Programming Slate on KCET, PBS SoCal and Link TV in June Spotlights Theater Icons Joe Papp, Terrence McNally, Harvey Fierstein and Alan Cumming; Plus, Programming Addressing LGBTQ+ Youth Mental Health In Ken Burns’‘Hiding in Plain Sight’ and LINK VOICES: ‘Born To Be’
PBS SoCal and KCET, Southern California’s flagship PBS stations, along with national independent satellite network Link TV, announced as part of Pride Month programming the broadcast world premiere of LA: A QUEER HISTORY. The two-part documentary film uncovers the history of how Los Angeles became the forefront of the LGBTQ+ civil rights movement as activists share their groundbreaking stories of resistance in one-on-one interviews and rare archival footage. From artists who helped shape early Hollywood to gay and lesbian organizing and beginning a national Civil Rights Movement, LGBTQ culture and community begins to take shape in the city of Angels. Part One, titled “Culture & Criminalization,” will immediately be followed by Part Two, “Protests and Parades” when the documentary premieres on Wed., June 15 at 8 p.m. on KCET and Thurs., June 16 at 8 p.m. on PBS SoCal.
Additional programming honoring the history and impact of LGBTQ+ individuals includes one new documentary and a rebroadcast from AMERICAN MASTERS that highlight the legacies of two theater legends: Joe Papp and Terrence McNally. While Papp worked to expand public access to the arts as the founder of The Public Theater, and Free Shakespeare in the Park, four-time Tony-winning playwright McNally used the power of the arts to transform society both through his productions and his LGBTQ activism. Both programs include never-before-seen interviews. While Stage and Screen Star Alan Cumming will join beloved British actor and fellow LGBTQ+ advocate Miriam Margolyes to uncover the country of their youth for the new travel seriesMIRIAM AND ALAN: LOST IN SCOTLAND as they take to the road and return to their Scottish roots and motorhome their way through Scotland’s Highlands and into its wildest places.
And moving from the theater to the concert hall, PBS programming in June offers up a music special TRUE COLORS: LGBTQ+ OUR STORIES, OUR SONGS spotlighting a lineup of musical performances from LGBTQ+ artists Indigo Girls, Billy Gilman and Morgxn hosted by Harvey Fierstein.
Additional specials bring historical context to events of injustices like THE LAVENDER SCARE which explores the unrelenting campaign carried out by the federal government to remove employees suspected of being homosexual from government and security positions. While A MURDER IN MONTROSE: THE PAUL BROUSSARD LEGACY follows how LGBTQ+ communities came together following a fatal hate crime, shedding light on civil unrest, legislation for victim’s rights and sparking political activism in the South. There is also the new LINK VOICES documentary “Born To Be” which follows the work of Dr. Jess Tingwhose work is changing the lives of transgender and gender non-binary individuals. Rounding out the month is HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT: YOUTH MENTAL ILLNESS, the two-part film executive produced by Ken Burns confronts issues of stigma, discrimination, awareness, and silence, to help shift public perception of mental health and LGBTQ+ issues today.
Select content slated to air on PBS SoCal, KCET and Link TV during the next month is listed as follows (*schedule subject to change):
AMERICAN MASTERS: “Terrence McNally: Every Act of Life” – Wed., June 1 at 9:30 p.m. on KCET
Explore four-time Tony-winning playwright Terrence McNally’s six groundbreaking decades in theater, from Kiss of the Spider Woman, The Full Monty, Love! Valour! Compassion! and Master Class to Ragtime, The Visit and Mothers and Sons. The film also delves into McNally’s pursuit of love and inspiration throughout his career, LGBTQ activism, triumph over addiction and the power of the arts to transform society.
AMERICAN MASTERS: “Joe Papp in Five Acts” – Fri., June 3 at 9 p.m. on PBS SoCal
Joe Papp, founder of The Public Theater, Free Shakespeare in the Park and producer of groundbreaking plays like Hair, A Chorus Line and for colored girls…, created a “theater of inclusion” based on the belief that great art is for everyone.
TRUE COLORS: LGBTQ+ OUR STORIES, OUR SONGS – Sun., June 5 at 10 p.m. on PBS SoCal
Harvey Fierstein hosts music from LGBTQ+ artists including Indigo Girls, Billy Gilman and Morgxn highlighting real-life stories of hope.
LINK VOICES: “Seahorse: The Dad Who Gave Birth” – Fri., June 10 at 10:30p.m. ET/PT on Link TV
Filmmaker Jeanie Finlay documents a transgender man’s path to parenthood after he decides to carry his child.
LINK VOICES: “Born To Be” – Fri., June 10 at 10:30 p.m. ET/PT on Link TV
Follow the work of Dr. Jess Ting at the groundbreaking Mount Sinai Center for Transgender Medicine and Surgery. There, for the first time ever in New York City, transgender and gender non-binary people have access to quality gender-affirming care. With extraordinary access, this documentary offers an intimate look at how one doctor’s work impacts the lives of his patients as well as how his journey from renowned plastic surgeon to pioneering gender-affirming specialist has led to his own transformation.
INDEPENDENT LENS: “Cured” – Sat., June 11 at 11 p.m. on KCET
When homosexuality was considered a mental illness to be “cured,” renegade LGBTQ+ activists fought a powerful psychiatry establishment that had things dangerously backwards.
THE LAVENDER SCARE – Mon., June 13 at 10 p.m. on PBS SoCal
Narrated by Glenn Close and featuring the voices of Cynthia Nixon, Zachary Quinto, T. R. Knight and David Hyde Pierce, the film tells the little-known story of an unrelenting campaign by the federal government to identify and fire employees suspected of being homosexual. Based on the award-winning book by David K. Johnson.
PRIDELAND – Mon., June 13 at 11 p.m. on PBS SoCal
Follow queer actor Dyllón Burnside on a journey to discover how LGBTQ+ Americans are finding ways to live authentically and with pride in the modern-day South.
LA: A QUEER HISTORY: “Culture & Criminalization” – Wed., June 15 at 8 p.m. on KCET and Thurs., June 16 at 8 p.m. on PBS SoCal
From artists who helped shape early Hollywood to the male/female impersonators in the “pansy clubs”, early Hollywood becomes a Queer destination for people wanting a new life. Early LGBTQ culture and community begins to take shape just as the post WW2 era sparks widespread criminalization.
LA: A QUEER HISTORY: “Protests & Parades” – Wed., June 15 at 9 p.m. on KCET and Thurs., June 16 at 9 p.m. on PBS SoCal
Despite adversity, gay and lesbian organizing begins. Publications, protests and uprisings spring up, leading to the country’s first Pride Parade, LGBTQ Social Services, the first “Gay City” and an eventual national Civil Rights Movement.
MIRIAM AND ALAN: LOST IN SCOTLAND: “Episode One” – Thurs., June 16 at 10 p.m. on KCET
Starting in Glasgow, Miriam Margolyes and Alan Cumming visit the street where Miriam’s Jewish family first lived in Scotland, then journey north into the Highlands; Alan learns about his ancestral past at Cawdor Castle.
QUEER SILICON VALLEY – Thurs., June 16 at 10 p.m. on PBS SoCal and Wed., June 29 at 10 p.m. on KCET
Filmmakers Bob Gliner (We’re Still Here, Schools That Change Communities, Walk the Walk) and Ken Yeager explore the rich history of Silicon Valley and its profound impact on the LGBTQ+ movement in the United States.
AMERICA REFRAMED: “Broken Heartland” – Fri., June 17 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Link TV
When a gay teen kills himself, his parents are forced to reconcile their own beliefs.
A MURDER IN MONTROSE: THE PAUL BROUSSARD LEGACY – Mon., June 20 at 11:30 p.m. on PBS SoCal
In 1991, Paul Broussard, a 27-year-old gay man, was murdered on the streets of Houston. Through the documentary exposes the aftermath of this pivotal event – from civil unrest to hate crime legislation; from victim’s rights to political activism, Houston and the nation would never be the same again.
AMERICAN MASTERS: “Ballerina Boys” – Wed., June 22 at 8 p.m. on KCET
Discover Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo (The Trocks), an all-male company that for 45 years has offered audiences their passion for ballet classics mixed with exuberant comedy. With every step, they poke fun at their strictly gendered art form.
MIRIAM AND ALAN: LOST IN SCOTLAND: “Episode Two” – Thurs., June 23 at 10 p.m. on KCET
Miriam Margolyes and Alan Cumming visit Ullapool and Glencoe on their love letter tour of Scotland. They meet a pagan witch, who involves them in an ancient healing ritual and Alan fulfils his dream of writing and performing a song in Gaelic.
AMERICA REFRAMED: “Little Miss Westie” – Fri., June 24 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Link TV
Two transgender siblings and their parents navigate puberty, school and dating as the children begin living in their authentic genders.
BREAKING BIG: “Lee Daniels” – Sat., June 25 at 6 p.m. on KCET
Trace Lee Daniels’ path from West Philly to the red-hot center of Hollywood. Learn how he conquered both the independent and mainstream sides of Hollywood, directing and producing critical darlings like “The Butler” and “Empire.”
BREAKING BIG: “Christian Siriano” – Sat., June 25 at 6:30 p.m. on KCET
Learn how sartorial savant Siriano parlayed confidence and a singular vision into a Project Runway victory. See how he surmounted rejection from FIT and created one of the most socially conscious and successful fashion lines in the industry.
POV: “Pier Kids” – Sat., June 25 at 11:30 p.m. on KCET
Follow the Black, homeless queer and trans youth who call NY’s Christopher Street Pier their home as they withstand tremendous amounts of homophobia and discrimination while working to carve out autonomy and security in their lives.
HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT: YOUTH MENTAL ILLNESS: “The Storm” – Mon., June 27 at 9 p.m. and 11 p.m. on PBS SoCal
The first two-hour episode focuses on the lived experience of more than twenty young people with mental health challenges, along with the observations and insights of families, providers, and advocates.
HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT: YOUTH MENTAL ILLNESS: “Resilience” – Tues., June 28 at 9 p.m. and 11 p.m. on PBS SoCal
In the second episode, our “heroes” speak about finding help, inpatient and outpatient therapy, the added stigma of racial or gender discrimination, the criminalization of mental illness and youth suicide.
GO FIGURE: THE RANDY GARDNER STORY – Wed., June 29 at 8 p.m. on KCET
An intimate documentary on the life and career of two-time Olympian Randy Gardner. Together with his Olympic partner Tai Babilonia, they formed the iconic figure skating pairs team known as “Tai and Randy.” The film shares one man’s quest to finally come to terms with his true identity so that he can be a light to others.
ARTBOUND: “LGBTQ Nightlife (Mustache Mondays)” – Wed., June 29 at 9 p.m. on KCET
For a generation of multicultural Queer artists, gay nightclubs were a haven for seeking communion and solidarity. This film examines the history of these spaces and how they shaped the Queer cultural fabric unique to Southern California. One particular event, “Mustache Mondays” was a weekly destination for over a decade and became a seminal event for the Queer art community in the early 2000s.
MIRIAM AND ALAN: LOST IN SCOTLAND: “Episode Three” – Thurs., June 30 at 10 p.m. on KCET
Miriam Margolyes and Alan Cumming finish their Scottish odyssey driving from Inverness to Edinburgh, and enjoy some vegan white pudding, kosher haggis, ‘Zen golf’ and dressing up along the way.
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Featured Image | LA: A QUEER HISTORY (Courtesy of KCET)