PBS Honors Hispanic Heritage Month With Rich Performances, Touching Tributes and Compelling History

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– Featuring Specials from BALLET HISPANICO and GREAT PERFORMANCES and New Episodes from CRAFT IN AMERICA; Selected Titles Available for Online Streaming –

– Critically Acclaimed Documentary Film “Dolores,” Now in Theaters, Will Make Broadcast Premiere on INDEPENDENT LENS on PBS in 2018 –


ARLINGTON, VA – September 18, 2017 – In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month and as part of its yearlong commitment to celebrating the diversity of our nation, PBS today announced programs that commemorate the experiences, culture and contributions of Hispanic Americans who have shaped Latino — and American — history.

With captivating performances, new and encore episodes from popular series, and the 30th ANNUAL HISPANIC HERITAGE AWARDS, among the country’s highest honors to Latinos by Latinos, PBS’ rich programming lineup aims to broaden viewers’ understanding of Hispanic Americans through a display of diverse talents both in front of and behind the camera.

“PBS is always in search of programming that showcases and reflects the unique perspectives and contributions of all in our society,” said Beth Hoppe, Chief Programming Executive and General Manager, General Audience Programming. “We are committed to bringing audiences a primetime lineup that is representative of the many cultures, generations and genres of a diverse America and to sharing those stories and viewpoints year-round.”

BALLET HISPANICO, now available for streaming on pbs.org, focuses on two iconic works from the country’s premier Latino dance company, “CARMEN.maquia,” a modern take on Bizet’s passionate opera, and “Club Havana,” the reimagining of a sizzling nightclub in  Havana from Cuban-born choreographer Pedro Ruiz. In addition, on October 6, GREAT PERFORMANCES and VOCES present “Havana Time Machine,” a musical journey through today’s Cuba featuring the Grammy-winning Raul Malo of The Mavericks.

Following “Havana Time Machine” on October 6, PBS will air the 30thANNUAL HISPANIC HERITAGE AWARDS (check local listings). The program features top Latino performers and personalities paying tribute to honorees including Luis Fonsi, Gael García Bernal, The Latin Recording Academy, NASCAR’s Alba Colón, Rudy Beserra and the nation’s “DREAMER” community. The Hispanic Heritage Awards were created by the White House in 1988 to commemorate the creation of Hispanic Heritage Month in America. 

PBS also presents new episodes from the Emmy-nominated and Peabody Award-winning series CRAFT IN AMERICA. Celebrating 10 years on PBS, the new season brings two new episodes, “Borders” and “Neighbors,” which explore the connections between Mexico and the Unites States through craft. CRAFT IN AMERICA premieres on Friday, September 29.

In addition, PBS announced earlier this year that it has acquired North American distribution rights for “Dolores,” which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in the US Documentary Competition category. “Dolores” sheds light on one of the most important, yet least-known, activists in American history — Dolores Huerta, who co-founded the first farm workers unions with Cesar Chavez and who continues to work for justice today at 87. Through a partnership of PBS, PBS Distribution, PBS documentary series INDEPENDENT LENS and Latino Public Broadcasting, the film is currently in theatrical release and will make its broadcast premiere on INDEPENDENT LENS in 2018. 


Hispanic Heritage Month Digital Resources on PBS.org

PBS.org features a Hispanic Heritage Month Online Collection to connect viewers to new programs, films and digital features that are streaming online — and highlight the stories, history and culture of Hispanic and Latino Americans. 

Viewers and fans can join the celebration on social media by following the hashtag #MiHistoria and sharing their own stories — of people, places, memories that are important to them — with PBS. All submissions using the hashtag #MiHistoria (and tag @PBS) will be aggregated onto PBS.org and shared across PBS platforms to help celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month. Working closely with Latino Public Broadcasting, WORLD Channel and partners from American Documentary, the campaign aspires to educate and excite audiences about Latino identity and culture, and connects them to relevant programs in public media.


Hispanic Heritage Month Resources for Kids, Parents & Teachers

This fall, PBS KIDS will kick off Hispanic Heritage Month with an all-new episode of The Fred Rogers Company’s PEG + CAT, featuring the voices of Latin Grammy-nominated Mariachi Flor de Toloache in their first-ever animated appearance. “The Pig Problem/The Mariachi Problem” premieres September 15 on PBS stations and PBS KIDS streaming platforms. PBS KIDS also offers a variety of bilingual games and apps with Spanish and English options — including the new Daniel Tiger’s Storybooks App. Families can visit pbskids.org/games/spanish for more fun and learning with their favorite characters. In addition, parent resources, including book and activity recommendations, are available on PBS Parents.

PBS LearningMedia makes it easy for teachers to integrate Hispanic Heritage Month into their lessons with a trove of curriculum-aligned videos, activities and lesson plans. These resources are designed to help students deepen their awareness of Hispanic American and Latino artists, educators, icons and everyday people while also building a foundational understanding of the Spanish language. Featured resources in PBS LearningMedia include Hispanic Heritage MonthOh Noah!Latino AmericansThe Latino Public Broadcasting CollectionAmerica By the Numbers; and The Supplemental Spanish Collection; and on iTunes, the Beginning Spanish iBook. Visit pbslearningmedia.org to explore more.


Listed alphabetically below are Hispanic Heritage Month programs (check local listings).


Enjoy two iconic works from the country’s premier Latino dance company: “CARMEN.maquia,” a modern take on Bizet’s passionate opera, and “Club Havana,” a virtuosic reimagining of a sizzling nightclub by Cuban-born choreographer Pedro Ruiz. – Currently streaming on pbs.org.



Explore America’s creative spirit through the language and traditions of the handmade. The Emmy-nominated and Peabody Award-winning series promotes and advances original handcrafted work and inspires people of all ages to pursue their own creativity.


Explore the relationships and influences Mexican and American craft artists have on each other and on our cultures. The program features traditional weaving and the creation of paper jewelry. -- Friday, September 29, 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET


Travel to and from the U.S. and Mexico to explore the people, history, traditions and crafts, noting how aesthetics cross from one country to another and back again in an organic and ongoing cultural exchange. -- Friday, September 29, 10:00-11:00 p.m. ET


Great Performances “Havana Time Machine”

Take a musical journey to today’s Cuba, where past, present and future collide in joyful celebration. This performance-documentary also features evocative performance segments hosted by the Grammy-winning Raul Malo of The Mavericks. A special presentation with VOCES.  -- Friday, October 6, 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET


The Hispanic Heritage Awards

Join the country’s highest tribute to Latinos by Latinos. The program includes performances and appearances by celebrated Hispanic artists. Honorees include Luis Fonsi, Gael García Bernal, The Latin Recording Academy, NASCAR’s Alba Colón, Rudy Beserra and the nation’s “DREAMER” community -- Friday, October 6, 10:00-11:00 p.m. ET


Encore programs (check local listings)



“East of Salinas”

Meet José, a bright third grader, and his dedicated teacher, both sons of migrant farm workers. José was born in Mexico and is about to learn what that means for his future. Experience a moving story of immigration, childhood and circumstance. -- September (check local listings)

“No Mas Bebes” (“No More Babies”)

Explore the case of Mexican-American women who claim they were coercively sterilized at a Los Angeles hospital in the late 1960s and 1970s. Meet the mothers, young Chicana lawyers and whistle-blowing doctors who exposed the shocking practice. -- September (check local listings)


POV “Don’t Tell Anyone” (“No Le Digas a Nadie”)

Meet immigrant activist Angy Rivera, the country’s only advice columnist for undocumented youth. In a community where silence is often seen as necessary for survival, she steps out of the shadows to share her own parallel experiences of being undocumented and sexually abused. -- September (check local listings)



From Latin jazz and mambo to salsa, Tejano, Chicano rock, Latin pop and reggaeton, LATIN MUSIC USA tells the story of the rise of new American music forged from powerful Latin roots and reveals the often overlooked influence of Latin music on jazz, hip hop, rhythm and blues and rock ‘n’ roll — and on all of American culture. Jimmy Smits narrates.

“Bridges/The Salsa Revolution”

Chart the rise of Latin jazz, the mambo and the cha-cha, and the reinvention of the son cubano and the plena to create salsa, a defining rhythm for Latinos the world over. -- September (check local listings)

“The Chicano Wave/Divas and Superstars”

Learn how music played an important role in the struggle for Chicano civil rights, and review the impact of the Latin pop explosion of the turn of the 21stcentury. -- September (check local listings)



Join narrator Benjamin Bratt for a documentary series that chronicles the rich and varied history of Latinos, who have for the past 500-plus years helped shape what is today the United States and have become the country’s largest minority group.

“Foreigners in Their Own Land”

Survey the history and people from 1565-1880, as the first Spanish explorers enter North America, the U.S. expands into territories in the Southwest and as the Mexican-American War strips Mexico of half its territories by 1848. -- September (check local listings)

“Empire of Dreams”

See how the American population is reshaped by Latino immigration starting in 1880 and continuing into the 1940s: Cubans, Mexicans and Puerto Ricans begin arriving in the U.S. and start to build communities in South Florida, Los Angeles and New York. -- September (check local listings)

“War and Peace”

Trace the World War II years and those that follow, as Latino Americans serve their new country by the hundreds of thousands — yet still face discrimination and a fight for civil rights in the United States. -- September (check local listings)

“The New Latinos”

Review the decades after World War II through the early 1960s, as swelling numbers of immigrants from Puerto Rico, Cuba and the Dominican Republic seek economic opportunities. -- September (check local listings)

“Prejudice and Pride”

Witness the creation of the proud “Chicano” identity as labor leaders organize farm workers in California, and as activists push for better education opportunities for Latinos, the inclusion of Latino studies and empowerment in the political process. -- September (check local listings)

“Peril and Promise”

Examine the past 30 years, as immigration creates a debate over the undocumented that leads to calls for tightened borders and English-only laws. Simultaneously, Latino influence is booming in business, sports, media, politics and entertainment. -- September (check local listings)



Examine the Latino experience during a war that placed its heaviest burden on working-class youth and their communities. Framing the documentary are memoirs of two siblings, Everett and Delia Alvarez, who stood on opposite sides of the Vietnam War, one as a POW and the other protesting at home. -- September (check local listings)



VOCES, PBS’ signature Latino arts and culture documentary showcase, is the only ongoing national television series devoted to exploring and celebrating the rich diversity of the Latino cultural experience. 

“Children of Giant

In 1955, Elizabeth Taylor, Rock Hudson, James Dean and a massive crew descended on the Texas town of Marfa to begin production on Giant. Now, decades later, “Children of Giant” explores the film’s still timely examination of racial prejudice. – September (check local listings)

“Now en Español”

Explore the ups and downs of being a Latina actress in Hollywood through the lives of the five dynamic women who dub “Desperate Housewives” into Spanish for American audiences. -- September (check local listings)

“El Poeta”

Meet renowned Mexican poet Javier Sicilia, who ignited an international movement for peace after the brutal murder of his 24-year-old son — collateral damage in a drug war that has left more than 70,000 dead since 2006. -- September (check local listings)