The Complete Porgy and Bess

The Complete Porgy And Bess

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The Complete Porgy and Bess

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This 1956 recording based on George Gershwin's opera Porgy and Bess was the second "complete" recording of the opera after the 1951 version recorded several years earlier, and the first recording of the work to feature jazz singers and musicians instead of operatic singers and a classical orchestra. This technically makes the album not an opera at all.

Russell Garcia arranged Gershwin's work for the Bethlehem Orchestra, the Duke Ellington Orchestra, the Australian Jazz Quintet, the Pat Moran Quartet and the Stan Levey Group. Mel Tormé sang the role of Porgy and Frances Faye the role of Bess. The Ellington Orchestra plays "Summertime" as the overture, but does not appear elsewhere on the album.

Originally released by Bethlehem Records in 1956 (3BP-1); reissued in the 1970s (EXLP-1). Highlights from this recording released by Bethlehem as BCP 6040 and BCP 6009. On CD: Bethlehem Records #BET6028-2 (Releaseed 1994), Rhino Records #75828 (Released 1999).

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