Celebrate 100 Years of Julia Child!

Julia Child is a quintessential PBS icon and pioneer who opened up new worlds for a whole generation of Americans, showing them that cooking – even French food – is easy, enjoyable and within reach for all. In honor of what would have been her 100th birthday on August 15, KLRU is planning a 10 day celebration of special tributes, videos, and more to commemorate her life and memory.

Starting today on the KLRU blog, Facebook, and Twitter, we’ll have special Julia posts and we want you to join in the fun – use the #CookForJulia to share your favorite Julia Child recipes, memories, episodes and more with your friends on Facebook or Twitter (and us, too!).

This is a nation-wide celebration that we’re so excited to share with you in the Austin community – check out all the national buzz here and stay in touch because we’ll be sharing a lot of Julia goodies in the next 10 days!

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.

Stotesbery added Latino Public Broadcasting board

KLRU’s Bill Stotesbery named to national Latino Public Broadcasting board

Austin, TX — KLRU-TV, Austin PBS, announces that CEO and General Manager Bill Stotesbery has been elected to the Latino Public Broadcasting Board of Directors. In his announcement, letter Edward James Olmos, President of the LPB Board, wrote that Stotesbery’s “leadership and expertise will greatly contribute in helping our organization grow.”

Under Stotesbery’s leadership, KLRU has worked on several projects with focusing on the Latino community, most recently the addition of VMe, an all-Spanish language public television service, on KLRU’s digital cable channel 18.4.

“I am pleased to be included in this vital public broadcasting organization ,” said Stotesbery. “The LPB is very active in ensuring the diversity of PBS offerings and making sure Latino filmmakers have their stories heard.”

“As Latinos become this nation’s largest minority group, we face an exciting time ahead of us as we help bring diverse talent and content to public broadcasting,” Olmos said. “The programs we support bring new audiences to public television and have a recognizable impact on a broad range of viewers; present a diverse subjects and viewpoints from a variety of Latino producers across the country; and both complement and challenge existing public television offerings.”

Chris Isaak live in Studio 6A to premiere his Beyond the Sun special!

On February 13, Chris Isaak brought the house down at ACL Live at the Moody Theater with his Beyond the Sun tour featuring the classic rock ’n roll that inspired his own musical career. In case you weren’t one of the lucky ones in the venue that night, there’s no need to worry: We filmed it and will air the special on Monday evening at 7pm!

Even better, we’ll be coming to you live from KLRU Studio 6A with Chris Isaak to talk about this tour and what makes him come back again and again to create memorable music on public television.

This is not only a special evening because of Chris Isaak’s concert, but it’s also an important night for KLRU. We’ll be sharing the Chris Isaak Beyond the Sun special with public television stations all over the country to help them showcase the quality music that can only be found on public television. From concert specials like this to the music on Great Performances and American Masters, PBS gives audiences the best seats in the house to the best concerts week after week. We’re so thrilled to be able to share Chris Isaak’s incredible concert with other cities, communities and families.

We hope you’ll tune in on Monday night to support your public television station and to rock out with Chris Isaak! And if you haven’t already supported KLRU during our March pledge drive, you’ll want to call in with your donation on Monday – we have the DVD of his Beyond the Sun concert as well as his exclusive 2-CD Beyond the Sun album as thank you gifts!

Because this is such a special evening for KLRU, we want to look our best! Wardrobe provided by 81Poppies.com.

In the Studio: Jill Abramson tapes Overheard 3/12

Please join KLRU’s Overheard with Evan Smith for an interview with
Jill Abramson, executive editor of The New York Times
DATE: March 12
TIME: 1:30 p.m. (doors open at 1 p.m.)
LOCATION: KLRU’s Studio 6A (map).
RSVP: The event is free but an RSVP is required. RSVP now

Abramson became executive editor last fall, and has described her new job as like “ascending to Valhalla.” She’s a New York native who says the paper was like religion in her home growing up. She’s also the first woman to head the Times – an important milestone for a paper with a history of lawsuits and anecdotes alleging discrimination. Abramson worked as a deputy bureau chief and investigative reporter at The Wall Street Journal before joining the Times in 1997. She rose quickly, becoming Washington bureau chief in 2000 and managing editor in 2003. Abramson is the author of several books, including Strange Justice: The Selling of Clarence Thomas and The Puppy Diaries.

We hope you’ll be there as Overheard with Evan Smith continues a second season of great conversation with fascinating people, always on the news and always with a sense of humor. The show features in-depth interviews with a mix of guests from politics, the arts, literature, journalism, business, sports and more, and reaches PBS viewers from California to Florida. We’d love to see you in the studio for the interview, and for a chance to join the audience Q&A after the interview. Watch past Overheard interviews at klru.org/overheard

KLRU Endowment Receives Gift From Luci Baines Johnson and Ian Turpin

KLRU Endowment Receives Gift From Luci Baines Johnson and Ian Turpin Recognizing Longtime Supporters Sandy and Dudley Youman

Gift In Honor of Station’s 50th Anniversary

Austin, TX — KLRU-TV, Austin PBS, announces that Luci Baines Johnson and Ian Turpin have created the Sandy and Dudley Youman Fund within the KLRU Endowment honoring two of the station’s key supporters and the station’s 50th anniversary.

“PBS’s success depends on having best friends, and KLRU, Ian, and I have all survived and thrived because of the selfless service and extraordinary talent of our unsung heroes Sandy and Dudley Youman,” Johnson said. “Their tireless commitment of time, talent and treasure has been a blessing beyond measure to PBS and to us and we know the greatest way to thank them is to give back to the cause they love.”

“Sandy and Dudley certainly have a place at center stage in the history of KLRU, and I’m very happy that this gift recognizes that and helps us continue the station’s great work into the next 50 years,” said KLRU CEO Bill Stotesbery.

The Sandy and Dudley Youman Fund, part of the KLRU Endowment, will be used to help support KLRU programming and events. The KLRU Endowment was established in 1991 to provide a permanent fund that furthers KLRU’s vision to make Central Texas the most vibrant, informed, and engaged community in the country through the creative use of educational and inspirational content.

Sandy Youman retired from KLRU in 2005 after a career at the station spanning two decades. While at KLRU, Youman was instrumental in building membership, increasing major donors and in creating the Producers Circle. Sandy and Dudley, a physician, have continued to support KLRU and other non-profit organizations in Austin through their boundless volunteer activities.

“As I told Luci,” Sandy Youman said, “This is a real ‘grace-gift,’ defined as thoroughly unexpected, unnecessary at a level of such magnitude, but certainly really appreciated! I am humbled and thrilled that through this fund we can continue to play a part in making a difference for KLRU; not only inspiring the next generation of Youmans, but for the KLRU families throughout Austin, Central Texas and beyond.”

About KLRU
KLRU-TV, Austin PBS, presents quality multimedia content that engages people in the thoughtful exchange of ideas, the expression of the arts, and enjoyable lifelong learning opportunities, resulting in a more vibrant community and a higher quality of life. In addition to providing locally produced and quality national television programming, KLRU is also a non-profit organization helping to build a stronger community through educational workshops, community engagement projects and public events. Known as the producing station of the longest-running live music television show Austin City Limits, KLRU has also worked on several other national productions including Overheard with Evan Smith and documentaries like Citizen Architect and Last Best Hope. Get more information about KLRU at klru.org.


Light/The Holocaust & Humanity Project programs Sundays @ 1 on KLRU

Light  / The Holocaust & Humanity Project is a full-length contemporary ballet being put on by Ballet Austin and a Holocaust education partnership that promotes the protection of human rights against bigotry and hate through arts, education, and public dialogue. Light / The Holocaust & Humanity Project returns to Austin in 2012 from Martin Luther King Jr. Day (January 15) through Yom HaShoah or Holocaust Remembrance Day (April 19), with events/initiatives led by more than 30 community partners.  The Austin American Statesman published an editorial about the project by Karen E. Gross,  community director of the Austin Anti-Defamation League, Cookie Ruiz, executive director of Ballet Austin, and Bill Stotesbery, chief executive and general manager of KLRU-TV, Austin PBS.

KLRU will produce television and web content related to Light  / The Holocaust & Humanity Project and will host Gerda Weissmann Klein as part of Spark on March 20th. During February, KLRU will have special programming each Sunday at 1 pm. The programs will be:

2/5 Irena Sendler: In The Name Of Their Mothers
During WWII, a group of young Polish women, some barely out of their teens, outfoxed the Nazis and rescued thousands of Jewish children from certain death. Over half a century later, 95-year-old Irena Sendler tells the true story, long suppressed in Communist Poland, of this daring conspiracy of women who risked their lives in the name of Warsaw’s Jewish mothers.

2/12 Not In Our Town: Light In The Darkness
In 2008 in Patchogue, NY, a series of attacks against Latino residents ended with the killing of 37-year-old Marcelo Lucero, an Ecuadorian immigrant who had lived there for 13 years. Seven local high school students arrested for the crime admitted they were “looking for a Mexican” to beat up. Over a two-year period, the film followed Patchogue Mayor Paul Pontieri as he led a diverse group of residents to confront the anti-immigrant bias in their town and repair the fabric of their community life. The victim’s brother, Joselo Lucero, and other Latino residents became leading voices for immigrants while working within the community to address local divisions. Faith leaders mobilized their congregations, and educators and school administrators developed anti-bias programs.

2/19 Not In Our Town: Class Actions
This program tells the stories of a suburban California school district, a mid-western college town and a college campus in the heart of the South where people are working together to stop hate and intolerance, and activitating their communities to create safer, more accepting environments for everyone. “Not In Our Town: Class Actions” profiles local innovators — a teacher who starts an anti-bullying program at her school, then spreads it to five districts; diverse leaders in a college town who bring students, local officials and community members together after a wave of bias attacks; and a coalition of students who take positive action when their core values are threatened. Also airs Feb. 13 at 9 pm

2/26 Teenage Witness: The Fanya Gottesfeld Heller Story
In 1941, the Nazis asserted their power by overrunning tiny villages throughout Eastern Europe. In the middle of the horror and chaos stood 15-year-old Fanya Gottesfeld (Heller). Only through the kindness of a Polish peasant did Fanya survive – hidden beneath a chicken coop with her parents and brother for two-and-a-half years. Based on her acclaimed memoir, Love In A World of Sorrow, this documentary presents a raw and emotional look at survival and the tenacity of the human spirit. Richard Gere narrates. Fanya’s story differs from other Holocaust narratives because of her relationship with a Ukrainian soldier – a Nazi collaborator who helped save her family from certain death. However, this relationship left Fanya with questions she continues to struggle with today. Since the book’s publication in 1993, the Holocaust survivor has dedicated her life to spreading a message of hope to audiences young and old. Today, Fanya shares the details of her ordeal with inner-city teens in the hopes of making them understand, and even relate to, the difficult choices she made. The atrocities of the Holocaust occurred more than 60 years ago, but its lessons of courage and tolerance and the dangers of prejudice and baseless hatred remain relevant today. At the age of 83, Fanya contemplates a return to her hometown of Skala, in present-day Ukraine, accompanied by Father Patrick Desbois, the French-Catholic priest responsible for identifying more than 600 previously unknown graves of Jews. The film follows Fanya as she wrestles with the past and focuses on the importance of her work today.

KLRU, the PBS Video Game Challenge, and East Austin College Prep

This week, KLRU hosted the first of two workshops to explain to middle school students how to create games for the PBS portion of the National Video Game Challenge. We met in a game design class at East Austin College Prep Academy with students, their teachers, Laura Minnigerode of World Wide Workshops, Anne Fertitta of AMD (a fellow national sponsor), Michael Mayrath of GYLO, a local startup in educational gaming, and two guest speakers: Prof. Susan Empson of UT-Austin and Vicki Smith, a national finalist in last year’s Video Game Challenge.

For the competition, students are creating math games that help elementary-age students solidify essential math concepts. We had Prof. Empson, our elementary math expert, and Ms. Smith, our award-winning game designer, help connect mathematical thinking to solid game construction. As part of the workshop, we had students present games in progress and all of our experts then chimed in commentary on how to beef them up for submission.

Our next stop: Travis HS on Tuesday, Jan. 31! If you’d like to help mentor students in their submission, either in person or via distance, contact Ben Kramer at 475-9050 or bkramer@klru.org.

KLRU Celebrates Black History Month

KLRU-TV, Austin PBS Celebrates Black History Month

KLRU announces an expansive slate of events and programs profiling the rich history, culture and contributions of African-Americans in honor of Black History Month. The programs air as part of KLRU’s celebration of Black History Month, February 2012.  With new programs that delve into the archives of history, this year’s schedule provides an in-depth look at a variety of historical events from the post-Emancipation era to the rise of the black power movement.  Additionally KLRU will host two free community events. Information is listed below.


KLRU Community Cinema
Tuesday, February 7, 2012 at 7 p.m.
Location: Windsor Park Library, 5833 Westminster Drive
KLRU and the Windsor Park Library present monthly film screenings and discussions afterwards. The February event is in conjunction with Black History Month. Shukree Hassan Tilghman, a 29-year-old African American filmmaker, is on a cross-country campaign to end Black History Month.  Through this tongue-in-cheek journey, More than a Month, investigates what the treatment of history tells us about race and equality in a “post-racial” America.  Join us for a free screening and discussion afterwards.

Arts In Context: The Relatives with The Isaac Sisters
Saturday, February 11 at 8 p.m. Doors at 7 p.m.
Location: KLRU Studio 6A, 26th and Guadalupe
Free, but RSVP required. RSVP now
Join us for this very special taping of Arts In Context.  Formed in the early 1970s by the Rev. Gean and Tommy West, the Relatives’ cut three genre-bending singles during their decade-long run that were too freaky for the church and too righteous for R&B radio. Though pioneers of an utterly singular sound, the Relatives never made a splash outside of Dallas and have remained virtually unknown even among serious record collectors. But all of that is changing with recent performances at ACL Music Festival in 2010 and backing Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears on the PBS television series Austin City Limits last year.  Joining them will be The Isaac Sisters in their very first television appearance.

On Air:

Below is a list of programs on KLRU (18.1) during February to commemorate Black History Month.  All programs are broadcast on KLRU 18-1 unless otherwise noted.


Preview Screening: Downton Abbey 1/5

Join KLRU and other Downton Abbey fans as we preview the first hour of the second season of this beloved Masterpiece Classic series.

The screening will be January 5th in KLRU’s Studio 6A. Doors open at 6:30 and the screening will start promptly at 7. The event is free, but an RSVP is required. RSVP now

Downton Abbey season two starts airing on January 8th on PBS, but we’re giving our fans a chance to see the first hour before anyone else. We’ll have Downton Abbey items to give away and light refreshments will be served. RSVP now