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Patt Morrison kicks off the new Downton Abbey season locally with an LAaRT special

COSTA MESA, Calif.(Dec. 20, 2013) – LA Times writer and columnist Patt Morrison will take an insightful look into the world of Downton Abbey as she guest hosts PBS SoCaL’s weekly arts program, LAaRT.  The exclusive program, entitled “Patt Morrison on Downton,” premieres January 2nd at 7pm on PBS SoCaL.

Morrison’s analysis of the blockbuster series is in anticipation of the January 5th 2-hour season premiere of Downton Abbey airing at 9 p.m on PBS SoCaL.

The special explores the Downton Abbey historical parallels, cultural relevance and provides commentary on what makes this hit series so extraordinary.  Additionally, Morrison explains that all Downton characters, high and lowly, actually reveal the personal stories of real Britons from the times in which they lived.

Patt Morrison is a multiple Emmy-winning broadcaster who also owns eleven Golden Mike awards for her work as host and commentator on public television and radio. As a longtime Los Angeles Times writer and columnist, she owns a share of two Pulitzer Prizes and myriad other awards, including the Los Angeles Press Club’s lifetime achievement award. She is also the author of the best-selling book, “Rio LA, Tales from the Los Angeles River.” Pink’s, the legendary Hollywood hot dog stand, has named its vegetarian hot dog “The Patt Morrison Dog” in her honor.

“As PBS’ home in Southern California, PBS SoCaL is expanding its efforts to provide high-quality programming to Southern California,” said Mel Rogers, President and CEO of PBS SoCaL. “Patt Morrison, an iconic figure for local journalism, connects our great PBS programming to the community.”

Interview guests featured in the special include Associate Professor Douglas M. Haynes, Professor Kate Flint, and the Hon. Anthony Russell. Haynes, of UC Irvine, has taught British history for more than ten years and published works on the history of British imperial medicine and race relations in early modern Britain. Flint, of USC, has published The Transatlantic Indian 1776-1930 (Princeton University Press, 2008), which looks at the two-way relations between Native Americans and the British, plus the intersections of modernity, nationhood, performance, and popular culture. Russell is the third son of the fourth Baron Ampthill and heir presumptive to his brother, the fifth Baron, and is the author of the stunning memoir “Outrageous Fortune,” which takes us inside his childhood growing up at Leeds Castle. Also spotlighted in the program are Emmy Red Carpet interviews with Downton Abbey writer and creator Julian Fellowes, Executive Producer Gareth Neame, Executive Producer Rebecca Eaton and Series Producer Liz Trubridge.

This special is part of a series of events that will kick off the much anticipated fourth season. PBS SoCaL will also host a unique experience inspired by Downton Abbey on Masterpiece aboard the historic Queen Mary in Long Beach with hundreds of 1920's costumed fanson January 4th. For more information about this event, please visit pbsocal.org.

About PBS SoCaL

PBS SoCaL is PBS for Greater Los Angeles and dedicated to interactively educating, entertaining and enlightening viewers throughout the Southland.  With its three unique broadcast channels, PBS SoCaL HD, PBS SoCaL Plus and PBS SoCaL World, PBS SoCaL provides award-winning programs like Frontline,NewsHour, NOVA, Nature and Masterpiece, as well as local productions Real Orange, SoCaL Insider with Rick Reiff, and LAaRT.  Through community outreach initiatives including PBS SoCaL Education, PBS SoCaL provides local schools access to new media materials that engage students in 21st century learning.  Explore the future of PBS in Southern California at www.pbssocal.org.

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