Gershwin, George

1935 personal check, year “Porgy and Bess” premiéred

Price: $1395.00 Special Offer - $1250.00



Description:
(1898-1937) Ukrainian-Jewish- American Broadway, popular, and classical concert hall composer. Quit school at 15 to work for a Tin Pan Alley publishing firm. In 1919 scored his first big hit with "Swanee", popularized by Al Jolson. In 1924, George and lyricist brother Ira collaborated on musical comedy “Lady Be Good” (featuring "Fascinating Rhythm" and "Lady Be Good"), followed by “Oh, Kay!” (1926), “Funny Face” (1927), “Strike Up the Band” (1927 & 1930), “Show Girl“ (1929), “Girl Crazy” (1930, with "I Got Rhythm") and “Of Thee I Sing” (1931, 1st musical comedy to win a Pulitzer Prize). In 1924, he composed his first major classical work, “Rhapsody in Blue” for orchestra and piano, orchestrated by Ferde Grofé and premièred with Paul Whiteman's concert band in New York. While in Paris for a short period, wrote “An American in Paris” which premiered at Carnegie Hall Dec. 13, 1928 and quickly became part of the standard repertoire in the US and Europe. His most ambitious composition was “Porgy and Bess” (1935), called by Gershwin a "folk opera”, widely regarded as the most important American opera of the 20th century. Early in 1937, he developed a type of cystic malignant brain tumor and in Hollywood, working on the score of “The Goldwyn Follies”, he collapsed, dying at age 38 following surgery for the tumor. Partly printed DS, New York, July 16 1935, 2 ¾ x 6 ½ National City Bank of New York (Madison Avenue Branch) check #3191, paying $50 to Paul Mueller (Gershwin’s valet and chauffeur for the last 7 years of Gershwin’s life), endorsed by Mueller on the verso. Gershwin’s name and NYC address printed vertically at the left, dark 2 ½” fountain pen signature at lower right. The world premiere performance of “Porgy and Bess” took place at the Colonial Theatre in Boston on Sept. 30, 1935.

Condition: Very Good, cancellation holes at left do not affect signature, bank stamp and pencil mark at lower right
Type:Check






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