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30 May 10 Texas Music Special on PBS Honors Troops

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Austin, TX — “Texas Burning: A Lone Star Salute to Our Troops,” the award-winning concert special commemorating the opening of San Antonio’s Center for the Intrepid, is premiering on Texas PBS stations over the next few weeks.
 
Houston PBS Channel 9 began by broadcasting the one-hour program Monday, May 24, followed by Killeen’s KNCT-TV at 10 p.m. Sunday, May 30, and San Antonio’s KLRN-TV at 10 p.m. Wednesday, June 2. Each has a viewing party or sneak preview attached.
 
The concert was recorded live at the historical Charline McCombs Empire Theatre in San Antonio in 2007, days before the dedication ceremony of the state-of-the-art rehabilitation facility for seriously wounded troops at Brooke Army Medical Center. It showcases seven impressive Texas- and Gulf Coast-based artists who perform in a variety of musical genres.
 
 “The unique mix of talented musicians, performing in honor of the military and their families, creates a compelling concert special. It’s a great way to begin the week leading to Memorial Day weekend,” says Andrea McKenna, assistant director of programming for Houston’s KUHT.
 
The show is hosted by Austin’s Patricia Vonne and Sam Baker, who both also performed. “It was a very special night of music in recognition of our brave troops and their loved ones. We hope everyone will tune in and join us in saying ‘thank you’,” says Vonne. Her song, “Texas Burning,” is the origin of the show’s title and its theme song. Guitar goddess Carolyn Wonderland, internationally renowned blues player Sherman Robertson, GRAMMY nominee Ruthie Foster, singer-songwriter Shannon McNally and New Orleans’ Swedish chanteuse Theresa Andersson are also featured.
 

Blues player Sherman Robertson

It is the first project produced by Houston-based Rampant Entertainment. The program is being submitted to the National Educational Telecommunications Association, known as NETA, for national distribution to more than 350 public television stations. Executive producer Anthony Cutrona, a Houston-based attorney, anticipates that many TV stations, especially those serving large military communities, will begin airing the program later this summer. “By the time Veteran’s Day rolls around in November, we hope to have hundreds of stations offering ‘A Lone Star Salute to Our Troops’,” he says.
 
John Frazier of Houston’s Rollin’ Films, was the director and producer of the concert video. He and Cutrona were recipients of an award for Best Music Video in the Shows/Specials category at the 2007 Houston WorldFest International Film Festival. The program was partially underwritten by House of Blues, Restorative Health Care (based in San Antonio), Marshall Sound Design (based in Dallas) and the Houston Blues Society.
 
KNCT-Killeen will air the show following PBS’ National Memorial Day Concert live broadcast from Washington, D.C.
 
The concert special includes introductory footage of wounded warriors being treated at the Center for the Intrepid. Hundreds of military personnel, catastrophically injured in Iraq and Afghanistan, have been treated there during the past three years.
 
The live concert audience included many soldiers and family members. Rampant Entertainment donated seating to troops stationed in the San Antonio area, and all ticket proceeds were donated to Operation Homefront, a non-profit organization with headquarters in San Antonio that provides support to the families of deployed soldiers. 
 
A DVD of the one-hour program will be offered for sale during the PBS broadcasts. Rampant Entertainment will release the complete three-hour concert DVD and Blu-ray disc for sale later in the summer. It will include 30 songs, with three in Spanish, and features a number of duets and collaborations, along with behind-the-scenes footage.
 
Rampant Entertainment plans to develop “Texas Burning” into a televised concert series by recording a concert annually in Houston and San Antonio. It hopes to shoot its first “Texas Burning: Live from Houston” concert at Rockefeller Hall, the historical venue formerly known as Rockefeller’s Nightclub, later this year.

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