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Ovation Gets Artsy Makeover

Arts channel Ovation TV is rebranding as simply "Ovation" as
it heads into upfront meetings with ad agencies sporting a new logo and on-air
look and plans for new series and programming stunts.

The new logo features gold, concentric circles and suggests
a speaker, a klieg light or a pebble dropping in water, senior vice president
of programming Kris Slava said. The color is "Ovation gold," as in the gold
standard of arts entertainment programming, added senior vice president of
marketing Gaynor Strachan Chun.

The Web site and on-air graphics also change, effective March
1. Ovation worked with Oishii Creative on the new look.

Ovation plans a "chunky" increase in its programming budget
this year, Slava said, and will, for the first time, do some national
advertising this summer (for its annual "American Revolutionaries" programming
stunt), Chun said.

The new look comes as the channel approaches 40 million
households and has evolved its programming during the past three years that
Slava, a former Bravo executive, has been with the Hubbard Media-owned service.

A new series, The
Scenic Route
, a travel show hosted by Los
Angeles Times
writer David Keeps, premieres Sunday, April 11, as part of a
two-week stunt called "Passport Ovation." Keeps visits sites where photographer
Edward Weston and novelist John Steinbeck worked in California;
explores historic lighthouses; and journeys to an artists enclave in the Mojave

Starting March 28, the network looks at religious
controversies in a stunt called "Sacred to Profane."

A high-definition version of Ovation launches in July,
around the time the network's centerpiece stunt, "American Revolutionaries,"
returns. This year the theme is American directors, Slava said, and the network
will air movies such as Martin Scorsese's Mean Streets.

Ovation isn't Nielsen rated (and has no current
timetable for that, Chun said) but has seen "three-digit-growth" in ad-sales
every year, Slava said.