CPTV Announces Its “Celebrating Jewish Heritage” Initiative

Release Date: 05/29/2014

CPTV Announces Its “Celebrating Jewish Heritage” Initiative Featuring Special Programming on the Diversity and Richness of Connecticut’s Jewish Heritage

Tune in to CPTV beginning Sunday, June 1

Connecticut Public Television (CPTV) is launching a new initiative entitled “Celebrating Jewish Heritage.” Launching June 1, 2014, the initiative highlights the history, diversity and prominence of Jewish influence and culture in Connecticut and around the world. The presenting sponsor of “Celebrating Jewish Heritage” is Hebrew Health Care, a Hartford HealthCare clinical partner.

“Hebrew Health Care is honored to sponsor this programming series; and we have been an integral part of Greater Hartford’s Jewish Community for more than a century. Our clinical partnership with Hartford HealthCare not only enables us to enhance services and keep the promise we made to our community long ago, but allows us to sponsor events such as this,” remarked Bonnie Gauthier, HHC President and CEO.

Kicking off the initiative on June 1 at 3:30 p.m. is the concert special Ethan Bortnick Live in Concert: The Power of Music. Composer and pianist Ethan Bortnick is the youngest performer to ever headline his own international concert tour. Along with his growing international fame, Ethan studies Hebrew and attends a Jewish day school. He has helped raise funds for over 50 Jewish organizations with his concerts, and cherishes his heritage from his mother, who emigrated from Ukraine and lived in Israel for 18 years. In this concert special, he performs with a 50-piece orchestra, a children’s choir and special guest vocalists, including Damian McGinty of Glee and Celtic Thunder, and Grammy-nominated vocalist Jane Monheit. The show will have a repeat airing on Sunday, June 8 at 2 p.m.

Additional programs slated for the “Celebrating Jewish Heritage” initiative include:

• American Masters – “Mel Brooks: Make a Noise”
Airs on CPTV Saturday, July 19 at 7:30 p.m.; Repeats Sunday, July 20 at 2 p.m.
Journey through Mel Brooks’ early years in the creative beginnings of live television, to the film genres he so successfully satirized, to the groundbreaking Broadway musical version of his first film. Delve into his professional and personal achievements and downfalls through intimate reflections and confessions.

• Great Performances – “Broadway Musicals: A Jewish Legacy”
Airs on CPTV Saturday, August 16 at 7:30 p.m.; Repeats Sunday, August 17 at 2 p.m.
Discover the many Jewish talents who continue to leave their mark on musical theater through some of the timeless performances in American history. Follow filmmaker Michael Kantor as he focuses on Jewish influence on the Broadway musical, combining interviews and performance footage.

• POV – “Koch”
Airs on CPTV Monday, September 22 at 10 p.m.; Repeats Sunday, September 28 at 2 p.m.
Although many New York City mayors have made legendary use of their time in office, few have matched the bravado that Ed Koch brought during his three terms from 1978 to 1989. Neil Barky recounts the legacy of the man New Yorkers either loved or hated, and his contribution as a new Democrat for the dawning Regan era.

• Michael Feinstein at the Rainbow Room
Airs on CPTV Friday, October 31 at 9 p.m.; Repeats Sunday, November 2 at 2 p.m.
Michael Feinstein, “the Ambassador of the Great American Songbook,” commemorates the reopening of the historic Rainbow Room, a legendary Manhattan hotspot. The special includes performances and features choreographed dancers and talented musicians selected from the Big Apple’s finest artists.

• Jerusalem: Center of the World
Airs on CPTV Monday, December 15 at 10 p.m.; Repeats Sunday, December 21 at 2 p.m.
Host Ray Suarez of The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, together with an outstanding roster of scholars, explores the founding of the city, and the birth and convergence of the world's three major monotheistic religions. He lends voice to the key events in the city's history as described in the Hebrew and Christian Bibles, the Talmud, the Hagaddah, the Koran, and the Hadith, taking viewers far beyond the city’s exteriors.

• Israel: The Royal Tour
Airs on CPTV Sunday, January 4 at 7 p.m.; Repeats Sunday, January 11 at 2 p.m.
The latest installment in CBS News Travel Editor Peter Greenberg's "Royal Tour" series gives viewers an all-access tour of Israel, guided by its own head of state, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The Royal Tour journeys to some locations beyond the standard tourist checklist that hold special meaning to Netanyahu, and the history of Israel, giving viewers an insight on Palestinian statehood.

• The Jewish People: A Story of Survival
Airs on CPTV Monday, February 2 at 10 p.m.; Repeats Sunday, February 8 at 2 p.m.
This is the story of Jewish survival. From slavery to the loss of their homeland; from exile to anti-Semitism; from pogroms to near annihilation in the Holocaust, how did they endure while so many other communities have vanished? Hosted by Martha Teichner, Senior Correspondent for “CBS News/Sunday Morning,” The Jewish People: A Story of Survival explores central themes of survival and the achievement of a people.

***Note: Programming for March, April and May 2015 (including programs airing as part of Holocaust Remembrance Day in April 2015) will be announced at a later date.

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