NPT Presents Special Programming on Thursday Nights

PrintOver the coming weeks, NPT will broadcast a number of programs that examine our nation’s history of political and racial tensions so that we might better understand the events of today. “Through engagement with these topics, we seek to enrich the lives of everyone who calls Nashville home,” said Beth Curley, NPT’s president and CEO. On Thursday nights, Aug. 11 through Aug. 18 and Sept. 8 through Oct. 13, NPT will pair an episode of the second series of Eyes on the Prize with a documentary about a related issue.

Thursday, Aug. 11, at 8 p.m. Eyes on the Prize: The Time Has Come (1964-1966)
The second series of this seminal chronicle of the civil rights era begins in the mid-1960s, as the fabric of the traditional movement changes with the rise of the Black Power movement. Malcolm X takes nationalism to urban streets as a younger generation of black leaders listens.

Thursday, Aug. 11, at 9 p.m. Independent Lens: Let the Fire Burn
On May 13, 1985, a longtime feud between the city of Philadelphia and controversial radical urban group MOVE came to a deadly climax. By order of local authorities, police dropped military-grade explosives onto a MOVE-occupied row house. It was only later discovered that authorities decided to “let the fire burn.” Using archival news coverage and interviews, filmmaker Jason Osder brings to life one of the most tumultuous and largely forgotten clashes between government and citizens in modern American history, one that ended with the deaths of 11 people (including five children) and the destruction of 61 homes.

Thursday, Aug. 18, at 8 p.m. Eyes on the Prize: Two Societies (1965-1968)
The Kerner Commission finds that America is becoming “two societies, one black, one white, separate and unequal.”

Thursday, Aug. 18, at 9 p.m. Freedom Riders: The Nashville Connection
Nashville veterans of the 1961 Freedom Rides recall their role in the landmark event of the civil-rights era in this 2011 panel discussion moderated by journalist John Seigenthaler.

Thursday, Sept. 8, at 8 p.m. Eyes on the Prize: Power! (1966-1968)
The call for Black Power takes various forms across communities. In Cleveland, Carl Stokes wins election as the first black mayor of a major American city. The Black Panther Party, armed with law books and guns, is born in Oakland.

Thursday, Sept. 8, at 9 p.m. Vel Phillips: Dream Big Dreams
The story of civil rights leader Vel Phillips, now in her 90s, who became the first African-American judge in Wisconsin and the first woman, and African American, in the nation elected to executive office in state government.

Thursday, Sept. 15, at 8 p.m. Eyes on the Prize: The Promised Land (1967-1968)
Martin Luther King Jr. stakes out new ground for himself and the fragmenting civil rights movement.

Thursday, Sept. 15, at 9 p.m. Independent Lens: Through a Lens Darkly: Black Photographers and the Emergence of a People
Thomas Allen Harris’ critically acclaimed documentary presents photographic portrayals of African Americans by African Americans spanning the advent of the medium to the present day.

Thursday, Sept. 22, at 8 p.m. Eyes on the Prize: Ain’t Gonna Shuffle No More (1964-1972)
A call to pride and a renewed push for unity galvanize black America. Olympic champion Cassius Clay challenges America to accept him as Muhammad Ali. The National Black Political Convention tries to create a unified response to growing repression against the movement.

Thursday, Sept. 22, at 9 p.m. Independent Lens: American Denial
The film uses Gunnar Myrdal’s innovative research into the Jim Crow-era racism as a starting point for a look at how unconscious biases affect race relations in the U.S.

Thursday, Sept. 29, at 8 p.m. Eyes on the Prize: A Nation of Law? (1968-1971)
Black activism is increasingly met with a sometimes violent and unethical response from local and federal law enforcement agencies. At New York’s Attica State Prison, an inmate takeover leaves 43 men dead – four killed by inmates, 39 by police.

Thursday, Sept. 29, at 9 p.m. Frontline: Prison State
With unprecedented access, Frontline investigates the impact of mass incarceration in America. Around 2.3 million people are behind bars in the U.S. today, but a disproportionate number come from a few city neighborhoods, and in some places the concentration is so dense that states are spending millions of dollars annually to lock up residents of single blocks. “Prison State” examines one such community, Louisville’s Beecher Terrace housing project, and follows the lives of four residents as they move in and out of custody, while Kentucky tries break that cycle and shrink its prison state.

Thursday, Oct. 6, at 8 p.m. Eyes on the Prize: The Keys to the Kingdom (1974-1980)
Anti-discrimination legal rights gained in past decades by the civil rights movement are put to the test. In Boston, some whites violently resist a federal court school desegregation order. The Bakke Supreme Court case challenges affirmative action.

Thursday, Oct. 6, at 9 p.m. Frontline: Separate and Unequal
Sixty years after the Supreme Court declared separate schools for black and white children unconstitutional, Frontline examines the comeback of segregation in America. The film focuses on Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where a group of mostly white parents are trying to form their own city with its own separate school district, leaving behind a population of black students. Through this battle, Frontline shows the growing racial divide in American schools and the legacy of Brown v. Board of Education.

Thursday, Oct. 13, at 8 p.m. Eyes on the Prize: Back to the Movement (1979-Mid-80s)
Power and powerlessness. Pummeled by urban renewal, a lack of jobs and police harassment, Miami’s black community explodes in rioting. In Chicago, an unprecedented grassroots movement triumphs. Harold Washington becomes Chicago’s first black mayor.

Thursday, Oct. 13, at 9 p.m. POV: 15 to Life: Kenneth’s Story
Does sentencing a teenager to life without parole serve society? Following a Florida man who received four life sentences at age 15, this eye-opening film reveals a justice system that routinely condemns young Americans to die in prison.

Click to see our full schedule.

Programming Offers Historical, Cultural Look at the Olympics

It’s that time again. The Olympic team uniforms have been revealed (and critiqued), the first athletes have arrived in Rio and Olympic tie-in campaigns are well underway. But if you’re still seeking context for these Games, tune to NPT beginning this weekend for a look at historical, cultural and even gastronomic aspects of the Summer Olympics.

View of a Rio beach, from Get Ready to Rio! with Chef Hubert Keller

View of a Rio beach, from Get Ready to Rio! with Chef Hubert Keller

Get Ready to Rio! with Chef Hubert Keller, is a four-part cooking and travel series set in the Summer Olympic host city. Chef Keller meets with chefs and locals to learn about traditional and innovative Brazilian dishes, while also showcasing Rio de Janeiro’s breathtaking scenery. The series airs on NPT Saturdays, July 30 through August 20, at 1 p.m. You can also watch Get Ready to Rio! on NPT2, Wednesdays at 10 a.m., August 10 through 31.

Tuesday, August 2, at 7 p.m. The opening ceremony of the Olympics doubles as a high-tech branding opportunity for the host country and includes a dramatic lighting of the Olympic flame. We’re all familiar with the torch relay leading up to the ceremony; the tradition began with the 1936 Summer Olympics held in Berlin, Germany. Those Olympics introduced much of the now-familiar pageantry, but there was also a sinister side to those Olympics. The Nazi Games – Berlin 1936 uses newly declassified documents and rarely seen archival footage to expose the darker story of the Berlin Games.

Tuesday, August 2, at 8 p.m. Everyone loves an underdog and in the 1936 Olympics, the American rowing team was just that. Boys of ’36: American Experience tells the story of the  team’s unexpected gold-medal performance and the obstacles they overcame in life as well as in sports. This new documentary is based on the best-selling book by Daniel James Brown.

Tuesday, August 2, at 9 p.m. Women competed for Olympic boxing medals for the first time during the 2012 London Games. Claressa “T-Rex” Shields won that first gold medal at age 17, but as the coming-of-age documentary T-Rex: Her Fight for Gold shows on Independent Lens, her toughest competition may come outside the ring. Shields is defending her medal in the 2016 Rio Games.

Thursday, August 4, at 8 p.m. After legendary boxer Muhammad Ali died this spring, many of the remembrances included footage that showed what an unusual a fighter he was. Other stories examined forgotten chapters in his rise from obscure Louisville kid to Olympic champion to icon. Independent Lens: The Trials of Muhammad Ali looks at Ali’s 1960s battle to overturn the prison sentence he received for refusing induction into U.S. military service during the Vietnam War.

Thursday, August 4, at 9:30 p.m. Jesse Owens: Enduring Spirit looks at the athlete’s long association with Ohio State University from the days of his record-shattering performances on the school’s track team to well after his retirement from competition.

Thursday, August 4, at 11 p.m. The modern Olympics had its darkest moment on Sept. 5, 1972, when 11 Israeli athletes were taken hostage and eventually killed by Palestinian terrorists during the Munich Games. Munich ’72 and Beyond, is a new documentary about those horrifying events and the development of a Munich monument to the slain Olympians.

Friday, August 5, at 9 p.m. Niko von Glasow would seem to be the perfect choice to make a documentary about the 2012 London Paralympics. But the disabled filmmaker had no interest in sports nor the Games – until he took the assignment and got to know the athletes profiled in My Way to Olympia on POV.

Friday, August 12, at 9 p.m. It’s not quite the Olympics, but for the senior athletes featured in POV’s Ping Pong, participating in the Over 80 World Table Tennis Championships is a chance to show off their combined 703 years of experience. Their stories are inspiring and poignant; one competitor, for example, received a diagnosis of only one week to live, while another uses the sport as a respite to dementia.

Find our full programming lineup at

NPT, Tennessee’s Public Media Stations Welcome CPB Board to State

Photo by Susan Adcock

CPB president and CEO Patricia Harrison, NPT’s Beth Curley, Gov. Bill and Crissy Haslam, and members of the CPB’s Board of Directors at the Tennessee Executive Residence

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting’s Board of Directors held its quarterly meeting here in Nashville on June 27 at the Hermitage Hotel.

A reception was held that evening at Tennessee’s Executive Residence for the state’s 12 public media television and radio stations. Gov. Bill Haslam and first lady Crissy Haslam welcomed the media representatives, members of their respective boards, community partners and donors.

The evening began with remarks by NPT’s president and CEO Beth Curley; Nashville Public Radio’s president and CEO Rob Gordon; the Corporation for Public Broadcasting’s president and CEO Patricia de Stacy Harrison; and CPB board chair Elizabeth Sembler. NPT board chair Mike Koban introduced Gov. Haslam, who then delivered an entertaining address that shared anecdotes about Tennessee history and the governor’s residence.

Photo by Susan Adcock

Kathy Mattea performs during a reception for Tennessee public media stations.

Grammy-winning recording artist Kathy Mattea, who is the spokesperson for NPT’s Aging Matters series, talked about the most recent documentary, Aging Matters: Living with Alzheimer’s and Dementia, which premiered later that night on NPT. Mattea then performed two songs, finishing with “Where’ve You Been?,” a song co-written by her husband songwriter Jon Vezner and Don Henry. The song was inspired Vezner’s grandparents, a long-married couple who in their later years lived on separate floors of a nursing home before a poignant reunion. Mattea’s moving performance brought tears to many in the room.

The CPB board then issued a proclamation expressing its deep appreciation to the public media stations of Tennessee for their service to the people of the state. In addition to NPT, the stations honored were Nashville Public Radio/WPLN-FM; Chattanooga’s WTCI-TV and WUTC-FM; Cookeville’s WCTE-TV; Cordova’s WKNO-TV and WKNO-FM; Johnson City’s WETS-FM; Knoxville’s WETP-TV, WUOT-FM and WDVX-FM; and Martin’s WLJT-TV.

“NPT is honored that the CPB board recognizes the efforts and accomplishments of NPT and our fellow Tennessee public media stations in providing educational, informative and entertaining programming to our respective audiences,” said NPT’s Beth Curley. “We are also looking forward to sharing an overview of NPT’s original productions and community engagement activities with CPB board and staff.”

On Tuesday, June 28, NPT and WPLN gave presentations about their work. In a town hall format moderated by NPT producer LaTonya Turner and interspersed with video segments, NPT’s community partners discussed their involvement on NPT’s Aging Matters, American Graduate, Children’s Health Crisis, Citizenship Project, Next Door Neighbors, Tennessee Civil War 150, and Veterans Coming Home projects. Contributing to the discussion in NPT’s Studio A were representatives from Alignment Nashville, Conexión Américas, Harpeth Hills Church of Christ, Meharry Medical College, Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools, Nashville Islamic Center of Nashville, the Tennessee Civil War National Heritage Area, Tennessee State University, and the YWCA of Nashville. A question-and-answer session followed the testimonials.

Photo by NPT staff.

NPT’s presentation to the CPB Board of Directors.

Nashville Public Radio’s Rob Gordon introduced WPLN’s part of the program, which included presentations by the radio station’s news director Blake Farmer and reporter Emily Siner, as well as local attorney and public media supporter David Ewing.


Photos by Susan Adock and NPT staff.

NPT’s Appraisal Day 2016 Reveals, Confirms Treasures

NPT hosted another fun, successful Fine Arts and Antiques Appraisal Day event this year. Held at the Factory at Franklin on June 25, the event raised more than $37,000 to support NPT’s educational, cultural and civic programming. Twenty appraisers were on hand to offer verbal assessments of furniture, silver, weaponry, musical instruments and other items. Brown & Brown Insurance Co. provided attendees with complimentary bottles of water and a chance to win a Fitbit. Two people won free admission via Now Playing Nashville and 10 NPT viewers purchased in-home appraisals during televised pledge specials leading up to the event.

Intriguing pieces appeared right from the start, among them an unusual rocking chair with a sleigh-like appearance. Selma Paul of Selma Paul Appraisal & Estate Services pulled out a flashlight for a closer look at the applied carving on the piece. “Have a seat,” she said to S.D. (Robin) Sinclair of Sinclair Appraisals and Consulting, with whom she was sharing an appraisal table. “It’s a perfect fit,” Sinclair quipped. Sinclair and Paul surmised that the piece is a convalescence chair likely designed for a woman and that could not only soothe the patient by rocking, but could also tilt back to place the sitter in a horizontal position.

S.D. (Robin) Sinclair at NPT's Appraisal Day 2016

S.D. (Robin) Sinclair at NPT’s Appraisal Day 2016

Tilting the chair back on unsuspecting friends was a favorite prank of their children, confirmed Franklin’s Mat and Pat Hughes. Originally part of a pair, the rocker was appraised at $500 and is believed to date from the 1850s.

There are always surprises at NPT’s Appraisal Day; some good, some bad. For Lisa and Bobby Keen, the news was good. At the last minute, the couple decided to bring a $20 auction purchase they were using as a pool fence decoration. Not anymore. The elongated wooden carving of a face is 19th-century Polynesian and worth an estimated $5,000 to $8,000.

Lisa and Bobby Keen at NPT's Appraisal Day 2016

Lisa and Bobby Keen at NPT’s Appraisal Day 2016

This was the Keens’ first time at NPT Appraisal Day and they made it a family affair by bringing along their sons, Jacob and Mason, who brought a small collection of vintage board games ‒ including an English “Sherlock Holmes” edition of Clue ‒ sourced from an antebellum home in Franklin. Though possessing a certain cool factor, the games were deemed to be of no great monetary value, while the painting the family brought was of indeterminate value due to an unrecognizable artist’s signature.

Another family’s paintings were easier to appraise. The three works by Texas artist Everett Spruce were brought in by his granddaughter, Phyllis Feener of Mt. Juliet, who came to Appraisal Day with her husband, Stan. Appraiser John Case of Case Antiques Inc. pored over the paintings before accessing their value at between $6,000 and $16,000 per painting.

Everett Franklin Spruce was considered to be one of the first American Scene Painters, a regionalist who specialized in depicting the Texas Hill Country and West Texas landscapes, particularly the area included in Big Bend National Park. His use of color and textured brush strokes show the influence of expressionism. Spruce’s works can be found in the collections of several museums, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Dallas Museum of Art and the DeYoung Museum in San Francisco.

On the other end of the spectrum, a painted elephant tusk turned out to be merely a faux tusk with appliqued decoration and thus worth around $50, about what the owner paid for it. It’s just as well ‒ were it real ivory it would be illegal to sell it.

Other appraisers present at the event were Charlie Clements, Clements Antiques (Chattanooga); Chas Clements, Clements Antiques (Chattanooga); Mel Covington, Berenice Denton Estate Sales & Appraisals (Nashville); Mike Cotter, Back in Time Rare Books (Jacksonville, Fla.); Rick Crane (Knoxville); Berenice Denton, Berenice Denton Estate Sales & Appraisals (Nashville); Sarah Campbell Drury, Case Antiques Inc., Auctions & Appraisals (Nashville); Kirsten Rabe Smolensky, Minerva Appraisal, LLC (Brentwood); Joe Spann, Gruhn Guitars (Nashville); Sam Holden, Pickle Road Appraisers (Nashville); Mike Mouret, Nashville Coin & Currency, Inc. (Nashville); Len De Rohan, Case Antiques Inc. Auctions & Appraisals (Knoxville); Joe Rosson, Joe Rosson Estate Sales (Knoxville); Sara Stessel, Chartreuse Consultants (Nashville); J.T. Thompson, Lotz House Civil War Museum (Franklin); Mike Walton, Walton’s Antique Jewelry (Franklin); and Julie Walton Garland, Walton’s Antique Jewelry (Franklin).

What will next year’s Appraisal Day turn up? Scour your attic and basement and save the date for Saturday, June 24, 2017. Hope to see you there!

NPT Receives $70,000 Nissan Foundation Grant for Next Door Neighbors Project

nissan foundation logo

Nashville Public Television announced today that it is a 2016 recipient of a Nissan Foundation grant. The grant will help fund NPT’s Next Door Neighbors project, which aligns with the Nissan Foundation’s mission of promoting the value of cultural diversity and building inclusive communities.

Next Door Neighbors began in 2008 and, through documentaries and video shorts, aims to shed light on Nashville’s status as a new destination city for refugees and immigrants and to explore the rich diversity of people now calling Middle Tennessee home. The most recent documentary, Next Door Neighbors: Becoming American, premiered June 23 on NPT.

“We are grateful for Nissan’s generous support of NPT’s Next Door Neighbors project which shares the cultures, struggles, sacrifices and successes of our immigrant and refugee communities with the greater Middle Tennessee community,” said Beth Curley, NPT’s president and CEO. “With Next Door Neighbors, NPT has helped foster a growing embrace of diversity while highlighting the many ways that new immigrants are contributing to Nashville’s growing economy and vibrant cultural life. We are honored to be selected as one of the leading culturally diverse and relevant programs in a community that serves as a home to Nissan’s U.S. operations.”

2016 marks the 10th time NPT has received a grant from the Nissan Foundation, and it is one of 27 recipients to be selected this year. In its 24-year history, the Foundation has awarded more than $9.3 million to more than 100 nonprofit organizations across the United States.

“The Nissan Foundation is proud to support NPT’s mission to enrich people’s lives and open doors to new ways of understanding our neighbors and the world we live in,” said Scott Becker, president of the Nissan Foundation. “Diversity is a core value of Nissan. Thirty-eight percent of Nissan’s U.S. customers are ethnically diverse, the highest among major automakers in the U.S.”

About the Nissan Foundation: Established in 1992, the mission of the Nissan Foundation is to build community through valuing cultural diversity. The Nissan Foundation is part of Nissan North America’s commitment to “enrich people’s lives” by helping to meet the needs of communities throughout the U.S. through philanthropic investments, corporate outreach sponsorships, in-kind donations and other charitable contributions.

About Nissan North America: In North America, Nissan’s operations include automotive styling, engineering, consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing, distribution and manufacturing. Nissan is dedicated to improving the environment under the Nissan Green Program and has been recognized annually by the U.S Environmental Protection Agency as an ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year since 2010. More information on Nissan in North America and the complete line of Nissan and Infiniti vehicles can be found online at and, or visit the U.S. media sites and

Celebrate Independence Day 2016 with NPT

Capitol Fourth Capitol Night 2016

A Capitol Fourth, the annual Independence Day concert, anchors NPT’s holiday programming again this year with a live broadcast on July 4. But getting an early start to the Fourth of July holiday is practically a summer tradition, so NPT’s Independence Day programming kicks off June 30.

Here’s a complete rundown of festive or patriotic-themed programming airing on NPT over the next couple of weeks as we celebrate our country’s 240th birthday.

Thursday, June 30, at 8 p.m. NPT’s original production Nashville WWII Stories chronicles the experiences of Middle Tennessee’s World War II veterans and the wartime contributions of those on those home front.

Thursday, June 30, at 9:30 p.m. This spring NPT hosted a town hall event for veterans and civilians as part of the Veterans Coming Home public media initiative. Bridging the Civilian/Military Divide, the broadcast version of that discussion, explores ways to recognize veterans and military families for their service while moving beyond stereotypes.

Monday, July 4, at 7 p.m. A Capitol Fourth will be broadcast live from the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol with an encore presentation immediately afterward at 8:30 p.m. This year’s concert features Middle Tennessee resident and Olympic figure skating legend Scott Hamilton leading a special salute to the 2016 U.S. Summer Olympic and Paralympic teams, along with host Tom Bergeron and guests Smokey Robinson; Kenny Loggins; retired Army Gen. Colin L. Powell; Gavin DeGraw; Amber Riley; Cassadee Pope; Alisan Porter; Jackie Evancho; Yolanda Adams; Sutton Foster; the cast of Broadway musical On Your Feet!; and Christopher Jackson (George Washington) of Broadway smash Hamilton.

Monday, July 4, at 11 p.m. The holiday would not be complete without a showing of 3,2,1 Fireworks, a behind-the-scenes look at pyrotechnics and the Washington, D.C., fireworks show.

Tuesday, July 12, at 7 p.m. The White House: The Inside Story is coda to the Independence Day holiday and precursor to PBS’ prime-time coverage of this year’s political conventions. With unprecedented access, this two-hour tour of the fabled residence includes interviews with President Obama and former President Jimmy Carter; comments by Michelle Obama and three former first ladies; and insight from White House staff.

Find our full programming lineup at

NPT’s ‘Aging Matters: Living with Alzheimer’s & Dementia’ Premieres June 27

Am Alzheimers Mantle TW

An estimated 5 million people in the U.S. are living with some form of dementia. Aging Matters: Living with Alzheimer’s and Dementia, the seventh documentary in Nashville Public Television’s NPT Reports: Aging Matters series, examines the impact these diseases are having on individuals, families and communities.

Aging Matters: Living with Alzheimer’s and Dementia premieres Monday, June 27, 2016 at 9 p.m. on NPT. The documentary highlights personal stories of people who are living with dementia and includes comments from their care partners and insight from leading experts in dementia. The documentary also examines the heavy burden of the costs associated with the disease ‒ whether financial, physical or psychological ‒ and looks at innovative ways of meeting the challenges of dementia care.

Aging Matters Alz eventA packed and rapt audience watched an advance screening of the documentary recently at FiftyForward Knowles and then participated in a discussion featuring panelists Quiteka “Teka” Moten, manager of programs and education, Alzheimer’s Association; Sally Wood, who has a family history of Alzheimer’s disease and is currently living with mild cognitive impairment (MCI); Dr. William Petrie, director of Vanderbilt University Medical Center’s outpatient geriatric psychiatry clinic; and John Mansfield, whose late mother attended FiftyForward’s Adult Day Services. Though many poignant and sobering points came up, there were also moments of humor and examples of resilience.

Aging Matters: Living with Alzheimer’s and Dementia was produced by Mary Makley and is her third documentary in the series. Makley previously produced Aging Matters: The New Old Age, and Aging Matters: End of Life. Makley was also executive producer and producer of NPT’s award-winning Children’s Health Crisis documentary series.

The NPT Reports: Aging Matters series is hosted by Grammy-winning singer and songwriter Kathy Mattea. Aging Matters: Living with Alzheimer’s and Dementia is made possible by the generous support of Cigna-HealthSpring, The West End Home Foundation, The HCA Foundation and the Jeanette Travis Foundation. Additional support provided by the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee and Jackson National Life Insurance Company.

Additional broadcast times for Aging Matters: Living with Alzheimer’s and Dementia are below; the documentary will also be available for online viewing on our website,

  • Wednesday, June 29, at 9 a.m. on NPT2
  • Friday, July 8, at 9 p.m. on NPT
  • Thursday, June 30, at 2 p.m. on NPT2
  • Thursday, July 14, at 11 p.m. on NPT
  • Saturday, July 23, at 9 p.m. on NPT2
  • Sunday, July 24, at 5 p.m. on NPT2

About Aging Matters:
NPT Reports: Aging Matters is a major initiative designed to open a community-based conversation about what older citizens in Middle Tennessee need to optimize their quality of life and what the community needs to do to prepare for a coming explosion in our aging population. Over the course of several years, NPT has focused on issues such as caregiving, finances, end-of-life issues, dementia and Alzheimer’s through documentaries, televised town halls or panel discussions, Aging Matters updates, community engagement conversations, a project website, interactive online screenings and DVD distribution.

‘Bare Feet with Mickela Mallozzi’ Dances into Music City Sunday, June 26

Mickela Mallozzi Nashville photo by Christin Sites

Mickela Mallozzi dances with Champion Buck Dancer Thomas Maupin, and his Champion Banjo Player grandson, Daniel Rothwell. Photo by Christin Sites

By Jessica Turk
Assistant Program Manager, NPT

Bare Feet with Mickela Mallozzi is a 30-minute travel TV series highlighting traditional dance and music culture from around the globe. Emmy® Award-winning host and producer, Mickela Mallozzi, began the series as a way to combine her two passions in life: travel & dance. From rediscovering her family’s roots in Southern Italy to dancing the tango on the main stage in Buenos Aires, the series covers Mickela’s adventures as she takes her camera around the world to follow dance in the lives of everyday people around the world.

Tune in Sunday, June 26, at 1:30 p.m., when Mickela turns her travel lens on her adopted home of Nashville. You’ll see familiar sights and discover hidden gems here in Music City as Mickela tries everything from line dancing, to modern ballet, to old-time buck dancing.

NPT is the presenting station for Bare Feet, so over this past year I’ve worked with Mickela on distributing her show to public television stations across the country through American Public Television. The series has come a long way since 2008 when Mickela began her journey to bring it to television. In the early days, she filmed the shows with a selfie stick or asked bystanders to film her as she danced in the street.

I sat down with Mickela recently to discuss the roots, success, and future of the series over lunch at Sunflower Café on a day marvelously devoid of summer heat.

A professional dancer and trained musician, Mickela said she loves to dance and the exuberance that comes through onscreen is her natural self. “I love to dance. It’s all genuine; it’s not fake. I think from the feedback I get from viewers, they feel like they’re with me,” she said. “Whether the camera was there or not I would still be doing it.”

Mickela said bringing the show to NPT and other public television stations was also a natural fit. “I ended up exactly where I wanted the show to be and where I believe it was always meant to be. For an audience that values not just interesting cultural content but things that are fun, too,” she said.

Though she would be the first to tell you she’s made many mistakes along the way, Mickela also said she’s learning all the time. “I’ve been blessed in the sense [that] I’ve also surrounded myself with people that know what they are doing,” she said.

Mickela’s following her passions and experiencing the world one dance at a time, but does she have any regrets or is there anything she would have done differently to make things go smoother? “If I had had the money to just throw at people to do these things for me, I wouldn’t have learned to make it,” Mickela said. “I think I have a knack for really connecting with people on a level that makes them feel comfortable enough to talk to me on camera. And that’s just something I learned to do over the years doing it by myself with a selfie stick and a camera.”

Bare Feet with Mickela Mallozzi airs Sundays at 1:30 p.m. on Nashville Public Television. Click here to find our complete programming schedule.

NPT’s ‘Next Door Neighbors: Becoming American’ Documentary Premieres June 23



Across the United States, mid-sized cities like Nashville are experiencing unprecedented growth in their international populations. Together these communities are redefining the traditional international city on a smaller local scale. Nashville Public Television’s Next Door Neighbors series of documentaries looks at the challenges faced and the contributions made by people who have come from other countries to make their home in Nashville and Middle Tennessee.

Next Door Neighbors: Becoming American, the ninth documentary in NPT’s award-winning series, premieres Thursday, June 23, at 8 p.m. The film will then be available for viewing online at

The 30-minute program shares the stories of four individuals who faced resettlement in the U.S. to escape the atrocities of war and the burden of poverty.

They are: Sisavanh Pouthavong Houghton, an artist and MTSU professor who barely escaped war-ravaged Laos as a young girl and now makes arts that reflects her journey; Brendali Menjivar, who survived violence and poverty in El Salvador; and Eh and Zahraa, classmates at John Overton High School from Burma and Iraq, respectively, who are now balancing American cultural norms with those of their families and homelands.

“That first generation of immigrant students have to enter into the new American culture, yet keep those ties,” says Gini Pupo-Walker, Conexión Américas senior director of education policy and strategic growth, in the documentary.

Through these stories of pursuing the American dream, Next Door Neighbors: Becoming American examines how age, education, family and culture affect one’s ability to succeed in the United States.

NDN BecomingAmerican titleNext Door Neighbors: Becoming American was produced by Shawn Anfinson and Ed Jones, both of whom have previously produced long-form and short projects in NPT’s Next Door Neighbors and Next Door Neighbors: Storytellers series.

NPT’s Next Door Neighbors: Becoming American is made possible by the generous support of The Nissan Foundation.

Additional broadcast times for Next Door Neighbors: Becoming American are below; the documentary will also be available for online viewing on our website,

  • Monday, June 27, at 8 a.m. on NPT2
  • Tuesday, June 28, at 1 p.m. on NPT2
  • Monday, July 4, at 11:30 p.m. on NPT
  • Saturday, July 16, at 9 p.m. on NPT2
  • Sunday, July 17, at 5 p.m. on NPT2

Corporation for Public Broadcasting Board Meets in Nashville

CPB_bug_logoThe Corporation for Public Broadcasting’s Board of Directors will meet here in Nashville on Monday, June 27, 2016, from 1:30 to 4:35 p.m. CDT.

CPB is a private, nonprofit corporation created by Congress in the Public Broadcasting Act of 1967.

CPB’s mission is to ensure universal access to non-commercial, high-quality content and telecommunications services. It does so by distributing more than 70 percent of its funding to more than 1,400 locally owned public radio and television stations, including Nashville Public Television and Nashville Public Radio here in Middle Tennessee.

“NPT is honored that the CPB board has chosen to have their quarterly meeting here in Nashville,” said Beth Curley, NPT’s president and CEO. “We are excited for CPB president and CEO Pat Harrison, the board members and CPB staff to see our thriving city and to share with them an overview of NPT’s original productions and community engagement projects, among them our Next Door Neighbors and Aging Matters series.”

CPB is the steward of the federal government’s investment in public broadcasting and the largest single source of funding for public radio, television, and related online and mobile services.

On the draft agenda for the Nashville meeting:

  • Approval of Minutes
  • Chair’s and Directors’ Remarks
  • President’s Report to the Board
  • Legislative Update
  • Approval of Minutes (executive session)
  • Update on Radio Interconnection (executive session)
  • Report on CPB’s Budget Request to Office of Management and Budget for FY 2020 General Appropriation (executive session)
  • Resolution: Authorization to Submit CPB’s Budget Request to OMB for FY 2020 General Appropriation
  • Resolution: Authorization to Submit CPB’s Budget Request to OMB for Public Radio Interconnection
  • Future Agenda Items


With the exception of the executive sessions, the public may attend and listen to these meetings in the Performing Arts Suite of the Hermitage Hotel, 231 6th Ave. N., Nashville, Tenn.

If you have questions about the upcoming CPB meeting in Nashville, please contact CPB at (202) 879-9600 or contact NPT at (615) 259-9325.