Beefing up PBS’s arts programming

Posted on: March 23, 2010

In Saturday’s (3/20) Wall Street Journal, Terry Teachout writes, “Until recently, it was all but impossible to get anyone at PBS to admit that arts programming on American public television is in decline and has been for years. … Then the big dog barked. Paula Kerger, the network’s president and CEO, gave a speech to Town Hall Los Angeles in January in which she acknowledged, tactfully but frankly, that PBS has fallen down on what many viewers regard as public TV’s Job One.” But Teachout isn’t impressed with the network’s plan for addressing that. “What should PBS be doing instead? For openers, it should air fine-arts programs that encompass the full range of the performing arts. That means not just ‘The Nutcracker’ but ballet and modern-dance masterpieces of all kinds. It means not just ultrafamiliar operas but solo recitals and chamber music. It means not just Broadway musicals but performances of classic and contemporary plays. And these performances should take place not just in New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco but in cities throughout America.”

Posted March 23, 2010