An all-new special episode spotlights art that connects: Go inside the Mill Valley comedy night that's a local institution and a haven for stars like Dana Carvey and Robin Williams. In San Jose, hundreds of professionals and students perform in a show that mixes traditional Chinese dance, music and martial arts with Western ballet. Follow local bluegrass legend Laurie Lewis as she performs and works to mentor new artists. And watch as Ed Drew revives the art of the tin-type while making images of at-risk youth on an organic garden project that's seeking to redefine the image of farming for African Americans.
Spark! Previous Broadcasts
The Ark, Mauleon, and Grisman (Episode #606H)
KQED 9: Wed, Aug 29, 2012 -- 1:30 AM
Spark goes on a musical adventure, exploring Latin Jazz, Bluegrass, and music from the Jewish diaspora. First, climb aboard The Ark, a project created by the Jewish Music Festival. In the basement of a divinity school, nine musicians from the US, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East have six days to compose a groundbreaking new piece of Jewish music. Next, meet pianist and bandleader Rebeca Mauleon, one of the leading ladies of Latin Jazz. Then visit with mandolin master, David Grisman, who blends new jazz and traditional bluegrass to create a thoroughly original sound.
Saxophonist Howard Wiley, Weaver Adela Akers, and other stories (Episode #506)
KQED 9: Tue, Aug 7, 2012 -- 7:30 PM
* Discover the tradition of spiritual music found at Angola State Prison in Louisiana with saxophonist Howard Wiley.
* Spend the day with weaver Adela Akers in her studio as she works with painstaking delicacy.
* Lend an ear to Marc Bamuthi Joseph, who blends spoken word, rap and movement to tell stories drawn from personal experience.
- KQED 9: Sat, Aug 11, 2012 -- 5:30 AM
- KQED 9: Fri, Aug 10, 2012 -- 11:30 PM
- KQED 9: Wed, Aug 8, 2012 -- 1:30 AM
SF Ballet's New Works Festival (Episode #603)
KQED 9: Wed, Aug 1, 2012 -- 1:30 AM
In celebration of its 75th anniversary, the San Francisco Ballet mounted an ambitious festival of new works, ten world premieres by ten choreographers. Spark follows the creation of three of these works by some of the country's most renowned choreographers - Mark Morris, Margaret Jenkins, and Christopher Wheeldon - exploring the new directions they are taking this centuries-old art form.
Morris has enlisted longtime friend Isaac Mizrahi to design the costumes and John Adams to compose the music for his ballet, both collaborators stellar figures in their own fields.
Margaret Jenkins, the highly respected Bay Area choreographer, has members of the Ballet company working in an entirely new way - within her modern dance tradition.
Christopher Wheeldon, heralded as the next Balanchine, blends elements of traditional and classical ballet.