Antiques Roadshow Adds New Dimensions on 18th National Tour
By Max Donner
Antiques Roadshow host Mark Walberg (left) and Mary Platt of Chapman University
Anaheim , CA(Hollywood Today)6/25/13/–“Antiques Roadshow” has reached the top of ratings pyramid in public television, but is still aiming higher. This summer, the program is increasing the number of cities it visits on its annual nationwide tour from six to eight. That will provide enough new material for six additional episodes each year.
“Convention Centers book many years in advance,” explains Executive Producer Marsha Bemko. So the production crew and appraisal teams alike think many years ahead about the future direction of the show. Fortunately, the volume of significant finds keeps increasing. The total number of items evaluated on the
Roadshow tours has passed the one-million mark.
One reason Antiques Roadshow has remained a top rated television success story with over ten million viewers is that the show continues to interact with the audience as it grows. Bemko shared a good example in a recent press interview. The show staff was contacted by viewers who wanted up-to-date information about international agreements affecting materials from endangered species to be included. Rhinoceros horn and elephant ivory are two frequent examples. Now millions of avid collectors have the knowledge they need to make informed decisions.
The June 22 Anaheim Convention Center appraisal event showed there is even more to come. The set included a separate digital media production center for web exclusives that will only be webcast on the Antiques Roadshow website. A “web exclusive” taping of an appraisal by Meredith Meuwly of Heritage Auctions featured a rare item that did not have the exceptional value of most finds broadcast in the standard one-hour episodes on PBS, but did have a fascinating story that is a good add for the “web exclusive” segment shown online.
This “web exclusive” curio belongs to a couple from San Anselmo, California. It is a portable casino with a miniature roulette wheel, whiskey decanter and shot glasses – all painstakingly disguised as library books. This prohibition era gem was fabricated in France and is worth around $500 to $800 to serious curio collectors.
It is a portable casino with a miniature roulette wheel, whiskey decanter and shot glasses – all painstakingly disguised as library books. Ffabricated in France and is worth around $500 to $800 to serious curio collectors.
What is next? The program’s host Mark Walberg is marking another important achievement. His daughter Goldie is launching her own career in the arts at the Washington School of Ballet in the District of Columbia. Eighteen year-old Goldie Walberg is a good example of the next generation of aspiring arts trendsetters, a generation that has grown up watching Antiques Roadshow. A young couple from Hollywood waiting to meet with an appraisal expert on the set explained how watching Antiques Roadshow as teenagers inspired them to become collectors themselves. This hobby has also helped them to build their appreciation for other cultures. The young woman has a collection of original Zuni Native American jewelry. The young man is collecting crafts from North Africa.
Walberg demonstrated how interacting with the collector community is building appreciation for the arts. On the Anaheim Convention Center set, Walberg took a close look at the vintage ballet photo and autograph collection of Mary Platt, Director of Communications at Chapman University, a hub of local arts education. Their enthusiasm showed how collections help Americans bond immediately and engage them in discussion about their passions for the arts. This kind of personal inspiration takes place in front of television set many times each season as viewers watch Antiques Roadshow with other collectors and share their interests.
Antiques Roadshow PBS http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/roadshow/
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