Musica Viva welcomes the 27-member London Gershwin Players, with Mark Forkgen, condcutor and Robert Taub, piano, for an upbeat, all-Gershwin evening.
The London Gershwin Players will perform the exciting original version of Rhapsody in Blue - the tighter, leaner, more focused version that was written for the legendary 22-piece Paul Whiteman Band in New York City. Both Mark Forkgen, conductor and pianist Robert Taub particualrly like this version, as it has a sharper edge and greater spontaneity compared to the more often performed large orchestral version. Gershwin composed Rhapsody in Blue in a frenzied few weeks, and its first performance, a storied occasion with Gershwin himself at the piano, Stravinsky and other luminaries in the audience, was an immediate success. This concert marks the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the piece’s composition in January 1924.
Overture to the Musical Girl Crazy
Porgy and Bess Fantasy
American in Paris
Rhapsody in Blue (with Robert Taub, pianist)
"I've played the Rhapsody many times but always with the big orchestral version. I've always wanted to play the hotter original version, so we're doing it now! Can't wait!"
- Dr. Robert Taub, Director of Music, The Arts Institute, University of Plymouth
The other Gershwin works on this programme, American in Paris and Porgy & Bess Fantasy, are also fabulous with this tighter ensemble, and it's exciting to bring these works to our Musica Viva series here. London-based conductor Mark Forkgen is a favourite of Plymouth audiences, and the London Gershwin Players is very special indeed. Don't miss this unique programme.
Date: Saturday 27 January 2024
Time: 19:00–21:30 (including pre-concert talk and interval)
Venue: Levinsky Hall, Roland Levinsky Building
Ticket information: £12, £10 concessions, FREE to all students and under 18s