Broadway Musical Home


Who starred in the original cast?
Where can I buy the music?
What’s the buzz on Broadway?
Find out at Broadway Musical Home

Blog Twitter Facebook Pinterest MySpace Newsletter
Porgy and Bess

Porgy and Bess

by George Gershwin, Ira Gershwin and DuBose Heyward

Playing at a Theatre Near You

Buy Tickets

Porgy and Bess

Porgy and Bess




The popular Gershwin musical based on the play "Porgy" by Dorothy Heyward and DuBose Heyward.


Story:

Bess, beautiful and troubled, turns to Porgy, the crippled beggar, in search of safety after her possessive lover Crown commits murder.


Get Tickets for Porgy and Bess
The Latest News About the Show
Apply for Production Rights
Lyrics for the Musical's Songs



Composer

Composer
George Gershwin

Lyricist

Lyricist
Ira Gershwin

Lyricist

Lyricist and Librettist
DuBose Heyward



  • Premiere
  • 1942
  • 1943
  • 1944
  • 1953
  • 1976
  • 1983
  • 2012
  • 1959 Film

Broadway Premiere

Theatre
Alvin Theatre
Opening Night
Oct 10, 1935
Total Performances
124
Original Cast
Anne Wiggins Brown, Duncan, John W. Bubbles, Ruby Elzy, Olive Ball, Ford L. Buck, Alexander Campbell, George Carleton, Jack Carr, Warren Coleman, Henry Davis, Helen Dowdy, John Garth, Georgette Harvey, The Eva Jessye Choir, J. Rosamond Johnson, George Lessey, Edward Matthews, Burton McEvilly, Abbie Mitchell, Gus Simons, Harold Woolf, Ray Yeates
Director
Rouben Mamoulian
Producer
The Theatre Guild
Scenic Design
Sergei Soudeikine

1942 Broadway Revival

Theatre
Majestic Theatre
Opening Night
Jan 22, 1942
Total Performances
286
Original Cast
Anne Brown, Todd Duncan, Catherine Ayers, William Bowers, Jack Carr, Osbert Chevers, Warren Coleman, Henry Davis, Helen Dowdy, Paul Du Pont, Robert Ecton, Ruby Elzy, John Garth, Georgette Harvey, Harriet Jackson, Jacqueline Jennings, The Eva Jessye Choir, J. Rosamond Johnson, Naida King, Rosalie King, Avon Long, Edward Matthews, Harvey McGill, Gibbs Penrose, William Richardson, Robert Tucker, Jimmy Waters, Al West, Granville Williams, Lorraine Williams, William Woolfolk
Director
Robert Ross
Producer
Cheryl Crawford
Scenic Design
Herbert Andrews
Costume Design
Paul Du Pont

1943 Broadway Revival

Theatre
44th Street Theatre
Opening Night
Sep 13, 1943
Total Performances
24
Original Cast
Etta Moten, Todd Duncan, Roger Aeford, Ruthetta Anderson, Catherine Ayers, Richard Bowler, Charles Coleman, Warren Coleman, Charles Colman, Don Darcy, Henry Davis, Harold Desverney, John Diggs, Virginia Girvin, Gladys Goode, Leslie Gray, Georgette Harvey, Louisa Howard, Alma Hubbard, Harriet Jackson, Kenneth Konopka, Jerry Laws, Avon Long, Assota Marshall, Edward Matthews, Sadie McGill, Coral McMahan, Coyal McMahon, William O'Neal, George Randol, Douglas Rice, Patricia Rice, Eulabel Riley, Annabelle Ross, Velda Shelton, Zelda Shelton, William C. Smith, Kenneth Tucker, Robert Tucker, Thomas Tucker, Edward Lee Tyler, Eloise Uggams, Charles Welch, Musa Williams
Director
Robert Ross
Producer
Cheryl Crawford
Musical Director
Eva Jessye
Scenic Design
Herbert Andrews
Costume Design
Paul Du Pont

1944 Broadway Revival

Theatre
City Center
Opening Night
Feb 7, 1944
Total Performances
64
Original Cast
Etta Moten, William Franklin, Roger Alford, Ruthetta Anderson, Catherine Ayres, Olive Ball, Richard Bowler, Frances Brock, Warren Coleman, Charles Colman, Don Darcy, Henry Davis, Harold Desverney, John Diggs, Gladys Goode, Leslie Gray, Georgette Harvey, Louisa Howard, Alma Hubbard, Harriet Jackson, Kenneth Konopka, Jerry Laws, Avon Long, Assota Marshall, Edward Matthews, Sadie McGill, Coyal McMahon, William O'Neal, George Randol, Douglas Rice, Patricia Rice, Eulabel Riley, Annabelle Ross, Zelda Shelton, William C. Smith, Kenneth Tucker, Robert Tucker, Thomas Tucker, Eloise Uggams, Charles Welch, Musa Williams
Director
Robert Ross
Producer
Cheryl Crawford and John J. Wildberg
Scenic Design
Herbert Andrews
Costume Design
Paul Du Pont

1953 Broadway Revival

Theatre
Ziegfeld Theatre
Opening Night
Mar 10, 1953
Total Performances
305
Original Cast
Urylee Leonardos, Leontyne Price, Irving Barnes, LeVern Hutcherson, Joseph Attles, Catherine Ayers, Jacqueline Barnes, Lawson Bates, James Hawthorne Bey, Rhoda Boggs, Walter P. Brown, Georgia Burke, Miriam Burton, Sibol Cain, Cab Calloway, Elsie Clark, Helen Colbert, Charles Colman, Clarice Crawford, Joseph Crawford, Willis Daily, Hugh Dilworth, Helen Dowdy, Helen Ferguson, Elizabeth Foster, Doris Galiber, John Garth, Ruby Greene, Kenneth Hibbert, George A. Hill, Joseph James, Jebob, Sam Kasakoff, Moses La Marr, Jerry Laws, John McCurry, Joy McLean, Pauline Phelps, Edna Ricks, Walter Riemer, Howard Roberts, Anabelle Ross, George Royston Jr., George A. Royston, Sherman Sneed, Delores Swan, Helen Thigpen, Clyde Turner, Eloise C. Uggams, William Veasey, Barbara Ann Webb, Ray Yeates
Director
Robert Breen
Producer
Blevins Davis and Robert Breen
Musical Director
Alexander Smallens
Scenic Design
Wolfgang Roth
Costume Design
Jed Mace

1976 Broadway Revival

Theatre
Uris Theatre and Mark Hellinger Theatre
Opening Night
Sep 25, 1976
Total Performances
122
Original Cast
Clamma Dale, Esther Hinds, Donnie Ray Albert, Abraham Lind-Oquendo, Steven Alex-Cole, John D. Anthony, Shirley Baines, Earl Baker, Kenneth Barry, Phyllis Bash, Kenneth Bates, Raymond Bazemore, Carol Brice, Barbara Buck, Alex Carrington, Curtis Dickson, Ella Eure, Wilhelmenia Fernandez, William Gammon, Elizabeth Graham, Earl Grandison, Kenneth Hamilton, Betty Harris, Loretta Holkmann, Delores Ivory-Davis, Alma Johnson, Cora Johnson, Betty D. Lane, Roberta Long, Hartwell Mace, Larry Marshall, Patricia McDermott, George Robert Merritt, Myra Merritt, Naomi Moody, Glover Parham, William Penn, Dwight Ransom, Ross Reimueller, Cornel Richie, John B. Ross, Rodrick Ross, Hansford Rowe, Wilma A. Shakesnider, Alexander B. Smalls, Andrew Smith, Bernard Thacker, Mervin Wallace, Barbara Ann Webb, Wardell Woodard, Denice Woods, Barbara L. Young
Director
Jack O'Brien
Choreographer
Mabel Robinson
Producer
Sherwin M. Goldman and The Houston Grand Opera
Musical Director
John DeMain
Scenic Design
Robert Randolph (Additional scenic elements for Kittiwah Island designed by John Rothgeb)
Costume Design
Nancy Potts
Lighting Design
Gilbert V. Hemsley, Jr.

1983 Broadway Revival

Theatre
Radio City Music Hall
Opening Night
Apr 7, 1983
Total Performances
45
Original Cast
Henrietta Elizabeth Davis, Priscilla Baskerville, Naomi Moody, Daisy Newman, Robert Mosley Jr., Michael V. Smartt, Jonathan Sprague, James Tyeska, Loretta Abbott, Timothy Allen, Shirley Baines, Earl L. Baker, Gregg Baker, Emerson Battles, Raymond H. Bazemore, Shirley Black-Brown, Roslyn Burrough, Vertrelle Cameron, Seraiah Carol, Duane Clenton Carter, Dabriah Chapman, Louise Coleman, Janice D. Dixon, Diallobe Dorsey, Cisco Xavier Drayton, Alberta M. Driver, Richert Easley, Joseph S. Eubanks, Karen E. Eubanks, Lori Eubanks, Beno Foster, Luvenia Garner, Jerry Godfrey, Earl Grandison, Milton B. Grayson, Jr., Elvira Green, Lawrence Hamilton, Gurcell Henry, Angela Holcomb, Lisa D. Holkmann, Loretta Holkmann, Janice T. Hutson, David-Michael Johnson, Leavata Johnson, Tyrone Jolivet, Dorothy L. Jones, Donald Walter Kase, Robert Kryser, Roberta Alexandra Laws, Eugene Little, Jason Little, Ann Marie Mackey, Barbara Mahajan, Amelia Marshall, Larry Marshall, Richard Mason, Y. Yvonne Matthews, Regina McConnell, Everett McCorvey, John McDaniels, George Robert Merritt, William Moize, Byron Onque, H. William Penn, Marenda Perry, Lou Ann Pickett, Akili Prince, Herbert Lee Rawlings, Jr., Roumel Reaux, Noelle Richards, David Robertson, Lattilia Ronrico, Renee L. Rose, Myles Gregory Savage, Wilma A. Shakesnider, Sheryl Shell, Kiki Shepard, Gwendolyn Shepherd, Alexander Smalls, Larry Storch, Edward Strauss, Kevin L. Stroman, Charee Adia Thorpes, Veronica Tyler, Mervin Bertel Wallace, Pamela Warrick-Smith, Cornelius White, Rodney Wing, Tarik Winston, Denice Woods, Thomas J. Young
Director
Jack O'Brien
Choreographer
George Faison
Producer
Radio City Music Hall Productions (Bernard Gersten: Executive Producer) and Sherwin M. Goldman Productions
Musical Director
C. William Harwood
Scenic Design
Douglas W. Schmidt
Costume Design
Nancy Potts
Lighting Design
Gilbert V. Hemsley, Jr.

2012 Broadway Revival

Theatre
Richard Rodgers Theatre
Opening Night
Jan 12, 2012
Total Performances
293
Original Cast
Audra McDonald, Norm Lewis, David Alan Grier, Phillip Boykin, Nikki Renee Daniels, Joshua Henry, Christopher Innvar, Bryonha Marie Parham, NaTasha Yvette Williams (Mariah) as well as Allison Blackwell, Roosevelt Andre Credit, Trevon Davis, Joseph Dellger, Wilkie Ferguson, Carmen Ruby Floyd, Heather Hill, David Hughey, Andrea Jones-Sojola, Alicia Hall Moran, Cedric Neal, Phumzile Sojola, Nathaniel Stampley, Julius Thomas III, J.D. Webster and Lisa Nicole Wilkerson
Director
Diane Paulus
Choreographer
Ronald K. Brown
Producer
Jeffrey Richards and Jerry Frankel in association with the American Repertory Theatre
Musical Director
Constantine Kitsopoulos
Orchestrations
William David Brohn and Christopher Jahnke
Scenic Design
Riccardo Hernandez
Costume Design
Emilio Sosa
Lighting Design
Christopher Akerlind
Sound Design
Acme Sound Partners and Cricket S. Myers

1959 Film Version

Movie Name
Porgy and Bess
Type
Hollywood Musical
Director
Otto Preminger
Screenplay
N. Richard Nash
Starring
Sidney Poitier, Dorothy Dandridge, Sammy Davis Jr.





CDs

CD
2012 Broadway Revival Cast Album

CD
Houston Grand Opera Cast Album

CD
1930s Recording with Members from the Original Cast

CD
Recording with Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong


Sheetmusic

Sheetmusic
Vocal Selections

Sheetmusic
Vocal Score


Videos

DVD
Original Hollywood Version DVD


Other

Merchandise




1956 Tony Award Nominations

Stage Technician - Lawrence Bland

1977 Tony Award Nominations

Most Innovative Production of a Revival
Best Actress in a Musical - Clamma Dale
Best Featured Actor in a Musical - Larry Marshall
Best Scenic Design
Best Costume Design
Best Direction of a Musical

1977 Drama Desk Award Nominations

Outstanding Actress in a Musical - Clamma Dale
Outstanding Musical
Outstanding Actress in a Musical - Esther Hinds
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical - Larry Marshall
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical - Delores Ivory-Davis
Outstanding Director of a Musical
Outstanding Costume Design
Outstanding Lighting Design
Outstanding Set Design

1983 Tony Award Nominations

Best Actor in a Musical - Michael V. Smartt
Best Choreography - George Faison

2012 Tony Award Nominations

Best Revival of a Musical
Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical: Audra McDonald
Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical: Norm Lewis
Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical: Phillip Boykin
Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical: David Alan Grier
Best Direction of a Musical
Best Orchestrations
Best Costume Design of a Musical
Best Lighting Design of a Musical
Best Sound Design of a Musical

2012 Drama Desk Award Nominations

Outstanding Actress in a Musical: Audra McDonald
Outstanding Sound Design in a Musical
Outstanding Revival of a Musical
Outstanding Actor in a Musical: Norm Lewis
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical: Phillip Boykin

2012 Drama League Award Nominations

Distinguished Performance Award: Audra McDonald
Distinguished Revival of a Musical
Distinguished Performance Award: Norm Lewis

2012 Outer Critics Circle Award Nominations

Outstanding Actress in a Musical: Audra McDonald
Outstanding Revival of a Musical
Outstanding Actor in a Musical: Norm Lewis
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Musical: Phillip Boykin

2012 Theatre World Award Nominations

Phillip Boykin

Your Reviews: Do You Love It or Loathe It?

blog comments powered by Disqus
Broadway Musical
Broadway Musical
Broadway Musical
Broadway Musical
Broadway Musical
Broadway Musical