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July 20, 2010

Television Specials on New Tennessee PBS Network

Program tells stories of Tennesseans and their unique involvement in the arts

NASHVILLE - - A collaboration between the Tennessee Arts Commission and the Renaissance Center in Dickson, Creative License is a series of television specials that invites viewers to experience individuals like a young African-American from a tough inner city Memphis neighborhood who speaks passionately about his discovery of ballet.. Viewers also meet an artist who paints with a computer, even though she is paralyzed by Lou Gehrig’s disease. These moving stories focus on the human condition and how the arts have changed their lives.

The first three editions of Creative License are scheduled to air statewide on the new Tennessee PBS Network beginning in late July. Each of the one-hour television specials features a collection of inspiring arts-related stories in a magazine-style format. Barry Scott, a well-known playwright and actor, serves as host for the show.  Scott is a member of the Tennessee Arts Commission from Nashville.  

The arts specials have aired previously on many of the state’s PBS stations, but this is the first time the program has been available to a statewide audience through the new Tennessee PBS Network. The Tennessee Channel is a joint effort between all six of Tennessee’s PBS stations to bring the best programming related to life in the state. The Tennessee Channel broadcasts simultaneously throughout Tennessee on each station’s digital channel on Saturdays and Sundays.

Creative License will air July 24, 7 p.m. (CT) and 8 p.m. (ET); July 31, 7 p.m. (CT) and 8 p.m. (ET); and August 7, 7 p.m. (CT) and 8 p.m. (ET). Check local cable listings for the digital PBS station in your area.

“It’s exciting to broadcast the arts specials, produced by Tennesseans about Tennesseans, and to make it available to a statewide audience,” says Justin Harvey, program manager of Nashville Public Television. “With the introduction of The Tennessee Channel, this type of programming will reach a broader audience, allowing us to spotlight the uniqueness and creativity found in our own state.”

Creative License demonstrates the value of the arts in our society and why Tennessee is considered such a creative state. “The arts have made a difference in the lives of individuals and groups featured in these television specials,” says Rich Boyd, executive director of the Tennessee Arts Commission. “In many cases, the arts move lives forward in a more positive direction, and in every case the arts became core to their existence.  It’s great that we can team with the Renaissance Center in telling and sharing these stories with a statewide audience.”

Steve Hall, senior multimedia director at the Renaissance Center, is grateful that Creative License will be broadcast across the state on the new network. “In producing and planning the program, we have traveled across the state, discovering inspiring individuals with such incredible talent. I’m pleased that statewide viewers will get to meet these extraordinary people and learn about their unique relationship to the arts. Each show will be available for viewing at the same time, no matter where the viewer lives in Tennessee.”

Each week the Tennessee Channel features a four-hour block of programs and short subjects produced by public television stations across the state. The Tennessee Channel broadcasts simultaneously throughout Tennessee on each station’s digital channel. The channel is made possible in part by a grant from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. For more information visit: www.tnchannel.org


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