Porgy and Bess is an opera, first performed in 1935, with music by George Gershwin, libretto by DuBose Heyward, and lyrics by Ira Gershwin and Dorothy Heyward. Opera is an art form in which Singers and Musicians perform a Dramatic work (called an opera which combines a text (called a Libretto Year 1935 ( MCMXXXV) was a Common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. George Gershwin (September 26 1898 &ndash July 11 1937 was an American Composer. A libretto is the text used in an extended Musical work such as an Opera, Operetta, Masque, sacred or secular Oratorio and DuBose Heyward ( August 31, 1885 – June 16, 1940) was an American author best known for his 1924 Novel Ira Gershwin ( 6 December 1896 &ndash 17 August 1983) was an American Lyricist who collaborated with his younger Dorothy Heyward (née Kuhns 1890 &ndash November 19, 1961) was an American Playwright. It was based on DuBose Heyward's novel Porgy and the play of the same name that he co-wrote with his wife Dorothy. Porgy is a novel written by DuBose Heyward in 1925 as well as a play Dorothy Heyward helped him to write which debuted in 1927 All three works deal with African American life in the fictitious Catfish Row in Charleston, South Carolina, in the early 1930s. African Americans or Black Americans are citizens or residents of the United States who have origins in any of the black populations of Africa Charleston is a city in Charleston county in the US state of South Carolina.
Originally conceived by Gershwin as an "American folk opera," Porgy and Bess premiered in New York in the fall of 1935 and featured an entire cast of classically trained African-American singers—a daring and visionary artistic choice at the time. Incorporating a wealth of blues and jazz idioms into the classical art form of opera, Gershwin considered it his finest work, but it was not widely accepted in the United States as a legitimate opera until 1976 when the Houston Grand Opera production of his complete score (followed nine years later by its Metropolitan Opera premiere) established it as an artistic triumph. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the Porgy and Bess is an Opera, first performed in 1935, with music by George Gershwin, Libretto by DuBose Heyward, and The work is now considered part of the standard operatic repertoire and is regularly performed internationally. Despite this success, the opera has been controversial; some, from the outset, have considered it racist. List of racism-related topics|Racism by country Racism, by its simplest definition is the belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that
"Summertime" is by far the best-known piece from the work, and countless interpretations of this and other individual numbers have also been recorded and performed. " Summertime " is the name of an Aria composed by George Gershwin for the 1935 Opera Porgy and Bess. The opera is admired for Gershwin's innovative synthesis of European orchestral techniques with American jazz and folk music idioms. Jazz is an American Musical art form which originated in the beginning of the 20th century in African American communities in the Southern United States Folk music can have a number of different meanings including Traditional music: The original meaning of the term "folk music" was synonymous Porgy and Bess tells the story of Porgy, a crippled black man living in the slums of Charleston, South Carolina, and his attempts to rescue Bess from the clutches of Crown, her pimp, and Sportin' Life, the drug dealer.
The Porgy and Bess original cast recording was included by the National Recording Preservation Board in the Library of Congress, National Recording Registry in 2003. The Library of Congress is the De facto National library of the United States and the research arm of the United States Congress Wikipedia_talkFeatured_lists#Proposed_change_to_all_featured_lists for an explanation of this and other inclusion tags below -->The recordings preserved  The board selects songs on an annual basis that are "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant. "
|Role||Voice type||Premiere cast|
30 September 1935
(Conductor: - Alexander Smallens)
|Porgy, a crippled beggar||bass-baritone||Todd Duncan|
|Bess, Crown's girl||soprano||Anne Brown|
|Crown, a tough stevedore||baritone||Warren Coleman|
|Sportin' Life, a dope peddler||tenor||John W. Bubbles|
|Robbins, an inhabitant of Catfish Row||tenor||Henry Davis|
|Serena, Robbins' wife||soprano||Ruby Elzy|
|Jake, a fisherman||baritone||Edward Matthews|
|Clara, Jake's wife||soprano||Abbie Mitchell|
|Maria, keeper of the cook-shop||contralto||Georgette Harvey|
|Mingo||tenor||Ford L. Alexander Smallens ( January 1, 1889 &ndash November 24, 1972) was a Russian born American conductor and A bass-baritone is a high-lying bass that shares certain qualities with the Baritone Voice type. Robert Todd Duncan ( February 12, 1903, Danville Kentucky &ndash February 28, 1998, Washington D This article is related to a series of articles under the main article Voice type. Warren Coleman (1901&ndash1968 was an American Operatic Baritone. The tenor is the highest male voice within the Modal register, just above the Baritone voice John William Sublett ( February 19, 1902 &ndash May 18, 1986) known by his stage name John W Henry Davis (1886 Chicago Illinois, US – April 1, 1946 New York New York, U Ruby Elzy ( February 20, 1908 – June 26, 1943) was a pioneer African American Operatic Soprano who created the Edward Matthews (1904-1954 was a pioneering African American opera singer Abbie Mitchell ( 25 September 1884 &ndash 16 March 1960) also billed as Abbey Mitchell, was an American Soprano This article is related to a series of articles under the main article Voice type. Georgette Harvey (1882&ndash1952 was an American singer and actress perhaps most famous for creating the role of Maria in Gershwin's Opera Buck|
|Peter, the honeyman||tenor||Gus Simons|
|Lily, Peter's wife||soprano||Helen Dowdy|
|Frazier, a black 'lawyer'||baritone||J. Rosamond Johnson|
|Strawberry woman||mezzo-soprano||Helen Dowdy|
|Jim, a cotton picker||baritone||Jack Carr|
|Crab man||tenor||Ray Yeates|
|Scipio, a small boy||boy soprano|
|Mr. Helen Dowdy was a Broadway actress and singer who played the role of Queenie in the 1946 revival of Kern & Hammerstein's Show Boat John Rosamond Johnson (1873&ndash1954 most often referred to as J This article is related to a series of articles under the main article Voice type. Helen Dowdy was a Broadway actress and singer who played the role of Queenie in the 1946 revival of Kern & Hammerstein's Show Boat A boy soprano is a young male singer with an unchanged voice in the Soprano range Archdale, a white lawyer||spoken||George Lessey|
|The Eva Jessye Choir, led by Eva Jessye|
With the exception of the small speaking roles, all of the characters are black. George Lessey ( 8 June, 1879 &ndash 3 June, 1947) was an American actor and director of the silent era. Eva Jessye ( January 20, 1895, Coffeyville Kansas &mdash February 21, 1992, Ann Arbor Michigan)&mdashthe first black woman
Scene 1: Catfish Row, a summer evening
The opera begins with a short introduction which segues into an evening in Catfish Row. Jasbo Brown entertains the community with his piano playing. Clara sings a lullaby to her baby ("Summertime") as the working men prepare for a game of craps. Craps is a Dice game played against other players or a bank Craps developed from a simplification of the Old English game hazard. Clara's husband, Jake, tries his own lullaby ("A Woman is a Sometime Thing") with little effect. Porgy, a cripple and a beggar, enters on his goat cart to organize the game. Crown, a lowlife, and his woman Bess enter, and the game begins. Sportin' Life, the local supplier of "happy dust" (cocaine) and bootleg alcohol, also joins in. Cocaine ( benzoylmethyl ecgonine) is a Crystalline Tropane Alkaloid that is obtained from the leaves of the Coca plant One by one, the players get crapped out, leaving only Robbins and Crown, who have become extremely drunk. When Robbins wins, Crown starts a fight, and eventually kills Robbins. Crown runs, telling Bess to fend for herself. The door is shut on her by most of the residents, except Porgy, who shelters her.
Scene 2: Serena's Room, the following night
The mourners sing a spiritual to Robbins ("Gone, Gone, Gone"). To raise money for his burial, a saucer is placed on his chest for the mourners' donations ("Overflow"). A white detective enters, in a speaking voice telling Serena (Robbins' wife) that she must bury her husband soon, or his body will be given to medical students. He arrests Peter (a bystander), whom he will force to testify against Crown. Serena laments her loss in "My Man's Gone Now. My Man's Gone Now is a song composed by George Gershwin, with lyrics by DuBose Heyward, written for the folk opera Porgy and Bess (1935 " The undertaker enters, and agrees to bury Robbins as long as Serena promises to pay him back. Bess and the chorus finish the act with "Leavin' for the Promise' Lan'".
Scene 1: Catfish Row, a month later, in the morning
Jake and the other fishermen prepare for work ("It take a long pull to get there"). Clara asks Jake not to go, and to come to a picnic, but he tells her that they desperately need the money. This causes Porgy to sing from his window about his outlook on life ("I got plenty o' nuttin'"). Sportin' Life waltzes around, selling cocaine, but soon incurs the wrath of Maria ("I hates yo' struttin' style"). A fraudulent lawyer, Frazier, arrives and farcically divorces Bess from Crown. Archdale, a white lawman, enters and informs Porgy that Peter will soon be released. The bad omen of a buzzard flies over Catfish Row, causing Porgy to sing "Buzzard keep on flyin' over".
As the rest of Catfish Row prepares for the picnic, Sportin' Life asks Bess to start a new life with him in New York; she refuses. Bess and Porgy are now left alone, and express their love for each other ("Bess, you is my woman now"). The chorus re-enters in high spirits as they prepare to leave for the picnic ("Oh, I can't sit down"). Bess leaves Porgy behind as they go off to the picnic. Porgy reprises "I got plenty o' nuttin'" in high spirits.
Scene 2: Kittiwah Island, that evening
The chorus enjoys themselves at the picnic ("I ain't got no shame doin' what I like to do!"). Sportin' Life presents the chorus his cynical views on the Bible ("It ain't necessarily so"), causing Serena to chastise them ("Shame on all you sinners!"). Crown enters to talk to Bess, and he reminds her that Porgy is "temporary. " Bess wants to leave Crown forever ("Oh, what you want wid Bess?") but Crown makes her follow him into hiding in the woods.
Scene 3: Catfish Row, a week later, just before dawn
Jake leaves to go fishing with his crew, and Peter returns from prison. Bess is lying in Porgy's room, delirious. Serena prays to remove Bess's affliction ("Oh, doctor Jesus"). The Strawberry Woman and the Crab Man sing their calls on the street, and Bess soon recovers from her fever. Bess talks with Porgy about her sins ("I wants to stay here") before exclaiming "I loves you, Porgy. " Porgy promises to protect her from Crown. The scene ends with the hurricane bell signaling an approaching storm.
Scene 4: Serena's Room, dawn of the next day
The residents of Catfish Row drown out the sound of the storm with prayer. A knock is heard at the door, and the chorus believes it to be Death ("Oh there's somebody knocking at the door"). Crown enters dramatically, seeking Bess. The chorus tries praying to make Crown leave, causing him to goad them with the un-Christian "A red-headed woman make a choo-choo jump its track. " Clara sees Jake's boat turn over in the river, and she runs out to try and save him. Crown says that Porgy is not a real man, as he cannot go out to rescue her from the storm. Crown goes himself, and the chorus finish their prayer. Clara dies in the storm, and Bess will now care for her baby.
Scene 1: Catfish Row, the next night
The chorus mourns Clara and Jake ("Clara, Clara, don't you be downhearted"). Crown enters to claim Bess, and a fight ensues, which ends with Porgy killing Crown. Porgy exclaims to Bess, "You've got a man now. You've got Porgy!"
Scene 2: Catfish Row, the next afternoon
A detective enters and talks with Serena and Maria about the murders of Crown and Robbins. They deny knowledge of Crown's murder, causing the detective to question an apprehensive Porgy. He asks Porgy to come and identify Crown's body. Sportin' Life tells Porgy that corpses bleed in the presence of their murderers, and the detective will use this to hang Porgy. Porgy refuses to identify the body, and is arrested for contempt of court. Sportin' Life forces Bess to take cocaine, and then tells her that Porgy will be locked up for a long time. He tells her that she should start a new life with him in New York with the dazzling "There's a boat dat's leavin' soon for New York". She shuts the door on his face, but he knows that doubt at Porgy's return will make her follow him.
Scene 3 - Catfish Row, a week later
Porgy is released from jail and returns to Catfish Row richer, after playing craps with his cellmates with his "lucky bones", as he calls his dice. He gives gifts to the residents, and does not understand why they all seem so downhearted. He sees Clara's baby is now with Serena and madly asks where Bess is. Maria and Serena tell him that Bess has run off with Sportin' Life to New York. All three sing the trio "O Bess, oh where's my Bess" . Porgy calls for his goat cart, and leaves for New York to find Bess in the closing song "Oh Lawd, I'm on my way".
Gershwin first expressed interest in composing the opera upon reading Heyward's Porgy in 1926, and quickly dispatched a letter to the author. Though initial meetings were promising, Gershwin was in no hurry to write the opera, and Heyward soon collaborated with Dorothy in writing a play named Porgy, which opened in 1927.
After consulting with Gershwin, Heyward sold the story rights to Porgy in the fall of 1932 to Al Jolson, who had a desire to team with Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein II to create a musical on the subject with Jolson playing the lead role in blackface. Al Jolson (May 26 1886 October 23 1950 born in Lithuania, Russian Empire, was a highly acclaimed American singer comedian and actor and the first openly Jerome David Kern ( January 27, 1885 &ndash November 11, 1945) was an American Composer of popular music Oscar Hammerstein II (ˈhæmɚstaɪn (born Oscar Greeley Clendenning Hammerstein) ( July 12, 1895 – August 23, 1960) was Blackface in the narrow sense is a style of theatrical Makeup that originated in the United Initial enthusiasm for the proposed musical soon waned, however, leaving Gershwin alone to conceive a staged version of the work.
Gershwin's first version of the opera, running four hours (counting the two intermissions), was performed privately in a concert version in Carnegie Hall, in the fall of 1935. Carnegie Hall (generally ˌkɑrnɨgi ˈhɔːl is a concert venue in Midtown Manhattan in New York City located at 881 Seventh Avenue, occupying the east The world premiere performance took place at the Colonial Theatre in Boston on September 30, 1935 - the try-out for a work intended initially for Broadway where the opening took place at the Alvin Theater in New York City on October 10, 1935. The Colonial Theatre is the oldest continually-operating theatre in Boston Massachusetts, United States. Events 1399 - Henry IV is proclaimed King of England. 1744 - France and Spain defeat the Year 1935 ( MCMXXXV) was a Common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. The Neil Simon Theatre is a Broadway theatre located at 250 West 52nd Street in midtown- Manhattan. The City of New York Events 680 - Battle of Karbala: Shia Imam Husayn bin Ali, the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, is decapitated Year 1935 ( MCMXXXV) was a Common year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar.  During rehearsals and in Boston, Gershwin made many cuts and refinements to shorten the running time and tighten the dramatic action. The run on Broadway lasted 124 performances. Rouben Mamoulian produced and directed and Alexander Smallens conducted. Rouben Mamoulian ( October 8, 1897 &ndash December 4, 1987) was an Armenian - American film and Theatre Alexander Smallens ( January 1, 1889 &ndash November 24, 1972) was a Russian born American conductor and
After the Broadway run, a tour started on January 27, 1936 in Philadelphia and travelled to Pittsburgh and Chicago before ending in Washington, D.C. on March 21, 1936. Events 98 - Trajan becomes Roman Emperor after the death of Nerva. Year 1936 ( MCMXXXVI) was a Leap year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Philadelphia (ˌfɪləˈdɛlfiə Chicago (ʃɪˈkɑːgoʊ is the largest City by population in the state of Illinois and the American Midwest of the United States. Washington DC ( formally the District of Columbia and commonly referred to as Washington, the District, or simply D Events 630 - Byzantine emperor Heraclius restores the True Cross to Jerusalem. Year 1936 ( MCMXXXVI) was a Leap year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. During the Washington run, the cast—as led by Todd Duncan—protested segregation among the audience. Eventually management gave in to the demands, resulting in the first integrated performance of any show at National Theatre. The National Theatre is located in Washington DC and is a venue for a variety of live stage productions with seating for 1676 
Around 1938, the original cast reunited for a West Coast revival; the exception being that Avon Long took on the role of Sportin' Life. The " West Coast " " Western Seaboard " or " Pacific Seaboard " are terms for the westernmost coastal states of the Western United States Avon Long ( June 18, 1910 – February 15, 1984) was an American Broadway Actor and Singer. Long continued to reprise his role in several of the following productions.
On July 14, 1993, the U.S. Post Office issues a Porgy and Bess 29 cent postage stamp for the Gershwin's African-American folk opera. Events 1223 - Louis VIII becomes King of France upon the death of his father Philip II of France. Year 1993 ( MCMXCIII) was a Common year starting on Friday (link will display full 1993 Gregorian calendar) This is a survey of the postage stamps and postal history of the United States of America (USA.
The noted director and producer Cheryl Crawford brought Porgy and Bess back to Broadway in 1942 with an even more drastically cut version of the opera than the first Broadway staging, making it much more like the musical theater that Americans were used to hearing from Gershwin. Cheryl Crawford ( September 24 1902 - October 7 1986) was an American Theatre producer and director. Musical theatre is a form of Theatre combining Music, Songs spoken Dialogue and Dance. The orchestra was reduced, the cast was halved, and many recitatives were reduced to spoken dialog. Recitative /rɛsɪtə'tiv/ (also known by its Italian name "recitativo" (/retʃita'tivo/ is a style of delivery (much used in Operas Oratorios 
After trying out her concepts at a professional stock theater in Maplewood, New Jersey in September 1941, the show opened at the Majestic Theater on Broadway in January 1942. Maplewood is a township in Essex County, New Jersey, United States. The Majestic Theatre is a Broadway theatre located at 245 West 44th Street in midtown Manhattan.  Duncan and Brown reprised their roles as the title characters, with Alexander Smallens again conducting. Etta Moten replaced Brown as Bess in June. Etta Moten Barnett ( November 5 1901 – January 2 2004) was an American actress and singer ( Contralto) This production was far more successful financially.
On March 27, 1943, the opera had its European premiere at the Royal Opera House in Copenhagen. Events 196 BC - Ptolemy V ascends to the throne of Egypt. 1309 - Pope Clement V excommunicates Year 1943 ( MCMXLIII) was a Common year starting on Friday (the link will display full 1943 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Copenhagen (ˌkəʊpənˈheɪgən ˌkəʊpənˈhɑːgən ˈkəʊpənˌheɪgən ˈkəʊpənˌhɑːgən kʰøb̥ənˈhɑʊ̯ˀn kʰøb̥m̩ˈhɑʊ̯ˀn is the capital and largest city This performance is also notable for the fact that it was put on by an all-white cast under the nose of the Nazi occupiers, who put an end to its run after 22 sold-out performances. Nazism, which was a short name for National Socialism (Nationalsozialismus refers primarily to the Ideology and practices of the National Socialist German 
Other all-white or mostly-white productions in Europe took place in Zurich in 1945 and 1950, and Copenhagen in 1946. Zürich (, Zürich German: Züri, Zurich, Zurigo; in English generally Zurich) is the largest city in Switzerland and capital of the Copenhagen (ˌkəʊpənˈheɪgən ˌkəʊpənˈhɑːgən ˈkəʊpənˌheɪgən ˈkəʊpənˌhɑːgən kʰøb̥ənˈhɑʊ̯ˀn kʰøb̥m̩ˈhɑʊ̯ˀn is the capital and largest city
Blevins Davis and Robert Breen produced a revival in 1952 which restored much of the music cut in the Crawford version, including many of the recitatives, and divided the opera into two acts, with the intermission occurring after Crown forces Bess to stay on Kittiwah Island. Recitative /rɛsɪtə'tiv/ (also known by its Italian name "recitativo" (/retʃita'tivo/ is a style of delivery (much used in Operas Oratorios This version restored the work to a more operatic form, and Porgy and Bess was warmly received through Europe.  The London premiere took place on October 9, 1952 at the Stoll Theatre, where it remained until February 10, 1953. London ( ˈlʌndən is the capital and largest urban area in the United Kingdom. Events 768 - Carloman I and Charlemagne are crowned Kings of The Franks. Year 1952 ( MCMLII) was a Leap year starting on Tuesday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. The Peacock Theatre is a West End theatre in the City of Westminster, located in Portugal Street near Aldwych. Events 1355 - The St Scholastica's Day riot breaks out in Oxford, England, leaving 63 scholars and perhaps 30 locals dead Year 1953 ( MCMLIII) was a Common year starting on Thursday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. 
Notable also was this production's original cast, with Leontyne Price as Bess, William Warfield as Porgy, and Cab Calloway as Sportin' Life, a role that was concieved with him in mind. Mary Violet Leontyne Price (born February 10, 1927) is an American Opera singer ( Soprano) William Caesar Warfield ( 22 January 1920 - 26 August 2002) concert Baritone singer was born in West Helena Arkansas Cabell "Cab" Calloway III ( December 25, 1907 &ndash November 18, 1994) was a famous American Jazz Singer The small role of Ruby was played by a young Maya Angelou. Maya Angelou (ˈmaɪə ˈændʒəloʊ (born Marguerite Ann Johnson on April 4, 1928) is an American Poet, Memoirist Price and Warfield met and wed while on the tour.
After a small tour of Europe financed by the United States Department of State, the production came to Broadway's Ziegfeld Theatre. The Ziegfeld Theatre was a Broadway Theatre formerly located at the intersection of Sixth Avenue and 54th Street in Manhattan, It went on the road again in the fall of 1954 to Latin America, the Middle East and Europe, though Price and Warfield had since left the production. This tour saw Porgy and Bess premiere at La Scala in Milan, in February of 1955. The Teatro alla Scala (or La Scala, as it is known in Milan, Italy, is one of the world's most famous Opera houses The theatre was Milan (Milano Milan (listen) is one of the largest cities in Italy, located in the plains of Lombardy. A historic yet tense premiere took place in Moscow in December 1955, the first time an American theater group had been to the Soviet capital since the Bolshevik Revolution. Moscow (Москва́ romanised: Moskvá, IPA: see also other names) is the Capital and the largest city of A soviet (сове́т, "council" originally was a workers' local council in late Imperial Russia. The October Revolution (Октябрьская революция Oktyabrskaya revolyutsiya) also known as the Soviet Revolution Author Truman Capote travelled with the cast and crew, writing an account of this event in his book The Muses Are Heard: An Account. Truman Capote (ˈtruːmən kəˈpoʊti ( 30 September, 1924, New Orleans Louisiana – 25 August, 1984, Los Angeles
During the 1960s and early 1970s, Porgy and Bess mostly languished on the shelves, a victim of its perceived condescending racism in a racially-charged time. Though new productions took place in 1961 and 1964 along with a Vienna Volksoper premiere in 1965, these did little to change most Americans' opinions of the work. The Vienna Volksoper ( Volksoper Wien or Vienna People's Opera) is a major Opera house in Vienna, Austria.
The Houston Grand Opera production which opened on September 25, 1976 helped to turn the tide. Houston Grand Opera (HGO was founded in 1955 through the joint efforts of Maestro Walter Herbert and Houston cultural leaders Mrs Events 303 - On a voyage preaching the Gospel, Saint Fermin of Pamplona is beheaded in Amiens, France Year 1976 ( MCMLXXVI) was a Leap year starting on Thursday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. For the first time, an American opera company had tackled the opera, not a Broadway production company. This production was based on Gershwin's original full score and did not incorporate the cuts and other changes that Gershwin himself had made before the New York premiere, but it allowed the public to take in the operatic whole as first envisioned by the composer. In this light, it became clear that Porgy and Bess was indeed an opera, not a serious piece of musical theatre. Donnie Ray Albert, Clamma Dale and Larry Marshall starred, respectively as Porgy, Bess and Sportin' Life. Clamma Dale is an African-American operatic Soprano. She is best known for portraying the role of Bess in the highly successful 1976 Houston Grand Opera production This production won the Houston Grand Opera a Tony Award—the only opera ever to receive one—and a Grammy Award. The Antoinette Perry Awards for Excellence in Theatre, more commonly known as the Tony Awards, recognize achievement in live American Theatre and are presented The Grammy Awards (originally called the Gramophone Awards)—or Grammys —are presented annually by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences
Another Broadway production was staged in 1983. After toying with the idea of staging the opera since the 1930s, the Metropolitan Opera finally did so for the first time in 1985, opening on February 6, with a starry cast including Simon Estes, Grace Bumbry, Bruce Hubbard, Gregg Baker and Florence Quivar. The Metropolitan Opera Association of New York City, founded in April 1880 is a major presenter of all types of opera including Grand Opera. Events 46 BC - Julius Caesar defeats the combined army of Pompeian followers and Numidians under Metellus Scipio Simon Estes (born February 2, 1938) is an American Bass-baritone. Grace Bumbry (born 4 January 1937) an American Opera Singer, was considered one Bruce Hubbard (1952-1991 was an African-American operatic baritone Florence Quivar (b March 3 1944 in Philadelphia PA is an American Operatic Mezzo-soprano who is considered to be "one of the most prominent England's Glyndebourne Festival tackled the work in an acclaimed 1986 production directed by Trevor Nunn, which was scenically expanded and videotaped for television in 1993 (see below in "Film and television"). This article is about the Glyndebourne opera festival See Glyndebourne for details of the Country house and opera house Glyndebourne Festival Trevor Robert Nunn CBE (born 14 January 1940) is an English theatre- and Film director. These productions were also based on the "complete score," without incorporating Gershwin's revisions. A semi-staged version of this production was performed at the Proms in 1998. The Proms, more formally known as The BBC Proms, or The Henry Wood Promenade Concerts presented by the BBC, is an eight-week summer season of daily Orchestral The centennial celebration of the Gershwin brothers from 1996–1998 included a new production as well. On February 24–25, 2006, the Nashville Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of John Mauceri, gave a concert performance at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center that incorporated the cuts made by Gershwin himself for the New York premiere, thus giving the audience an idea of what the opera sounded like on its Broadway opening. The Nashville Symphony is an American symphony orchestra based in Nashville Tennessee. John Mauceri (born 1945 New York is an American conductor producer and Composer for theatre Opera and television Porgy and Bess (2006 first recording of the original 1935 production of George Gershwin 's opera Porgy and Bess. The Tennessee Performing Arts Center or TPAC, is located in the James K In 2000 and 2002 there was a revival directed by Tazewell Thompson at New York City Opera. Tazewell Thompson is a Playwright, a director, and former Artistic Director of the Westport Country Playhouse in Westport, Connecticut New York State Theater by David Shankbonejpg|thumb| New York State Theater]] The New York City Opera (NYCO is based in Philip Johnson 's New York State In 2007, Los Angeles Opera staged a revival directed by Francesca Zambello and conducted by John DeMain, who led the history-making Houston Opera revival of Porgy and Bess in 1976. The Los Angeles Opera is an Opera company in Los Angeles California, United States
Porgy and Bess: the Musical premiered November 9, 2006 at the Savoy Theatre (London), directed by Trevor Nunn. Events 694 - Egica, a king of the Visigoths of Hispania, accuses Jews of aiding Muslims sentencing all Year 2006 ( MMVI) was a Common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. The Savoy Theatre is a West End theatre located in the Strand in the City of Westminster, London England Nunn, had previously directed the show as an opera at the Glyndebourne Festival and as a videotaped television production with Willard White; for this production, he adapted the lengthy opera to fit the conventions of musical theatre. Videotape is a means of recording images and sound onto Magnetic tape as opposed to movie film. Sir Willard Wentworth White CBE (born October 10, 1946) is a Jamaican born British Bass-baritone. Musical theatre is a form of Theatre combining Music, Songs spoken Dialogue and Dance. Working with the Gershwin estate, Nunn used dialogue from the original novel and subsequent Broadway stage play to replace the recitative with naturalistic scenes. Recitative /rɛsɪtə'tiv/ (also known by its Italian name "recitativo" (/retʃita'tivo/ is a style of delivery (much used in Operas Oratorios He also did not use conventional operatic voices in this production. Gareth Valentine provided the musical adaptation. Gareth Valentine (born on St Cecilia's Day is a British composer also a musical supervisor/conductor of world reknown
This original cast of this version included:
From the outset, the opera's depiction of African Americans attracted controversy. African Americans or Black Americans are citizens or residents of the United States who have origins in any of the black populations of Africa Problems with the racial aspects of the opera continue to this day. Virgil Thomson, a white American composer, stated that "Folk lore subjects recounted by an outsider are only valid as long as the folk in question is unable to speak for itself, which is certainly not true of the American Negro in 1935. For the American author with a similar name see Virgil Thompson (author Virgil Thomson ( November 25, 1896 - September " Duke Ellington stated "the times are here to debunk Gershwin's lampblack Negroisms. Edward Kennedy "Duke" Ellington (April 29 1899 &ndash May 24 1974 was an American Composer, Pianist, and Bandleader. " Several of the members of the original cast later stated that they, too, had concerns that their characters might play into a stereotype that African Americans lived in poverty, took drugs and solved their problems with their fists.
A planned production by the Negro Repertory Company of Seattle in the late 1930s, part of the Federal Theater Project, had been cancelled because actors were displeased with what they viewed as a racist portrayal of aspects of African American life. The Federal Theatre Project (FTP was a New Deal project to fund Theatre and other live artistic performances in the United States during the List of racism-related topics|Racism by country Racism, by its simplest definition is the belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that The initial plan was that they would perform the play in a "Negro dialect", which these Pacific Northwest African American actors did not speak, and were supposed to learn from a dialect coach. Negro is a term referring to people of Black African ancestry A dialect (from the Greek word διάλεκτος dialektos) is a variety of a Language that is characteristic of a particular group of The Pacific Northwest is a region in the northwest of North America (the term refers to the land not the ocean Florence James attempted a compromise of dropping the use of dialect pronunciations, but ultimately the production was canceled outright. 
Another production of Porgy and Bess, this time at the University of Minnesota in 1939, ran into similar troubles. The University of Minnesota Twin Cities ( U of M or The U) is the oldest and largest part of the University of Minnesota system. According to Barbara Cyrus, one of the few black students at the university at the time, members of the local African American community saw the play as "detrimental to the race" and as a vehicle that promoted racist stereotypes. A stereotype (from Greek: stereo + týpos = "solid impression" is a generalized perception of first impressions behaviors presumed by a group The play was eventually cancelled due to pressure from the African American community, which saw their success as proof of the increasing political power of blacks in the Twin Cities. 
This belief that Porgy and Bess was racist gained strength with the American Civil Rights and Black Power movements of the 1950s, '60s and '70s. The American Civil Rights Movement (1955–1968 refers to the reform movements in the United States aimed at abolishing racial discrimination against African Black Power is a racially based Political slogan and a name for various associated ideologies Year 1960 ( MCMLX) was a Leap year starting on Friday (link will display full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. This article is about the Decade 1970-1979 For the Year 1970 see 1970. In fact, as these movements advanced, Porgy and Bess was seen as more and more out of place. When the play was revived in the 1960s, social critic and African American educator Harold Cruse called it, "The most incongruous, contradictory cultural symbol ever created in the Western World. Harold Wright Cruse (8 March 1916 - 30 March 2005 was an American academic who was an outspoken social critic and teacher of African-American studies at the University of Michigan " African-American Author John Hope Franklin did not totally agree with this view, stating in his introduction to Three Negro Classics "Sportin' Life clowns but not for white audiences. John Hope Franklin (born January 2, 1915) is a United States historian and past president of the American Historical Porgy's clowning is a deliberate frustration of white power. Porgy also plays Uncle Tom, but he is never servile and lives for no white master. Uncle Tom is a Pejorative for a black person who is perceived by others as behaving in a subservient manner to White American authority figures or "
Gershwin’s all-black opera was also unpopular with some celebrated black artists. Harry Belafonte declined to play Porgy in the late 1950s film version, so it was offered to Sidney Poitier who regretted his choice ever after. Harold George Belafonte Jr (born March 1 1927 is an American musician actor and Social activist. Sir Sidney Poitier, KBE (ˈpwɑːtie born February 20, 1927) is an Oscar - Golden Globe - BAFTA - and Grammy Betty Allen, president of the Harlem School of the Arts, admittedly loathed the piece and Grace Bumbry, who excelled in the 1985 Metropolitan Opera production as Bess, made the often cited statement: "I thought it beneath me, I felt I had worked far too hard, that we had come far too far to have to retrogress to 1935. The Harlem School of the Arts (HSA is a school in Harlem, New York. Grace Bumbry (born 4 January 1937) an American Opera Singer, was considered one My way of dealing with it was to see that it was really a piece of Americana, of American history, whether we liked it or not. Americana refers to artifacts of the Culture of the United States, the history and folklore resultant from its Westward expansion. Whether I sing it or not, it was still going to be there. "
Over time, however, the opera gained acceptance from the opera community and some (though not all) in the African American community. Maurice Press stated in 2004 that "Porgy and Bess belongs as much to the black singer-actors who bring it to life as it does to the Heywards and the Gershwins. " Indeed, Ira Gershwin stipulated that only blacks be allowed to play the lead roles when the opera was performed in the United States, launching the careers of several prominent opera singers.
During the era of apartheid in South Africa, several South African theatre companies planned to put on all-white productions of Porgy and Bess. The Republic of South Africa (also known by other official names) is a country located at the southern tip of the continent of Africa Ira Gershwin, as heir to his brother, consistently refused to permit these productions to be staged. Ira Gershwin ( 6 December 1896 &ndash 17 August 1983) was an American Lyricist who collaborated with his younger
In the summer of 1934, George Gershwin worked on the opera in Charleston, South Carolina. Charleston is a city in Charleston county in the US state of South Carolina. He drew inspiration from the James Island Gullah community, which he felt had preserved some African musical traditions. The Gullah are African Americans who live in the Low Country region of South Carolina and Georgia, which includes both the coastal plain and the This research added to the authenticity of his work. 
The music itself reflects his New York jazz roots, but also draws on southern black traditions. Gershwin modeled the pieces after each type of folk song that the composer knew about; jubilees, blues, praying songs, street cries, work songs, and spirituals are blended with traditional arias and recitatives. Folk music can have a number of different meanings including Traditional music: The original meaning of the term "folk music" was synonymous The Blues is a vocal and instrumental form of Music based on the use of the Blue notes It emerged as an accessible form of self-expression This article is about the musical term "aria" For other meanings or uses of the word see Aria (disambiguation. Recitative /rɛsɪtə'tiv/ (also known by its Italian name "recitativo" (/retʃita'tivo/ is a style of delivery (much used in Operas Oratorios 
In addition to being influenced by New York jazz and southern black music, many biographers and contemporaries have noted that for many numbers Gershwin borrowed melodies from Jewish liturgical music. Jewish music, the music of Jews, is quite diverse and dates back thousands of years Gershwin biographer Edward Jablonski has claimed that the melody to "It Ain't Necessarily So" was taken from the Haftarah blessing, and others have attributed it to the Torah blessing. Biographers are Authors who write an account of another person's life while autobiographers are authors who write their own Biography. The haftarah or haftorah (also haphtara) ( Hebrew: הפטרה plural haftarot or haftorahs; "parting" Torah reading ( is a Jewish religious Ritual that involves the public reading of a set of passages from a Torah scroll.  Allusions to Jewish music have been detected by other observers as well. One musicologist detected 'an uncanny resemblance' between the folk tune Havenu Shalom Aleichem and the spiritual It Take a Long Pull to Get There. 
The score makes use of leitmotifs, which are introduced to establish each character with a unique musical theme. A leitmotif (ˌlaɪtmoʊˈtiːf (also leitmotiv; lit "leading motif" is a recurring Musical theme, associated with a particular person place The score then intertwines these themes to show conflict between characters. The best example of this is after the aria "There's a boat dat's leaving soon for New York" in Act III Scene ii.
Bess' idea of Porgy is expressed by snippets their duet "Bess, you is my woman now," in which they pledge their fidelity to one another:
Her idea of Sportin' Life is shown through snippets of his aria "There's a boat that's leavin' soon for New York" in which the drug peddler tries to persuade Bess to leave Catfish Row with him:
Bess's difficult decision to follow him is represented by a conflict of these two melodies. A duet is a Musical composition or piece for two Performers In Classical music the term is most often used for a composition for two singers This article is about the musical term "aria" For other meanings or uses of the word see Aria (disambiguation. The first is heard in a sparse and distant orchestration:
Sportin' Life is sure that Bess will follow him, and the quiet cocaine motif is heard. Orchestration is the study or practice of writing Music for Orchestra (or more loosely for any Musical ensemble) or of adapting for orchestra music composed Then his own song is heard in a dazzling, overblown orchestration, complete with swaggering rhythms:
This contrast represents Sportin' Life's successful corruption of Bess's love for Porgy. Orchestration is the study or practice of writing Music for Orchestra (or more loosely for any Musical ensemble) or of adapting for orchestra music composed
Days after the Broadway premiere of Porgy and Bess with an all-black cast, two white opera singers, Lawrence Tibbett and Helen Jepson, both members of the Metropolitan Opera, recorded highlights of the opera in a New York sound studio, released as Highlights from Porgy and Bess. Porgy and Bess, the Opera by George Gershwin, has been recorded by a variety of artists since it was completed in 1935 including renditions Lawrence Mervil Tibbett ( November 16, 1896 - July 15, 1960) was an American opera singer movie actor radio personality and recording artist Helen Jepson was an American Lyric soprano noted for being a "stunning blond beauty" as well as for her voice The Metropolitan Opera Association of New York City, founded in April 1880 is a major presenter of all types of opera including Grand Opera. Highlights from Porgy and Bess, the 1935 album of George Gershwin 's opera was recorded just days after Porgy and Bess opened on Members of the original cast were not recorded until 1940, when Todd Duncan and Anne Brown recorded selections of the work. Robert Todd Duncan ( February 12, 1903, Danville Kentucky &ndash February 28, 1998, Washington D Two years later, when the first Broadway revival occurred, American Decca rushed other members of the cast into the recording studio to record other selections not recorded in 1940. Decca Records is a British Record label established in 1929 by Edward Lewis. These two albums were marketed as a two volume 78 rpm set Selections from George Gershwin's folk opera Porgy and Bess. Decca Presents Selections from George Gershwin's folk opera Porgy and Bess consists of two volumes of records the first from 1940 and the next from 1942 After LP's had begun to be manufactured in 1948, the recording was transferred to LP, and subsequently, to CD.
For years, the two albums mentioned above were the only ones available of music from Porgy and Bess.
Although there was an initial feeling by members of the jazz community that a Jewish piano player and a white novelist could not adequately convey the plight of blacks in a 1930s Charleston ghetto, jazz musicians warmed up to the opera after twenty years. Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald recorded an album in 1957 in which they sang and scatted Gershwin's tunes. Louis Armstrong (August 4 1901 &ndash July 6 1971 nicknamed Satchmo or Sachimo and Pops, was an American Jazz Trumpeter Ella Jane Fitzgerald (April 25 1917 &ndash June 15 1996 also known as " Lady Ella " and the "First Lady of Song" is considered one of the most influential Porgy & Bess is a 1957 album (see 1957 in music) by the Jazz vocalist and trumpeter Louis Armstrong, and the Jazz singer The next year, Miles Davis recorded what some consider a a seminal interpretation of the opera arranged for big band. Miles Dewey Davis III (May 26 1926 &ndash September 28 1991 was an American Jazz Trumpeter, Bandleader, and Composer. Porgy and Bess is a Studio album by Jazz musician Miles Davis, released in 1958 on Columbia Records. A big band is a type of Musical ensemble associated with playing jazz music and which became popular during the Swing Era from the early 1930s until the late
In 1959, Columbia Masterworks Records released a soundtrack album of Samuel Goldwyn's film version of Porgy and Bess, which had been made that year. Columbia Masterworks Records was a Record label started in 1927 by Columbia Records. It was not a complete version of the opera, nor was it even a complete version of the film soundtrack, which featured more music than could be contained on a single LP. The album remained in print until the early 1970s, when it was withdrawn from stores at the request of the Gershwin estate. It is the first stereo album of music from Porgy and Bess with an all-black cast. However, according to the album liner notes, Sammy Davis, Jr. was under contract to another recording company, and his vocal tracks for the film could not be used on the album, so Cab Calloway substituted his own vocals of Sportin' Life's songs. For a bibliographic format for citing liner notes see WikipediaCiting sources/example style Liner notes (also sleeve notes or album notes Samuel George “Sammy” Davis Jr (8 December 1925 &ndash 16 May 1990 was an American Entertainer. Cabell "Cab" Calloway III ( December 25, 1907 &ndash November 18, 1994) was a famous American Jazz Singer Robert McFerrin was the singing voice of Porgy, and Adele Addison the singing voice of Bess. Robert McFerrin Sr (March 19 1921 – November 24 2006 was the first African-American male to sing at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City Adele Addison (born July 24, 1925, Springfield Massachusetts) is an African American Lyric soprano who was an acclaimed figure in The white singer Loulie Jean Norman was the singing voice of Clara (portrayed onscreen by Diahann Carroll), and Inez Matthews the singing voice of Serena (portrayed onscreen by Ruth Attaway). Loulie Jean Norman (born in Birmingham Alabama on March 12 1913; died August 2 2005 in Los Angeles) was a famous Coloratura Diahann Carroll (born July 17 1935) is an American award-winning Actress and songstress.
In 1963, Leontyne Price and William Warfield, who had starred in the 1952 world tour of Porgy and Bess, recorded their own album of excerpts from the opera for RCA Victor. Mary Violet Leontyne Price (born February 10, 1927) is an American Opera singer ( Soprano) William Caesar Warfield ( 22 January 1920 - 26 August 2002) concert Baritone singer was born in West Helena Arkansas RCA Records (originally The Victor Talking Machine Company, then RCA Victor is one of the flagship labels of Sony Music Entertainment. None of the other singers from that production appeared on that album, but John W. Bubbles, the original Sportin' Life, substituted for Cab Calloway (who had played Sportin' Life onstage in the 1952 production). John William Sublett ( February 19, 1902 &ndash May 18, 1986) known by his stage name John W The 1963 recording of Porgy and Bess excerpts remains the only official recording of the score on which Bubbles sings Sportin' Life's two big numbers.
A 1959 film version was produced in 70 mm Todd-AO by Samuel Goldwyn, but plagued with problems. Porgy and Bess is a 1959 movie based on George Gershwin 's opera of the same name. Todd-AO is an extremely high definition Widescreen Film format developed in the mid 1950s Samuel Goldwyn ( ca. July 1879 &ndash 31 January 1974) was an Academy Award and Golden Globe Award -winning producer Rouben Mamoulian, who had directed the 1935 Broadway premiere, was hired to direct the film, but was subsequently fired in favor of director Otto Preminger for daring to suggest that the film be made on location in South Carolina after a fire on the sound stage destroyed the film's sets. Otto Ludwig Preminger ( December 5[[ 906]]&ndash April 23[[ 986]] was an Austrian born Film director who moved from the theatre to Hollywood South Carolina ( is a state in the southern region ( Deep South) of the United States of America. Goldwyn, who never liked making films on location, considered Mamoulian's request a sign of disloyalty. Robert McFerrin dubbed the songs for Sidney Poitier's Porgy and Adele Addison for Dorothy Dandridge's Bess. Robert McFerrin Sr (March 19 1921 – November 24 2006 was the first African-American male to sing at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City Sir Sidney Poitier, KBE (ˈpwɑːtie born February 20, 1927) is an Oscar - Golden Globe - BAFTA - and Grammy Adele Addison (born July 24, 1925, Springfield Massachusetts) is an African American Lyric soprano who was an acclaimed figure in Dorothy Jean Dandridge ( November 9, 1922 &ndash September 8, 1965) was an American Actress and Popular singer Ruth Attaway's Serena and Diahann Carroll's Clara were also overdubbed. Diahann Carroll (born July 17 1935) is an American award-winning Actress and songstress. Although Dandridge, Davis and Carroll were all singers, the women's voices were not considered operatic enough. Davis and Pearl Bailey (who played Maria in the movie) were the only principals who sang their own songs. Pearl Mae Bailey ( March 29, 1918 – August 17, 1990) was an American singer and actress Andre Previn's adaptation of the score won him an Academy Award, the film's only Oscar. WikipediaWikiProject Classical music#Biographical_infoboxes --> André Previn ( Andreas Ludwig Priwin) KBE (b "The Oscar" redirects here for the film see The Oscar (film.
The Gershwin estate was disappointed with the film, as the score was edited to make it more like a musical. Musical theatre is a form of Theatre combining Music, Songs spoken Dialogue and Dance. Much of the music was omitted from the film, and many of Gershwin's orchestrations were either changed or completely scrapped. It was shown on network television in the U. A television network is a distribution network for Television content whereby a central operation provides programming for many Television stations S. only once, in 1967. It was pulled from release in 1974, and prints can now only be seen in film archives or on bootleg videos.
In 1993, the Glyndebourne Festival stage production of "Porgy and Bess" was greatly expanded scenically and videotaped in a television studio. Videotape is a means of recording images and sound onto Magnetic tape as opposed to movie film. Television ( TV) is a widely used Telecommunication medium for sending ( Broadcasting) and receiving moving Images, either monochromatic It was telecast by the BBC in England and by PBS in the United States. It was directed by Trevor Nunn and featured a cast of American singers, with the exception of Willard White, who is Jamaican but sounded American, as Porgy. Cynthia Haymon sang the role of Bess. Nunn's "opening up" of the stage production was considered highly imaginative, his cast both sang and acted well, and the three hour production retained nearly all of Gershwin's music, heard in the original 1935 orchestrations - including the opera's sung recitatives, which had occasionally been turned into spoken dialogue in earlier productions. Recitative /rɛsɪtə'tiv/ (also known by its Italian name "recitativo" (/retʃita'tivo/ is a style of delivery (much used in Operas Oratorios The 1993 "Porgy and Bess" was subsequently released on VHS and DVD, and is, so far, the only version of the opera to appear in those formats. DVD (also known as " Digital Versatile Disc " or " Digital Video Disc " - see Etymology)is It has won far greater acclaim than the 1959 film, which was widely panned by most critics for allegedly not being entirely faithful to Gershwin's opera, for refining the language grammatically, and for being staged in what they called an "overblown" manner. It was nominated for four Emmy Awards, and won for its art direction. The term art director is a blanket title for a variety of similar job functions in Advertising, Publishing, film and Television, the Internet 
In 2002, the New York City Opera telecast its new version of the Houston Opera production, from the stage of Lincoln Center. New York State Theater by David Shankbonejpg|thumb| New York State Theater]] The New York City Opera (NYCO is based in Philip Johnson 's New York State This version featured far more cuts than the previous telecast, but, like all stage versions produced since 1976, used the sung recitatives and Gershwin's orchestrations. The telecast also included interviews with director Tazewell Thompson and was hosted by Beverly Sills. Tazewell Thompson is a Playwright, a director, and former Artistic Director of the Westport Country Playhouse in Westport, Connecticut WikipediaWikiProject Opera#Infoboxes --> Beverly Sills ( May 25, 1929 – July 2, 2007) was an
In 2006 the opera was presented as a musical in an adaptation by Trevor Nunn, who also directed and Gareth Valentine (Musical Supervisor). Called "The Gershwin's Porgy And Bess", it was staged at the Savoy Theatre, London to critical acclaim, but disappointing box office.
While not an adaptation, Sesame Street parodied the song "A Woman is a Sometime Thing" in season 36 of the show. Sesame Street is an American educational Children's television series and a pioneer of the contemporary educational television standard combining Hoots the Owl sang to Cookie Monster about how "A Cookie is a Sometimes Food". Hoots the Owl is a character on the children's television program Sesame Street, performed by Kevin Clash. Cookie Monster is a fictional Muppet character on the children's television show Sesame Street.
The 1985 movie White Nights featured a scene in which Gregory Hines performed There's a Boat Dat's Leavin' Soon for New York as Sportin' Life. White Nights is a 1985 film starring Mikhail Baryshnikov, Gregory Hines, Jerzy Skolimowski, Helen Mirren and Gregory Oliver Hines ( February 14, 1946 – August 9, 2003) was an American Actor, Singer, Dancer Hines' rendition, before a Siberian audience, included a tap dancing sequence. Siberia (Сиби́рь Sibir) is the name given to the vast region constituting almost all of Northern Asia and for the most part currently serving Tap dance was developed in the United States during the nineteenth century and is popular nowadays in many parts of the world Director Taylor Hackford pointed out in a special edition DVD release of the film that it was necessary to locate a Russian "woman of color" (Helene Denbey) to portray Bess, as per Gershwin's stipulations. Taylor Edwin Hackford (born December 31, 1944) is an Academy Award -winning American Film director. The Russian people (Русские— Russkie) are an East Slavic Ethnic group, primarily living in Russia and neighboring countries
Gershwin prepared an orchestral suite containing music from the opera after Porgy and Bess closed early on Broadway. Though originally titled "Suite from Porgy and Bess", Ira later renamed it "Catfish Row". "Catfish Row", originally entitled "A Suite from Porgy and Bess " is an orchestral work by George Gershwin based upon music from his opera
In 1942 Robert Russell Bennett arranged a medley (rather than a suite) for orchestra which has often been heard in the concert hall, known as Porgy and Bess: A Symphonic Picture. It is based on Gershwin's original scoring, though for a slightly different instrumentation (the piano was removed from the orchestral texture at the request of the conductor Fritz Reiner, for whom the arrangement was made). Morton Gould also arranged an orchestral suite in the 1950s. Morton Gould ( December 10, 1913 &ndash February 21, 1996) was an American Pianist, Composer, conductor
Porgy and Bess contains many songs that have become popular in their own right, becoming standards in jazz and blues in addition to their original operatic setting.
Some of the more popular songs include:
Some of the more celebrated renditions of these songs include Sarah Vaughan's "It Ain't Necessarily So" and the versions of "Summertime" recorded by Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong and Miles Davis. " Summertime " is the name of an Aria composed by George Gershwin for the 1935 Opera Porgy and Bess. My Man's Gone Now is a song composed by George Gershwin, with lyrics by DuBose Heyward, written for the folk opera Porgy and Bess (1935 "It Ain't Necessarily So" is a popular Song with music by George Gershwin and lyrics by Ira Gershwin. " I Loves You Porgy " is an Aria from the Opera Porgy and Bess with music by George Gershwin and Lyrics by Sarah Lois Vaughan (nicknamed " Sassy " and " The Divine One ") ( March 27 1924, &ndash April Billie Holiday (born Eleanora Fagan; April 7 1915 – July 17 1959 was an American Jazz singer and songwriter Porgy & Bess is a 1957 album (see 1957 in music) by the Jazz vocalist and trumpeter Louis Armstrong, and the Jazz singer Porgy and Bess is a Studio album by Jazz musician Miles Davis, released in 1958 on Columbia Records. Numerous other musicians have recorded "Summertime" in varying styles, including both instrumental and vocal recordings. Janis Joplin recorded a Blues rock version of "Summertime" with Big Brother & The Holding Company. Janis Lyn Joplin ( January 19, 1943  – October 4, 1970) was an American singer songwriter and music arranger from Blues-rock is a hybrid musical genre combining Bluesy improvisations over the 12-bar blues and extended Boogie jams with Rock Big Brother and the Holding Company is an American rock band that formed in San Francisco in 1965 as part of the psychedelic music scene Sublime recorded a (radically reworked) version, as well. Sublime was a hip-hop influenced American Ska-punk and Reggae band that originated in Long Beach California. Billy Stewart's version became a Top 10 Pop and R&B hit in 1966 for Chess Records. For the English goalkeeper see Billy Stewart (footballer. For other persons of similar names see Bill Stewart and William Stewart. The Top Forty or Top 40 is a music industry shorthand for the currently most-popular songs in a particular genre. Pop music as a genre features a noticeable rhythmic element catchy melodies and hooks, a mainstream style and conventional structure Chess Records was an American Record label based in Chicago Illinois.
Nina Simone recorded several Porgy & Bess songs. Eunice Kathleen Waymon, better known by her Stage name Nina Simone ( IPA: ninɐ sʌmɞnɑ (February 21 1933 – April 21 2003 was a fifteen-time She made her debut in 1959 with a version of "I Loves You, Porgy", which became a Billboard top 20 hit. See Billboard (Turkish magazine Billboard is a weekly American Magazine devoted to the Music industry  Other songs she recorded included "Porgy, I's Your Woman Now" [i. e. "Bess, You Is My Woman Now"], "Summertime" and "My Man's Gone Now".
"Summertime" vies with the Beatles "Yesterday" as one of the most popular cover songs in popular music, with an estimated 2,500 different versions recorded. The Beatles were a pop and rock band from Liverpool, England formed in 1960 " Yesterday " is a pop song originally recorded by The Beatles for their 1965 album Help!. In Popular music, a cover version, or simply cover, is a new rendition ( Performance or Recording) of a previously recorded commercially released Even seemingly unlikely performers such as the Zombies have made recordings of it. For the Undead creature of Vodou lore see Zombie. For other meanings see Zombie (disambiguation.