Porgy and Bess at the Festival Theatre, Edinburgh

Went to see Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess last night in Edinburgh. It took a long time to get there – there was a cow on the train line. We’d allowed two hours (it usually takes one hour from here), and in the end we took a taxi from the station and got there just before curtain up. But I’m really pleased we didn’t give up on the way!

I’ve been playing Summertime and It Ain’t Necessarily So for a long time (I bought the music for Summertime in 1967, I think), but I’d never seen the original show. It was a real education. The music is more modern than most of the jazz arrangements I’ve heard – and even though I know that Summertime starts on a high F#, the effect of the song at the very start of the show is electrifying. This was opera, not just a musical! It was performed by Cape Town Opera, who were absolutely terrific! I don’t know where else they are performing this (it was the last night in Edinburgh), but I’d recommend it to anyone.


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