Tag Archives: Ira Gershwin

A Jewish Legacy

Dear Friends,

We wanted to share with you today a wonderful DVD by PBS—Broadway Musicals: A Jewish Legacy.

We saw it when PBS first aired it and we liked it so much we bought our own copy so that we could continue to enjoy this amazing show.

This program “examines the unique role of Jewish composers and lyricists in the creation of the modern American musical. The film showcases the work of legends such as Irving Berlin, Jerome Kern, George and Ira Gershwin, Lorenz Hart, Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein II, Leonard Bernstein, and Stephen Sondheim.” It  includes performances by Matthew Broderick, Kelli O’Hara, Zero Mostel, Nathan Lane, Barbra Streisand, Idina Menzel, Kristin Chenoweth, and many more!

Don’t miss out—you can order your copy from PBS today! The cost is only $29.99, and you can get it by clicking on this link or on the picture below.

broadway PBS

Best,
Philip & Marilyn

 

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Porgy & Bess

Last night we saw the most incredible theatrical happening that we have seen in years!

It was the San Francisco Opera Company’s production of Porgy & Bess, presented by PBS at 9pm Eastern Time.  Incidentally, if you would like a DVD of this glorious production you can order it at PBS.  Dial 1 800  PLAY PBS or click here to link to PBS’s website.  The cost for a dvd is $28.74 including shipping.

The director, who spoke and described the history of Porgy & Bess, spoke about how the authors, George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin, wrote the opera and decided to bring it in 1934 to The Theatre Guild, which had been producing serious plays since 1919.

The Theatre Guild board immediately said Yes!, and they presented it on Broadway, opening October 10, 1935 at the Guild Theatre on West 52nd Street.

Having seen this San Francisco Opera production last night, we simply can’t tell you how fantastic it was!  It is definitely in our opinion, the greatest theatrical works that America has created.

All of the actors in this San Francisco production were wonderful.  Additionally, no attempt was made to glamorize the totally poverty-stricken society that this play displays for us.

FUNNY  SIDENOTE: I remember seeing the original production at a matinee. I was 9 years old, and I remember that my mentor was given strict instructions that I must not be allowed to watch the last scene, as it was much too tragic!  AND I remember that my mentor did not take me out of the theatre seat, and so I saw the whole show.  Afterwards, my irritated parents spoke to me about the tragic ending.  I said, “That’s not tragic.  He’s going to New York!”  I still remember 80 years later.

porgy and bess

 

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