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The Police announce final show is a NYC benefit

The Police have announced their final concert ever, a public television benefit at New York’s Madison Square Garden.

The bassman cometh

The proceeds of the Thursday, August 7 performance will specifically benefit the production of arts programming for Thirteen, WNET and WLIW New York.

The pairing will kick off the “Public Television Rocks!” initiative launched by Thirteen (WNET) and WLIW21 that combines events and programming to expand public television’s appeal to a wider audience. Tickets for the concert will be available through the public television network as thank-you gifts in exchange for a contribution to either one of the stations. Tickets will be made available to the general public beginning Saturday, June 14 at 7:30 p.m. EST and will be available until they are gone.

“We kicked off our very first American tour at CBGB’s in 1978 and this summer, thirty years later, our journey will come full circle as we play our final show here in New York City,” said The Police in a statement. “We are honored to partner with public television and have a deep respect for their commitment to arts and culture.”

The B-52’s will open for The Police in what is expected to be the largest fundraising event in public television history.

In addition to donating their talent to raise funds for NYC public television arts programming, The Police announced their commitment to MillionTreesNYC during a press conference on June 6 with New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg.

“The Police are now part of one of the most exciting elements of PlaNYC, MillionTreesNYC, our initiative to plant one million new trees over the next 10 years,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “Sting’s human right’s advocacy is well known, as is his support for the environment, especially the rainforests. Today, The Police have demonstrated their commitment to greening our City.”

MillionTreesNYC is a component of PlaNYC, the Mayor’s plan to make the City more sustainable and reduce its carbon footprint 30 percent by 2030. The Police pledged $1 million to the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City in support of MillionTreesNYC. This donation, matched by the City, will provide $2 million to help launch the reforestation component of MillionTreesNYC which will plant 10,000 trees and reforest 2,000 acres of parkland across the five boroughs.

Deforestation efforts improve air and water quality, reduce greenhouse gases and lower energy costs.

“We are pleased to contribute to this powerful and historic initiative that will undoubtedly improve the quality of life for future generations,” said The Police. “We applaud Mayor Bloomberg and the City of New York for boldly confronting the City’s environmental issues and are excited to support their goal of creating a healthier, more sustainable City.”

Get tickets and do good on June 14

In anticipation of their final concert, public television will celebrate The Police, one of rock’s greatest bands, with a historical look at Sting, Stewart Copeland, and Andy Summers, featuring classic concert footage and interviews. This will air simultaneously on Thirteen, WLIW21, and Thirteen HD, from 7:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. EST. Later that same evening, WLIW21 will rebroadcast at 9 p.m. EST.

The Police will be performing one final time

Throughout live breaks in the program, viewers will be provided with information on how to support public television and obtain access to one of the most historic rock shows of this decade. Tickets to the concert will also be offered to public television stations along the Eastern Seaboard, including WETA, WHYY, CPTV, and WGBH to use in fundraising.

How to pledge and be rewarded

Gift levels for pairs of tickets are as follows: $750, $500, $350, $150. The higher the gift level, the better the seats offered as a thank-you gift. VIP tickets are at the $2,000 level including prime seats, a private, pre-concert reception and a complimentary souvenir.

Donations are, of course, accepted regardless of where you live. Supporting public television is always a good thing.

A very limited thank-you gift will be made available for a contribution at the $5000 level. Contributors at this level will receive an invitation for two to attend the band’s final sound check, a chance to be in close proximity to the band as they prepare for their final concert. This once-in-a-lifetime experience will include floor seats, pre-concert dinner and cocktails in a private dining room along with a complimentary souvenir gift. These thank-you packages are limited to 45 pairs.

VIP tickets during the live broadcast and during business hours will be available by calling 1-800-222-6459.

An arresting moment for public TV

“All of us at Thirteen/WNET and WLIW New York are incredibly honored to host the final concert of The Police and to be a part of this amazing event that will do so much to improve our City,” said Neal Shapiro, President and CEO of the Educational Broadcasting Corporation, the licensee of Thirteen and WLIW New York. “We are even more grateful that The Police have decided that proceeds from their landmark concert will directly benefit public television. On behalf of our millions of viewers, I personally want to thank Sting, Andy Summers and Stewart Copeland for their extraordinary generosity.”

Seeing Copeland's percussional brilliance is priceless

Now live is the microsite for “Public Television Rocks” at with sneak-peek interview footage, webisodes and information about the August 7 final Police concert.

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