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 Black History Month, KLRU and KLRU-Q will broadcast a lineup of programs and events honoring and exploring African American culture. We also offer a special online-only series – Austin Revealed – this month focused on local stories on civil rights, desegregation and more. Find out more about Austin Revealed
Blackademics TV airs Sundays at 1:30 pm starting February 2. Each weekly program features top Black Studies scholars engaging with projects and research focused on education, performance and youth empowerment.
2/3 POV American Promise at 9 pm
This film spans 13 years as Joe Brewster and Michele Stephenson, middle-class African-American parents in Brooklyn, N.Y., turn their cameras on their son, Idris, and his best friend, Seun, who make their way through one of the most prestigious private schools in the country. Chronicling the boys’ divergent paths from kindergarten through high school graduation at Manhattan’s Dalton School, this documentary presents complicated truths about America’s struggle to come of age on issues of race, class and opportunity.
2/7 American Masters Alice Walker: Beauty in Truth at 8 pm
Most famous for her seminal novel “The Color Purple,” writer / activist Alice Walker celebrates her 70th birthday. Born February 9, 1944, into a family of sharecroppers in rural Georgia, her life unfolded during the violent racism and seismic social changes of mid-20th century America. Her mother, poverty and participation in the Civil Rights Movement were the formative influences on her consciousness, becoming the inherent themes in her writing. The first African-American woman to win a Pulitzer Prize for Literature, Walker continues to shine a light on global human rights issues. Her dramatic life is told with poetry and lyricism, and includes interviews with Steven Spielberg, Danny Glover, Quincy Jones, Howard Zinn, Gloria Steinem, Sapphire, and Walker herself.
2/10 Independent Lens Spies of Mississippi at 9 pm
This film tells the story of a secret spy agency formed by the state of Mississippi to preserve segregation during the 1950s and ’60s. Granted broad powers, this commission investigated citizens and organizations in attempts to derail the civil rights movement
2/6 The March at 9 pm
Witness the compelling and dramatic story of the 1963 March on Washington, where Dr. Martin Luther King gave his stirring “I Have a Dream” speech. This watershed event in the Civil Rights Movement helped change the face of America. The film reveals the dramatic story behind the event through the remembrances of key players such as Jack O’Dell, Clarence B. Jones, Julian Bond and Andrew Young. Supporters and other testimonials of the March include Harry Belafonte, Diahann Carroll, Roger Mudd, Peter Yarrow and Oprah Winfrey, in addition to historians, journalists, authors and ordinary citizens who joined some 250,000 Americans who thronged to the capital on that momentous day to peacefully demand an end to two centuries of discrimination and injustice. Other notable figures featured in the film include Clayborn Carson, Edith Lee Payne, Joyce Ladner and Rachell Horowitz. Denzel Washington narrates. Also repeats on February 10 at 10 pm.
2/13 Independent Lens More Than A Month at 9 pm
An African-American filmmaker is on a cross-country campaign to end Black History Month. Through this tongue-in-cheek and thought-provoking journey, the film investigates what the treatment of history tells us about race and equality in a “post-racial” America.
2/20 Independent Lens Soul Food Junkies at 9 pm
Baffled by his dad’s reluctance to change his traditional soul food diet in the face of a health crisis, filmmaker Byron Hurt sets out to learn more about this culinary tradition and it’s relevance to black cultural identity. The African American love affair with soul food is deep-rooted, complex, and in some tragic cases, deadly. This film puts this culinary tradition under the microscope to examine both its benefits and consequences. Hurt looks at the socioeconomics of predominantly black neighborhoods, where it can be difficult to find healthy options and wonders if soul food has become an addiction in his community.
2/27 A Reason To Dance at 9 pm … An Arts In Context Special
As a mother, teacher and dancer, China Smith is on a quest to spread awareness about the mixed nature and diversity of the African diaspora through contemporary dance. Her company, Ballet Afrique, employs a synthesis of ballet and modern blended with Afrocentric undertones to articulate the human condition and spirit through the unbounded art form of dance. As Smith wrestles with the business aspect of sharing her art as well as the uphill battle against cultural expectations and the cultural stereotypes of ballet, she continues to cement herself as an indelible and essential part of the dance scene.
KLRU Q will also be offering special programs for Black History Month. KLRU Q is broadcast channel 18.3. It is also available to digital cable subscribers of Grande on 284 and Time Warner on 255.
Ernest J. Gaines: Louisiana Stories at 6 pm
Author and Louisiana native Ernest J. Gaines gave an immortal voice to the people of his early life through his tales of the old South. Ernest J. Gaines: Louisiana Stories is a memory-filled journey from the land of dirt roads, magnolias and majestic oak trees to San Francisco and back again. Gaines’ reminisces about growing up on a plantation and reflects on a successful career which has spanned more than 40 years.
Underground Railroad: The William Still Story at 7 pm
This program tells the story of William Still, one of the most important yet unheralded individuals of the Underground Railroad. The film details the accounts of black abolitionists, who had everything at stake as they helped fugitives follow the North Star to Canada.
Whispers Of Angels: A Story Of The Underground Railroad at 7:59 pm
This documentary recounts the story of the critical Eastern Line of The Underground Railroad and its role in the 19th century anti- slavery movement in America.
Long Shadows: The Legacy Of The American Civil War at 9 pm
Long Shadows explores the ways in which the echoes of the Civil War can still be felt in American society: from politics to economics, from civil rights to foreign policy, from individual to collective memory, from South to North to West. It is a film about the nature of History in our national and personal lives–the past as prologue.
Education Of Harvey Gantt at 10:30 pm
On January 28, 1963, a young black man from Charleston named Harvey Gantt enrolled at Clemson College, making him the first African American accepted to a white school in South Carolina. The Education Of Harvey Gantt tells this pivotal, yet largely forgotten, story of desegregation.
Colored Frames at 6 pm
Colored Frames reflects on the last 50 years in African-American art by exploring the influences, inspirations and experiences of black artists.
Highwaymen: Legends Of The Road at 7 pm
This new documentary tells the story of a unique art world phenomenon that took root in the mid-20th century in the Jim Crow South. They were an unlikely group of black landscape painters that emerged from the American South in the 1950s and 60s. Segregation locked them out of selling their works in white owned art galleries. So, the artists took to the road to sell their paintings.
Black Kungfu Experience at 8 pm
The Black Kungfu Experience introduces kungfu’s African-American pioneers, men who challenged convention and overturned preconceived notions while mastering the ancient art.
Music And Message Of Curtis Mayfield And The Impressions at 9 pm
The Music And Message Of Curtis Mayfield And The Impressions tells the incredible story of a great artist and one of the most important R&B groups of all time. One of the few musicians to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame more than once, Curtis Mayfield remains a music icon.
Hines Farm Blues Club at 10 pm
During the late 1950s and throughout the 1960s, Hines Farm – in a rural community outside of Toledo, Ohio – was the location of one of the premier blues clubs in the United States, featuring musicians such as John Lee Hooker, Freddie King, Bobby “Blue” Bland and B.B. King. The club featured a “who’s who” of blues and jazz entertainers, and served as a cultural nexus for local African-Americans. The Hines Farm Blues Club is a tribute to this legendary blues mecca and a ” sentimental journey” through the African-American music scene of the era.