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Arts & Culture

American Masters: Bill T. Jones: A Good Man

Acclaimed director/choreographer Bill T. Jones (right) rehearses "Fondly Do We Hope…Fervently Do We Pray," an original dance-theater piece in honor of Abraham Lincoln’s bicentennial, with his dancers.
Courtesy of Paul B. Goode
Acclaimed director/choreographer Bill T. Jones (right) rehearses "Fondly Do We Hope…Fervently Do We Pray," an original dance-theater piece in honor of Abraham Lincoln’s bicentennial, with his dancers.

Airs Friday, November 11, 2011 at 9 p.m. on KPBS TV

Biographical Essay and Tribute

This essay on the life and achievements of Bill T. Jones, written by John Rockwell, was presented in 2010 when Jones was bestowed with the Kennedy Center Honors.

The film chronicles the intense creative journey of Bill T. Jones – a 2010 Kennedy Center Honors recipient and two-time Tony® Award winner for Best Choreography – as he tackles the most ambitious work of his career and leads the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company in the creation of "Fondly Do We Hope…Fervently Do We Pray," an original dance-theater piece in honor of Abraham Lincoln’s bicentennial commissioned by Ravinia Festival.

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Co-directors Bob Hercules of Media Process Group and Gordon Quinn of Kartemquin Films provide a window into the creative process and the creative crisis of one of our nation’s most enduring, provocative artists as he explores what it means to be a good man, to be a free man, to be a citizen.

Anna Deavere Smith hosts. “Bill T. Jones: A Good Man” is a co-production of A Good Man Film LLC, Kartemquin Films, Independent Television Service (ITVS), Thirteen’s AMERICAN MASTERS for WNET, and Media Process Group, with the cooperation of the Ravinia Festival. The presentation is in collaboration with PBS member station WTTW.

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Watch Bill T. Jones: A Good Man on PBS. See more from American Masters.

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Watch Interview with Bill T. Jones on PBS. See more from American Masters.

Bill T. Jones discusses his creative process, the origins of the documentary "Bill T. Jones: A Good Man," and how President Abraham Lincoln and related subject matter has inspired his work for "Fondly Do We Hope… Fervently Do We Pray."
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Watch Bill T. Jones: The Cutting Room Floor on PBS. See more from American Masters.

In this mini documentary, originally produced for ITVS, see how the directors chose which scenes and storylines to cut from the final edit of the film and see footage from one of the cuts that was made.