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Trio wins reprieve, plots relaunch

USA Cable is giving a second life to Trio, revamping the digital network's programming and on-air look.

Trio, which focuses on popular arts, will relaunch on June 10 with 650 hours of new music, theater, dance, movies, festivals and events programming. Trio is touting its acquisitions of Sessions at West 54th Street, a celebrated PBS music series, Rowan and Martin's Laugh In, a classic 1970s comedic show, and the network rights to the film Elizabeth. The network has 10 specials in development for 2001, including Walk Through, showcasing some are the world's finest private art collections, and a 10-hour special on the 2001 New Orleans Jazz Festival.

Trio currently reaches 11.3 million subscribers on satellite and digital cable. President of Emerging Networks for USA Cable Patrick Vien estimates the network will reach 35-40 million subscribers within 3 to 4 years. USA Cable acquired Trio and its sister network News World International in May 2000 for about $100 million through the purchase of North American Television Inc. - Allison Romano