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AETN, UCA to host screening of 'Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise' Feb. 27

Posted 22 Feb 2017

The Arkansas Educational Television Network has partnered with the University of Central Arkansas to host a free screening of 'American Masters – Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise' Monday, Feb. 27, at 6 p.m.

Distinctly referred to as 'a redwood tree, with deep roots in American culture,' Dr. Maya Angelou (April 4, 1928-May 28, 2014) led a prolific life. As a singer, dancer, activist, poet and writer, she inspired generations with lyrical modern African-American thought that pushed boundaries. Best known for her autobiography 'I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings' (Random House), she gave people the freedom to think about their history in a way they never had before. 'American Masters – Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise' is the first feature documentary about her life.

The screening, which is free and open to the public, will be held at the Doyne Health Science Center Auditorium, Bruce Street, Conway, on the UCA campus. A panel discussion will immediately follow the film, and refreshments will be served.

Panelists will include: Janis F. Kearney, founding president of the Celebrate! Maya Project; Dr. Stacy Lettman, UCA assistant professor of English; and Dr. Monika Alston-Miller, UCA associate professor of communication. Taine Duncan, Ph.D., associate professor of philosophy and director of the gender studies program, will serve as moderator.

The screening is made possible in partnership with: the School of Communication; Film, Theatre and Creative Writing Department; English Department; Gender Studies Program/Department of Philosophy; African/African-American Studies Program; Office of Diversity and Community; and Office of Institutional Diversity.

With unprecedented access, filmmakers trace Angelou's incredible journey, shedding light on the untold aspects of her life through never-before-seen footage, rare archival photographs and videos and her own words. From her upbringing in the Depression-era South and her early performing career to her work with Malcolm X in Ghana and her many writing successes, including her inaugural poem for President Bill Clinton, 'American Masters – Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise' reveals hidden facets of her life during some of America's most defining moments. The film also features exclusive interviews with Angelou, her friends and family, including Clinton, Oprah Winfrey, Common, Alfre Woodard, Cicely Tyson, Quincy Jones, Hillary Clinton, Louis Gossett Jr., John Singleton, Diahann Carroll, Valerie Simpson, Random House editor Bob Loomis and Angelou's son, Guy Johnson.

In conjunction with the film, 'American Masters' has launched a year-long online campaign, #InspiringWomanPBS, based on themes central to Angelou's life: artistic expression, academic success, active community engagement and acceptance of difference. People can share stories of inspirational women in their own lives via text, images or videos on the 'American Masters' website (pbs.org/americanmasters) or via Tumblr, Twitter and Instagram using #InspiringWomanPBS.

A video compilation series of the best submissions will be featured on PBS' Instagram Stories and Snapchat channels throughout the year. Additionally, previously unreleased videos from 'Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise' and 'In Their Own Words: The American Masters Digital Archive' will be released as part of the campaign, as well as new episodes of the 'American Masters Podcast.'

Funding for 'Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise' is provided in part by IDP Foundation, Ford Foundation/Just Films, National Endowment for the Arts, National Black Programming Consortium, Anne Ulnick, Michael Metelits, and Loida and Leslie Lewis. 

Launched in 1986, 'American Masters' has earned 28 Emmy Awards – including 10 for Outstanding Non-Fiction Series and five for Outstanding Non-Fiction Special – 12 Peabodys, an Oscar, three Grammys, two Producers Guild Awards and many other honors. The series' 31st season on PBS features new documentaries about Patsy Cline (March), Chef James Beard (May) and Chef Jacques Pépin (May). 'American Masters' is a production of THIRTEEN PRODUCTIONS LLC for WNET and also seen on the WORLD channel.

The Arkansas Educational Television Network is Arkansas's statewide public television network that enhances lives by providing lifelong learning opportunities for people from all walks of life. AETN delivers local, award-winning productions and classic, trusted PBS programs aimed at sharing Arkansas and the world with viewers. AETN depends on the generosity of Arkansans and the State of Arkansas to continue offering quality programming. Additional information is available at aetn.org. AETN is broadcast on KETS (Little Rock), KEMV (Mountain View), KETG (Arkadelphia), KAFT (Fayetteville), KTEJ (Jonesboro) and KETZ (El Dorado).