Hartford Political Legend Celebrated in the New CPTV Documentary, The Last Bipartisan: A Tribute to Peter Kelly
Premieres Sunday, October 24 at 10:30 p.m. on Connecticut Public Television (CPTV) and online in HD at cpbn.org, keyword: Peter Kelly
With little more than two weeks to go before the end of a particularly rough election season, a new CPTV documentary celebrates a man who counts numerous friends and colleagues from both sides of the aisle, Hartford’s Peter Kelly. The Last Bipartisan: A Tribute to Peter Kelly – a bipartisan celebration of Kelly’s life and good works – premieres on Sunday, October 24 at 10:30 p.m. on Connecticut Public Television (CPTV). In addition, this special will be the first original Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network (CPBN) production to be the broadcast in HD on the web.
With segments taped on June 8, 2010, at Hartford’s Connecticut Convention Center and emceed by CNN’s Mary Matalin and Ed Rollins, the 30-minute documentary features video tributes to Kelly from former President Jimmy Carter; former Vice President Al Gore; United States Senators Christopher Dodd and Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut, Richard Lugar of Indiana and Mark Warner of Virginia; Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi; Majority Leader of the U.S. House of Representatives Steny Hoyer; Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro; former Republican and Democratic National Committee Chairmen Frank Fahrenkopf and Charles Manatt, respectively; and former Hartford Courant Washington Bureau Chief David Lightman.
Participants in the event lauded Peter Kelly’s contributions to the community, the country and the world. “He is an extremely loyal friend, somebody you can always rely on,” commented former Vice President Gore. Colleague Riva Levinson continued, “He is the father of the democracy movement,” noting Kelly’s primacy in recognizing and acting on the opportunity to spread democracy worldwide after the fall of the Soviet Union. Former President Jimmy Carter paid tribute to Kelly by saying, “As chairman of the board for the Malta House of Care, you’re improving access to free primary healthcare services for thousands of uninsured individuals.”
Senator Joe Lieberman recounted a story which explains his indebtedness to Kelly. Because of Kelly’s suggestion in 1985 that he run for senator against Lowell Weicker in 1988, Lieberman had a chance to talk about that possibility with his father, who was dying of cancer, and would not live to see his son win the office.
While the documentary is primarily a toast to Kelly, there also is some good-natured roasting from his friends and colleagues, including some special surprises from Kelly’s friends, family and the Georgetown Chimes, a choral group he joined in his undergraduate college days.
The Last Bipartisan was produced by former Connecticut Public Broadcasting Media Lab interns Julia Kwon and Sam Hockaday. The executive producer of the documentary is Paul Pfeffer, CPBN manager of online content. “It was a very rich educational experience,” Pfeffer recognized. “Because of the opportunity to learn history from the people who made it, as well as the challenge of capturing those stories and presenting them faithfully and accurately…This project tested the abilities of a very talented group of young content producers.” The CPBN Media Lab instructs and trains undergraduate and post-graduate students in journalism and video/web production. Interviews and research were conducted by interns Jessie Sawyer and Anna Nalitov. Open animation was created by Ross Mortensen, based on an original caricature by Ed Valtman, former Hartford Courant political cartoonist. Picture animation was created by Hockaday and Chris Lawhorn. Many other Media Lab interns made significant contributions, including Tyler Varsell, Stephanie Pelletier, Megan Vann and Nicole Walton from the University of Hartford, David Huck and Julia Ballek from the University of Connecticut, Megan Clark from Bryn Mawr, Hillary Malin from Eastern Connecticut State University, Chris Mathews from Springfield College and Katherine Amershadian from Mitchell College.
About the CPBN Media Lab
The Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network (CPBN) Media Lab’s goal is to create 21st century journalists. It is a service of the Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network (CPBN), parent company of Connecticut Public Television (CPTV) and Connecticut Public Radio (WNPR) Over the past three years, the CPBN Media Lab has provided real world technical and journalism training for over 300 Connecticut students, from undergraduate and postgraduate college students in its internship program, and through seminars, workshops and Media 101 courses for high school students and the Future Producers Academy for middle school students.
The CPBN Media Lab also serves as a journalism mentor to Connecticut high schools that are participating as PBS NewsHour Student Reporting Labs. The CPBN Media Lab has produced a multi-part web original series on metal bats in Little League baseball, Foul Play; the history, facts and the promise of young voters participating in the democratic process, Youth Vote; and the history and effects of political corruption in Connecticut, Corrupticut. Online features include profiles of the Newington Children's Theatre Company and the UConn Pep Band. The Media Lab also completed RoboNation: CT FIRST, a documentary about four Connecticut based high school teams and their efforts in the FIRST robotics competition; it will air on the Connecticut Sports Network (CTSN). Current projects include the Outdoor Enthusiast and (I)NTERVIEW, a series of conversations with Connecticut’s most recognizable people – literally, “names you know, stories you don’t.” Graduates of the CPBN Media Lab have gone on to journalism school in London, the Masters of Arts in Journalism program at Hofstra University and careers as reporters for the Torrington Register-Citizen and the Journal-Inquirer.
About Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network
The Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network (CBPN) includes CPTV and WNPR. CPTV, a media service of CPBN, is a locally and nationally recognized producer and presenter of quality public television programming, including UConn Women’s Basketball, original documentaries and educational programming. CPTV has built a reputation as a leader in children’s programming, including playing an historic role in bringing Barney & Friends™, Bob the Builder™ and Thomas & Friends™ to public television. The station offers 11 hours of positive, nurturing children’s programs each weekday, reaching 50,000 to 70,000 households daily. The CBPN also includes WNPR, an affiliate of National Public Radio, Public Radio International and American Public Media. WNPR serves over 200,000 listeners weekly in Connecticut, New York and Rhode Island with news and information. Its award-winning local programming includes The Faith Middleton Show and Where We Live. Overall, the network brings a broad spectrum of public affairs, entertainment, sports and educational programming to viewers, listeners and readers. For more information, visit www.cpbn.org.