Lifestyle & Belief

PBS sees sharp cuts from National Endowment for the Arts this year


Author/activist Angela Davis speaks onstage during the PBS portion of the 2012 Winter TCA Tour on January 5, 2012 in Pasadena, California.


Frederick M. Brown

NEW YORK — The National Endowment for the Arts slashed funding this year for a number of PBS shows, the Associated Press reported.

PBS President Paula Kerger told The New York Times the cuts are disappointing and broadcaster will “have to scramble and try to fill the gap."

The popular “Live From Lincoln Center” received no funding, compared with  $100,000 last year, the AP wrote.

The Metropolitan Opera received $50,000 for its “Great Performances at the Met” telecasts, one third less than 2011. Other PBS programs that saw cuts were “The PBS NewsHour, “Independent Lens” and “American Masters."

The endowment did for the first time award large grants to gaming, mobile and web-based projects.

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WNET received $75,000 for “The Elastic Animation Festival,” and new series and its web site, and PBS received $50,000 for creation of mobile applications, the New York Times wrote.

The NEA's media arts director, Alyce Myatt, told the Times the endowment hopes to encourage public media projects in gaming. This year the endowment financed a video game that uses the writings of Henry David Thoreau; one that encourages younger people to write poems via texting; and an augmented reality computer game featuring a super heroine.