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Broadway: The Golden Age Surprise Smash Hit of PBS Pledge Drive - MORE Dates Added


Filmmaker Rick McKay's "Broadway: The Golden Age" is the surprise hit of the Public Television Spring Pledge Drive, with NYC's WNET/13 finding that "Golden Age" topped ratings so far for any show shown during the drive! WNET debuted "Golden Age" Sunday, March 12th opposite the season premiere of "The Sopranos" and still triumphed with their highest rating yet for this pledge drive and record breaking pledge donations. WNET has now gone from the two scheduled airings of the film to ten airings, ending this weekend with an airing Friday, March 17th at 1:30 PM and a "Broadway: The Golden Age" double-header Saturday, March 18th at 10 PM and midnight, followed by a repeat showing early Monday, March 20th at 2 AM for night-owls.

Other cities across the country are having similar results with Los Angeles reporting BGA one of their biggest hits of the season. More cities are jumping on the bandwagon with airings coast to coast. This weekend the film debuts in Pittsburgh, Washington, DC, Memphis, Baltimore, Cleveland, Albuquerque, Syracuse, Louisiana and other cities, with an encore airing Saturday at 5 PM on Los Angeles' KCET. Post pledge drive, WNET13 in NYC has already added Thursday, April 27th at 8 PM and Saturday, April 29th at 1 AM.

Much of the success of the screenings seems to be due to the original pledge drive that was filmed with director Rick McKay and "Broadway: The Golden Age" stars Elizabeth Ashley, Barbara Cook, Anne Jackson, Jane Powell and Eli Wallach. The "virtual pledge drive" was hosted by Midge Woolsey and Tom Stewart of WNET and has been screening to great results all over the country with the film, making this one of the rare occasions that the pledge breaks are as entertaining as the film! Also, bringing new viewers to PBS is the week dedicated to the film at the premiere Broadway website,, where each day exclusive rare peaks at unseen footage from the "Broadway: The Golden Age" vaults were debuted with Angela Lansbury, Carol Burnett, Alec Baldwin, Stephen Sondheim, Elaine Stritch, and the late Jerry Orbach. The clips are still online.

"Broadway: The Golden Age" was independently produced by Rick McKay, Albert M. Tapper, Jamie DeRoy and Anne L. Bernstein. The film has been a hit on DVD for Sony/BMG and is on the Top Ten Best Selling Lists on Amazon for both Documentaries and Musicals. The film is released on television by American Public Television. McKay is hard at work on "Broadway: BEYOND The Golden Age" with Robert Redford, Liza Minnelli, Glenn Close, Dick Van Dyke and many more stage stars of the 60's and 70's, as well as "Broadway: The Next Generation" with Alan Cumming, Liev Schreiber, Audra McDonald, Patti LuPone, Betty Buckley and other stars of the 80's, 90's and this century. More information about airings of "Broadway: The Golden Age" and the complete casts of the two remaining films of McKay's Broadway Trilogy are available at

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