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.

Super Why gets high praise

TV Guide calls Super Why “the greatest TV show to happen to reading.”  Watch SUPER WHY with your kids every morning on KLRU at 9 a.m.

This series focuses on the adventures of four fairytale friends who transform into reading-powered superheroes: Alpha Pig with Alphabet Power, Wonder Red with Word Power, Princess Presto with Spelling Power, Super Why with the Power to Read and Super YOU with the Power to Help. Together, they are the “Super Readers!” The Super Readers jump into books (literally) to find answers to everyday preschool challenges and embark on exciting adventures, where they play interactive reading games to overcome obstacles and save the day. In every episode, young viewers dive directly into a pop-up story to experience a brightly-illustrated children’s tale brought to magical life.

AFS hosts screening of Tattooed Under Fire

The Austin Film Society Documentary Tour will be screening Tattooed Under Fire on Wednesday, Jan. 20, 8:30pm, at the Alamo Drafthouse Ritz. Filmmaker Nancy Schiesari will be in attendance to talk about making this documentary. Tickets to this screening are $6.

KLRU helped present this documentary to the nation on PBS and first aired on KLRU in 2008. Filmed at Fort Hood, Tattooed Under Fire is a unique, intimate, character-driven portrait of Iraq-bound and returning U.S. soldiers as they go under the tattoo needle: openly professing their pride, sharing their secrets and confessing their fears

Read an interview with Schiesari in the Austin Chronicle

Three candidates for governor debate the issues

UPDATE: The debate is scheduled to stream live online at texasdebates.org

Republican candidates in the highly-anticipated Texas gubernatorial race will square off in The Texas Debates: Race for Governor on Thursday, January 14, at 7 p.m. The live debate broadcast to millions on television, radio and online throughout the state will include two-term Texas Governor Rick Perry, three-term U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison and former Wharton County Republican Party chair Debra Medina.

The Texas Debates will originate from the Murchison Performing Arts Center on the campus of the University of North Texas in Denton. The candidates will answer questions from a panel of North Texas journalists as well as members of the live audience which will include Republican voters from Denton and Tarrant counties.

Education focus of Live United Film Series event on 1/28

Join KLRU and United Way Capital Area for a special film screening and discussion on education issues in Austin on Thursday, January 28, from 6 to 8:30 p.m. in KLRU’s Austin City Limits Studio 6A. RSVP here. Light hors d’oeuvres and beverages provided.

Jason Sabo from United Ways of Texas will moderate a discussion on whether the Austin community is investing enough in education. Panelists will include:

  • Dr. Michael Marder from University of Texas UTeach project
  • Liliana Ary from Univision Radio
  • Clayton Christopher from Sweet Leaf Tea and a student he is mentoring through Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Texas
  • The discussion will take place immedately after a screening of It All Adds Up. This documentary, produced by Academy Award-winning director Sue Marx, focuses on the academic enrichment and mentoring program called Math Corps. The film features engaging and heart-warming interviews with alumni and current campers who testify to the life-changing impact of this project. RSVP here.

    Funky Chickens visit KLRU

    KLRU often has famous guests visit the sixth floor studios; on any given week you’ll find a variety of musicians, writers, even politicians making an appearance at a taping for one of our local programs. With so many famous faces you’d think the KLRU staff would be used to rock stars in the studio but the appearance of some local chickens proved that to be incorrect.

    Special thanks to Judith Haller with the Austin Funky Chicken Coop tour for bringing her special guests. To learn about the chicken coop tour watch Central Texas Gardener on Saturday, January 23rd at noon and 4pm.

    Highlights 1/10 to 1/16

    Stunningly beautiful high-definition, high speed footage of hummingbirds in the wild combined with high-tech presentations of their remarkable abilities help us to understand the world of hummingbirds as we never have before on Nature at 7 p.m. Sunday.

    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.

    KLRU celebrates the arts with this special focusing on Austin-area choirs. In Context: Voices of Light at 8 p.m. Monday features songs by Austin Chinese Choir and Capital City Men’s Chorus and the choirs from East Austin Baptist, Abiding Love Lutheran Church, The Lakeway Church and Barton Hills Elementary School. The diverse lineup illustrates that regardless of differences, the desire to express the experience of life through music is a common goal.

    See how Sam Cooke put the spirit of the black church into popular music on American Masters Monday at 9 p.m. Through creating a new sound, he set into motion a chain of events that forever altered the course of popular music and race relations in America.

    Hear for yourself how Marvin Gaye combined gospel, rhythm and blues, soul and jazz to create his own intimate style reflecting his “path of the heart” and giving us his autobiography in lyrics and sound on American Masters 10 p.m. Monday.

    A magnificent trading vessel embarks on a royal expedition to a mysterious, treasure-laden land in Egypt called Punt. Tuesday at 7 p.m., Nova follows a team of archeologists and boat builders as they reconstruct the mighty vessel shown in the mysterious wall carving.

    Independent Lens documents the true story of the final weeks of rehearsal for the Young@Heart Chorus in Northampton, MA, whose average age is 81, and many of whom must overcome health adversities to participate at 8 p.m. Tuesday.

    We are separated from our nearest relatives, the chimpanzees, by only one or two percent of our genes. Alan Alda sets out at 7 p.m. Wednesday on Human Spark to explore our differences and quickly finds that the scientists studying chimps and other non-human primates are themselves separated into opposing worldviews.

    Recorded for television at the end of its Broadway run in July 2008 by Spike Lee, “Passing Strange” is the semi-autobiographical story of a young black man who leaves behind his middle-class, church-ruled upbringing in Los Angeles to travel to Europe in search of his identity, or what he calls “the real.” See it on Great Performances 8 p.m. Wednesday.

    Legendary New Orleans songwriter Allen Toussaint hits the Austin City Limits stage with songs from his latest LP, The Bright Mississippi, and classic hits like “Southern Nights”  Wednesday at 10:30 p.m. and Friday at 9 p.m.

    Republican candidates in the highly anticipated Texas gubernatorial race will square off in The Texas Debates: Race for Governor on Thursday, January 14, at 7 p.m.  The live debate broadcast to millions on television, radio and online throughout the state will include two-term Texas Governor Rick Perry and three-term U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison.

    Hip hop conquers the Austin City Limits stage with sets from alternative rapper/actor Mos Def, supporting his latest record, The Ecstatic; and Somalian native K’naan, performing songs from his acclaimed LP, Troubadour at 7 p.m. Saturday.

    December 2009: Biscuit Brothers Special

    The Biscuit Brothers Special
    Sunday, December 20 at 5 pm.

    Musical Celebrations – Chanukah, Kwanzaa, Hispanic tradition, birthdays and other holidays and celebrations are explored after Tiny Scarecrow accidentally releases all the holiday melodies from Melody Garden. This song filled special shows how a “holiday” can be a good time to learn about other cultures and traditions and a great time to share your culture and traditions with others.
    Merry Musical Christmas – The whole family will sing and laugh along with this heart-felt musical nod to traditional Christmas specials of the past. Join the Biscuit Brothers and company on Christmas Eve as they use music to celebrate on the magical, musical farm and try to cheer up Tiny Scarecrow who sits high atop Symphony Barn waiting for snow.

    Watch a preview of the Biscuit Brothers Special here.

    Cyberchase at Austin Children's Museum

    School groups who visit ACM this fall will explore the new Cyberchase: The Chase is On! exhibit through January 23, 2010. Based on the award-winning animated math series, the exhibit recruits K-5 students to join the CyberSquad¹s action packed adventures using math reasoning and problem-solving to thwart Hacker¹s evil plans to conquer Cyberspace.

    Downloadable resources include exhibit experiences correlated to NCTM standards and bilingual instruction sheets for pre/post activities.