via press release:
EVERYDAY MUSEUM VISITS TRANSFORMED INTO TRULY UNIQUE EXPERIENCES IN NEW SMITHSONIAN CHANNEL™ SERIES
SERIOUSLY AMAZING OBJECTS
PREMIERING MONDAY, NOVEMBER 25 AT 8PM ET/PT
Host Xavier Carnegie Takes Unsuspecting Museum-Goers Behind The Ropes And Into The Smithsonian’s Vaults
New York, NY, November 12, 2013 – Imagine you are on an ordinary museum visit when you’re unexpectedly whisked away to a secret vault behind closed doors, to the hidden storerooms where America keeps its coolest stuff.
SERIOUSLY AMAZING OBJECTS, a new original Smithsonian Channel series premiering Monday, November 25 at 8 p.m. ET/PT, surprises unsuspecting museum-goers by taking them behind the scenes to reveal incredible objects that changed our world – from the Wright Flyer to Thomas Edison’s light bulb, from Lewis and Clark’s compass to surprisingly artistic pandas – and dozens more.
With verve and spontaneous humor, host Xavier Carnegie invites unwitting Smithsonian guests to answer pop quizzes on fascinating topics. Some lucky winners venture into the Smithsonian’s vaults. Others get to go even further – as they’re whisked off to Montana for a recreation of the Battle of the Little Bighorn, or soar the wild blue yonder in an antique biplane. Each object has astonishing significance to our nation’s history, and each participant discovers something they never knew – while experiencing an adventure they never imagined.
The premiere of SERIOUSLY AMAZING OBJECTS coincides with the recently published book from Penguin Press by Smithsonian Institution Undersecretary for History, Art and Culture Richard Kurin, titled The Smithsonian’s History of America in 101 Objects and Smithsonian magazine’s November Special Issue, 101 Objects That Made America.
Xavier Carnegie is a familiar face and voice at the Smithsonian. As the Creative Director at the National Museum of American History, he writes and directs compelling historical plays and programs. He even portrays historical characters, from a 1700s pirate, to an 1800s cowboy, to a 20th century Civil Rights protester. He is an aspiring renaissance man, traveling everywhere from Michigan to Melbourne as a performer, reviewer, moderator, panelist, and presenter, but he also finds time for Shakespeare, musicals, and experimental projects in his native Washington D.C.
SERIOUSLY AMAZING OBJECTS: TRAILBLAZERS Premieres Monday, November 25 at 8 p.m. ET/PT
Guests win a surprise quiz and win the opportunity to enter the secret vaults at the National Museum of American History to find Lewis & Clark’s compass – a defining symbol of America’s western expansion. Then the guests are dropped into a local forest and must navigate an obstacle course by compass in a race against time (not as easy as it might seem). A young kid’s passion for airplanes gets him behind the scenes at the National Air and Space Museum for an up-close look at the original Wright Flyer as well as a flight in a historic biplane. Ben Franklin’s electrical generator sparks the imagination, as do original comics featuring America’s first super-heroine, Wonder Woman. And the discovery of WWII version of “texting” leads to an astonishing encounter with the last survivor of a Pearl Harbor warship.
SERIOUSLY AMAZING OBJECTS: MELTING POT Premieres Monday, December 2 at 8 p.m. ET/PT
A young couple at the National Museum of the American Indian travels to remote Smithsonian vaults to discover Sitting Bull’s hand-drawn depictions of the Battle of the Little Bighorn. Then they’re whisked away to Montana for a re-creation of the Battle… and meet Sitting Bull’s great-grandson. A couple of youngsters are challenged to re-create Edison’s original light bulb, and then find themselves in the vaults to see the real thing. Unsuspecting guests get behind the scenes to discover everything from the real Pocahontas to the Smithsonian’s gun room, to the National Zoo’s Giant Pandas.
SERIOUSLY AMAZING OBJECTS: SEEKING FORTUNE Premieres Monday, December 9 at 8 p.m. ET/PT
In this week’s program, our lucky museum goers go to new heights for an unusual perspective of the famous “Spirit of St. Louis” plane. An enthusiast of the American West encounters the tiny object that started the entire California Gold Rush. One of the first televisions reveals how TV changed American history. We find the lost recording of Woody Guthrie’s iconic “This Land Is Your Land,” and hear an impromptu performance by singer-songwriter Jason Isbell.
SERIOUSLY AMAZING OBJECTS: LEGENDS Premieres Monday, December 16 at 8 p.m. ET/PT
An unsuspecting couple is taken backstage to see the personal belongings of Abraham Lincoln, and then encounters “Lincoln” himself. We’ll see how a hunting trip gone terribly wrong led to the first Teddy Bear and how a bugle helped start a war. The world’s first telephone fascinates visitors and rare photos from 1912 turn out to be originals from the Titanic disaster, taken only hours after the wreck.
SERIOUSLY AMAZING OBJECTS is produced for Smithsonian Channel by The Biscuit Factory. Executive Producers for Biscuit Factory are Molly Hermann and Rob Lyall. Executive Producers for Smithsonian Channel are Linda Goldman and David Royle.
ABOUT SMITHSONIAN CHANNEL
Smithsonian Channel is owned by Smithsonian Networks, a joint venture between Showtime Networks Inc. and the Smithsonian Institution. Its programs are largely inspired by the assets of the world’s largest museum complex. Smithsonian Channel features award-winning original documentaries, series, and groundbreaking programs highlighting America’s historical, cultural and scientific heritage. Smithsonian Channel brings the American experience home in high definition and Dolby Digital 5.1 and is available to customers of DirecTV, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Charter Communications, Cablevision, Verizon, AT&T, and more. Learn more at http://www.smithsonianchannel.com <http://www.smithsonianchannel.com/> .