About Jonna Mayberry

I’m the editor of Wisconsin Public Television’s program guide, Airwaves, as well as a publicist. In my free time, you’ll find me thrift shopping, reading the latest memoir or history book, and watching Independent Lens. I run on coffee and puns. Follow me @JonnaMayberry or email me at jonnatha.mayberry@wpt.org.

 

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Your Guide to British Drama Season Premieres

We may have said farewell to Downton Abbey, but British dramas still reign on WPT. March brings new seasons of Grantchester on Masterpiece and Mr. Selfridge on Masterpiece, and April welcomes a new season of Call the Midwife.

Clear your Sunday evenings and make a date with your favorite midwives, vicars and entrepreneurs. View premiere dates and season previews below.

Grantchester on Masterpiece: Season 2
Premieres 8 p.m. Sunday, March 27
Enjoy a new season of adventures, matchmaking and murder with vicar Sidney Chambers and veteran cop Geordie Keating.

Mr. Selfridge on Masterpiece: Season 4
Premieres 9 p.m. Sunday, March 27
See Jeremy Piven in the thrilling final season that dramatizes the climactic battle for the future of London’s iconic department store,
Selfridge & Co.

Call the Midwife: Season 5
Premieres 7 p.m. Sunday, April 3
Rejoin the nurses and midwives for a fifth season. It’s 1961 and Poplar is beginning to feel the winds of social change, along with improvements in housing, sanitation and healthcare.

Saying Farewell to Downton Abbey

As of 10 p.m. Sunday night, the phenomenon known as Downton Abbey is officially over. I’m a Downton fan (see: The Downton Dish), so I spent my weekend trying to squeeze in as much Downton as possible before the finale.

My all-things-Downton weekend included attending Wisconsin Public Television’s A Downton Abbey Farewell fundraising event, held Saturday night at the University Club in Madison. It was so much fun to mingle with fellow fans, dress up in 1920s attire and enjoy Downton-themed food and music. The amazing team that puts the event together really goes all out to give guests the complete Downton Abbey experience, and the excitement was contagious. (View photos from Saturday’s event here).

The show might be over, but our love of Downton Abbey doesn’t have to stop. Check out Masterpiece’s The Downton Abbey Connection to stay connected to your favorite characters, hear from other fans, take Downton-inspired quizzes to find out if you’re a superfan, and more!

Fellow Downton fans: We’ll get through this.

The Downton Dish: Episode 9

A million romances (old and new), butler news, and a new baby! Downton Abbey: The Final Season has been a potpourri of highs and lows, and the series finale was no different. Join us for our final episode of The Downton Dish as we recap the finale’s many developments and reflect on the fates of our favorite characters.

Watch the complete series of “The Downton Dish” here.

The Downton Dish: Special Edition

While a new episode of Downton Abbey won’t be airing this Sunday night — the finale airs 8 p.m. next Sunday, March 6 — we just couldn’t go a whole week without Downton, and luckily, we don’t have to. WPT is airing a Downton Abbey: The Final Season marathon beginning 11 a.m. Sunday. A lot happened this season, so this is the perfect time to catch up on important plot points before the series finale.

We’re also taking this time to reflect on some of our favorite moments from our video series, The Downton Dish. Kait and I have had such a blast recapping each episode of this season. We’ve laughed. We’ve cried. We’ve almost fallen off our chairs (literally). Here are just a few of our favorite clips:

Tom Branson returns —The remix:

Daisy’s at it again:

The hilarious Downton tour:

(Stay tuned: We’ll be back with one final episode of The Downton Dish after the series finale airs on March 6!)

It’s hard to accept the fact that Downton Abbey is almost over, but there’s still time to squeeze in as much Downton as possible. Join us for A Downton Abbey Farewell, 5:30 p.m. Saturday, March 5 at The University Club in Madison! It’s a fundraising event for WPT, and the event will feature Downton Abbey-inspired food and fun, both upstairs and downstairs, as the University Club is transformed into a lavish estate. Kait and I will be there and we’d love to meet you! Get all of the details here.

Dowager Insults: The Complete Collection

If you watch Downton Abbey, you’re likely in awe of the Dowager Countess’ (Maggie Smith) wit. Stubborn wouldn’t even begin to describe Lady Violet, but despite her faults, there’s no doubt that Downton Abbey just wouldn’t be the same without her sharp tongue.

Luckily, Slate Magazine has taken all of the Dowager’s sassiest moments and compiled them into one hilarious video. With only two more episodes to go until Downton Abbey: The Final Season is over (sadly), what better way to prepare to say goodbye than with a reflection on the Dowager’s best moments?

Director Stanley Nelson Visits Madison

Director Stanley Nelson’s work — which includes impactful American Experience documentaries Freedom Summer and Freedom Riders, and the unprecedented upcoming documentary The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution — is important, unrivaled and prolific.

In advance of the Feb. 16 nationwide premiere of The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution, the first feature-length documentary to explore the Black Panther Party in detail, Nelson is taking time out of his busy schedule to visit Madison this week.

While in Madison, Nelson will attend a free screening  at the Madison Central Library, sit down with Wisconsin Public Television Director’s Cut host Pete Schwaba for an exclusive interview about his film, and appear Tuesday, Feb. 9 at 3:15 p.m. on Wisconsin Public Radio’s Central Time.

Needless to say, everyone at WPT is excited to welcome Nelson to the studios, and we hope that you can take advantage of the opportunity to meet this prolific director while he’s here or tune in to one of his interviews. Check out the details of Nelson’s screening and appearances below, and mark your calendars for the premieres of Director’s Cut: Stanley Nelson and The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution Feb. 16 on WPT.

Continue reading Director Stanley Nelson Visits Madison

It’s the First Day of Winter: Celebrate With Virtual Snow!

Today marks the official first day of winter, a harbinger of more chilly, snow-filled weeks, which will eventually melt into slushy days as we prepare for spring. As I write this, the ground is currently devoid of snow here in Madison, which is a boon to holiday travels, but unfortunate for those fond of a white Christmas.

via GIPHY

While we wish we could deliver actual snow to those who want it, virtual snow will have to do. For your daily dose of winter, check out this clip from Wisconsin Life, featuring Eau Claire’s super-talented snow carvers, Jason Anhorn and Steve Bateman.

Each year when Wisconsin winters are at their harshest, the professional artists set out to brighten the barren landscape, spending eight weeks carving blocks of compacted snow into larger-than-life sculptures in Eau Claire’s Boyd Park. I’m left feeling that my feeble attempts at snowmen don’t quite compare …

Celebrate International Tea Day With Violet Crawley

Violet Crawley, avid tea drinker and Dowager Countess of Grantham.

Today is International Tea Day, and what better way to celebrate than with some of Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham’s most witty quips and comebacks? Check out some of my favorites below, and post your own to add to the mix!

Downton Abbey: The Final Season premieres 8 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 3 on Wisconsin Public Television. Continue reading Celebrate International Tea Day With Violet Crawley

2015 Holiday Program Schedule

As we prepare for the first snowflakes to fall, we wanted to share the special holiday-themed programs coming up on Wisconsin Public Television. From Thanksgiving, through New Year’s Day, look to WPT for classic favorites and fresh new holiday treats. Here is a complete list of every holiday program on Wisconsin Public Television.

Tuesday, Nov. 24
6:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. – Wild Kratts “Happy Turkey Day”
5 p.m. – Martha Speaks “Martha’s Thanksgiving, Parts 1 & 2”
7 p.m. – American Experience “The Pilgrims”

Wednesday, Nov. 25
1 a.m. and 9 p.m. – American Experience “The Pilgrims”
6 a.m., 2 p.m. and 4 p.m.– Wild Kratts Creature Christmas
5 p.m. – Martha Speaks “Martha’s Thanksgiving, Parts 1 & 2”

Thursday, Nov. 26 – Thanksgiving
3 a.m. – American Experience “The Pilgrims”
5 a.m. – Sara’s Weeknight Meals “Thanksgiving 101” (Create)
5:30 a.m. – Katie Brown Workshop “Home for the Holidays” (Create)
6 a.m. and noon – Cooking With Julie Taboulie “Thanksgiving Traditions Take a Twist” (Create)
6 a.m. – Wild Kratts Creature Christmas
6:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. – The Jazzy Vegetarian “Giving Thanks” (Create)
7 a.m. and 1 p.m. – Heirloom Meals Thanksgiving (Create)
8 a.m. and 2 p.m. – America’s Test Kitchen “Revisiting Julia Child’s Roast Turkey” (Create)
8:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. – A Home for Chrisy Rost: Thanksgiving (Create)
9:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. –  Steven Raichlen’s Project Smoke “Thanksgiving Comes Early” (Create)
10 a.m. and 4 p.m. – Katie Brown Workshop “Best of the Holidays” (Create)
10:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. – The Farm Holiday Special With Ian Knauer (Create)
11 a.m. – Sara’s Weeknight Meals “Thanksgiving 101” (Create)
11:30 a.m. Katie Brown Workshop – “Home for the Holidays” (Create)

Friday, Nov. 27
Midnight – Cooking With Julie Taboulie “Thanksgiving Traditions Take a Twist” (Create)
6 a.m. and 2 p.m. – Wild Kratts Creature Christmas
9:30 a.m. and noon – Peg + Cat “The Christmas Problem”
11:30 a.m. – Thomas & Friends “Christmas Cheer!”

Saturday, Nov. 28
7 a.m. – Wild Kratts Creature Christmas
3 p.m. – Rick Steves’ European Christmas

Sunday, Nov. 29
7 a.m. – Wild Kratts Creature Christmas
8:30 a.m. – Wild Kratts “Happy Turkey Day”
4:30 p.m. – Libera: Angels Sing Christmas in Ireland

Tuesday, Dec. 1
11:30 a.m. – Thomas & Friends “Coming Home for Christmas”
3:30 p.m. – Odd Squad “Reindeer Games”

Thursday, Dec. 3
7 p.m. – The Three Tenors Christmas

Friday, Dec. 4
9:30 a.m. and noon – Peg + Cat “The Flat Woman Problem/The Hanukkah Problem
9:20 p.m. – Craft in America Holiday (TWC)

Saturday, Dec. 5
1 a.m. – Craft in America “Holiday”
2 a.m. – Silent Night (TWC)
5 a.m. – Thomas & Friends “Tinsel & Trains”
11:30 a.m. – Rick Steves’ European Christmas

Sunday, Dec. 6
9 a.m. – Libera: Angels Sing Christmas in Ireland
1:30 p.m.– Keeping Up Appearances Christmas Specials “1991”

Monday, Dec. 7
5 a.m. – Arthur’s Perfect Christmas
5 a.m. – Sewing With Nancy “Sew Gifts, Make Memories, Part 1” (TWC)
6 a.m. and 4 p.m. – Wild Kratts Creature Christmas
7:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. – Curious George: A Very Monkey Christmas
9 a.m. and noon – Peg + Cat + Holidays
11 a.m. – Super WHY! “Judith’s Happy Chanukah”
11:30 a.m. – Thomas & Friends “Winter Delights”
3:30 p.m. – Odd Squad “Reindeer Games”
5 p.m. – Martha Speaks “Martha’s Holiday Surprise/We’re Powerless”

Tuesday, Dec. 8
5 a.m. – Sewing With Nancy “Sew Gifts, Make Memories, Part 2” (TWC)
Noon – The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About Christmas!

Wednesday, Dec. 9
11 a.m. – Super WHY! “Judith’s Happy Chanukah”
Noon – Peg + Cat “The Flat Woman Problem/The Hanukkah Problem”

Thursday, Dec. 10
4:30 a.m. – Craft in America “Holiday” (TWC)

Friday, Dec. 11
11:30 a.m. – Thomas & Friends “Let it Snow”
8 p.m. and 11 p.m. – Lidia Celebrates America “Home for the Holidays” (TWC)
9 p.m. – Craft in America “Celebration”

Saturday, Dec. 12
Midnight – A Southern Celtic Christmas Concert
Midnight – Craft in America “Celebration” (TWC)
7 a.m. – Curious George: A Very Monkey Christmas
10 a.m. – Rick Steves’ European Christmas (Create)
11:30 p.m. – Vicious “Holiday Special” (TWC)

Sunday, Dec. 13
1:30 p.m. – Keeping Up Appearances Christmas Specials “1993”

Monday, Dec. 14
11 a.m. Super WHY! “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas”
8 p.m. – The National Christmas Tree Lighting 2015

Sunday, Dec. 15
10 p.m. – Craft in America “Celebration”

Wednesday, Dec. 16
9:30 a.m. and noon – Peg + Cat “The Christmas Problem”
10 a.m. – Dinosaur Train “Dinosaurs in the Snow/Cretaceous Conifers”
11:30 a.m. – Thomas & Friends “Tinsel & Trains”
12:30 p.m. – The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About Christmas!

Thursday, Dec. 17
3:30 a.m. – Lidia Celebrates America “Home for the Holidays” (TWC)
4:30 a.m. – Craft in America “Celebration” (TWC)
1 p.m. – O Christmas Tree (TWC)

Friday, Dec. 18
6 a.m. and 4 p.m. – Wild Kratts Creature Christmas
11:30 a.m. – Thomas & Friends “Winter Delights”
5 p.m. – Martha Speaks “Martha’s Holiday Surprise/We’re Powerless”

Saturday, Dec. 19
6 a.m. – Once Upon a Christmas Cheery in the Lab of Shakhashiri 2015
10:30 a.m. – A Chef’s Life Holiday Special
11:30 a.m. – Lidia Celebrates America “Home for the Holidays”
5 p.m. – Green Bay Holiday Pops! (TWC)

Sunday, Dec. 20
5 a.m. – Sid the Science Kid “Sid’s Holiday Adventure”
7 a.m. – Curious George: A Very Monkey Christmas
1:30 p.m. – Keeping Up Appearances Christmas Specials “1994” (TWC)
4 p.m. – The Lawrence Welk Show “Christmas” (TWC)
11 p.m. – Silent Night (TWC)

Monday, Dec. 21
5:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. – Odd Squad “Reindeer Games”
8 p.m. – Christmas With the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Featuring Santino Fontana & the Sesame Street Muppets

Tuesday, Dec. 22
2 a.m. – Christmas With the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Featuring Santino Fontana & the Sesame Street Muppets
1 p.m. – Rick Steves Special “European Christmas” (TWC)

Wednesday, Dec. 23
3 a.m. – Rick Steves Special “European Christmas” (TWC)
12:30 p.m. – The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That! “Reindeer Games/Along Came a Spider”
11 p.m. – Green Bay Holiday Pops!

Thursday, Dec. 24 – Christmas Eve
6 a.m. and 4 p.m. – Wild Kratts Creature Christmas
7 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. – Curious George: A Very Monkey Christmas
9 a.m. – Peg + Cat “The Christmas Problem”
10:30 a.m. – Once Upon a Christmas Cheery in the Lab of Shakhashiri 2015
11:30 a.m. – Peg + Cat + Holidays
Noon – Mr. Stink (TWC)
12:30 p.m. – The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About Christmas!
1 p.m. – The National Christmas Tree Lighting 2015 (TWC)
1:30 p.m. – Curious George: A Very Monkey Christmas
3 p.m. – Odd Squad “Reindeer Games”
5 p.m. – Martha Speaks “Martha’s Holiday Surprise/We’re Powerless”

Friday, Dec. 25 – Christmas Day
5 a.m. – Arthur’s Perfect Christmas
5 a.m. and 11 a.m. – A Chef’s Life Holiday Special (Create)
6 a.m. and 4 p.m. – Wild Kratts Creature Christmas
6:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. – Healthy Heritage Kitchen: Kwanzaa Edition (Create)
7 a.m. – Curious George: A Very Monkey Christmas
7 a.m. and 1 p.m. – Joseph Rosendo’s Travelscope “A San Antonio Christmas” (Create)
7:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. – The Farm Holiday Special With Ian Knauer (Create)
8 a.m. – The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About Christmas!
8 a.m. and 2 p.m. – Alsatian Christmas Table With Chef Hubert Keller “Alsatian Christmas Dinner” (Create)
8:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. – Alsatian Christmas Table With Chef Hubert Keller “Alsatian Christmas Treats” (Create)
9 a.m. Rick Steves Special “European Christmas” (TWC)
9 a.m. and 5 p.m. – Family Travel With Colleen Kelly “Chicago: My Kind of Town for the Holidays” (Create)
9:30 a.m. – Peg + Cat “The Christmas Problem”
9:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. – Katie Brown Workshop “Christmas” (Create)
10 a.m. and  7 p.m. – Christmas With the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Featuring Santino Fontana & the Sesame Street Muppets
10 a.m. – Craft in America “Holiday” (TWC)
10 a.m. and 4 p.m. – Heirloom Meals Christmas (Create)
11 a.m. – Christmas at Belmont
11 a.m. – Lidia Celebrates America “Home for the Holidays” (TWC)
Noon – St. Thomas Christmas: Jubilant Light
Noon – Once Upon a Christmas Cheery in the Lab of Shakhashiri 2015 (TWC)
Noon – Paint This With Jerry Yarnell “Greeting/Christmas Card” (Create)
1 p.m. – Green Bay Holiday Pops!
2 p.m. – Mr. Stink
3 p.m. – Once Upon a Christmas Cheery in the Lab of Shakhashiri 2015
4 p.m. – Wild Kratts Creature Christmas
8 p.m. – Call the Midwife Holiday Special
9:30 p.m. – Vicious Holiday Special

Saturday, Dec. 26
Midnight – Paint This With Jerry Yarnell “Greeting/Christmas Card” (Create)
1 a.m. – Christmas With the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Featuring Santino Fontana and the Sesame Street Muppets (TWC)
2 a.m. – Christmas at Belmont (TWC)
2 a.m. – Steven Raichlen’s Project Smoke “Thanksgiving Comes Early” (Create)
3 a.m. – Tonic Sol-fa Christmas (TWC)
5 p.m. – Once Upon a Christmas Cheery in the Lab of Shakhashiri 2015 (TWC)
5 p.m. – Katie Brown Workshop “New Year’s” (Create)

Sunday, Dec. 27
9 a.m. – Rick Steves Special “European Christmas” (TWC)
11 a.m. – A Chef’s Life “Holiday Special” (TWC)
11 a.m. – Katie Brown Workshop “New Year’s” (Create)
1:30 p.m. – Keeping Up Appearances Christmas Specials “1995” (TWC)

Thursday, Dec. 31 – New Year’s Eve
11 a.m. – Katie Brown Workshop “New Year’s” (Create)
10 p.m. – Live From Lincoln Center “New York Philharmonic New Year’s Eve: La Vie Parisienne”

Your Pets’ Secret Lives

Nature "Pets: Wild at Heart" premieres 7 p.m. tonight.
Nature “Pets: Wild at Heart” premieres 7 p.m. tonight.

I share my apartment with two pets: a longhaired gray tabby named Donna and a shorthaired orange tabby named Harvey. They’re full of personality, fond of food and usually tolerant of my presence. Donna likes to curl up on my lap when she feels like it, and on the rare occasion that Harvey’s not sleeping, he loves to play with his catnip mouse. Continue reading Your Pets’ Secret Lives