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Kennedy Center’s New TV Series Premieres with Mingus Tribute

Next at the Kennedy Center's first episode, "Let My Children Hear Mingus," airs Oct. 14 on PBS

Charles Mingus (for Next at the Kennedy Center premiere)
Charles Mingus (photo: ©Christian Rose/Fastimage, courtesy of Resonance Records)

Next at the Kennedy Center, a new prime-time TV series that is the product of a collaboration between the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and PBS, will premiere tonight (October 14) with an episode titled “Let My Children Hear Mingus.”

The program will explore the music and legacy of legendary bassist and composer Charles Mingus, who would have turned 100 this year. It will feature a performance by the Mingus Big Band at the Kennedy Center’s Terrace Theater as well as performances by and interviews with musicians Charles McPherson, Robert Glasper, Christian aTunde Adjuah, Georgia Anne Muldrow, and Kennedy Center Artistic Director for Jazz Jason Moran, among others.

Next at the Kennedy Center is a three-year partnership between the public broadcaster and the Washington, D.C. performing arts institution. The first season, airing in 2022-23, will include five episodes.

More information about the show can be found at the PBS website.

The Mingus Big Band and a related ensemble, Mingus Dynasty, were founded after Mingus’ 1979 death to keep his music alive. Both groups were formed by his widow Sue Mingus, who passed away in September at the age of 92; you can read her JazzTimes obituary here.

JazzTimes 10: Essential Charles Mingus