The swinging tunes will be flowing from TV sets across Wisconsin this weekend when Wisconsin Public Television airs a series of great music specials from the era of cool.
It all starts at 7 p.m. Saturday with Great Performances: Tony Bennett Duets II. The legendary jazz crooner teams up with contemporary performers like Lady Gaga, Andrea Bocelli, John mayer, k.d. lang and the late Amy Winehouse in her last recording session. Watch a few moments from the show now:
Then at 9, stay tuned for the premiere of Under the Streetlamp. This talented vocal group is made up of four former “Jersey Boys” cast members. Enjoy their vocal acrobatics on a collection of hits from the 40s, 50s and 60s. Intrigued? Here’s a taste of what they have to offer:
Then, come back at 6 p.m. Sunday for a dose of The Chairman of the Board. Enjoy Frank Sinatra’s Concert for the Americas — a 1982 show from the Dominican Republic featuring all of Sinatra’s biggest hits. Here’s one of those big songs from the show — “The Best is Yet to Come.”
Garry Denny is Director of Programming for Wisconsin Public Television. He is responsible for the acquisition, scheduling and delivery of programming services on WPT, and each month, he gives you the inside scoop on the best new programs in his post “A Look Ahead.” This month, he’s got a lot of music on the brain.
Great Performances “The Phantom of the Opera Live at the Royal Albert Hall” When it comes to programs that we broadcast as part of our fundraising drives, I usually find that for my taste it’s pretty much a mixed bag. For example, I’m not a practitioner of yoga (too hot and sweaty) so I would not be inclined to watch Easy Yoga for Easing Pain if it weren’t my job to do so. On the other hand, I’ve always been a big fan of our big, lush stage spectaculars like “Les Misérables in Concert.” For me, “The Phantom of the Opera” is just such a show. It’s grand, sweeping and visually stunning, and has so many great songs. Andrew Lloyd Webber is a funny looking gent, but he sure can write some amazing music. This lavish 25th anniversary presentation features special appearances by Michael Crawford and Sarah Brightman and should be considered a must see of great television. Great Performances “The Phantom of the Opera at the Royal Albert Hall” premieres 7 p.m. Sunday, March 4. Visit the WPT Schedule to see a clip of Ramin Karimloo and Sierra Boggess in “The Phantom of the Opera.”
Live from the Artists Den “Adele” On Sunday, February 12, I got a very jarring reality check while watching the 54th Annual Grammy Awards on CBS. It turns out that I’m just not as hip or popular culture aware as I once believed. Why? Because until that night I had no idea who Adele is – what she looks like, sounds like or even the names of her songs. Her amazing live performance of “Rolling in the Deep” that night on the Grammys quickly rid me of my ignorance. Frankly, it was just plain awesome, and even more entertaining because of the way in which the lyrics call out her jackass ex-boyfriend. Pure genius. On Live from the Artist Den Adele performs for a much smaller audience in Santa Monica, but she’s all there in great vocal form. She has an amazing voice with a great presence – truly a joy to watch and listen to. Trust me, you want to see this! Live from the Artist Den “Adele” premieres 8:30 p.m. Thursday, March 8. For now, enjoy this gorgeous clip from the program in which Adele performs “Someone Like You.”
Frank Sinatra: Concert for the Americas Speaking of great singers you can’t go wrong with Ol’ Blue Eyes. I’ve been a Sinatra fan for a very long time and have been lucky enough to see him twice in concert. Both times were extraordinary experiences. In 1982, at the age of 66, Frank Sinatra performed an outdoor show in the Dominican Republic where he rocked the house. If the amphitheater had doors he would have blown them off. Sinatra was at his best that night performing his signature hits like “I Get a Kick Out of You,” “I’ve Got You Under My Skin,” “The Way You Look Tonight” (my favorite) and the iconic “Theme from New York, New York.” With a big band and orchestra behind him Sinatra was in fine form vocally, and he just had such incredible stage presence. They didn’t call him Chairman of the Board for nothing. Frank Sinatra: Concert for the Americas premiers 6 p.m. Sunday, March 11.
Watch Antiques Roadshow at 7 p.m. Mondays on Wisconsin Public Television.
Antiques Roadshow is one of the most popular programs on American public television. That’s no different in Wisconsin. The show has visited Milwaukee and Madison on numerous occasions and have uncovered the interesting stories around the state’s hidden artifacts along the way.
Antiques Roadshow fans can enhance the on-air experience with the show’s robust website. Remember the angry letter from last year’s Madison episode that Frank Sinatra sent to Chicago newspaper columnist Mike Royko? Now, you can read it online.