February 25, 2015 12:53 ET

In Honor of Women's History Month, Story of a Maverick Ballerina Has National Debut

COSTA MESA, CA--(Marketwired - Feb 25, 2015) - PBS SoCaL, PBS for Greater Los Angeles, presents "Mia, a dancer's journey," the story of celebrated 20th century ballerina, Mia Slavenska. The inspiring one-hour biography will air on PBS stations across the country throughout 2015 as a part of PBS SoCaL's commitment to highlight the arts and the remarkable stories of women.

In celebration of Women's History Month in March, "Mia, a dancer's journey," will have a special airing on Public Broadcasting's WORLD Channel on March 22 at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT, with an encore airing at 10 p.m. PT.

"Mia, a dancer's journey" is voiced by Emmy® award-winning actress Blythe Danner and features a daughter's promise to tell her mother's story, which becomes a fascinating and moving reflection on historical memory, national identity, and the power of dance. "Mia Slavenska was quite an extraordinary artist who lived a dramatic and inspiring life," said Blythe Danner. "It was an honor to represent her voice in this moving documentary."

Slavenska achieved fame as a prima ballerina in Croatia, and then as a star attraction in the Ballet Russe De Monte Carlo. She later escaped to the U.S. to avoid World War II. In America, Slavenska formed her own company and introduced U.S. audiences to ballet as an art form. She retired from the stage in 1961 and dedicated her life to teaching. Before she died, Slavenska's daughter, Maria, promised to tell her mother's story.

"PBS SoCaL is thrilled to share Mia's story and journey as an émigré artist who overcame adversity and contributed to the American cultural landscape," said PBS SoCaL Executive Producer of Program Development and National Productions, Brenda Brkusic. "We hope the film educates, entertains and inspires PBS viewers across the country."

"Mia, a dancer's journey" was co-produced by Slavenska Dance Preservation, Inc. and PBS SoCaL. The film is directed by Maria Ramas and Kate Johnson and produced by Maria Ramas, Kate Johnson, Brenda Brkusic and Ted Sprague. Funding for the program was made possible in part by The National Endowment for the Arts, Art Works, The Women in Film Foundation Film Finishing Fund, Dance Films Association, The Herman Lissner Foundation, The Tcherepnin Foundation, Mladen and Nada Buntich and The PBS SoCaL Program Excellence Fund for the Arts. For more information, please visit

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