The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess Comes to Broadway
The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess opened Thursday, January 12th, 2012 at the Richard Rodgers Theatre produced by Jeffrey Richards, Jerry Frankel and Rebecca Gold. Following its sold-out world premiere engagement at Boston’s American Repertory Theater (A.R.T.), George and Ira Gershwin’s legendary masterwork has returned to the Broadway stage for the first time in more than 35 years. With this new production this classic story by Dubose and Dorothy Heyward will be introduced to the next generation of theatregoers.
The story is set in Charleston’s fabled Catfish Row, where the beautiful Bess struggles to break free from her scandalous past, and the only one who can rescue her is the crippled but courageous Porgy. Threatened by her formidable former lover Crown, and the seductive enticements of the colorful troublemaker Sporting Life, Porgy and Bess’ relationship evolves into a deep romance that triumphs as one of theater’s most exhilarating love stories.
Led by Tony-nominated director Diane Paulus (Hair), Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Suzan-Lori Parks (Topdog/Underdog), and two-time Obie Award-winning composer Diedre L. Murray (Running Man), Porgy and Bess boasts one of Broadway’s most accomplished creative teams.
The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess comes to Broadway in a stunning and stirring new staging, featuring such legendary songs as “Summertime,” “It Ain’t Necessarily So,” and “I Got Plenty of Nothing,” plus a remarkable cast led by four-time Tony Award winner Audra McDonald (Ragtime, “Private Practice”), Drama Desk nominee Norm Lewis (Les Misérables, Sondheim on Sondheim) and two-time Tony nominee David Alan Grier (Race, “In Living Color”).
The cast includes Audra McDonald as Bess, Norm Lewis as Porgy, David Alan Grier as Sporting Life, Phillip Boykin as Crown, Nikki Renée Daniels as Clara, Joshua Henry as Jake, Christopher Innvar as Detective, Bryonha Marie Parham as Serena and NaTasha Yvette Williams as Mariah, as well as Allison Blackwell, Roosevelt André 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. The creative team also includes choreographer Ronald K. Brown, set designer Riccardo Hernandez, costume designer ESosa, lighting designer Christopher Akerlind and sound designer Acme Sound Partners.
The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess is the latest addition to The Broadway Collection, a group of new and classic Broadway musicals selected for their unparalleled popularity with international audiences. Tickets are available through The Broadway Collection partners internationally.