The Peabody Awards

The Peabody Awards


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  • “Twin Peaks” for the Premiere Episode
    “Twin Peaks” for the Premiere Episode

    As one Peabody Board member noted, the limits of acceptability in series television are becoming narrower and narrower. In the spring of 1990, Twin Peaks burst upon the scene and in the process redefined the standards and conventions of television drama. From its unpredictable melding of comedy and tragedy, to its inventive visual imagery and sound montage, the Twin Peaks premiere episode set new standards and expectations for the medium Executive producers David Lynch and Mark Frost have... read more

  • American Playhouse
    American Playhouse

    Comments on the excellence of American Playhouse would, no doubt, fill volumes. Awards presented to this outstanding television effort likewise would take substantial space to list. For nine seasons American Playhouse has been showcasing quality television. It has offered works by outstanding American playwrights and has presented adaptations of stories by distinguished American writers. During 1990 alone the series presented such quality works as Women and Wallace and An Enemy of the People. During the eight previous years... read more

  • Backhauling

    Public television station KCTS 9 in Seattle utilized the services of numerous talented people to produce a chilling look at what happens in the trucking industry when haulers transport toxic chemicals one way and then transport food products on the return. This investigative report was presented on the “MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour” on PBS during March of 1990. The production group spent more than four months interviewing, videotaping, examining documents and truckers’ log books and even utilized home videotapes in... read more

  • Dick Feagler Commentaries
    Dick Feagler Commentaries

    The message is, of course, what is important. But just watching Dick Feagler deliver his commentaries four nights weekly on WKYC-TV, Cleveland, is great television. Waiting for his “zinger” when he symbolically “twists the knife” as he develops a problem of great importance looking for a solution is time well spent. His incisive way of getting to the heart of a problem or situation quickly and clearly sets Dick Feagler apart. The entry from which submitted his commentaries... read more

  • Eyes on the Prize II: America at the Racial Crossroads (1965-1985)
    Eyes on the Prize II: America at the Racial Crossroads (1965-1985)

    Two years ago, Executive Producer Henry Hampton accepted a Peabody Award for the first installment of this landmark series on the American Civil Rights movement. In the view of the Peabody Board, Eyes on the Prize II: America at the Racial Crossroads 1965-1985, matches the power of the first series and joins with it to comprise the definitive archival record of these historic events. Eyes is important television for many reasons. To many living Americans, the civil rights... read more

  • Futures

    Over the years, the Peabody Board has observed children’s television becoming increasingly frenetic and “hi-tech.” Often obscured by this approach is the raw power of the medium to educate by recording the interplay between excellent teachers and their inquisitive and motivated students. Here is the core of this outstanding series which makes mathematics and science at once exciting and important to learn. Acclaimed teacher Jaime Escalante uses his classroom as a springboard to introduce students to leading figures... read more

  • Heat With John Hockenberry
    Heat With John Hockenberry

    It is not uncommon to hear one say: “Radio isn’t what it used to be.” Perhaps. But if you are a regular listener to Heat with John Hockenberry, heard nightly for two hours on National Public Radio, your reaction might be “Thank goodness!” Whatever you are looking for on radio is likely to be found, at one time or another, on this program. The Peabody Board was told that “diversity is the program’s hallmark,” and, indeed it seems... read more

  • Institutional Award: Cable News Network (CNN) for Its Coverage of the Persian Gulf War
    Institutional Award: Cable News Network (CNN) for Its Coverage of the Persian Gulf War

    In scarcely more than a decade, CNN has matured from a cable curiosity to become an international service of inestimable importance. Never was that role more visible than in its coverage of the Persian Gulf crisis. CNN was on the scene before the events of August, 1990; its network of correspondents, editors and photographers covered the events as they continued, from Operation Desert Shield to Desert Storm. This extensive, 24-hour coverage from the scene, from world capitals and... read more

  • Institutional Award: John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
    Institutional Award: John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

    In reviewing literally thousands of hours of programming in the past few years, Peabody screening committees have made a remarkable discovery. Consistently, the best in American television is prefaced by the voice-over and graphic, “The following program is made possible by a grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.” It is more than coincidence. Under the inspired leadership of the late William Kirby, the MacArthur Foundation has consistently supported inventive, inspired and important television, including... read more

  • Institutional Award: The Southern Center for International Studies
    Institutional Award: The Southern Center for International Studies

    Historians in the future will likely be very grateful to those persons at the Southern Center for international Studies in Atlanta for the decision to produce programs such as Annual Reports of the Secretaries of State (now in their 8th year), Annual Reports of the Secretaries of Defense (now in their 4th year), and A Conversation with Dean Rusk (a 5-part series hosted by Edwin Newman). Julia Johnson White has served as Executive Producer for all of these... read more

  • John Hammond: From Bessie Smith to Bruce Springsteen
    John Hammond: From Bessie Smith to Bruce Springsteen

    American Masters has brought millions of Americans an engaging look at John Hammond, described as “talent scout, record producer, civil rights activist, jazz critic and social commentator” in an hour-long program that instantly captures the viewer’s attention. Hammond’s story is told largely through the music he helped bring to the world’s attention but it is also told by the presence of the diverse American music legends who played a part: Billie Holiday, Count Basie, Bob Dylan, Aretha Franklin,... read more

  • Journey’s End: The Memories and Traditions of Daisy Turner and Family
    Journey’s End: The Memories and Traditions of Daisy Turner and Family

    Anyone who has spent even a short amount of time in Vermont knows that it is an exceptional state. The inhabitants of Vermont tend to be individualistic in their thinking, strong in their convictions and ruggedly independent. A unique part of what gives Vermont such an appealing ambience is the Vermont Folklife Center in Middlebury. Pairing with Vermont Public Radio, the Center’s executive director Jane C. Beck and producer/director Ev Grimes produced a series of 20 four-and-a-half minute... read more

  • Kid’s Corner
    Kid’s Corner

    America’s university-affiliated radio stations run the gamut when it comes to the quality of their programming. WXPN-FM, the University of Pennsylvania’s station, obviously ranks near the top when quality is measured if this excellent series is typical. Members of the Peabody Board heard two episodes in the Kid’s Corner series—“Line in the Sand” and “Science Stump-o-Rama.” They were quickly impressed with the work of Executive Producer Mark Fuerst and co-producers Kathy O’Connell and Robert Drake. The series seemed... read more

  • Manicu’s Story: The War in Mozambique
    Manicu’s Story: The War in Mozambique

    It is very easy for those of us busily engaged in daily activities to lose sight of some of the great personal tragedies which take place around the world. As members of the Peabody Board sat listening to Manicu’s Story: The War in Mozambique, there was no way they could not become emotionally involved. This moving account looks graphically at the social upheaval resulting from civil war in that nation. The story is told, however, in personal terms—not... read more

  • Mother Goose Rock ‘n’ Rhyme
    Mother Goose Rock ‘n’ Rhyme

    Here is a program, produced by Think Entertainment, that really puts a new and delightful twist on an old and traditional nursery rhyme. Produced by the delightful and multitalented Shelley Duvall, who is no stranger to comedy, Mother Goose Rock ‘n’ Rhyme is more than just delightful comedy. It is full of music and suspense and lots of other good things. Shelley Duvall, Jean Stapleton and Dan Gilroy all had important parts and Paula Marcus and Tom Bliss... read more

  • Mount St. Helens: A Decade Later
    Mount St. Helens: A Decade Later

    This hour-long re-visit to Mount Saint Helens ten years after the disastrous eruption is a magnificent example of what a talented and quality news operation can do. Using footage saved over the decade since the original coverage and adding to this with newly-found film and video coverage the talented team of Reporter/Producer Lars Larson and Photographer/Editor Andy Elliott came up with a gripping, meaningful and exceptionally well done documentary. Presented as a part of the station’s Northwest Reports... read more

  • Personal Award: Frederick Wiseman
    Personal Award: Frederick Wiseman

    For nearly twenty-five years, filmmaker Fred Wiseman has focused an unblinking lens on American institutions and brought the results to public television. Wiseman’s films are documentaries in the truest sense of the word. Like all important documents, they preserve the public record with clarity and detail. Whether his subject is an intensive care facility (Near Death) or a public space (Central Park), Wiseman captures the full range of humanity and experience. If television holds a mirror to our... read more

  • Personal Award: Paul and Holly Fine
    Personal Award: Paul and Holly Fine

    At its best, 60 Minutes brings topics of critical importance to its vast weekly audience with a sense of urgency, immediacy and personal impact. It is more than coincidental that many of these moments, have been produced by the team of Paul and Holly Fine. Beginning in local television in Washington D.C., now a long-time member of the CBS News organization, the Fines have infused their work with honesty, integrity and humanity. Somehow, Paul and Holly Fine have... read more

  • Personal Award: Red Barber
    Personal Award: Red Barber

    A personal Peabody Award goes to Red Barber, sportscaster extraordinary, who (even though it is trite to say) is, indeed, a living legend. Red Barber simply personifies the best in radio. What he is doing now is extraordinary. His unrehearsed, spontaneous responses and commentaries are the joy of Friday mornings on National Public Radio. He may jump from how the flowers are blooming in Tallahassee (where he makes his home) to the latest on the Pete Rose story.... read more

  • Personal Award: Worth McDougald on the Occasion of His Retirement for Over Two Decades in Service to the Peabody Awards as Director
    Personal Award: Worth McDougald on the Occasion of His Retirement for Over Two Decades in Service to the Peabody Awards as Director

    McDougald, Worth, on the Occasion of His Retirement for Over Two Decades in Service to the Peabody Awards as Director.... read more

  • Peter Jennings Reporting: Guns
    Peter Jennings Reporting: Guns

    Few national issues seem to grip the American public as strongly as the argument over the right to own guns, particularly assault weapons with a high degree of firepower. Peter Jennings and the ABC News organization have produced a special which, in the opinion of the members of the Peabody Board, set a benchmark for excellence. With a total broadcast time of some 150 minutes this report looked at guns, including who does the shooting, who dies and... read more

  • POV: Days of Waiting
    POV: Days of Waiting

    Almost half a century has passed since the time, soon after the attack on Pearl Harbor, that more than a hundred thousand American citizens of Japanese descent were forced into internment camps in the United States. Now, Mouchette Films in association with P.O.V./The American Documentary, has put together a moving hour-and-a-half of television. Based largely on photos and paintings supplied by Estelle Peck Ishigo, a Caucasian woman married to a Japanese-American husband, the program serves as a painful... read more

  • Rotary and AIDS: The Los Altos Story
    Rotary and AIDS: The Los Altos Story

    Production of this program, which was telecast nationally on the Financial News Network, was, from the start, controversial within the Rotary Club of Los Altos, California. The President-elect of the club suddenly came face to face with the reality of AIDS when he learned that his son had contracted the disease. He determined that he would do what he could to try to insure that others did not have to face such a crisis alone. Growing out of... read more

  • Saturday Night Live
    Saturday Night Live

    For years when members of the Peabody staff have come to New York to present the awards one of the earliest tasks has been to see if any tickets were available at NBC for Saturday Night Live. (It has even been suggested that the Peabody presentation day was moved to Monday just so . . . well, you know!) While the latter isn’t true, it is true that for fifteen years Saturday Night Live has provided millions of... read more

  • The Civil War
    The Civil War

    The history of television is marked by several Watershed events: the Kennedy assassination, Watergate, Roots, for example. The Civil War now takes its place with those broadcasts as a television event which forever changed the medium. A labor of love by Ken Burns, marked by important contributions by co-producer Ric Burns and a team of researchers, The Civil War brought America’s bloodiest and most bitter conflict vividly to life. Each scene, indeed each frame, is marked by a... read more

  • The Koppel Report: Death of a Dictator
    The Koppel Report: Death of a Dictator

    Here is a chilling, a startling hour on television. A revolution is taking place and you are there! Ted Koppel and his associates at ABC News and Koppel Communications located exclusive dramatic footage to make this program stand out. They took the viewer behind closed doors to hear and see the discussions that took place during the early hours of the revolution in Romania. They showed the brutal street battles, the trial of Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceasescu and... read more

  • The Schubert Theatre: 75 Years of Memories
    The Schubert Theatre: 75 Years of Memories

    The producers of this magnificent piece of radio nostalgia gave members of the Peabody Board a step-by-step account of just how the program came into being. Their descriptions in the entry form, however, could not do justice to the quality of the program itself. One has to listen to do that. Co-producers Faith Middleton and Diane Orson have worked uncommon magic to bring to the ear of the listener a moving picture of why the Shubert played such... read more