Two musicians who dominated the musical world in the 20th century are celebrated in an exciting evening of their best-loved music. That they were both Americans and more specifically New Yorkers is not surprising as the United States was a melting pot of cultures and both men were products of a system that strove to give so much to those who had so little. The great song writer Irving Berlin said that Gershwin stood over New York like a Colossus, with one foot in Tin Pan Alley and the other in Carnegie Hall, and less than two decades later the same could be said of Bernstein.
Leonard Bernstein was a great conductor in the grand manner but he was also a composer of enormous depth and talent. His score for West Side Story sets him apart from all other composers of his generation and would do so if that was the only thing he had written. As well as his two other musicals On the Town and Wonderful Town, where he specifically celebrates his own city, there is also a wealth of concert music. Bernstein’s musical diversity is equally matched by Gershwin’s ability to write a tune. Some of them are daringly simple yet they became immortal almost before they left the page.
In this up-beat and brilliant concert, their music is performed with an energy and theatrical flair that allows the true genius of both composers to burst through. Three singers and a concert pianist join together to sing and play their way through some of the most popular and well loved music ever written.