The Theater: Old Musical in Manhattan

Porgy and Bess (music by George Gershwin; book by DuBose Heyward; lyrics by DuBose Heyward & Ira Gershwin) reached Broadway for the fifth time since 1935. Such popularity is indeed deserved: the great roll call of Gershwin tunes alone—Summertime, A Woman Is a Sometime Thing, I Got Plenty o' Nuttin', Bess, You Is My Woman Now, It Ain't Necessarily So—would be enough to explain it. But Porgy and Bess approaches authentic American opera: its very story is picturesquely American and unblushingly operatic. The crammed, violent life of Catfish Row inspired George Gershwin...

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