TCM Archive Materials VIEW ALL ARCHIVES (1)
|Also Known As:||Died:||July 11, 1937|
|Born:||September 26, 1898||Cause of Death:||brain tumor|
|Birth Place:||Brooklyn, New York, USA||Profession:||Music ...|
RATE AND COMMENT
Family moved frequently when Gershwin was growing up; as his father landed a new job, the family changed residences so he could walk to work
Family purchased a piano; began to take lessons
Worked for the summer playing piano at a resort in the Catskills
Professional debut as a pianist, performed at the Finlay Club; arranged by Ira
Worked as a song plugger at Remick's
Began making piano rolls; also played piano at nightclubs
First published song "When You Want 'Em, You Can't Get 'Em, When You've Got 'Em, You Don't Want 'Em" (lyric by Murray Roth); earned five dollars for the song
First song on Broadway "The Runaway Girl" in "The Passing Show of 1916"
Served as rehearsal pianist for the show "Miss 1917"
Toured with Louise Dresser as her accompanist
Signed to a contract as staff composer with Harms Publishing Co.
Contributed several songs to the unsuccessful stage musical "Half Past Eight"
First complete score for a Broadway musical "La La Lucille"
Al Jolson interpolated the Gershwin song "Swanee" into "Sinbad"; first hit song
Provided songs for editions of "George White's Scandals"
First stage musical written with brother Ira (who used the pen name Arthur Francis), "A Dangerous Maid"
Wrote first opera, "Blue Monday"; a failure it was dropped from the "Scandals"
Initial stage collaboration with Fred and Adele Astaire, contributed songs to "For Goodness Sake"
First film score, "The Sunshine Trail"
Paul Whiteman and his orchestra introduced "Rhapsody in Blue" as part of "An Experiment in Modern Music at Aeolian Hall" in NYC
With brother Ira, wrote stage musical "Lady, Be Good"; production starred the Astaires; song "The Man I Love" cut during the pre-Broadway tour
Made the cover of TIME magazine (July)
Commissioned by the Symphonic Society of New York to write "The Concerto in F"
Had stage hit with "Oh, Kay!"
Had failure with first version of "Strike Up the Band" (written with Ira)
Bounced back with a reteaming with the Astaires, "Funny Face"
"An American in Paris" debuted at Carnegie Hall in December
Debut as symphony conductor
Had Broadway hit with "Girl Crazy", starring Ethel Merman and Ginger Rogers
With brother Ira, signed contract to write songs for the Fox feature "Delicious"
Premiered the political satire "Of Thee I Sing"
Debuted "Second Rhapsody" at the Boston Symphony; played piano
Composed "Cuban Overture"
"Of Thee I Sing" became first musical to be awarded the Pulitzer Prize in Drama
Had flops with "Pardon My English" and "Let 'Em Eat Cake", the sequel to "Of Thee I Sing"
Hosted the NYC-based radio program "Music By Gershwin"
"Porgy and Bess" debuted at the Alvin Theater
Formed Gershwin Publishing Co.
Signed to a contract by RKO
Moved to L.A.
Provided the songs to "Shall We Dance" and "A Damsel in Distress", both starring Fred Astaire; earned Oscar nomination for the song "They Can't Take That Away From Me" from the former
Underwent brain surgery to remove a tumor; died on July 11
Posthumous exhibition of paintings
Last songs "Love Walked In" and "Love Is Here to Stay", included in "The Goldwyn Follies"
Portrayed by Robert Alda in the studio biopic "Rhapsody in Blue"
Vincente Minnelli's "An American in Paris" used his musical suite as the basis of an original film musical teaming Gene Kelly and Leslie Caron
"Funny Face" filmed with a revised story, teaming Fred Astaire and Audrey Hepburn
Feature adaptation of "Porgy and Bess" released, directed by Otto Preminger
Please support TCMDB by adding to this information.Click here to contribute