Virtual PBS TCA Press Tour Winter 2022

January 18 - 20, 2022

Event times are in the local location timezone

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Greetings - 

The Virtual PBS TCA Press Tour is happening online January 18, 19 and 20.

For up-to-date information straight from the virtual Press Sessions, follow PBS Communications on Twitter using @PBS_PR and #TCA22.

Please note this is a private, invitation-only event for registered press.

Interested in pre-screening full episodes of upcoming programs? Head to the PressRoom Video page.

After broadcast, full-length PBS programs, updated daily, are available for viewing on

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Press Contacts

Mary Vertucci

Contact with any Press Tour-related technical or access questions

Tricia Moore

Contact with any Press Tour-related technical or access questions

Jeremy Gaines

Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications, Contact with PBS press-related questions

Phil Piga

PBS Press Tour, Contact with any general Press Tour questions


Tuesday, January 18, 2022, 1:00 p.m. ET Press conference panelist: Paula Kerger, President & CEO

NATURE "American Horses"

Wednesday, January 19, 2022, 3:15 p.m. ET American horses are icons. Following the popularity of “Equus: Story of the Horse,” NATURE turns its cameras to the uniquely American horse breeds that helped shape our nation, such as the Mustang, Appaloosa, Morgan and Quarter Horse. Each breed has a unique story to tell, and each story is rooted deep in the American experience. Grounded in historical moments and told by charismatic people, “American Horses” traces the emergence of these remarkable breeds and the role they played in the development of our country. This episode is part of NATURE’s 40th anniversary season. Press conference panelists: Bill Pullman, narrator | Eric Bendick, Emmy-winning producer | Fred Kaufman, series executive producer | Mike Miller, Wyoming rancher and breeder of Quarter Horses | Tara Miller, Wyoming rancher and breeder of Quarter Horses


Wednesday, January 19, 2022, 3:55 p.m. ET ARTHUR, the longest running children’s animated series on television, is celebrating its 25th anniversary with four new episodes (and more) premiering in February, culminating in a much-anticipated ending that gives a glimpse into what’s in store for the future of these beloved characters. Based on the best-selling books by Marc Brown, the award-winning series, games and video shorts continue to engage audiences with heartfelt and humorous stories about family, friends, and the challenges of growing up. ARTHUR offers support and insights, tackling the difficult topics that kids, parents, and educators can face. Guest stars over the years include Congressman John Lewis, Yo-Yo Ma, Idina Menzel, Fred Rogers, Koko Taylor, and Alex Trebek to name just a few. New, upcoming ARTHUR content to be announced. Press conference panelists: Daniel Brochu, voice of “Buster Baxter” | Marc Brown, author and co-executive producer | Carol Greenwald, executive producer | Jodie Resther, voice of “Francine Frensky”


Thursday, January 20, 2022, 1:00 p.m. ET The fan-favorite drama inspired by Jane Austen’s final, unfinished novel is back! After the first season’s finale left viewers hanging in suspense, the story continues with its high-spirited heroine, Charlotte Heywood (Rose Williams), returning to the picturesque coastal resort of Sanditon and the companionship of her friend Georgiana Lambe (Crystal Clarke). What adventures, scandals, intrigue and above all else — romance — await Miss Heywood this season? Press conference panelists: Belinda Campbell, executive producer | Crystal Clarke, actor, “Georgiana Lambe” | Ben Lloyd-Hughes, actor, “Alexander Colbourne” | Susanne Simpson, series executive producer | Tom Weston-Jones, actor, “Colonel Francis Lennox” | Rose Williams, actor, “Charlotte Heywood” | Justin Young, screenwriter

American Anthems

Thursday, January 20, 2022, 2:00 p.m. ET From NBCUniversal Syndication Studios and Academy and Emmy Award-winning studio Believe Entertainment Group, this new six-part series celebrates the inspiring efforts of individuals facing extraordinary circumstances with surprise songs written and performed by country music’s biggest stars. Each episode follows a different featured artist, including Grammy Award winner Jennifer Nettles, as they turn a local hero’s transformative story into a powerful and deeply personal anthem. These heroes are then surprised with a once-in-a-lifetime performance of the original song at an intimate event in their honor. Reminding viewers that opportunity can be found in adversity, AMERICAN ANTHEMS delivers messages of hope and compassion one song at a time. Press conference panelists: Wes Edwards, series director, two-time Country Music Association Award winner | Dan Goodman, series executive producer, co-founder of Believe Entertainment Group | Jennifer Nettles, series participant, Grammy Award winner


Thursday, January 20, 2022, 2:40 p.m. ET A three-part documentary series, THE GREAT MUSLIM AMERICAN ROAD TRIP follows a millennial Muslim American couple on a cross-country journey along historic Route 66 as they explore Islam’s deep roots in America. Making more than a dozen stops between Chicago and Los Angeles, rapper Mona Haydar and her husband Sebastian Robins meet with authors, entrepreneurs, medical students, performers and others to better understand the centuries-long Muslim experience in the United States. This series highlights the diversity of Muslims across the nation and their contributions to history and culture, weaving a colorful story of what it means to be a Muslim in America today. Press conference panelists: Hossam Aboul-Magd, director of photography | Mona Haydar, series host | Alex Kronemer, series director and producer | Sebastian Robins, series host

NOVA "Augmented"

Thursday, January 20, 2022, 3:20 p.m. ET NOVA follows the dramatic personal journey of Hugh Herr, an MIT biophysicist who creates brain-controlled robotic limbs. At age 17, Herr’s legs were amputated due to frostbite after he and a friend got lost in a snowstorm and nearly died while climbing New Hampshire’s Mount Washington. Frustrated by the primitive prosthetic legs he was given, Herr set out to remedy their design. While still a teenager, he crafted outsize prosthetic limbs that made him an even more accomplished climber than before the accident. Someday, the bionic innovations pioneered by Herr and his colleagues might even redefine what it means to be human; meanwhile, his story presents a powerful tale of innovation and the transformational power of personal tragedy. Premieres Wednesday, February 23, 9/8c Press conference panelists: Dr. Hugh Herr, mountain climber, double amputee, and MIT biophysicist who creates brain-controlled robotic limbs | Jim Ewing, first-ever patient to undergo the “Ewing Amputation” procedure at Brigham and Women’s Faulkner Hospital | Dr. Shriya Srinivasan, researcher in Dr. Herr’s Biomechatronics group at the MIT Media Lab | Matthew Orr, director | Chris Schmidt, series co-executive producer


Thursday, January 20, 2022, 4:00 p.m. ET PBS presents a musical celebration of the Broadway songwriting duo, Lerner & Loewe, featuring music from their most popular shows including “My Fair Lady,” “Gigi,” “Camelot,” “Paint Your Wagon” and “Brigadoon.” The program includes performances by Broadway and television celebrities like Tony® nominee Jenn Colella, Aisha Jackson, Michael Maliakel, Aaron Lazar, Jose Llana, Sean Thompson and more with Maestro Luke Frazier and The American Pops Orchestra. Press conference panelists: Luke Frazier, arranger and conductor of the American Pops Orchestra | Jenn Colella, Broadway actor and singer, Tony-nominee for “Come From Away” | Aisha Jackson, Broadway actor and singer, “Frozen” and “Waitress” and “Once Upon a One More Time” (tentative) | Jose Llana, Broadway actor and singer, “The King & I’ and “Rent” | Michael Maliakel, Broadway actor and singer, currently starring in the title role of “Aladdin” (tentative)


Tuesday, January 18, 2022, 1:45 p.m. ET An uplifting cooking competition that celebrates the multiculturalism that makes American food unique and iconic. Hosted by Alejandra Ramos, the new eight-part series will give talented home cooks from different regions of the country the opportunity to showcase their beloved signature dishes and compete to win the national search for “The Great American Recipe.”From family favorites passed down through generations, to internationally influenced recipes that are quickly becoming mainstays of American cuisine, the series mixes camaraderie with competition, revealing rich personal stories and the inspiration behind the contestants’ favorite recipes. Judges Leah Cohen, Tiffany Derry and Graham Elliot will bring their professional insights and deep culinary knowledge to encourage and support the contestants along the way. Press conference panelists: Leah Cohen, judge, chef and owner of New York’s Pig & Khao Restaurant | Tiffany Derry, judge, chef and founder of Tiffany Derry Concepts | Graham Elliot, judge, award-winning chef and author | Steve Humble, chief content officer, VPM| Jilly Pearce, series executive producer | Alejandra Ramos, host, food writer and lifestyle contributor


Tuesday, January 18, 2022, 2:25 p.m. ET This production marks The Metropolitan Opera’s return for their 2021-22 season following the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown. Grammy Award–winning jazz musician and composer Terence Blanchard’s adaptation of Charles M. Blow’s memoir tells a powerful and profound story about a young man’s journey to overcome a life of trauma and hardship. The Met’s first production of a new opera by a Black composer featuring a libretto by filmmaker Kasi Lemmons. “Fire Shut Up in My Bones” is co-directed by James Robinson and Camille A. Brown (2020’s GREAT PERFORMANCES AT THE MET “The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess”), with Brown also choreographing, becoming the first Black director to create a mainstage Met production.  Press conference panelists: Terence Blanchard, Oscar®-nominated and six-time Grammy®-winning trumpeter and composer| Charles M. Blow, author, “Fire Shut Up in My Bones” | Peter Gelb, general manager, Metropolitan Opera | David Horn, series executive producer | Kasi Lemmons, librettist

AMERICAN EXPERIENCE "Riveted: The History of Jeans"

Tuesday, January 18, 2022, 3:05 p.m. ET “Riveted: The History of Jeans” is the fascinating and surprising story of the iconic American garment. Worn by everyone from presidents to supermodels, farmers to rock stars, they’re more than just a pair of pants — America’s tangled past is woven deeply into the indigo fabric. From their roots in slavery to the Wild West, youth culture, the civil rights movement, rock and roll, hippies, high fashion and hip-hop, jeans are the fabric on which the history of American culture and politics are writ large. Premieres Monday, February 7, 9/8c Press conference panelists: Tanisha C. Ford, history professor, The Graduate Center, CUNY, and author of Liberated Threads: Black Women, Style, and the Global Politics of Soul | Cameo George, series executive producer | Emma McLendon, fashion historian, former associate curator, Costume at The Museum at FIT, and author of Denim: Fashion’s Frontier | Anna Lee Strachan, producer, writer, director


Tuesday, January 18, 2022, 3:45 p.m. ET San Francisco’s Lowell High School, one of the best public schools in the country, draws high achievers from across the city into a fiercely competitive universe. Nearly 70% are Asian Americans. Follow seniors as the pressure intensifies to impress admissions officers at elite universities with their report cards, test scores and overall awesomeness. The students proudly own their identity as nerds and tell their stories with candor and humor. The film asks, how do these kids define their identities outside of acceptance letters? Premieres Monday, May 2. Press conference panelists: Debbie Lum, director and producer | Donna Schmidt, parent of former Lowell student and film subject | Richard Shapiro, former Lowell physics teacher and film subject | Lois Vossen, series executive producer | Ian Wang, former Lowell student and film subject


Tuesday, January 18, 2022, 4:20 p.m. ET THE LIBRARY OF CONGRESS GERSHWIN PRIZE FOR POPULAR SONG honors living musical artists whose lifetime contributions in the field of popular song exemplify the standard of excellence associated with George and Ira Gershwin, by promoting the genre of song as a vehicle of cultural understanding; entertaining and informing audiences; and inspiring new generations of musicians. In making the selection for the prize, the Librarian of Congress consulted leading members of the music and entertainment communities, as well as curators from the Library’s Music Division, American Folklife Center and Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division. The Gershwin name is used in connection with the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song courtesy of the families of George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin. GERSHWIN® is a registered trademark of Gershwin Enterprises. Press conference panelists: Lionel Richie, 2022 honoree | Tim Swift, producer and CEO of Bounce


Wednesday, January 19, 2022, 1:00 p.m. ET Directed and executive produced by Ken Burns, written by Dayton Duncan, and produced by David Schmidt and Ken Burns. Scientist, inventor, writer of enduring epigrams of homespun wisdom, creator of America’s first subscription library and one of its most prestigious universities, Benjamin Franklin was (with the possible exception of Thomas Jefferson) the nation’s most complex and compelling Founding Father—and certainly its wittiest. In our two-part, four-hour film we will follow his colorful and extremely consequential life, peering into the man behind the bifocals he invented and to a great extent using his own words to get to know him and his times. Premieres Monday and Tuesday, April 4 and 5 Press conference panelists: Ken Burns, filmmaker | Erica Armstrong Dunbar, PhD, professor of history, Rutgers University | Walter Isaacson, author | Mandy Patinkin, narrator


Wednesday, January 19, 2022, 1:45 p.m. ET A new six-part primetime series hosted by New York Times bestselling author (How to Be Black), podcast creator and host (How to Citizen with Baratunde) and outdoor enthusiast Baratunde Thurston. The series follows him on an adventure-filled journey to explore the diverse array of regions across the U.S. and how those landscapes shape the way Americans work, play and interact with the outdoors. From wilderness pilots flying “below the rim” in Idaho to coal miners turned beekeepers in Appalachia to Black surfers catching waves in Los Angeles, Baratunde introduces viewers to a vivid cast of characters whose outdoor lives are shaped by where they live. AMERICA OUTDOORS reveals a deeper understanding of our passionate yet complicated relationship with the outdoors. Premieres Tuesdays, July 5 through August 9. Press conference panelists: Baratunde Thurston, series host| Michael Rosenfeld, executive producer | Martin Black, series participant | Lori MacNichol, series participant | Dudley Edmonson, series participant

FRONTLINE "Plot to Overturn the Election"

Wednesday, January 19, 2022, 2:35 p.m. ET One year after President Biden's inauguration, more than two-thirds of Republican voters believe his election was illegitimate. The idea that the 2020 election was stolen from Donald Trump is now a defining issue of the Republican Party. Yet the story of how lies about election fraud made their way to the center of American politics has not been fully told. FRONTLINE and ProPublica trace the hidden origins of disinformation about the 2020 election and demonstrate how a handful of people have had an outsized impact on the current crisis of democratic legitimacy in the United States. The film shows how a small team of Trump supporters met in secret to create the core narratives of fraud that Trump would champion from the White House, and it illustrates how the legacy of their campaign goes beyond the January 6th insurrection to the growing right-wing movement to audit the vote in battleground states, alter election law, and elect Republican candidates aligned with their views. Premieres March 29. Press conference panelists: Raney Aronson, series executive producer| Sam Black, writer and producer | A.C. Thompson, FRONTLINE correspondent and ProPublica reporter