Rock star's TV channel to help couch potatoes find themselves

Dave Stewart, half of the 1980s pop group The Eurythmics, has announced plans to launch the world's "first human potential, mind, body and spirit" television channel.

Innergy, which he describes as "an antidote to shopping channels", promises to offer viewers "help and guidance for self-empowerment". It will feature documentaries about spiritual life and practical advice on everything from "great gurus and spiritual ways to success, to sacred sex and cooking programmes".

The Amsterdam-based broadcaster UPCtv describes it as "all you need to lead a better, richer, fuller life".

According to Stewart, it will not be broadcasting programmes about people "knitting yoghurt sweaters in the Shetland Isles. What we want to make is the antidote to the shopping channels. There is an alternative to everything."

Stewart is backed by the entertainment executives Morgan Mason, a former White House staffer, and Eileen Gregory, managing director of Seven Dials Films, who have long been developing the idea of a "more spiritual" channel.

They were brought together by the new-age author Deepak Chopra, who suggested the three work together.

"There will be no preachers, or anything like that," said Robert Briel, a spokesman for UPCtv. "I think there is an appetite for something more spiritual."

Innergy, which is expected to begin broadcasting before the summer, will expand into an interactive experience when the website comes online and interactive features will be added to the digital television signal.

Despite his rock star status, Stewart will not host any programmes, but his music will be heard as a signature of the channel. "I'm very proud to be involved with a channel dedicated to investigating human potential," he said.

Stewart has sold more than 30 million albums and has been a successful record producer, but has long been keen to pursue avenues other than music.

He recently wrote and directed the film Honest, starring three members of the band All Saints, which is to premiere at the Cannes Film Festival, and he is a keen photographer.

Stewart is also teaming up with the co-founder of Microsoft, Paul Allen, to establish a multi-media creative centre in London's Covent Garden.

But he also has an interest in developing his spiritual side. Several years ago he identified himself as suffering from what he called "paradise syndrome" - depression induced by having everything you want.

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