American Ballet Theatre: A History

Filmmaker Interview with Ric Burns

In this filmmaker interview, Ric Burns describes what camera techniques he used to capture the ephemeral nature of dance on film, as well as how he came to discover ballet through the process of filmmaking. Watch his documentary American Masters – American Ballet Theatre: A History.

Jascha Heifetz: God’s Fiddler

Filmmaker Statement: Three Key Assets for the Documentary

Emmy- and Peabody-winning filmmaker Peter Rosen (American Masters — Garrison Keillor: The Man on the Radio in the Red Shoes, The Cliburn: Playing on the Edge) uncovers the story of legendary musician Jascha Heifetz (1901-1987), the first truly modern violin virtuoso, for American Masters. Rosen cites three key assets that helped him decide to make […]

Judy Garland: By Myself

Top Performers Pay Tribute to Judy Garland

The artistry of singer and actress Judy Garland (1922 – 1969) is a living legacy upheld by the great singers of our time. American Masters asked performing artists who hold Garland’s work close to their hearts and in their own personal repertory what inspires them most about “the hardest working woman in Hollywood.” The national […]

Sun Records

Director Bruce Sinofsky: An In Memoriam Tribute

Bruce Sinofsky (1956 – 2015) wrote, directed and produced the two-hour American Masters documentary Good Rockin’ Tonight: The Legacy Of Sun Records (2001). In this filmmaker interview, he says his reason for making the film was to pay tribute to the musicians who formed the foundation of Sun Records and rock and roll. They may […]

August Wilson: The Ground on Which I Stand

Filmmaker Interview with Sam Pollard

Filmmaker Sam Pollard’s latest documentary for American Masters is August Wilson: The Ground on Which I Stand. In this interview Pollard speaks about August Wilson’s relevance, interviewing actors, surprises and more. “[Wilson] stands head and shoulders with Edward Albee, Tennessee Williams and Arthur Miller,” says Pollard.

“He stands head and shoulders with Edward Albee, Tennessee Williams and Arthur Miller,” says Pollard. “People know their works and I want them to know the works of August Wilson.”

August Wilson: The Ground on Which I Stand

Music in August Wilson’s Work

Music was vital to playwright August Wilson (1945 –2005), who as a teenager honed his writing at the same time he discovered blues musicians like Bessie Smith. Wilson said that when he first heard Smith, “The universe stuttered, and everything fell into place.” Learn how composer Kathryn Bostic, jazz legend Wynton Marsalis and actor and […]

Ricky Jay: Deceptive Practice

Art Spiegelman and Ricky Jay in Conversation: Web Exclusive

Cartoonist and author Art Spiegelman (Maus, In the Shadow of No Towers) and sleight-of-hand magician Ricky Jay spoke in conversation at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles on the occasion of the exhibition Extraordinary Exhibitions, featuring over 80 17th-, 18th-, and 19th-century ephemeral advertising sheets known as broadsides, from Ricky Jay’s own collection. The magical […]