TS Documentary on PBS

“Different is the New Normal” — a documentary that demystifies Tourette Syndrome — will be airing nationally on local PBS stations over the next several weeks, in honor of Tourette Syndrome Awareness Month (May 15-June 15).

Visit this site — then click on the “Schedule” tab at the bottom — to see if your local PBS station is airing the documentary. If it’s not, consider contacting the station and asking them to air it.

For additional information about the documentary, which chronicles the life of Ariel Small, a 16-year-old boy with Tourette Syndrome, visit the TSA website.


TS Documentary Now Available Online

“Different is the New Normal,” a film that demystifies Tourette Syndrome, is now available for online viewing.

This documentary chronicles the life of Ariel Small, a 16-year-old boy with Tourette Syndrome. It premiered last month on WNET in New York. We encourage you to contact your local PBS station and request that they air “Different is the New Normal,” so that it can reach a larger audience.

For additional information about this documentary, visit the TSA website.

Support James Durbin on American Idol

After auditioning and successfully making it past several rounds on “American Idol,” James Durbin is now a finalist on the highly popular TV singing competition.

The Santa Cruz rocker has wowed the judges with his passionate performances and wowed America even more with his personal story about living with Tourette Syndrome as well as Asperger’s.

James’ story has already created unprecedented national awareness of Tourette Syndrome. If he continues through to the top 10, to be announced March 24, he will be part of the highly popular nationwide tour, bringing him even more success and exposure and creating additional awareness of TS.

James’ next performance will be Wednesday, March 9, live on Fox, starting at 7 pm Central Time. For two hours immediately following the broadcast, viewers can vote for James in three different ways: by calling the toll-free number listed during the broadcast, by text message, and — for the first time this season — online. You can vote as often as you like by phone or text message; and up to 50 times online.

So don’t forget to tune in and watch James’ next performance and vote to help him advance to the next round.

New Tourette Syndrome Documentary

A new, hour-long documentary, “Tourette’s Uncovered,” premieres tonight, Sept. 13 at 8:00 pm CT, on Discovery Health, profiling four different TS children and their families.

Check local cable or satellite listings to determine if Discovery Health is available on your channel lineup. The documentary will be re-televised several times. (All times listed at the Discovery Health Web site are ET.)

Introducing MD-TV

MD TV is a new, interactive Web television station with medically oriented content, created by Dr. Evan Trost, a physician with Tourette Syndrome. The first episode aired yesterday. In several episdoes over the next few weeks, Dr. Trost plans to talk more about TS, including insights on his life with the disorder.

Special TS Story fom Coppell, Texas

Here’s a heartwarming story out of Coppell, Texas, where high school senior Andrew Nesbitt, who has TS, was given a unique opportunity to be part of his high school’s winning soccer team, for which he volunteers time as team manager.

You can view the news segment from the local CBS affiliate here.

Andrew said he will never forget this moment: “I felt like I was on the team and just like any other player. It was awesome!”

Congratulations to Andrew, his coach, friends and family, who don’t let his Tourette Syndrome stand in his way!

Heads Up: PBS Special June 30

Dr. Oliver Sacks


NOVA, the long-running PBS series, will air a special episode on Tuesday, June 30, titled “Musical Minds.” In the St. Louis area, it’s currently scheduled to air on KETC, Channel 9, at 8 p.m. Please check the program schedule on KETC’s Web site to confirm.

In this episode, Dr. Oliver Sacks, world-renowned neurologist and author, explores how the power of music can make the brain come alive, how music affects the brain, and how it can impact some neurological disorders.

New York State percussionist Matt Giordano, and his mother, Kathy, appear in the show. Matt, who has Tourette Syndrome, talks about the impact of music on his life. This documentary was filmed in 2008 and originally aired on the BBC in the United Kingdom last year.

“Both Matt Giordano and his mom, Kathy, have presented to us in the past,” said Lynn Dunlap, co-president of the TSA’s Greater Missouri chapter. “Matt brought his ‘drum circle’ a couple years ago to a special meeting for our kids, and they loved it. Kathy, who is a private educational advocate, mostly for TS kids, came in town in the fall of 2007, as an educational presenter at the Missouri National Education Conference. Later that evening, she presented to our chapter.”

Dr. Oliver Sacks’ long list of books include The Man Who Mistook his Wife for a Hat, Oaxaca Journal, An Anthropologist on Mars, and Awakenings, the film version of which starred Robin Williams as Dr. Sacks.

Dr. Sacks’ most recent book is Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain, featuring Matt Giordano, Tobias Picker, and other individuals with Tourette Syndrome.