Downton Downtown?

Downton Abbey is coming back! Well, sort of. The show isn’t returning but an exhibition based on the beloved series opens in New York next week for a limited engagement. Then the exhibit makes its way across the US, maybe even to your town (I’ve not seen any tour dates but fingers crossed it will come to North Carolina).

Here’s a description based on Masterpiece promotion:

The first-ever fully immersive Downton Abbey experience is coming stateside! Downton Abbey: The Exhibition will make its US debut in New York City on Saturday Nov. 18, before traveling throughout the US. Tickets are now available to purchase at www.downtonexhibition.com. Continue reading

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Bath & Beyond

Did you know that today – May 25 – is TOWEL DAY?

Probably not. Many don’t. But it’s got something to do with the late, great Douglas Adams and his fantastic sci fi comedy The Hitch Hiker’s Guide To The Galaxy (which the BBC made into an excellent series in 1981 and UNC-TV aired shortly thereafter) so I thought I’d pass it along.

“Listen. It’s a tough universe. There’s all sorts of people and things trying to do you, kill you, rip you off, everything. If you’re going to survive out there, you’ve really got to know where your towel is.” – Ford Prefect

Find out more about TOWEL DAY, all you hoopy froods.

Rootle Up!

The crew from Rootle, UNC-TV’s Kids Channel, invites you to join them tomorrow for a live music-filled event that will thrill kids and kids at heart.

Read-a-roo’s Block Party Live takes place tomorrow (March 18) from 10am to 2pm at Northlake Mall in Charlotte and includes live performances by el Sistema inspired youth orchestras Kidznotes, Charlotte Symphony’s Winterfield Youth Orchestra and MusicalMinds NC. In addition to the performances, there’ll be music-themed craft activities, an instrument petting zoo and meet and greets with PBS Kids stars Arthur, DW and Curious George. Of course, everyone’s favorite well-read marsupial Read-a-roo will be on hand as well.

Bring the kids, bring yourselves and bring a love of all things music. The event is free and open to the public so come out and say hi to the Rootle gang!

And Still I Rise

Tuesday night, American Masters presents the first feature documentary about the late author/activist and celebrated North Carolinian Maya Angelou. However, you can catch an advanced screening of this exceptional film this weekend.

UNC-TV was one of four public television stations selected to host a special screening of Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise prior to its national premiere on PBS. The screening will take place Saturday at Wake Forest University and will be followed by a panel discussion. The event is open to the public. Continue reading

Calling All Nerds!

When I was a kid, nerd was an unflattering nickname. Luckily, somewhere along the way, geeky became sexy and nerds where cool again. But there was no reason for it to be a bad thing in the first place since everyone’s a nerd for something. My guess is, if you’re reading this, you’re a nerd for public television – and that’s a good thing.

UNC-TV is throwing a kick-off party for the PBS Nerd Initiative. It’s tonight at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Science in downtown Raleigh. Join us and show your support for NC’s public media network and broadcast service. There’ll be prizes and trivia and photo ops with UNC-TV talent. And it’ll be okay to let your inner nerd out.

The fun begins tonight (January 26) at 7pm at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences (11 W. Jones Street) in Raleigh. Hope you can make it!

The Unforgettable Fair!

The North Carolina State Fair starts up this week in Raleigh and once again UNC-TV will be there with goodies galore and fun for all ages. Stop by and meet our very own Read-A-Roo and a host of other fan favorite characters during Be My Neighbor Day and Read-A-Roo’s Block Party Live. Catch the Rootle Up! World Premiere Video with a special performance by Mr. Steve. Meet some UNC-TV staffers – or even volunteer yourself!

Stop by the UNC-TV Pavilion, located by Dorton Arena, and say “hi” any day during this year’s State Fair – October 13 through 23rd.

Guess Who’s Alan To Town

Masterpiece Mystery! fans know that the dashing and personable Alan Cumming is the current host of the long-running anthology series, joining the ranks of celebrated presenters like Vincent Price and Diana Rigg. What you may not know is that Cumming is a versatile performer who seems to have done everything from Shakespeare to major movie franchises. UNC-TV viewers may have first spotted him in the 1990s special Bernard And The Genie with Lenny Henry (Chef!) and Rowan Atkinson (Mr. Bean). Since then, Cumming has won a Tony Award (Cabaret, 1998), published a bestselling memoir (Not My Father’s Son) and earned multiple Emmy nominations for his role in The Good Wife. His credits are too numerous to mention at this time but, suffice it to say, the man is so capable and accomplished it would be easy to be jealous if he weren’t so engaging and congenial.

All that’s to set up this announcement: the man himself is coming to North Carolina! Yes, Cumming is bringing his one-man show – “Alan Cumming Sings Sappy Songs” – to the Durham Performing Arts Center on April 27, 2017. If you’re interested, tickets go on sale tomorrow (Friday, August 12). Continue reading