Highlights 1/17 to 1/23

What happens when two great predators come face to face in Yellowstone? Find out on Nature at 7 p.m. Sunday when the grizzly and the wolf face off. In every encounter, the opposition is measured, strengths are tested, and risks are carefully weighed. They key is knowing your own strengths and limitations in the heat of the moment.

Judi Dench returns in the sequel to the Emmy-nominated “Cranford” mini-series, the acclaimed story of everyday life in a small Cheshire market town on Masterpiece Classic at 8 p.m. Sunday.

My Music: Ed Sullivan’s Rock and Roll Classics at 8 p.m. Monday presents classic song performances from 1963-1968. From the Beatles’ American television debut to the Doors’ infamous one-time-only appearance to the Rolling Stones, Sly and the Family Stone, the Mamas and the Papas and more.

Brain Fitness Frontiers at 10 p.m. Monday looks at the impact of virtual reality in changing memories and dealing with pain, the ability of the brain to interface with mechanical and electronic instruments in such a way that the brain can control them without any interface by the human body.

The Great Sphinx is disappearing; the sands of Egypt have buried this wonder of the ancient world. Nova follows the team to find out if they can reverse the destructive forces of man and nature to save this wonder of the ancient world at 7 p.m. Tuesday.

SCHEDULE CHANGE: “Dancing Boys of Afghanistan” has been postponed. Instead Frontline will show “A Death in Tehran” at 8 p.m. Tuesday. At the height of the protests following Iran’s controversial presidential election this summer, a young woman named Neda Soltani was shot and killed on the streets of Tehran. Her death—filmed on a cameraphone, then uploaded to the web—quickly became an international outrage, and Soltani became the face of a powerful movement that threatened the hardline government’s hold on power.

Independent Lens examines the creative and commercial value of musical sampling, including the related debates over artistic expression, copyright law and, of course, money at 9 p.m. Tuesday.

Learn of the essential components of the Human Spark–the attributes that make humans unique at 7 p.m. Wednesday. One of those faculties is the fascinating link between two of humans’ most characteristic abilities – language and the use of tools.

Great Performances at the Met goes behind the scenes 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Metropolitan Opera’s National Council Auditions, where thousands of hopefuls compete for a cash prize, the chance to sing on the Met stage, and the opportunity to launch a major operatic career.

Hip hop conquers the ACL stage with sets from Somalian native K’naan, performing songs from his acclaimed LP, Troubadour, and alternative rapper/actor Mos Def, supporting his latest record, The Ecstatic, on Wednesday at 10 p.m. and Friday at 9 p.m.

Railroad Commissioner and Senate candidate Michael Williams sits down with Evan Smith to talk politics on Texas Montly Talks at 7 p.m. on Thursday.

Tim McGraw has sold over 40 million albums, dominated the charts with 30 Number One singles, and received three Grammys. The 2009 release of his tenth studio album represents a new level of depth and intensity for the seasoned country artist, showcased on this episode of Soundstage at 9 p.m. Thursday.

Rising roots rock kings the Avett Brothers perform songs from their latest album at 7 p.m. Saturday on Austin City Limits. Ohio-to-Austin transplants Heartless Bastards follow with their classic rock ‘n’ roll.