PBS News [ Back to Press Releases ]
READY TO BRAVE A BRAND NEW WORLD? PBS AND THIRTEEN/WNET NEW YORK SEEK APPLICANTS FOR COLONIAL HOUSE, THE NEXT INSTALLMENT OF THE WILDLY POPULAR "HANDS-ON HISTORY" STRAND
Slated To Air On PBS In 2004, Series Will Take Modern-Day Participants Back In Time 400 Years To The Rigors And Adventures Of Life In Early Colonial America
Hollywood CA, January 10, 2003 --
Can't get enough of that porridge? Love the way your husband looks in breeches? Never leave the house without at least two petticoats? If you answered "aye" to any of these questions, we have a proposal for you!
PBS and Thirteen/WNET New York, one of the nation's leading producers of programming for public television, are pleased to announce that they are now seeking applicants for the next "hands-on history" series, COLONIAL HOUSE. Selected participants will spend five months living just as the 17th-century settlers did on the eastcoast of North America - eating the same foods, dressing in the same clothes, and using only the tools and supplies available to the early colonists. The eight-part series, currently scheduled to air on PBS in 2004, will chronicle their experience. Producers are seeking a spectrum of families and individuals to live as colonists, and one individual to assume the role of colony governor.
COLONIAL HOUSE is the latest experiential offering for PBS from Thirteen/WNET and co-producers Wall To Wall Television, who collaborated on the widely acclaimed series THE 1900 HOUSE - in which a British family lived as Victorian Londoners - and FRONTIER HOUSE - which brought a group of Americans back to 1880s Montana.
"We'll be looking for all types of people - single, married, members of families. Our modern adventurers will get a taste of what it was like to leave everything familiar behind and set off for a new land and a new way of life," said Beth C. Hoppe, Thirteen's executive producer. "They'll have to look out for each other, explore how communities are created, and how leaders emerge. And, they'll have to decide if their community would have made it back in the 1630s."
"COLONIAL HOUSE is without a doubt one of the most ambitious and exciting projects to be launched this year," added Sallie Clement, series producer. "Working closely with historians and other experts, our chosen families and individuals will be embarking on one of the most insightful and truly challenging journeys that they are ever likely to make. This iconic period in American history is well-documented, but we're about to breathe life into it. I'm both delighted to be joining the team and immensely proud of what we are setting out to achieve."
Those ready to don their cloaks and coifs (white linen caps) can begin the application process immediately by completing a detailed, online questionnaire available at both www.pbs.org/colonialhouse and www.thirteen.org. The questionnaire is designed to assess the motivation and abilities of applicants to adhere to the strict set of rules governing the program and ensuring its historical authenticity. Selected participants will face a rigorous training period during which they will learn the necessary skills and social protocol of the era.
Would-be applicants should also stay tuned to their local PBS stations for more information on how to proceed.
COLONIAL HOUSE is a co-production of Thirteen/WNET New York and Wall To Wall Television in association with Channel 4 (U.K.). Executive producers are Beth Hoppe at Thirteen and Leanne Klein at Wall To Wall, series producer is Sallie Clement, and executives in charge are William R. Grant at Thirteen and Alex Graham at Wall To Wall.
Thirteen/WNET New York is one of the key program providers for public television, bringing such acclaimed series as Nature, Great Performances, American Masters, Charlie Rose, Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly, Stage on Screen, EGG the arts show, and Cyberchase - as well as the work of Bill Moyers - to audiences nationwide. As the flagship public broadcaster in the New York, New Jersey and Connecticut metro area, Thirteen reaches millions of viewers each week, airing the best of American public television along with its own local productions such as The Ethnic Heritage Specials, The New York Walking Tours, New York Voices, Reel New York, and its MetroArts/Thirteen cable arts programming. With educational and community outreach projects that extend the impact of its television productions, Thirteen takes television "out of the box." And as broadcast and digital media converge, Thirteen is blazing trails in the creation of Web sites, enhanced television, CD-ROMs, DVD-ROMs, educational software, and other cutting-edge media products. More information about Thirteen can be found at: www.thirteen.org.
# # #
Debra Falk, Thirteen/WNET New York
Caroline Oman, Thirteen/WNET New York