Now hear this: Audible is underwriting ‘Masterpiece’

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Fiona Glascott stars as Sarah Raworth in the Masterpiece costume drama Indian Summers, set in the twilight of the British Empire in India. Audible is the latest underwriter for Masterpiece. (Photo: New Pictures/Channel 4)

Fiona Glascott stars as Sarah Raworth in the Masterpiece costume drama Indian Summers, set in the twilight of the British Empire in India. Audible is the latest underwriter for Masterpiece. (Photo: New Pictures/Channel 4)

Audible is a new corporate underwriter for Masterpiece on PBS.

Audible, which sells and produces audio books and spoken-word programming, steps into the spot vacated by designer Ralph Lauren, which opted not to renew its sponsorship contract. The clothing and luxury-goods designer had underwritten the icon series since 2012.

Viking River Cruises, underwriter since 2011, remains with the program.

In Monday’s announcement, Masterpiece EP Rebecca Eaton called the one-year agreement with Audible “the perfect partnership: We’re both all about books and the power of immersive story telling.”

Taylor Huttner, Audible marketing v.p., praised Masterpiece producers as “missionary believers in the artful performance of well-composed words.”

News of the deal came from the Sponsorship Group for Public Television, which secures underwriting for national PBS programs produced by Masterpiece presenting station WGBH, among other producers.

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