For the past 40 years, GREAT PERFORMANCES has been proud to bring you arts programming that has moved and inspired you. The pioneering primetime performing arts series first premiered on public television stations on November 4, 1972, with a broadcast production of the Landford Wilson play, The Rimers of Eldritch, starring a promising up-and-coming actress named Susan Sarandon. GREAT PERFORMANCES began with a simple mission: to provide the American public with the best of the performing arts, and to preserve a space in primetime for great artists to tackle the great works that they were most interested in performing, as well as showcase hidden gems of the repertoire that deserved to be seen by a wider audience.
Whether it’s a new production of a timeless classic from the Metropolitan Opera, electric performances by the Paul Taylor Dance Company, or Barbra Streisand’s historic homecoming concert in Brooklyn, our 40th Anniversary season carries on this tradition and celebrates the series’ legacy as a home for the leading artists of the world to do what they do best: give the performances that audiences love.
In short, GREAT PERFORMANCES may be turning 40 years old this year, but we’re certainly not over the hill. We’re expanding our reach online and in social media, allowing viewers to interact even more with their favorite programs and performers through exclusive web content. But most importantly, we’re broadcasting some of the most ambitious projects we’ve ever undertaken as we look to continue our mission for the next 40 years: inviting great artists to bring their “Great Performances” to America’s living rooms.