FOLLOWUP: “Porgy and Bess” — opera or musical?

By Robert D. Thomas

Music Critic

Pasadena Star-News/San Gabriel Valley Tribune/Whittier Daily
News

 

Last Saturday in the Pasadena Pops concert, the orchestra’s
new principal conductor, Marvin Hamlisch, alluded to a new production of Porgy and Bess now being prepared back
east, declaring that he was pleased that it was being produced as a Broadway
musical instead of an opera In my review (HERE), I responded, “I do, however,
take issue with Hamlish’s contention that Porgy
and Bess
is a musical. I realize that director Diane Paulus is
working on a new production of what she calls The Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess, which is supposed to recast
the work as a musical, but, in the words of Ira Gershwin, ‘It Ain’t Necessarily
So’ — i.e., it’s an opera.”

 

I’m not the only one who doesn’t agree with the production.
An article by composer/lyricist Stephen Sondheim in today’s New York Times castigating the concept
is HERE (it also appears in a number of other media outlets).

 

http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/08/10/stephen-sondheim-takes-issue-with-plan-for-revamped-porgy-and-bess/?ref=music

 

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(c) Copyright 2011, Robert D. Thomas. All rights reserved.
Portions may be quoted with attribution.