American Playhouse: Season 11, Episode 3

Porgy and Bess (6 Oct. 1993)

TV Episode  -   -  Comedy | Drama
7.3
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.3/10 from 107 users  
Reviews: 7 user | 4 critic

The story of a disabled beggar in Charleston,S.C. who falls in love with a prostitute, this is the first filmed version of Gershwin's opera which uses Gershwin's own orchestrations and ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(libretto), (based on the play by), 3 more credits »
0Check in
0Share...

On Disc

at Amazon

Editors' Spotlight

IMDb Picks: October

IMDb's editors share the movies and TV shows they are excited to see in October.


Related News

Lena Horne obituary
| The Guardian - TV News
Lena Horne obituary
| The Guardian - Film News

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 198 titles
created 10 months ago
 

Related Items

Search for "Porgy and Bess" on Amazon.com

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Porgy and Bess (06 Oct 1993)

Porgy and Bess (06 Oct 1993) on IMDb 7.3/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of American Playhouse.

User Polls

« Previous Episode | 149 of 163 Episodes | Next Episode »
Won 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »
Edit

Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Willard White ...
Cynthia Haymon ...
Gregg Baker ...
Cynthia Clarey ...
Marietta Simpson ...
...
Paula Ingram ...
Harolyn Blackwell ...
Clara (singing voice)
Gordon Hawkins ...
Bruce Hubbard ...
Jake (singing voice)
Barrington Coleman ...
D. Alonzo Washington ...
Johnny Worthy ...
Robbins (singing voice)
Curtis Watson ...
Jim
Mervin Wallace ...
Edit

Storyline

The story of a disabled beggar in Charleston,S.C. who falls in love with a prostitute, this is the first filmed version of Gershwin's opera which uses Gershwin's own orchestrations and practically all of the music, with only one major cut. Written by Albert Sanchez Moreno

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

6 October 1993 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Bass-baritone Bruce Hubbard appeared as Jake in the Glyndebourne stage production on which this television production is based, but he died suddenly in 1991, so he was not able to appear in this version. Because the original recording of the Glyndebourne production was used, however (instead of having the cast make an all-new recording for the telecast), Hubbard's singing voice is still heard as Jake, while Gordon Hawkins plays the role onscreen and lip-synchs to Hubbard's voice. See more »

Quotes

Sportin' Life: [singing to Bess] Picnics is all right for these small town suckers, but we is used to the high life, you know. You an' me, we understands each other. I can't see for the life of me what you is hangin' round this place for. Why, with your looks Bess, and your way with the boys, there's big money for you and me in New York.
Bess: [singing] I can't remember meetin' nuttin' that I likes less than I does you!
See more »

Connections

Version of Porgy and Bess (1959) See more »

Soundtracks

Summertime
Music by George Gershwin
Lyrics by DuBose Heyward
Sung by Harolyn Blackwell (dubbing Paula Ingram), and Women's Chorus
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Gershwin's best?
16 May 2004 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Gershwin's fully-fledged opera, 'Porgy and Bess', had of course been filmed in the 1950s (in a version my generation, born later, has never seen due to restrictions in making it available for re-release or home video), but this TV version goes some way to putting a definitive record in images as well as music on the screen.

The performances of the two leads are top-class - Willard White, a singer/actor so versatile that he has also played the lead in Shakepeare's 'Othello' (brilliantly) for the Royal Shakespeare Company; and Cynthia Harmon, a beautifully-voiced soprano. Also in fantastic form are Gregg Baker as Crown (he can also be seen in a version of 'Carmen' taped a year or so later), and Damon Evans as Sportin' Life. As as been noted elsewhere, the late Bruce Hubbard can be heard as Jake but was replaced for this film by Gordon Hawkins (who plays the role well); while Harolyn Blackwell sings while Paula Ingram plays the doomed and delicate Clara.

The strength of this production is Trevor Nunn's sympathetic direction from his original Glyndebourne staging some years before. All the songs are done with class (my favourites, 'Bess You Is My Woman Now', 'Summertime', 'I Got Plenty Of Nuttin', and 'It Ain't Necessarily So' coming off particularly well). A valuable record of a ground-breaking crossover between grand opera and the modern musical.


11 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Painting Churches BKeith57
The cutest thing ever... thslindal
Need help finding the name of a play rgustas
The Great Anerican Fourth of July on DVD? Cindyk610
Working mangos47
Hallelujah American playhouse season 11 episode 5 12/22/93 nancymurnane
Discuss Porgy and Bess (1993) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page