History

American Masters

American Masters, committed to producing comprehensive film biographies about the broad cast of characters who comprise our cultural history.

Ballerina Boys

53m 26s

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.

Episodes

  • Ballerina Boys: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Ballerina Boys

    S35 E8 - 53m 26s

    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.

  • Amy Tan: Unintended Memoir: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Amy Tan: Unintended Memoir

    S35 E7 - 1h 39m

    The story of the author whose first novel, “The Joy Luck Club,” was published to great commercial and critical success. With the blockbuster film adaption that followed as well as additional best-selling novels, librettos, short stories and memoirs, Tan firmly established herself as one of the most prominent and respected American literary voices working today.

  • Oliver Sacks: His Own Life (Audio Descriptive Version): asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Oliver Sacks: His Own Life (Audio Descriptive Version)

    S35 E6 - 1h 49m

    Explore the life and work of the legendary neurologist and storyteller, as he shares intimate details of his battles with drug addiction, homophobia, and a medical establishment that accepted his work only decades after the fact.

  • Oliver Sacks: His Own Life: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Oliver Sacks: His Own Life

    S35 E5 - 1h 49m

    Explore the life and work of the legendary neurologist and storyteller, as he shares intimate details of his battles with drug addiction, homophobia, and a medical establishment that accepted his work only decades after the fact.

  • Never Too Late: The Doc Severinsen Story: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Never Too Late: The Doc Severinsen Story

    S35 E4 - 1h 23m

    After more than 30 years as the colorful bandleader of The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, master trumpeter Doc Severinsen continues to defy nature well into his 90s with a grueling schedule of touring, performing and teaching. Trace the life and groundbreaking career of the unstoppable musical icon, revealing his personal trials and underscoring a remarkable journey of inspiration.

  • Twyla Moves: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Twyla Moves

    S35 E3 - 1h 22m

    Explore legendary choreographer Twyla Tharp’s career and famously rigorous creative process, with original interviews, first-hand glimpses of her at work and rare archival footage of select performances from her more than 160 choreographed works.

  • Flannery: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Flannery

    S35 E2 - 1h 23m

    Explore the life of Flannery O’Connor whose provocative fiction was unlike anything published before. Featuring never-before-seen archival footage, newly discovered journals and interviews with Mary Karr, Tommy Lee Jones, Hilton Als and more.

  • How It Feels To Be Free: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    American Masters: How It Feels To Be Free

    S35 E1 - 1h 53m

    A documentary that tells the inspiring story of how six iconic African American women entertainers – Lena Horne, Abbey Lincoln, Nina Simone, Diahann Carroll, Cicely Tyson and Pam Grier – challenged an entertainment industry deeply complicit in perpetuating racist stereotypes, and transformed themselves and their audiences in the process.

Extras + Features

  • Buddy Guy: The Blues Chase The Blues Away: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Buddy Guy: The Blues Chase The Blues Away

    S35 E9 - 1m 58s

    Dive into the career of the legendary blues guitarist, a pioneer of Chicago’s West Side sound and major influence on rock titans like Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton. Featuring new performances and interviews with Carlos Santana and more.

  • Buddy Guy's Grammys: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Buddy Guy's Grammys

    S35 E9 - 1m 27s

    Buddy Guy discusses the gratitude he feels for winning multiple nine Grammys, including his first, which he won for his song "Damn Right I've Got the Blues."

  • How blues legend Buddy Guy got his hands on his first guitar: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    How blues legend Buddy Guy got his hands on his first guitar

    S35 E9 - 3m 38s

    Buddy Guy’s first guitar cost his father two dollars and only had two strings on it. He would go to sleep with it in his hand, walked around with it and played until his fingers almost bled. He taught himself his favorite John Lee Hooker song on that guitar.

  • Ballerina Boys: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Ballerina Boys

    S35 E8 - 2m 36s

    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.

  • Watch these drag ballerinas get ready for a show: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Watch these drag ballerinas get ready for a show

    S35 E8 - 2m 14s

    Dancers from "The Trocks," an all-male comic ballet company describe how performing in drag is empowering, even extending in to wearing pointe shoes, which are normally reserved for women. While they are painful, the enable some of the "best moments" in ballet.

  • What goes through a drag ballerina's mind while dancing?: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    What goes through a drag ballerina's mind while dancing?

    S35 E8 - 1m 32s

    A dancer from "The Trocks" describes what goes through his mind while dancing the part of Odette in Swan Lake. Is he trying to portray a man playing a ballerina? Or just a ballerina? At the end of the day, it's about relating to the audience.

  • Amy Tan: Unintended Memoir: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Amy Tan: Unintended Memoir

    S35 E7 - 2m 14s

    An intimate portrait of the groundbreaking writer that interweaves archival imagery, including home movies and personal photographs, animation and original interviews to tell the inspiring story of Tan’s life and career.

  • Amy Tan’s first job was writing astrology: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Amy Tan’s first job was writing astrology

    S35 E7 - 2m 12s

    Amy Tan’s first job was “making up” astrology for her friend’s astrology hotline business. She later wrote ad copy, direct mail, and became a technical writer for a telecommunications company: “all the subjects I had absolutely no interest in,” Tan recalls. She turned to writing fiction in the search for more meaningful work and learned a lot about herself in the process.

  • How Amy Tan met her husband Lou: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    How Amy Tan met her husband Lou

    S35 E7 - 1m 14s

    According to Amy Tan's husband, Lou, it was "cluelessness at first sight." At first, Tan wasn't attracted to Lou because of his big muscles. "I always feel that the amount of muscle mass detracts from the mass in the brain."

  • What was the Joy Luck Club?: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    What was the Joy Luck Club?

    S35 E7 - 1m 34s

    The title of Amy Tan's famous novel was also the name of an investment club made up of Tan's parents and friends. Sandy Bremner, one of Tan's friends from childhood, describes how powerful it was for their parents to be around other immigrants from China like themselves.

  • Amy Tan's writing inspiration: asset-mezzanine-16x9

    Amy Tan's writing inspiration

    S35 E7 - 2m

    Get an inside look at best-selling author Amy Tan's creative process, as revealed in Amy Tan: Unintended Memoir from American Masters.

Schedule

  • Image
    American Masters: TVSS: Iconic

    American Masters

    Charley Pride

    Saturday
    Jun 26

    1 Hour

    Raised in segregated Mississippi, country performer Charley Pride proves artistic expression can triumph over prejudice and injustice.
  • Image
    American Masters: TVSS: Iconic

    American Masters

    Charley Pride

    Sunday
    Jun 27

    1 Hour

    Raised in segregated Mississippi, country performer Charley Pride proves artistic expression can triumph over prejudice and injustice.
  • Image
    American Masters: TVSS: Iconic

    American Masters

    Charley Pride

    Wednesday
    Jun 30

    1 Hour

    Raised in segregated Mississippi, country performer Charley Pride proves artistic expression can triumph over prejudice and injustice.
  • Image
    American Masters: TVSS: Iconic

    American Masters

    Charley Pride

    Wednesday
    Jun 30

    1 Hour

    Raised in segregated Mississippi, country performer Charley Pride proves artistic expression can triumph over prejudice and injustice.
  • Image
    American Masters: TVSS: Iconic

    American Masters

    Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You

    Friday
    Jul 2

    1 Hour 30 Minutes

    Writer/producer Norman Lear's turbulent childhood, early success with sitcoms "All in the Family," "The Jeffersons," "Good Times" and "Maude," and social activism.
  • Image
    American Masters: TVSS: Iconic

    American Masters

    Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You

    Friday
    Jul 2

    1 Hour 30 Minutes

    Writer/producer Norman Lear's turbulent childhood, early success with sitcoms "All in the Family," "The Jeffersons," "Good Times" and "Maude," and social activism.
  • Image
    American Masters: TVSS: Iconic

    American Masters

    Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You

    Saturday
    Jul 3

    1 Hour 30 Minutes

    Writer/producer Norman Lear's turbulent childhood, early success with sitcoms "All in the Family," "The Jeffersons," "Good Times" and "Maude," and social activism.
  • Image
    American Masters: TVSS: Iconic

    American Masters

    Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You

    Saturday
    Jul 3

    1 Hour 30 Minutes

    Writer/producer Norman Lear's turbulent childhood, early success with sitcoms "All in the Family," "The Jeffersons," "Good Times" and "Maude," and social activism.
  • Image
    American Masters: TVSS: Iconic

    American Masters

    Ted Williams: The Greatest Hitter Who Ever Lived

    Saturday
    Jul 3

    1 Hour

    The many sides of Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Ted Williams, including his relationships with his Mexican-American background, family, press and fans.
  • Image
    American Masters: TVSS: Iconic

    American Masters

    Ted Williams: The Greatest Hitter Who Ever Lived

    Sunday
    Jul 4

    1 Hour

    The many sides of Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Ted Williams, including his relationships with his Mexican-American background, family, press and fans.

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