Roberta Flack was a child piano prodigy | Roberta Flack | American Masters | PBS

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Growing up, Roberta Flack was known as a musical prodigy who “could play anything” on the piano. She grew up in the church, where her mother was an organist, and started studying classical piano repertoire at just nine years old.

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“American Masters: Roberta Flack” follows the music icon from a piano lounge through her rise to stardom. From “First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” to “Killing Me Softly,” Flack’s virtuosity was inseparable from her commitment to civil rights. Detailing her story in her own words, the film features exclusive access to Flack’s archives and interviews with Rev. Jesse Jackson, Peabo Bryson and more. “American Masters: Roberta Flack” premieres nationwide Tuesday January 24 at 9 p.m. ET on PBS (check local listings), and the PBS Video App.


Now in its 36th season on PBS, American Masters was recently nominated for an IDA Award, two Primetime Emmy® Awards and was awarded two News & Documentary Emmys. The series illuminates the lives and creative journeys of our nation’s most enduring artistic giants—those who have left an indelible impression on our cultural landscape—through compelling, unvarnished stories. Setting the standard for documentary film profiles, the series has earned widespread critical acclaim and 28 Emmy Awards—including 10 for Outstanding Non-Fiction Series and five for Outstanding Non-Fiction Special—14 Peabodys, three Grammys, two Producers Guild Awards, an Oscar, and many other honors. To further explore the lives and works of more than 250 masters past and present, the American Masters website offers full episodes, film outtakes, filmmaker interviews, the podcast American Masters: Creative Spark, educational resources, digital original series and more. The series is a production of The WNET Group.


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