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Ira GershwinThe Art of the Lyricist$
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Philip Furia

Print publication date: 1997

Print ISBN-13: 9780195115703

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195115703.001.0001

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Necessarily So: 1933–1935

Necessarily So: 1933–1935

Chapter:
(p.105) 6 Necessarily So: 1933–1935
Source:
Ira Gershwin
Author(s):

Philip Fuma

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195115703.003.0006

In 1926, during one of his frequent insomniac nights, George Gershwin picked up DuBose Heyward's best-selling novel Porgy, hoping it would help him fall asleep. Instead, he was inspired by the possibilities for operatic passion and violence in the tale of the crippled Porgy, who challenges Crown for the love of Bess. Ira Gershwin's skill in setting “singable” words to music was the catalyst that fused the poetry of DuBose Heyward with the music of George Gershwin into what is rightly called “the first authentic American opera.”

Keywords:   Ira Gershwin, George Gershwin, Porgy, American opera

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