The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess on Broadway
Out of the A.R.T.
October 3, 2011

The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess on Broadway played its final Broadway performance on September 23rd after a glorious run.

The Broadway-bound production of THE GERSHWINS' PORGY AND BESS, which played a record-breaking, sold out engagement at the American Repertory Theater, concluded its limited engagement at the Richard Rodgers Theatre after 321 performances, breaking the record of 307 performances previously held by the 1953 revival at the Ziegfeld Theatre.


THE GERSHWINS' PORGY AND BESS, with a score by George Gershwin, a book by DuBose and Dorothy Heyward, and lyrics by Ira Gershwin and DuBose Heyward, has been adapted by Pulitzer prize-winning writer Suzan-Lori Parks, and two-time Obie winner Diedre L. Murray. A.R.T.'s Artistic Director, Diane Paulus, directs. The Broadway production will star Audra McDonald as Bess, Norm Lewis as Porgy and David Alan Grier as Sporting Life, reprising their A.R.T. roles.

The creative team also includes choreographer Ronald K. Brown, set designer Riccardo Hernandez, costume designer ESosa, lighting designer Christopher Akerlind and sound designer ACME Sound Partners. 

THE GERSHWINS' PORGY AND BESS is the classic American tale is set in the 1930s in Catfish Row, a neighborhood in Charleston, South Carolina. Bess, beautiful and troubled, turns to Porgy, the crippled beggar, in search of safety after her possessive lover Crown commits murder. As Porgy and Bess's love grows, their future is threatened by Crown and the conniving Sporting Life. This heartbreaking love story boasts some of the most famous and beloved works from the Great American Songbook, including: "Summertime," "Bess, You Is My Woman," "It Ain't Necessarily So" and "I Loves You, Porgy."

THE GERSHWINS' PORGY AND BESS is based on DuBose Heyward's novel "Porgy" and the play of the same name, which he co-wrote with his wife Dorothy Heyward. All three works deal with African American life in the fictitious Catfish Row (based on the real-life Rainbow Row) in Charleston, South Carolina, in the early 1920s. George Gershwin worked on Porgy and Bess in Charleston, SC and drew inspiration from the James Island Gullah community, which he felt had preserved some African musical traditions. 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 which the composer knew about; jubilees, blues, praying songs, street cries, work songs, and spirituals are blended with traditional arias and recitatives.
 

Visit The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess on Broadway's facebook page click here

PORGY AND BESS: From Boston to Broadway: 

PORGY AND BESS: From Boston to Broadway

First Lady Michelle Obama made a suprise visit to the Saturday evening performance of the A.R.T.'s production of  'The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess' now running on Broadway.  More

 

First Lady Michelle Obama made a suprise visit to the Saturday evening performance of the A.R.T.'s production of  'The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess' now running on Broadway. 

  More

Press Releases

    For Immediate Release: December 6, 2012 Contact: Kati Mitchell 617-495-2668 kati_mitchell@harvard.edu     Cast album of A.R.T.’s production of The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess  garners Grammy Award...
  For Immediate Release: July 18, 2012 Contact: Kati Mitchell 617-495-2668 kati_mitchell@harvard.edu   2012 TONY AWARD WINNER THE GERSHWINS’ PORGY AND BESS WILL CONCLUDE ITS LIMITED ENGAGEMENT SUNDAY,...
Productions developed at the A.R.T. in 2011 recieve 10 Tony Awards Cambridge, MA – The American Repertory Theater (A.R.T.) is proud to announce that The Gershwins' Porgy and Bess, produced during the A.R.T.’s 2011/12 Season and nominated for 10 Tony...

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