- The Washington Times - Thursday, April 9, 2009

'Today' touts concerts

Jennifer Hudson, Gwen Stefani and Dave Matthews all have early wake-up calls for “Today” show concerts over the warm-weather months.

Miss Stefani's reunion show with her band No Doubt kicks off “Today's” Friday morning concert series on May 1, Associated Press reports. Miss Hudson is scheduled for May 15.

The Dave Matthews Band is signed up for June 5. The Jonas Brothers, another act sure to draw a big crowd to Rockefeller Plaza, are slated to perform later in June.

Taylor Swift, Fall Out Boy, Black Eyed Peas, the Fray, Kings of Leon and Katy Perry also are on the concert schedule, which runs through the end of August.

'Tudors' on top

HBO's shrink drew a lot of people to the couch Sunday night but not as many as Showtime got for “The Tudors,” TVWeek.com reports.

The first two episodes of the new season of HBO's “In Treatment” drew an average of 657,000 viewers in their premiere airings, up 13 percent from last season's average of 277,000.

Meanwhile, the season-three premiere of Showtime's “The Tudors” drew 726,000 viewers at 9 p.m., marking one of the few times a Showtime original has beaten an HBO original.

Still, the premiere of “The Tudors” was down 5 percent from its second-season start a year ago.

HBO has about 12 million more subscribers than Showtime.

Free laughs on Leno

Comedian Jay Leno unveiled his own stimulus package for the jobless in Detroit on Tuesday night, CNN.com reports.

Mr. Leno, host of NBC's “The Tonight Show,” performed a free show for unemployed residents of the Motor City at the Palace of Auburn Hills, which holds about 24,000 people.

Free tickets were given out a day before the show, according to Mr. Leno's Web site.

Mr. Leno, host of the long-running NBC show since 1992, has a new job himself. He will move from late night to a 10 p.m. show beginning this fall.

On the move

As expected, the Daytime Emmys are heading to the CW this August, Variety reports.

The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences made it official on Tuesday, announcing that the kudofest would take place Aug. 30 at downtown Los Angeles' Orpheum Theatre.

The deal marks the first time in its 36-year history that the Daytime Emmys program has run on a network other than the Big 3. It almost didn't make it on the air at all this year: CBS had the option to air this year's show, but passed. ABC, which aired the Daytime Emmys last year and had been rotating with CBS since 2004 (when NBC dropped out) opted not to step in and take over.

After CBS and ABC passed, rumors floated that NATAS might move the telecast back to the afternoon - where the show got its start - or even turn it into a webcast. Several cable networks also were discussed.

Last year, the Daytime Emmys show posted its lowest ratings yet, attracting just 5.4 million viewers.

The schedule change means the Daytime Emmys will take place in the middle of prime-time Emmy season - which is administered by NATAS' West Coast rival, the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, Variety notes.

The prime-time Emmys will be presented during a live telecast Sept. 20 on CBS.

On tap tonight…

Once the pride of its weekly schedule, NBC's Thursday night lineup has had its share of hits and misses in recent years. With last week's departure of the long-running “ER,” the Peacock network is stepping out on faith with a pair of new arrivals:

Parks & Recreation (8:30 p.m.). Former “Saturday Night Live” standout Amy Poehler continues her reign in the spotlight as the star of this new series from the producers of “The Office.” She plays Leslie Knope, a midlevel bureaucrat in the parks and recreation department of Pawnee, Ind. as documentary-style cameras follow her every move. Rashida Jones, Paul Schneider, Aziz Ansari, Nick Offerman and Aubrey Plaza also star.

Southland (10 p.m.). A young rookie's first day as a cop (Ben McKenzie from Fox's “The O.C.”) is anything but normal and sets into motion the plotline for this gritty police drama.

Written and compiled by Robyn-Denise Yourse from staff, Web and wire reports

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