Porgy & Bess

#heart-wrenching #hopeful #timeless #classic #family #love

Liz Oakley, 11th Grade, Brearley School Desmond Sam, 11th Grade, LaGuardia High School Sofie Somoroff, 10th Grade, Bronx Science High School Desmond: It’s a hot, blistering day in the 1920’s for an African American community in South Carolina. A group of men arrive back from working in the fields (to gamble) and the women are finishing their evening chores. A young woman belts out “Summertime”, a classic about enjoying life and all the precious gifts it offers. Sofie: Porgy and Bess is a story of two people who find love in a time of economic uncertainty, sorrow and despair on Catfish Row. Porgy, a disabled man, meets Bess, an addict and a prostitute, and welcomes her into his world. Desmond: Throughout the show, you see the unity of the people; this community is actually a small family. Liz:Porgy and Bess addresses many universal experiences, such as loss, addiction, perseverance, and standing up for others in need. Sofie: These issues teach an important lesson: No matter where we are and what issues we’re facing, if we have someone to face them with us, we can manage. Desmond: Religion is also an important part of the show. Many musical numbers include a vibe of spirituality and involve the whole ensemble, highlighting the importance of family and unity.

Liz: Porgy and Bess is an American classic, but the way in which it’s being revived is relevant today. The show’s creative team approached the opera with a critical eye, and adapted it to make it more accessible to today’s audiences: they shortened the show, clarified plot lines, and reworked the score to fit a smaller ensemble than usual. Sofie: Lets face it, the lives of teenagers are complicated, and it’s almost always a challenge to sort out our priorities. In the story of Porgy and Bess these two characters have so many obstacles and responsibilities. Still, they find each other and discover what is truly important. Desmond: Porgy and Bess is a musical that will forever stay in your mind and heart.

 

Is Porgy and Bess a love story?

TICKETS: $37 student rush tickets (cash only) starting 5pm • Richard Rogers Theatre, 226 W. 46th St. website