Vegas PBS Commemorates 50th Anniversary of Historic March on Washington

Posted by Pat Breen on

LAS VEGAS – August 22, 2013– Vegas PBS announced today the details of a special week of programs and online events and activities celebrating the 50th anniversary of the historic 1963 March on Washington, a watershed moment in the Civil Rights Movement that helped usher in sweeping civil rights legislation and a sea change in public opinion.

“The March,” narrated by Denzel Washington, premieres Tuesday, August 27, 2013 at 9:00 p.m. on Vegas PBS Channel 10, the eve of the 50th anniversary of the original event. The film reveals the dramatic story behind the event through the remembrances of key players such as Jack O’Dell, Clarence B. Jones, Julian Bond and Andrew Young. Supporters and other testimonials of the March include Joan Baez, Harry Belafonte and Diahann Carroll. Additional interviewees include Roger Mudd, the CBS anchorman who reported from the March, Clayborne Carson, founding director of Stanford’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute and a participant in the March, and Oprah Winfrey, whose life was transformed by watching the March on television along with millions of other Americans. Also featured are the remembrances of ordinary citizens who joined some 250,000 Americans who thronged to the capital on that momentous day to peacefully demand an end to two centuries of discrimination and injustice.

As part of the 50th anniversary March on Washington programming, Vegas PBS will present several encore broadcasts. “American Masters: James Baldwin: The Price of the Ticket” will air Friday, August 23, at 9:30 p.m. and on Tuesday, August 27 at 10 p.m., immediately following the premiere of “The March.” An encore broadcast of “In Performance at the White House: A Celebration of Music from the Civil Rights Movement” will air at 8 p.m. on August 27, prior to the premiere of “The March.”

In addition to the premiere of “The March,” the PBS Black Culture Connection website will debut The March @50, a provocative five-part web series exploring whether America has delivered on the promises of the March. The 1963 March on Washington was created by community activists and dedicated people from every state in the country. Memories of the March, a series of video vignettes created by PBS member stations from across the nation, will also debut on PBS Black Culture Connection. Fascinating first-person stories of original participants who made the trek to the nation’s capital are included, as well as others who were instrumental in working for the cause in their communities.

Vignettes include interviews with several women, including Johnnie Turner, a Memphis college student when she attended the March and now a Tennessee State Representative; Dorothy Foreman Cotton, the highest-ranking woman in the Southern Christian Leadership Conference during most of the 1960s; and Georgia Davis Powers, the grandniece of a slave who helped organize the 1964 March on Kentucky’s State Capitol, an event in which Dr. King also participated along with baseball great Jackie Robinson. Other interviewees include Sala Udin, a 20-year-old from Pittsburgh who heard Dr. King’s speech and changed the course of his life to launch a career in civil rights activism and North Carolina Congressman G.K. Butterfield, who attended the March and became known for his successful litigation of voting rights cases.

On August 28, 2013 — the actual 50th anniversary — PBS Black Culture Connection will host a full day of special online events and activities including screenings of “The March” during which viewers can interact with some of the film’s participants, online chats with original March participants and community leaders, and hosted discussions about the many aspects of the March and the Civil Rights Movement.

“The March” is a Smoking Dogs Films Production produced by Lina Gopaul and David Lawson and directed by John Akomfrah. Executive Producers are Krysanne Katsoolis, Cactus Three, and Robert Redford and Laura Michalchyshyn, Sundance Productions. Sam Pollard is Consulting Producer, with Gina Belafonte as Associate Producer. In addition to the U.S. premiere on PBS, “The March” will be screened by international broadcast co-producers the BBC and France 3.

About Vegas PBS
Dedicated to enriching the lives of those who call Southern Nevada home, Vegas PBS Channel 10 is among America’s most watched PBS stations on a per capita basis. Five additional channels are available over the air or on cable and satellite including Create, Vme, Worldview, Rewind and Jackpot!

Vegas PBS expands its television broadcast impact through supplemental materials on Vegas,,, and Vegas PBS also offers extensive online distance education for workforce development and economic diversification through GOAL: Global Online Advanced Learning.

Vegas PBS also provides educational resources to teachers including TeacherLine professional development courses; One Place, an educational media service and online curriculum service. Ready To Learn offers literary and health workshops based on curriculum materials in daytime children’s programs.

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Latoya Bembry
The Ferraro Group



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Shauna Lemieux
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Vegas PBS
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