Apollo Theatre Hall of Fame (NBC, 9-11 p.m.): Harlem's fabled Apollo Theatre gets some richly deserved prime-time attention in a special designed to "induct" musical greats into its newly created Hall of Fame: They include Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, and the Ink Spots. But the occasion is also a welcome excuse to hear performances by the likes of Ray Charles, Diana Ross, and Eric Clapton. The host is Bill Cosby, who also brings on many other memorable artists.
Wavelength (Syndicated, check local listings for premieres and repeats): Let's face it, still another talk show is premiering here, but the format does bring two slightly different angles to this over-worked genre: The host gets on a bus and takes the show to the country - you know, Clinton-campaign style - to give topics a local flavor. And the focus will be on young adults and their lives. That host is Jennifer Smith, best-known as the creator and host of the USA Network's "Youthquake," which traveled the world and offered interviews with young people. THURSDAY
Opening Shot (Bravo, 8-5:30 p.m.): If you think coverage of arts tends to get short shrift on mainstream TV - like those once-over-lightlies that pass for critiques on many local stations - you'll agree that coverage of arts for kids is even rarer. That makes the premiere of this regular series welcome, even if its first episode does stress conspicuously pop attractions to get the kiddies' attention. That opening show is a hunt for the "prehistoric" in TV, books, and film. The inevitable behind-the-scene s look at "Jurassic Park" is included - in this case a visit to the animation studios where those realistic (and controversially scary) dinosaurs were made for Steven Spielberg's huge summer hit. The director is interviewed, and the show visits his Amblimation studios, where an animated comedy feature about dinosaurs called "We're Back" is being made.
On Aug. 22, the show examines the tap-dancing scene with one of the form's top stars, Savion Glover. To demonstrate the appealing art, he teams with Gregory Hines and others.
Please check local listings for these programs.