs Wednesday, Nov.19, at 7 p.m.
Part 5 & 6 airs Wednesday, Nov. 26, at 7 p.m.
Preview the show: pbs.org/monarchy/

A new PBS series, Monarchy – The Royal Family at Work is about to debut on KLRU. Although I didn’t see the actual Royal Family doing much work in the first episode of this inside glimpse of the British Royal Palace, it was very interesting and sometimes comical to see how much work is done by others to accommodate the Queen and her entourage.

The first episode begins with an American photographer learning the rituals and formalities of royalty while attempting to keep a photo shoot of the Queen on schedule. more