Who Do You Think You Are?: Aug 4

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Another reason to look around the schedule at alternative offerings is the return of Who Do You Think You Are?

The acclaimed genealogy series begins this season with the wonderful Geoffrey Rush. Also appearing this season are Ray Martin, Toni Collette, Dawn Fraser, Peter Rowsthorn, Greig Pickhaver, David Wenham and Luke Nguyen.

In the first episode of this series return, internationally celebrated actor Geoffrey Rush believes he hails from a long line of farmers but an exploration of his heritage sees him discover an ancestor fighting for justice in the face of corruption and another desperate to succeed in a golden age of creativity.

Geoffrey traces his paternal line back to his great, great-grandfather John Thomas Rush, the first of his ancestors to arrive in Australia. What he uncovers is a David and Goliath battle in which his great, great-grandfather stood up for his rights and proved his resilience surviving the harsh beginnings and injustices of European Australia.

Later, Geoffrey flies to Germany and traces his musical lineage back to his seven times great-grandfather, Johann Willms. John Willms was born around 1680 at a similar time to J.S. Bach and at the height of the Baroque period in music. Johann’s story is one of passion, creativity and determination to succeed in this golden age of music and to leave an incredible legacy of successful musicianship.

Geoffrey reflects on the spirit displayed in both of his ancestors – men who used the written word to make their mark – not so different from Geoffrey Rush today.

7:30pm Tuesday on SBS.

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