CTV's Spectacle: Elvis Costello with... Completes Production of Four
Episodes with Top-Notch International Guest Lineup
--Sir Elton John, Tony Bennett, Lou Reed and former U.S. President Bill
Clinton among headliners--
TORONTO, July 3 /CNW/ - With filming of four episodes of the highly
anticipated new series Spectacle: Elvis Costello with... complete, CTV
announced today the initial guest lineup for the groundbreaking new music
television series. The series boasts an impressive international guest list
which includes Sir Elton John, Tony Bennett, Lou Reed, artist-director Julian
Schnabel and former President Bill Clinton. Additional guests appearing this
season will be announced soon. Production of Spectacle: Elvis Costello with...
continues this summer and fall; the series will premiere later this year on
CTV and Bravo!
As previously announced, the Canada/United Kingdom co-production will air
on CTV in Canada, Channel 4 in the UK and the Sundance Channel in the U.S.
(broadcast schedule is yet to be announced). FremantleMedia Enterprises will
handle sales of the show to the rest of the world.
Fusing the best of talk and music television, the first episode taped for
this 13-part series invites viewers to enjoy an intimate conversation between
host Elvis Costello and Spectacle Executive Producer Sir Elton John before
they make music history by performing together for the first time on
"I'm hoping that future shows continue to embody the great joy, passion
and celebration of music we've had thus far, mixed with rare poignant and
powerful moments," said Spectacle host Elvis Costello. "It's early to say too
much about Spectacle other than it has been a wonderful and surprising
"You very rarely get to hear what a great musician has to say. You're on
and off in five minutes," said Sir Elton John. "This is an intelligent show
hosted by an extremely intelligent man - with intelligent artists as guests
... and to get this on tape is important. It's very hard to do something like
this ... give Elvis 10 out of 10 for balls."
"This eclectic group of international performers will not only provide
memorable performances, but through the intimate environment of the show,
viewers will also be exposed to a new side of some of their favourite
musicians," said Susanne Boyce, President, Creative, Content and Channels, CTV
"Elvis Costello plus three music legends, an art world maverick and one
uniquely engaged former President of the United States produced some of the
most insightful conversations about music (and a few other things), as well as
a stack of extraordinary and original musical performances that were almost
certainly once-in-a-lifetime moments. All in all, not a bad start," said
Executive Producer and creator Stephen Warden.
"My partners and I set out to make a program that we would want to watch.
Spectacle is an unapologetically intelligent and massively entertaining show
about music and contemporary culture that has no parallel in television today.
Our first few episodes feature a knight, a president and the guitar player to
the king," added Executive Producer Martin Katz, referring to Sir Elton John,
President Bill Clinton and James Burton, Elvis Presley's long-time band
Additional musical special guests confirmed for this season include
musicians Davey Faragher, Pete Thomas and Steve Nieve of The Imposters;
guitarist James Burton, who played with Elvis Presley; legendary producer,
pianist, writer, arranger and singer Allen Toussaint; three-time Grammy
Award-winning jazz bassist Charlie Haden; jazz guitarist and composer Pat
Metheny, winner of 17 Grammy Awards; jazz pianist Bill Charlap; Larry Campbell
and Tony Garnier of Bob Dylan's touring band; keyboard player Kevin Hearn, of
Barenaked Ladies; and violinist/vocalist Jenny Scheinman. More will be
The series of 13 one-hour episodes of Spectacle will feature everything
from intimate one-on-ones with legendary performers and notable newcomers to
thematic panel discussions.
The program's eclecticism and depth reflect its uniquely qualified host.
Elvis Costello is a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee; a Grammy and Ivor
Novello Award-winning (and Oscar-nominated) songwriter and performer
comfortable in almost every genre imaginable; a musicologist of formidable
breadth and knowledge; a contributor to Vanity Fair magazine; and a noted wit
whose stint as guest host on The Late Show with David Letterman won rave
Consistent with Sir Elton John's long-standing commitment to philanthropy
and music, the series producers have struck an exciting association with the
(Product) RED (www.joinred.com) campaign created to raise awareness and money
for the Global Fund (www.theglobalfund.org) to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and
Malaria in Africa. Select program excerpts and performances will be
distributed in a variety of new media and conventional platforms, with a
portion of the profits directed to the Global Fund.
The producers of Spectacle: Elvis Costello with... are Stephen Warden,
former music journalist and artist manager (Remy Shand) of reinvention
entertainment; entertainment lawyer Jordan Jacobs (numerous Grammy and JUNO
winners) of SpyBox Pictures; and film producer Martin Katz (Hotel Rwanda) of
Prospero Pictures. The three, based in Toronto, formed Tri-Fi Productions to
produce the series in partnership with David Furnish and Steve Hamilton-Shaw
of Rocket Pictures.
The series is produced in association with CTV, Sundance Channel, Channel
4 and FremantleMedia. Executive Producers are Sir Elton John, Elvis Costello,
David Furnish, Steve Hamilton-Shaw, Jordan Jacobs, Martin Katz and Stephen
Warden. Co-Executive Producer is Alex Coletti.
For CTV, Ed Robinson is Executive Vice-President, Programming, CTV.
Susanne Boyce is President, Creative, Content and Channels, CTV Inc.
CTV, Canada's largest private broadcaster, offers a wide range of quality
news, sports, information, and entertainment programming. It has the
number-one national newscast, CTV National News With Lloyd Robertson, and is
the number-one choice for prime-time viewing. CTVglobemedia Inc. is Canada's
premier multi-media company which owns CTV Inc. and The Globe and Mail. CTV
Inc. also owns radio stations across the country, and leading national
specialty channels. Other CTVglobemedia investments include an interest in
Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, and in Dome Productions, a North American
leader in the provision of mobile high definition production facilities. More
information about CTV may be found on the company website at www.ctv.ca
For further information:
For further information: Renée Dupuis Macht, CTV Inc., (416) 332-4596 or