Artist & Tune
About the Song
This song was composed by the Gershwins for their 1935 opera "Porgy & Bess". It was adapted from Dorothy Heyward and DuBose Heyward's play Porgy, itself an adaptation of DuBose Heyward's 1925 novel of the same name.
Porgy & Bess was first performed in Boston on September 30, 1935, before it moved to Broadway in New York City. It featured a cast of classically trained African-American singers—a daring artistic choice at the time. After an initially unpopular public reception, a 1976 Houston Grand Opera production gained it new popularity, and it is now one of the best known and most frequently performed operas.
The classically trained African-American soprano Anne Brown played Bess both in the original Broadway production & also in the 1945 film Rhapsody in Blue, a biographical film on George Gershwin.