15 November 1999
The CBC and The Arts - THE COMMENTARY
By Joseph Planta
If the CBC is to succeed in the new century, thatís the most over used term in current pop culutre, this damned: new century, new millenium stuff, by the way; itíll have to foster a venue for the performing arts.
To recap, Iím in favor of a Canadian broadcasting company, but one that isnít funded by the people, if it contiues the type of programming it does. The performing arts, is the first and apex aspect of any culture, so making a Canadian culture that is condusive to all Canadians should be the CBCís sole mandate.
Programs like Air Farce and the occasional Governor General Awards special are some of our best venues to display the superb Canadian talent, but the CBC sort of shuns that away, for sports. We have a TSN, a SportsNet and a Headline Sports, why on Earth would the CBC still dabble in sports, when itís only erroding sports viewership accros the nation? Why does the CBC still cover politics, when there is a NewsNet, a CPAC and their own Newsworld, when itís only erroding political viewership accross the nation?
The CBC, if it is to remain a part of Canadian culutre, if it is to remain the focal point for all of Canadian culture, it should stick to comedy and splendid dramas like 22 Minutes and DaVinciís Inquest. They should have an emphasis on great Canadian cultural programming, like the top-notch symphonies accross the country, the dance and ballet companies across the country, the native cultural dynamics should be shown, as well as other great performing arts programs.
If thatís too much, then they should create programming that rivals American shows. 22 Minutes and Air Farce are just as funny, if not more than Saturday Night Live and Mad TV. How about more excellent shows like DaVinciís or Made In Canada? What about a renesance back to the great shows of years past that are so identified with Canadian television? King of Kensington, The Beachcombers, Street Legal, Quentin Durgens, MP, Jubilee!, Juliette, and more. Why not? Comedy is so big in this country, we should exploit it bigger.
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