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WTTW Press Room

For Immediate Release
January 30, 2006

Featuring artists and arts programs from around the state, supported by the Illinois Arts Council

The arts magazine series continues its sixth season on WTTW11 with a new installment on Friday, February 10 at 9:30 p.m. repeating Sunday, February 19 at 12:30 p.m.

Chicago, January 30, 2006 - WTTW11 is pleased to announce the next installment in the current season of its arts magazine series Arts Across Illinois.  This special series of original programming devoted to the work of individual artists, arts organizations, and community groups is supported by the Illinois Arts Council (IAC), and is made possible through the support of the office of Governor Rod Blagojevich and the Illinois General Assembly.  The IAC, chaired by Shirley R. Madigan, is a state agency of Illinois dedicated to providing financial and technical assistance to Illinois artists, arts organizations, and community organizations that present arts programming.

Illinois is a state rich in culture, traditions, and diversity. The arts play a major role in enriching and inspiring our communities, as this special program illustrates. In three prime-time half-hour magazine programs, Arts Across Illinois visits numerous working artists and performing groups. A one-hour live entertainment special titled CenterStage, featuring performances by a variety of other artists, will air in June (date TBD).

This new installment of Arts Across Illinois premieres Friday, February 10 at 9:30 p.m., repeating on Tuesday, February 14 at 1:00 a.m., Sunday, February 19 at 12:30 p.m., and Monday, February 20 at 3:30 a.m. The program, focusing on the immigrant experience reflected in the arts, is hosted by Chicago Tonight's Phil Ponce. Fawn Ring, who also hosts the Artbeat segments on Chicago Tonight, serves as correspondent. Featured are:

Island Life Each year the spirit of Puerto Rico comes alive at what has become the largest Puerto Rican event in the Midwest, the Cuatro Festival, featuring the ten-stringed guitar that is a cultural symbol of the island.

Made in Japan Take a group of traditional Japanese Taiko drummers, combine them with avant-garde jazz musicians from Chicago's South Side, and you'll have an amazing music mix of distant cultures. The mix master is bassist Tatsu Aoki, an artistic ambassador who bridges these two worlds through his band, Miyumi Project, and the annual Asian American Jazz Festival.  

Disappearing Memories  Filmmaker Silvia Malagrino returns to her native Argentina to learn more about the disappeared -- thousands of college students, intellectuals, and political activists, who simply vanished under a repressive regime in the 1970's.

Exile on Main Street Iraqi novelist Mahmoud Saeed tells the story of life inside one of Saddam Hussein's prisons in the award-winning and disturbing novel, Saddam City.

Beardstown Fiesta Arts Across Illinois travels to Beardstown for the annual Mexican Independence Day Festival, talking to residents as well as performers from the Mexican Folkloric Dance Company of Chicago about this changing community.

In addition to being broadcast in Chicago, this program will be offered on public television stations throughout the state and on city cable systems, to encourage Illinois residents to explore and enjoy the wide array of visual and performing arts opportunities made available with the support of the Illinois Arts Council.

Arts Across Illinois is an original production of WTTW11.  This series is produced by Andrea Guthmann; executive producer is Fawn Ring.  More information on Arts Across Illinois is available at www.wttw.com.

Arts Across Illinois is made possible through the generous support of the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency committed to the cultural, educational, and economic growth of the diverse people and communities of our state through the support and encouragement of artists and the arts.


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