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Gershwin Fantasy / Joshua Bell, John Williams, London So


Release Date: 07/28/1998 
Label:  Sony   Catalog #: 60659   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Alexander CourageGeorge Gershwin
Performer:  Joshua BellJohn T. Williams
Conductor:  John T. Williams
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 0 Hours 55 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

This disc was nominated for the 1999 Grammy Award for "Best Classical Crossover Album." It is also available in mini-disc format.
Jascha Heifetz asked George Gershwin to compose a violin work, but the composer's early death prevented what would no doubt have been a fruitful collaboration. Whether Alexander Courage's 'Fantasy for Violin and Orchestra on "Porgy and Bess"' is "as close as we can get to the violin concerto Gershwin never wrote," as Joshua Bell says, is certainly a point for debate. Courage, composer of the original 'Star Trek' theme, was asked by conductor John Williams to assemble the fantasy and the result is a showpiece for violin which uses eight songs from 'Porgy and Bess.' The work is a successful vehicle for the
Read more soloist: Bell's Stradivarius sings as he glides through the passagework with ease.
GERSHWIN FANTASY also includes Heifetz's violin-piano arrangement of Gershwin's 'Three Preludes for Piano' and new violin-orchestra arrangements of six more Gershwin tunes. The song arrangements, two by Jonathan Tunick and the rest by William David Brohn, are nicely varied and allow Gershwin and Bell equal footing. Gershwin himself makes an appearance in "Sweet and Low-Down": the arrangement includes a piano roll the composer made of the tune. Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Fantasy on Gershwin's "Porgy and Bess" for Violin and Orchestra by Alexander Courage
Performer:  Joshua Bell (Violin)
Conductor:  John T. Williams
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1935; USA 
Date of Recording: 03/1998 
Venue:  EMI Abbey Road Studio 1, London, England 
Length: 20 Minutes 24 Secs. 
Notes: In this selection Joshua Bell performs his own cadenza. 
2.
Preludes (3) for Piano by George Gershwin
Performer:  John T. Williams (Piano), Joshua Bell (Violin)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1926; USA 
Date of Recording: 03/1998 
Venue:  EMI Abbey Road Studio 1, London, England 
Length: 6 Minutes 46 Secs. 
Notes: Arranged: Jascha Heifetz 
3.
Girl Crazy: I got rhythm by George Gershwin
Performer:  Joshua Bell (Violin)
Conductor:  John T. Williams
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1930; USA 
Date of Recording: 03/1998 
Venue:  EMI Abbey Road Studio 1, London, England 
Length: 4 Minutes 17 Secs. 
Notes: Arranger: William David Brohn. 
4.
Girl Crazy: Embraceable you by George Gershwin
Performer:  Joshua Bell (Violin)
Conductor:  John T. Williams
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1930; USA 
Date of Recording: 03/1998 
Venue:  EMI Abbey Road Studio 1, London, England 
Length: 4 Minutes 16 Secs. 
Notes: Arranged: William David Brohn 
5.
Damsel in Distress: Nice work if you can get it by George Gershwin
Performer:  Joshua Bell (Violin)
Conductor:  John T. Williams
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1937; USA 
Date of Recording: 03/1998 
Venue:  EMI Abbey Road Studio 1, London, England 
Length: 3 Minutes 38 Secs. 
Notes: Arranger: Jonathan Tunick. 
6.
Show Girl: Liza "All the clouds'll roll away" by George Gershwin
Performer:  Joshua Bell (Violin)
Conductor:  John T. Williams
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1929; USA 
Date of Recording: 03/1998 
Venue:  EMI Abbey Road Studio 1, London, England 
Length: 3 Minutes 51 Secs. 
Notes: Arranged: William David Brohn 
7.
Girl Crazy: But not for me by George Gershwin
Performer:  Joshua Bell (Violin)
Conductor:  John T. Williams
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1930; USA 
Date of Recording: 03/1998 
Venue:  EMI Abbey Road Studio 1, London, England 
Length: 4 Minutes 18 Secs. 
Notes: Arranged: Jonathan Tunick 
8.
Tip-toes: Sweet and low-down by George Gershwin
Performer:  Joshua Bell (Violin)
Conductor:  John T. Williams
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1925; New York, USA 
Date of Recording: 03/1998 
Venue:  EMI Abbey Road Studio 1, London, England 
Length: 3 Minutes 31 Secs. 
Notes: Arranged: William David Brohn
This performance incorporates George Gershwin's recording of the song on piano roll. 
9.
Goldwyn Follies: Love is here to stay by George Gershwin
Performer:  Joshua Bell (Violin)
Conductor:  John T. Williams
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1937; USA 
Date of Recording: 03/1998 
Venue:  EMI Abbey Road Studio 1, London, England 
Length: 3 Minutes 44 Secs. 
Notes: Arranger: William David Brohn. 

Sound Samples

Fantasy for Violin and Orchestra on Porgy and Bess (excerpts)
I. Allegro ben ritmato e deciso
II. Andante
III. Allegro ben ritmato e deciso
I Got Rhythm
Embraceable You
Nice Work If You Can Get It
Liza (All the Clouds'll Roll Away)
But Not For Me
Sweet and Low-Down*
Love Is Here To Stay

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 Don't pass it up September 8, 2012 By Thomas N. (Sunman, IN) See All My Reviews "If you like Gershwin and you think Joshua Bell is 'the man,' this is the album to have. Heard one selection on the local PBS station (WGUC), looked up the details from their/Arkiv's website, and bought it "sound unheard," so to speak. Excellent price, excellent performance by Mr. Bell and, of course, Mr. Williams and company." Report Abuse
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