APT, PBS partner to offer Moyers & Company for viewing on COVE

Moyers & Company has become the first American Public Television-distributed program to be presented on the PBS COVE online video player and PBS mobile apps. The weekly public affairs show, hosted by veteran public TV journalist and independent producer Bill Moyers, has been offered on COVE on a test basis for several weeks, according to spokesperson Joel Schwartzberg. With today’s announcement, PBS and APT signaled their intention to collaborate to bring more APT titles to PBS’s online video player. The arrangement helps to make Moyers & Company more easily accessible for public TV viewers. The series, which launched in August 2010, is the first from Moyers to be distributed by APT.

All-Star Orchestra to bring classical masterworks to WNET, APT

The All-Star Orchestra, made up of top professional musicians from across the country, will produce eight pubTV programs of classical masterworks. The one-hour shows, titled All-Star Orchestra and set for broadcast on New York’s WNET over eight Sundays this fall, will feature performances of classics by American composers as well as guest interviews and commentary by the group’s Music Director Gerard Schwarz. American Public Television will distribute the programs nationally. In last month’s announcement, WNET programming exec Stephen Segaller said the project is “in the tradition of Leonard Bernstein’s celebrated programs that popularized classical music on television,” such as the critically acclaimed Omnibus, 1952–61, and Young People’s Concerts, which Bernstein led from 1958–72, the first series televised from Lincoln Center. The All-Star Orchestra’s performances were filmed in HD with 19 cameras last August at New York’s historic Grand Ballroom at Manhattan Center.

CNBC buys Nightly Business Report; show leaving Miami

Nightly Business Report, the public TV business news show that has repeatedly shed staff during nearly three tumultuous years under two owners, has been sold again – this time to financial news powerhouse CNBC. The cable network will produce the weeknightly series exclusively for public TV stations from its headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., effective March 4. The show’s bureaus in New York and Washington and its headquarters at Miami’s WPBT will shut down. The sale brings another round of changes to the staff who produce and appear on the show. Anchor Susie Gharib will stay with NBR, but co-anchor Tom Hudson is exiting.

Live From Lincoln Center creator departs, McGee replaces Fornatale at WFUV, and more…

John Goberman has produced more than 200 live national telecasts since launching the PBS performance series more than three decades ago. Goberman was cited by Symphony Magazine as one of the 50 most important individuals making a difference in American music. He pioneered the video and audio technology by which concerts, opera, ballets and plays could be telecast during live performances without disruption of performers and audiences. His television work has garnered 13 national Emmy Awards, three Peabodys and the first Television Critics Circle Award for Achievement in Music. Goberman plans to focus on producing another type of performance that he helped to pioneer — “Symphonic Cinema,” in which orchestral scores are performed live to the films for which they were originally commissioned.

Allan Pizzato

Alabama firings expose rift over PTV mission, editorial standards

It’s not clear what objectives the political appointees of the Alabama Educational Television Commission had in mind when they came out of an executive session on June 12 and voted 5–2 to fire the state-operated public TV network’s top managers. Allan Pizzato, executive director of Alabama Public Television for 12 years, and his deputy, Pauline Howland, were ordered to clean out their desks and immediately vacate the station’s Birmingham headquarters. The dismissals triggered a series of unintended consequences that included an exodus of nine lay leaders from APT’s fundraising organizations, as well as Howland’s reinstatement on a temporary basis two days later. After the dismissals, the commissioners realized that they needed her knowledge and expertise to complete work on APT’s 2013 budget. The fissure also exposed an internal struggle over the commission’s push to schedule programs from the religious right for APT broadcast, and a revision of the network’s mission statement.

Moyers returns in January with weekly hour

The latest incarnation of Bill Moyers’ distinctive brand of talk programming will be the hourlong, multiplatform Moyers & Company, distributed by American Public Television. The January debut for the program — provided fully funded to pubTV stations — will mark the first time PBS has not been the distributor of an ongoing Moyers program to public TV stations, dating to his first show in 1972. His most recent series, Bill Moyers Journal, left the air April 30, 2010, when he retired. “Collaborating with APT offers stations flexibility in deciding where a broadcast can best serve their communities and it offers producers greater flexibility regarding the Web,” Moyers told Current in an email. “And we intend a major use of Web and social media.”

Moyers described the new show to pubTV stations in a letter Aug.