We are thrilled to announce that Maria's Portuguese Table has been picked up for national distribution. Here is the press release, courtesy of Maria Lawton, announcing this great news.
Groundbreaking Series Maria’s Portuguese Table to Air on PBS Stations Nationwide
Popular Cookbook Author Takes Viewers on Portuguese-themed Culinary and Cultural Journey
Maria Lawton, a cooking enthusiast known as the “Azorean Greenbean” and author of Azorean Cooking: From My Family Table to Yours, is excited to announce that the television series, Maria’s Portuguese Table, has been picked up for nationwide distribution with PBS. The series will be made available to every PBS station starting June 2021.
Air dates will vary by station, but it is expected that the first showings will begin as early as this summer as stations opt to add the program to their lineup. Viewers should check with their local PBS station for dates and time.
“Being Portuguese is something I am very proud of, and I can’t wait to share a small part of my heart through this television show,” said Lawton. “I want everyone to see just how amazing Portuguese food and culture is. Even though the Portuguese were great explorers of the world, their widespread impact isn’t always recognized. It’s time for the world to discover all things Portuguese!”
The first season of Maria’s Portuguese Table consists of eight 30-minute episodes following Maria on a culinary journey that spans from the heart of the Azorean islands in the North Atlantic Ocean, to vibrant Portuguese communities across the United States. Viewers will discover the influence of Portuguese cuisine throughout the world, and how it has migrated and evolved along with generations of Portuguese immigrants. The first season originally aired in limited markets including Rhode Island; Massachusetts; Connecticut; Buffalo, New York; Toronto, Canada; and Fresno, California.
WSBE Rhode Island PBS is the presenting station for Maria’s Portuguese Table. Lori Sullivan, director of content at Rhode Island PBS, said, “I am delighted that Maria will now be sharing her love of Portuguese food and culture with the rest of the country. The pride she has in her heritage is inspiring and I am glad that so many more people will now get the chance to experience that with her.”
In spring 2020, Lawton was nominated for a Boston/New England Emmy for her role as the host of Maria’s Portuguese Table. Lawton said, “I was humbled by the nomination, and in a year filled with so much sorrow I just jumped with joy at the announcement. It was at that moment that I knew I could never give up on this series. With the first season now going national, for the very first time, a series on Portuguese food and culture has joined the table of other cultures. The seat has been waiting for us, and I am ready for more to join me at that table as we look ahead to developing our next season.”
Half of the inaugural season was shot exclusively on the island of Sao Miguel, Azores, and features the capital city of Ponta Delgada as well as many small, coastal villages throughout the island. The other half of the season takes viewers to both the East and West coasts of the United States, where Lawton finds Portuguese influences at every turn.
Maria Lawton serves as Executive Producer of the series, along with her husband Bob. They sought out California-based media production company Cineasta Digital Productions, led by two-time Emmy Award-winning cinematographer Dean Camara, to help produce and direct the first season.
“It’s exciting to see the show still continue to grow. Taking Season One nationally gets me really excited about the possibilities of Season Two,” said Camara. “This show was produced to show off all the rich textures of Portuguese cuisine, culture and its influence around the world. I am just glad more people get to enjoy it, too.”
The creative team also worked with Something Productions, Inc., based in Fall River, Massachusetts, and the creative force behind the world-famous comedy troupe, The Portuguese Kids. Partners Derrick DeMelo and Brian Martins provided production services throughout the process.
The goal for the series and the production team is to find the right partnerships that will allow several more series to be produced. This would allow the series to explore and highlight the Portuguese culinary and culture. Lawton noted, “The Portuguese people have influenced the world since the fifteenth century, and I’m happy to promote our food and culture, wherever in the world it may be.”
For more information regarding Maria’s Portuguese Table, visit azoreangreenbean.com.