Indie Lens Pop-Up screening of Meet the Patels 12/6

Join KLRU and the Austin Public Library for the Indie Lens Pop-Up screening of the documentary Meet the Patels. This free event takes place Tuesday, Dec. 6th, at 7 pm at the Austin Public Library Windsor Park Branch 5833 Westminster Dr., Austin, TX, 78723.

meet-the-patelsRavi Patel is almost 30, an actor, and, worst of all to his traditional Hindu parents, still unmarried. After he breaks up with his white girlfriend, Ravi submits to his parents’ wishes and allows them to play matchmaker. The true-life romantic comedy Meet the Patels explores the influences of culture and identity on the most intense, personal, and important part of one’s life — love.

We’ll have guests from Indie Meme at the event to talk about that group’s work showcasing the best of South Asian indie cinema. They will be screening the film Island City on Dec. 4th at  Southwest Theaters in Austin. Get more details about that event

Indie Lens Pop-Up is a neighborhood series that brings people together for film screenings and community-driven conversations. Featuring documentaries seen on PBS’s Independent Lens, Indie Lens Pop-Up draws local residents, leaders and organizations to discuss what matters most, from newsworthy topics, to family and relationships. Make friends, share stories, and join the conversation.

Indie Lens Pop-Up Mimi and Dona 11/3

Join KLRU and the Austin Public Library for the Indie Lens Pop-Up screening of the documentary Mimi and Dona. This free event takes place Tuesday, Nov. 3rd, at 7 p.m. at the Austin Public Library Windsor Park Branch 5833 Westminster Dr., Austin, TX, 78723.


For 64 years, 92-year-old Mimi has cared for her daughter Dona, who has an intellectual disability, and now faces the inevitable: to find Dona a home. This alternately heartbreaking and heartwarming film by Mimi’s granddaughter tells the story of a quirky and deeply connected mother-daughter duo, and their effect on three generations of a Texas family.

Formerly known as Community Cinema, the long-running screening series has been renamed Indie Lens Pop-Up to strengthen the bond between the Independent Lens television series and local communities, and bring new energy and new audiences to the in-person events as well as online OVEE events and the broadcasts on KLRU. Over the past decade, screenings of Independent Lens films have brought more than 331,000 participants together at over 5,700 events to discuss issues that impact local communities.

Community Cinema: Makers Women in Comedy 10/7

Join KLRU and the Austin Public Library for a screening and discussion of Makers Women in Comedy on Tuesday, October 7th, at Windsor Park Branch Library (5833 Westminster Dr.). The free event is open to the public and takes place from 7 pm to 9 pm.

Women in Comedy tracks the rise of women in the world of comedy, from the “dangerous” comedy of 70s sitcoms like Maude to the groundbreaking women of the 1980s American comedy club boom and building to today’s multifaceted landscape. Makers is a six-part PBS series profiling the impact women have had over the past 50 years.

After the screening. we will have a discussion about comedy and improv with  Lashonda Lester and Topping Haggerty.

Lashonda Lester
Lashonda Lester has been working in entertainment in some capacity for over 20 years. As a stand up comedian, Lashonda began her comedy career in Austin in 2008 and within 2 years of starting, she was featured on the cover of the Austin Chronicle. Lashonda recently made her national television debut for Nickelodeon’s NickMom Night Out comedy showcase hosted by The View’s Sherri Shepherd. . She was second runner up out of 200+ comedians in the 2014 Funniest In Person Austin competition and in August 2014, she was nominated by Austin Monthly Magazine’s Best of the City as Best Comedian. In addition to Weird True Hollywood Tales, she’s also the creator and executive producer of As Seen On TV, a top ten countdown show of television programs from the 80s and 90s.

Topping Haggerty
Topping Haggerty has performed and directed improv and sketch comedy for many years in Austin, New York City, and San Francisco. Recently you may have seen her puppet/human sketch comedy extravaganza BatShyt Crazy: Life Rude Puppets in August at The Institution Theater. She received her BA in Drama from San Francisco State University.

June: LGBT Pride Month

KLRU broadcasts programming created by and about people from all cultures year-round, from public affairs to history to independent film to kids programming. In celebration of LGBT Pride Month, KLRU is broadcasting a lineup of special programs exploring the culture of the gay, lesbian, and transgendered community.

Independent Lens: We Were Here – Monday, June 9 at 10:00 pm
Some people forget about the AIDS plague of the 1980s. San Francisco was dramatically impacted, and the city became a war zone. Friends and family members were struck down in their prime by a mostly mysterious illness for which there was no cure. But the community — hippies, drag queens, lesbians, moms and dads, doctors and nurses — came together when the nation’s leaders looked the other way and built an unprecedented system of love, care, and compassion.

Day It Snowed in Miami – Tuesday, June 10 at 10:00 pm
On January 18, 1977, a group of conservatives packed Miami-Dade County’s commission chambers to protest the potential passage of the original gay rights ordinance. This program traces the political activism behind the equal rights ordinance on Miami Beach and then in Miami-Dade County.  It also chronicles the tragic effects of the AIDS pandemic in South Florida, and the ironic, compassionate turn in public opinion towards the gay community.

Independent Lens: Love Free or Die – Monday, June 16 at 10:00 pm
Faith, love, marriage, homosexuality and the Episcopal Church collide in the first openly gay Bishop Gene Robinson of New Hampshire.  Robinson is a man whose two primary passions are in direct conflict:  his love for God and for his partner Mark.  Robinson is the first openly gay person to become a bishop in the historic traditions of Christendom. He becomes the focal point as American churches debate whether or not lesbian and gay people are equal to heterosexuals in the eyes of God, while the United States at large struggles with legal equality for gays and lesbians.

Independent Lens: The New Black – Tuesday, June 17 at 10:00 pm
Centering on the historic fight to win marriage equality in Maryland, this film takes viewers into the pews, onto the streets, and provides a seat at the kitchen table as it looks at how the African American community grapples with the divisive gay rights issue.

Documentary focuses on weight issues

To some, weight-loss surgery can seem like an almost magical experience, in which individuals lose hundreds of pounds in just one shot. But in reality, it’s a long, difficult, and often disorienting journey. A moving new documentary – All of Me – humanizes a group of Austin-area women grappling with obesity, body-image, friendships, relationships and eventually this process of surgery.

All Of Me from filmmaker Alexandra Lescaze will have its Texas premiere in Austin Film Festival on Sunday, October 27 at 3:00 PM at Highland Galaxy. It will screen a second time on Wednesday, October 30 at 7:15 PM at Long Center Rollins Theater. All of the film’s primary subjects will be in attendance at both screenings. KLRU’s Bill Stotesbery will moderate the panel discussion on Sunday.

The “Girls” have been friends—and fat—for years. Their bond goes deep and wide, literally and figuratively. They are smart, intuitive, complex, warm, and compelling and speak openly about their inner lives. The Girls met via the Austin chapter of the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance and partied together among Austin’s Big Beautiful Women community. Meanwhile they tried every diet and every pill. Now they’re going through the life-changing process of weight-loss surgery in an effort to lose hundreds of pounds. The experience presents a host of issues and consequences—some they knew they were in for, some they feared, and some they never could have imagined.

Alexandra Lescaze, Director/Producer, is a NY-based documentary filmmaker and the Executive Director of the Sidney Hillman Foundation, home of the annual Hillman Prizes in Journalism and monthly Sidney Awards, honoring excellence in journalism in service of the common good. Her first film, Where Do You Stand? Stories From An American Mill, documented the 25-year effort of North Carolina textile workers to organize a union in the face of modernization and globalization. Her current film, All ofMe, will air on PBS’ Independent Lens series during its 2013-2014 season.

All of Me is a co-production of Mighty Fine Films, Inc., and Independent Television Service (ITVS), produced in association with KLRU-Austin, with funding provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB).

KLRU responds to Citizen Koch documentary controversy

Many of you know about the controversy surrounding the “Citizen Koch” documentary. (If not, please read the included links to news articles on the subject.) We have read the emails, petitions and comments from our community with interest and appreciate the opportunity to clarify a few matters regarding “Citizen Koch.”

The public television system includes a wide array of organizations, from producers and local stations to distributors like PBS.  Each entity is independently owned and operated.

The Independent Television Service (ITVS), which funds, presents and promotes documentaries and dramas for public television and cable networks, was the organization that was in discussion with the makers of the film “Citizen Koch.” ITVS did not submit the film to PBS, or any public television station, for consideration.

To the best of our knowledge, the filmmakers have not yet made “Citizen Koch” available for broadcast. Right now, it seems that the filmmakers are presenting the film at festivals and screenings.   If the film does become available to PBS stations, we will review it and consider airing it just as we would any similar submission.

If you would like more information on this subject, the PBS Ombudsman, Michael Getler, has written a column on this which you might find informative.

You might also be interested in a film presented earlier by PBS through ITVS and  INDEPENDENT LENS series entitled “Park Avenue.” This examination of the widening gap between America’s wealthy and rest of the nation by Alex Gibney (Academy Award-winning filmmaker of Taxi to the Dark Side and Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room) was aired by public television stations across the nation, including KLRU,  and can be seen via free streaming on

We appreciate your feelings on this matter, and we share your concern for open and honest information.  KLRU appreciates and seeks out input from our community.  We will watch for a program offer that will allow us to consider “Citizen Koch.”


Recent articles about the film and PBS:

The New Yorker, May 27, 2013
A Word From Our Sponsor – Public television’s attempts to placate David Koch
By Jane Mayer, May 28, 2013
ITVS Responds to The New Yorker article on Park Avenue and Citizen Koch

The PBS Ombudsmen, May 25, 2013
David Koch and PBS: The Odd Couple
By Michael Getler, May 20, 2013
Was resignation of billionaire Koch from WNET Board related to controversial doc?
By Dru Sefton, May 23, 2013
Why ITVS should be held accountable and “Citizen Koch” should be called “Citizen Corp”
By Anthony Kaufman


Community Cinema: Beauty Is Embarrassing 12/4

Explore the artistic world of Wayne White at this month’s Community Cinema screening at 7 pm on December 4 Austin’s Windsor Park Branch Library (5833 Westminster Dr.).

Artist Wayne White found early success as one of the creators of Pee-wee’s Playhouse and now his “word” paintings, which feature pithy and often sarcastic text statements crafted onto vintage landscape paintings, have made him a darling of the fine art world. This is a funny, irreverent story of the highs and lows of a commercial artist struggling to find peace and balance between his work and his art.

Community Cinema: As Goes Janesville

The October 2012 Community Cinema film is As Goes Janesville with screenings and discussions in both Austin and Round Rock. All screenings will start at 7 pm, are free and open to the public.

As Goes Janesville by Brad Lichtenstein records two years in the lives of laid-off workers, business leaders, and elected officials trying to reinvent their lives and their Midwestern town amid the closure of their GM plant and America’s worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. Screenings take place October 2 at Austin’s Windsor Park Branch Library (5833 Westminster Dr.) and October 25 at Round Rock Public Library (216 E. Main Street).

Olympic Fever

Every four years, Summer Olympics keep us on the edges of our seats. As the Opening Ceremony nears, excitement for the games reaches a fever pitch. KLRU is here to help tide you over.

Saturday, July 21 at 8pm: My Music, British Beat
This year’s Closing Ceremony aims to celebrate fact that music has been one of Britain’s strongest cultural exports over the last 50 years. Why wait for August? Tune in as My Music travels on location to London and around the UK to the place where the British Beat was born.

Thursday, July 26 at 9pm: Strong!
In a few days, we get to see serious athletic glory. But what about all the hard work that goes into preparing for an Olympic competition? Strong! follows Cheryl Haworth as struggles to defend her champion status as her lifetime weightlifting career inches towards its inevitable end. Strong! chronicles her journey and the challenges this unusual elite athlete faces, exploring popular notions of power, strength, beauty and health.