Playlist Ken Burns

Ken Burns

Country Music writer and producer Dayton Duncan; producer Julie Dunfey; and director and producer Ken Burns. Photo: Evan Barlow

An Interview with the Writer and Producer of Ken Burns's 'Country Music'

Daniel Hautzinger

“Country music is a different way to look at who we are as people and what our shared history is," says Dayton Duncan, the writer and producer of Ken Burns's upcoming eight-part Country Music documentary series. "It is uniquely American in its origin."
The WLS National Barn Dance Cast, October, 1944. Image: Courtesy Lee Cannon/Flickr

When Chicago Was a Center of Country Music

Daniel Hautzinger

Chicago is well-known for music: electric blues, gospel, jazz, house. For a couple decades, it was also home to one of the United States' most popular country music radio shows, a program that launched the careers of stars and may have inspired the Grand Ole Opry.
Johnny Cash at his home in California, 1960. Photo: Courtesy Sony Music Archives

'Country Music' By Ken Burns Is Coming

Daniel Hautzinger

He has already explored the history of jazz, and now Ken Burns turns his lens towards America's other great homegrown music in an eight-part, sixteen-hour documentary series coming this fall that explores country's history and people in Burns's trademark exhaustive manner.
Geoffrey Ward, scriptwriter for Ken Burns' The Vietnam War. Photo: Diane Raines Ward

The Extraordinary Life of Ken Burns' Scriptwriter

Daniel Hautzinger

Geoffrey C. Ward has written scripts for Ken Burns for the past thirty years, and his incredible life uniquely fits him for the job. He survived polio, hunted tigers in India as a teenager, and has an ancestor who bankrupted Ulysses S. Grant. 
173rd Airborne Brigade paratrooper after an early morning firefight. July 14, 1966. Photo: AP/John Nance

Understanding Vietnam: A Conversation with the Director of 'The Vietnam War'

Daniel Hautzinger

Lynn Novick, co-director with Ken Burns of the ten-part, eighteen hour documentary series The Vietnam War, which premieres in September, discusses the potential lessons of the war and one of the most affecting moments of her filming career.
Soldiers on a search and destroy operation near Qui Nhon. January 17, 1967. Photo: Bettmann/Getty Images

From the Archive: Veterans and Steppenwolf Discuss the Vietnam War

Daniel Hautzinger

In 1984, WTTW hosted a discussion of the Vietnam War with a group of veterans and four Steppenwolf Theatre actors playing soldiers onstage, including Gary Sinise. Revisit it here.
Ken Burns. (Courtesy of Justin Altman)

Ken Burns: America's Storyteller

Daniel Hautzinger

In Ken Burns: America's Storyteller, Tom Hanks, Meryl Streep, Wynton Marsalis, and more celebrate the career of legendary documentary filmmaker Ken Burns. Watch clips highlighting Burns and his career.
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