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Porgy and Bess - Broadway

A reworked version of this Gershwin classic comes to Broadway starring Audra McDonald and Norm Lewis.


What is the Story of Porgy and Bess?
Set in the 1930s in an African-American Charleston neighborhood known as Catfish Row, Porgy and Bess centers on the tragic love story of the cripple beggar Porgy and beautiful Bess, who longs to turn away from her former life as a prostitute and cocaine addict. After a murder, Bess’ abusive partner Crown flees, leaving her at the mercy of a disapproving community and tempted by the seductive drug dealer Sporting Life. Bess strikes up an unlikely relationship with Porgy and gradually finds acceptance on Catfish Row—until a hurricane and the return of Crown change everyone’s lives forever.

Should I See It?

What Is Porgy and Bess Like?
As beautiful and balmy as a summer day in the South, Porgy and Bess is a lush new musical theater staging of the Gershwin opera. The show has been adapted to include more dialogue, big dance numbers and a shorter running time. It still features the classic tunes “Summertime,” “I Got Plenty of Nothing” and “It Ain’t Necessarily So,” as well as beautifully sung performances by four-time Tony winner Audra McDonald and Norm Lewis in the title roles and David Alan Grier as troublemaking gambler Sporting Life.

Is Porgy and Bess Good for Kids?
This against-all-odds love story includes plotlines centering on drug abuse, prostitution and death, including two onstage murders. Porgy and Bess is best for teens and adults.