The Ken Burns Effect hits the Twin Cities

I got an interesting notification this week from the Northrop Auditorium.

Ken Burns is coming to Minneapolis.

Northrop Auditorium and Twin Cities Public Television present An
Evening with Ken Burns
at Northrop on September 5, 2007 at 7:30 p.m.

Acclaimed documentary filmmaker, Ken Burns will preview and discuss THE WAR, a seven-part epic series documenting World War II through the memories of men and women from four quintessential American towns, including Luverne, MN. Ken Burns' full-length series of THE WAR will air on tpt2 beginning September 23.

Tickets for the September 5 event at Northrop are free, however reservations
are required. To reserve a seat, visit or contact the Northrop Ticket Office at (612) 624-2345. For group reservations call (612) 625-8878 or email

According to Burns, memories are the building blocks that shape history. PBS
and the Library of Congress' Veterans History Project invite anyone to get a camera
and conduct an interview with anyone who has been through or was affected by the
World War II. The library will catalogue the submissions to become part of the
permanent Veterans History Project collection. For more information visit or

I do enjoy interviewing people, but I've never conducted an interview on film...I could interview my dad (he's 71). I remember when I was a kid, he told me stories about food rations and a friendly neighborhood butcher who would leave meat for my dad's family on his parents' back porch. I think the part of the story that "got" to me was that my dad never said whether his dad had gone to ask for help, or if the butcher had a sense that my dad's family was hungry. I always wondered about that, but never asked.

My personal favorite Burns piece was "Jazz", although I think "Baseball" was his most popular. I checked out Burns' filmography to see what else he's done:
* Brooklyn Bridge (1981)
* Remembering Chicago and World War 2 (1982)
* The Shakers: Hands to Work, Hearts to God (1984)
* The Statue of Liberty (1985)
* Huey Long (1985)
* Congress (1988)
* Thomas Hart Benton (1988)
* The Civil War (1990)
* Empire of the Air: The Men Who Made Radio (1991)
* Baseball (1994)
* Thomas Jefferson (1997)
* Lewis & Clark: The Journey of the Corps of Discovery (1997)
* Frank Lloyd Wright (1998)
* Not For Ourselves Alone: Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony (1999)
* The 50 Years War: Israel and the Arabs (2000)
* JAZZ (2001)
* Mark Twain (2001)
* Horatio's Drive (2003)
* Unforgivable Blackness: The Rise and Fall of Jack Johnson (2004)
* The War (This Fall)


Melina said...

I liked Jazz, and I liked the Jack Johnson piece...caught that one by accident on PBS a couple months ago.

Anonymous said...

See you there!

Reetsyburger said...

melina - haven't seen most of Burns' work, but what I dig about it is his STYLE.

IIII - WORD *high five*