Narrated by author and radio personality Garrison Keillor (A Prairie Home Companion), the hour-long documentary Let There Be Light follows grand masters of stained glass as they labor to complete a masterpiece: their last window for the Washington National Cathedral. The film – winner of the Best of Festival award at Washington, D.C.’s 2013 Independent Film Festival – now comes to CPTV on Monday, March 20, 2017 at 10 p.m.
Six years in the making, Let There Be Light showcases Rowan LeCompte and Dieter Goldkuhle, both of whom have passed away since work on the film began. LeCompte was a stained glass artist best known for creating 45 stained glass windows and six mosaic murals in the Washington National Cathedral. In fact, he designed his first window for the cathedral at the age of 16. Goldkuhle, who was born into a family of glass makers from the Bavarian region of Germany, was both a master craftsman and a philosopher.
The film documents their work on a window initially intended to take one year and be ready for the 2007 centennial celebration of the Washington National Cathedral’s founding. The project takes longer than expected, however, and tension develops between the two men, and later, a major conflict erupts between LeCompte and the cathedral administration. Another grand master of glass, Mary Clerkin Higgins, is brought in to try and overcome these obstacles in order for this massive work of art to be completed.
For filmmaker Peter Swanson, the public television broadcast is the culmination of a ten-year saga, in which he followed the twists and turns of the story development. His inspiration for the film dates back to his high school days in the early ‘70s when he carried the mail around the cathedral grounds as a summer job. This long-standing relationship with the institution put him in an awkward position when controversy erupts between the artist and the cathedral. He kept saying to the Executive Producer, Christine Swanson, “I can’t take sides, my job is just to follow the story.”
Told with stunning images, this story of passion and creation celebrates the power and beauty of light, and aims to inspire and ignite the inner creative light within everyone.
Let There Be Light is presented by Connecticut Public Television (CPTV) and distributed by American Public Television (APT).
About Connecticut Public Television
Connecticut Public Television (CPTV) is a media service of the Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network (CPBN). CPTV is a locally and nationally recognized producer and presenter of quality public television programming, including original documentaries, public affairs and educational programming. CPTV also includes two affiliate channels: CPTV4U, a 24/7 television channel featuring award-winning drama, news and talk programming, concert performances, independent films, nature shows, British comedy and more; and CPTV Sports, Connecticut’s only 24-hour local sports network, covering statewide high school sports. For more information, visit cptv.org.
American Public Television (APT) has been the leading syndicator of high-quality, top-rated programming to the nation’s public television stations since 1961. For more than 10 years, APT has annually distributed one-third or more of the top 100 highest-rated public television titles in the U.S. Among its 250 new program titles per year, APT programs include prominent documentaries, performance, news and current affairs programs, dramas, how-to programs, children’s series and classic movies. America’s Test Kitchen From Cook’s Illustrated, Cook’s Country, AfroPoP, Rick Steves’ Europe, Front and Center, Doc Martin, Nightly Business Report, Midsomer Murders, A Place to Call Home, Lidia’s Kitchen, Globe Trekker, Simply Ming, and P. Allen Smith’s Garden Home are a sampling of APT’s programs, considered some of the most popular on public television. APT licenses programs internationally through its APT Worldwide service. Now in its 12th year, Create® TV — featuring the best of public television’s lifestyle programming — is distributed by American Public Television. APT also distributes WORLD™, public television’s premier news, science and documentary channel. To find out more about APT’s programs and services, visit APTonline.org.