Look what's coming to Blue Ridge PBS!
American Conscience: The Reinhold Niebuhr Story
Friday, April 21 at 9:00pm
Examine the career and global impact of renowned American-born theologian Reinhold Niebuhr, who became a voice of conscience to a country reaching the pinnacle of its economic and political power. Reinhold Niebuhr explored fundamental concepts such as human nature, power and justice in his writings. As the Great Depression gripped America in the 1930s, Niebuhr rocked the liberal Christian community with the publication of Moral Man and Immoral Society, which challenged the idea of inherent progress and justice in history.
Through archival photos, recordings and interviews with his daughter, former students, The New York Times writer David Brooks and civil rights icon Andrew Young, the documentary also explores Niebuhr's influence and impact on numerous leaders, including Martin Luther King, Jr., President Barack Obama, and former President Jimmy Carter. With revealing insights from academic experts who discuss his life and influence, the stories capture Niebuhr's seminal role in American life. Perhaps the clearest indication of the scope of his appeal is the popularity of his Serenity Prayer, most prominently used by Alcoholics Anonymous.
Discover the incredible characters and epic stories that have shaped America’s past and present. Television’s most-watched history series, acclaimed by viewers and critics alike, has been honored with every major broadcast award.
Monday-Wednesday, April 10-12 at 9:00pm - The Great War
Drawing on the latest scholarship, including unpublished diaries, memoirs and letters, “The Great War” tells the rich and complex story of World War I through the voices of nurses, journalists, aviators and the American troops who came to be known as “doughboys.”
The series explores the experiences of African-American and Latino soldiers, suffragists, Native-American “code talkers” and others whose participation in the war to “make the world safe for democracy” has been largely forgotten. “The Great War” also explores how a brilliant PR man bolstered support for the war in a country hesitant to put lives on the line for a foreign conflict; how President Woodrow Wilson steered the nation through three-and-a-half years of neutrality, only to reluctantly lead America into the bloodiest conflict the world had ever seen, thereby transforming the United States into a dominant player on the international stage; and how the ardent patriotism and determination to support America’s crusade for liberty abroad led to one of the most oppressive crackdowns on civil liberties at home in American history.
It is also a story of little-known heroism and sacrifice (including the deadliest battle in American history) that would leave more than 53,000 men dead on the battlefield and more than 60,000 dead from disease. American fatalities would come at a critical time in the war, but they would be dwarfed by a cataclysm of violence that would ultimately claim 15 million lives.
Tuesday, April 18 at 8:00pm – Grand Coulee Dam
In the wake of the Great Depression, Grand Coulee played a central role in transforming the Northwest; it was the largest hydroelectric power producing facility in the world when it was completed in March 1941. Featuring the men and women who lived and worked at Grand Coulee, native people whose lives were changed, historians and engineers, this film explores how the tension between technological achievement and environmental impact hangs over the project’s legacy.
April 25 at 8:00pm – Command and Control
The long-hidden story of a deadly 1980 accident at a Titan II missile complex in Damascus, Arkansas, “Command and Control” exposes the terrifying truth about the management of America’s nuclear arsenal and shows what can happen when weapons built to protect us threaten to destroy us. Featuring the minute-by-minute accounts of those who were on the scene, the film reveals the unlikely chain of events that caused the accident and the feverish efforts to prevent the explosion of a ballistic missile carrying the most powerful nuclear warhead ever built by the United States.
Austin City Limits
Saturdays at 9:00pm
Explore the best original music — including contemporary and traditional rock, blues, country, folk, soul and worldbeat — in uninterrupted full concerts recorded live in Austin, Texas.
April 1 – Ed Sheeran / Valerie June
Sheeran lights up hits “Sing!” and “A-Team,” while June burns through material from her acclaimed LP Pushin’ Against a Stone.
April 8 – The Avett Brothers / Nickel Creek
ACL showcases modern Americana with the Avett Brothers and Nickel Creek. The Avett Brothers perform tunes from their LP Magpie and the Dandelion, while Nickel Creek highlights their comeback album, A Dotted Line.
April 15 – Spoon / White Denim
Austin’s best alternative rock shines with Spoon and White Denim. Top 10-seller Spoon highlights its album They Want My Soul, while White Denim features its LP Corsicana Lemonade.
April 22 – Cassandra Wilson
Celebrate Billie Holiday with acclaimed jazz singer Cassandra Wilson, as she performs “Strange Fruit,” “Don’t Explain, “Good Morning Heartache” and other Holiday classics from the tribute album Coming Forth by Day.
April 29 – Natalia Lafourcade / Grupo Fantasma
Enjoy the contemporary Latin sounds of Natalia Lafourcade and Grupo Fantasma. Mexican superstar Lafourcade performs songs from her Grammy-winning album Hasta la Ruiz and powerhouse Latin funk orchestra Grupo Fantasma dazzle with irresistible grooves.
Call The Midwife – NEW SEASON!
Sundays at 8:00pm
It’s now 1962 and times are changing. As they strive to help mothers and families cope with the demands of childbearing, disability, disease and social prejudice, the Poplar medics must make choices – and fight battles – of their own.
April 2 – Episode 1
The team reunites, but all is not well when a change of management shocks Nonnatus House to the core. Sister Mary Cynthia’s health takes an unexpected turn as mental illness threatens to derail her.
April 9 – Episode 2
The Nonnatus team prepares for the birth of a baby they know may not survive. Shelagh shows her mettle when she is first on the scene after an explosion in the docks. Sister Ursula continues to ruffle feathers with her unpopular decisions.
April 16 – Episode 3
A Chinese first-time mother faces an unexpected crisis, while new legislation and Sister Ursula cause serious problems for Shelagh and Dr. Turner.
April 23 – Episode 4
An expectant mother buckles under the strains of pregnancy. As Tom provides pastoral care, he reveals why this case has touched him more than most.
April 30 – Episode 5
Nonnatus House welcomes a new recruit, Nurse Valerie Dyer. A vulnerable young man captures the hearts of Fred and Violet, while the whereabouts of Sister Mary Cynthia causes distress among the team.
The Crowd and the Cloud
Wednesdays at 7:00pm
A documentary series showcasing the power of Citizen Science in the Digital Age. Host, former NASA Chief Scientist Waleed Abdalati, takes viewers on a global tour of the projects and people on the front lines of citizen science and crowdsourcing. By observing their environment, monitoring neighborhoods, and collecting information about the world around them, citizens are helping professional scientists advance knowledge while speeding up new discoveries and innovations.
April 5 - Even Big Data Starts Small
20,000 volunteers across the U.S. measure precipitation: when extreme weather hits, emergency managers turn their data into life-saving alerts. Armchair mappers worldwide update information used by first responders after the Nepal earthquake. A new project, EyesOnALZ, enlists the crowd to speed up research on Alzheimer’s disease. DIY enthusiasts from Public Lab map the BP oil spill with kites, balloons and cameras and continue to watchdog pollution. The crowd, using mobile tech and the cloud contribute to science that saves lives.
April 12 - Citizens + Scientists
Citizen scientists track air and water pollution at fracking sites in windswept Wyoming and five other states, using simple but science-based techniques developed by the “Bucket Brigade.” On idyllic East Coast trout streams, volunteers from Trout Unlimited monitor water quality regularly, generating baseline data that will prove invaluable in the event of future pollution events. Community members connected with professional researchers to tackle Flint’s drinking water crisis and now the same is happening in Philadelphia and other cities. In China, citizens use government data and a unique mobile app to report environmental crimes. When citizens and scientists partner, it’s a win-win for all concerned.
April 19 - Viral vs. Virus
Sensors on asthma inhalers generate real-time maps of environmental dangers to help patients, physicians and disease detectives in Louisville, Kentucky. Street knowledge was also crucial in a historic medical breakthrough: John Snow’s mapping of cholera fatalities in 19th century London. In West Oakland, California, citizens confront air pollution and rising asthma rates by collecting traffic data. Local ordinances are changed and everyone breathes easier. Can apps and maps combat globalized diseases in a warming world? Stories of citizen science fighting mosquito-borne diseases with apps and crowd-sourced data in Barcelona, Houston and New Orleans. In Kenya, Medic Mobile develops smart but low-cost software to give simple phones powerful capabilities to help community health workers improve maternal and child health.
April 26 - Citizens4Earth
Counting birds for more than 100 years generates data on a changing climate and there’s an app for that: eBird. Surfer science using smart tech tracks ocean acidification and coastal temperatures in the Smartfin project, a recent startup. We spend “A Year in the Life of Citizen Science” including a Thanksgiving Monarch Butterfly Watch in California. Seasonal change is tracked by Latina and Native American teens in springtime in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and horseshoe crabs are surveyed in summer by retirees along mid-Atlantic coasts. In Uganda, World Bank economists and local partners generate data for sustainable development. The far-ranging potential of “Citizen Science in the Digital Age.”