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Porgy and Bess

Donald Macleod explores the poignant story of George Gershwin's unhappy last months, spent in Hollywood, and the effect of his death on his beloved brother Ira.

When George Gershwin died at the age of 38, he was at the height of his compositional powers, and teeming with ideas. In the final programme of the week, Donald Macleod explores the poignant story of his unhappy final months, spent in Hollywood away from his home in New York - and the effect that his tragic premature death had on his beloved brother Ira.

We also hear arguably the two finest works of Gershwin's final years - the dazzling "Variations on 'I Got Rhythm'" for piano and orchestra - performed in an archive recording by the composer's great friend Oscar Levant - and two complete scenes from Gershwin's operatic masterpiece, "Porgy and Bess".

1 hour

Last on

Fri 15 Feb 2013 18:30

Music Played

  • George Gershwin & Brian Wilson

    Love Is Here To Stay,

    Performer: Brian Wilson (vocals)

    • WALT DISNEY:42890.
  • George Gershwin

    Pardon My English (excerpts): Overture; in three quarter time; Isn't it a pity

    Performer: Bauer - John Cullum, Golo/Michael - William Katt, Ilse – Michelle Nicastro, Orchestra of St Luke’s, Eric Stern (conductor)

    • SONY CLASSICAL: MPK47681.
    • 3.
  • George Gershwin

    Variations On I Got Rhythm (1934)

    Performer: Oscar Levant (piano), Morton Gould and his orchestra

    • SONY CLASSICAL: MPK47681.
  • George Gershwin

    Porgy and Bess (1935): Act II, Scene 2

    Performer: Porgy - Willard White, Bess - Cynthia Haymon, Sporting Life - Damon Evans, Serena - Cynthia Clarey, Maria – Marietta Simpson, Crown - Gregg Baker, Glyndebourne Chorus, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Simon Rattle (conductor)

    • EMI: 5562202.
    • 10.
  • George Gershwin

    Porgy and Bess (1935): Act II, Scene 3

    Performer: Porgy - Willard White, Bess - Cynthia Haymon, Sporting Life - Damon Evans, Serena - Cynthia Clarey, Maria – Marietta Simpson, Crown - Gregg Baker, Glyndebourne Chorus, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Simon Rattle (conductor)

    • EMI: 5562202.
    • 14.
  • George Gershwin

    Ive Got Beginners Luck (1937)

    Performer: Fred Astaire (vocals), The Johnny Green Orchestra

    • CONIFER CDSVL :199.
    • 12.
  • George Gershwin

    Pardon My English (excerpts): Overture; in three quarter time; Isn't it a pity

    Performer: Bauer - John Cullum, Golo/Michael - William Katt, Ilse – Michelle Nicastro, Orchestra of St Luke’s, Eric Stern (conductor)

    • SONY CLASSICAL: MPK47681.
    • 3.
  • George Gershwin

    Variations On I Got Rhythm (1934)

    Performer: Oscar Levant (piano), Morton Gould and his orchestra

    • SONY CLASSICAL: MPK47681.
  • George Gershwin

    Porgy and Bess (1935): Act II, Scene 2

    Performer: Porgy - Willard White, Bess - Cynthia Haymon, Sporting Life - Damon Evans, Serena - Cynthia Clarey, Maria – Marietta Simpson, Crown - Gregg Baker, Glyndebourne Chorus, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Simon Rattle (conductor)

    • EMI: 5562202.
    • 10.
  • George Gershwin

    Porgy and Bess (1935): Act II, Scene 3

    Performer: Porgy - Willard White, Bess - Cynthia Haymon, Sporting Life - Damon Evans, Serena - Cynthia Clarey, Maria – Marietta Simpson, Crown - Gregg Baker, Glyndebourne Chorus, London Philharmonic Orchestra, Simon Rattle (conductor)

    • EMI: 5562202.
    • 14.
  • George Gershwin

    Ive Got Beginners Luck (1937)

    Performer: Fred Astaire (vocals), The Johnny Green Orchestra

    • CONIFER CDSVL :199.
    • 12.

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