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Albany Symphony Celebrates Rhapsody in Blue at 100

George Gershwin
Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue at 100

George Gershwin’s Rhapsody In Blue was premiered on February 12, 1924, at Aeolian Hall in New York City, by the Paul Whiteman Band, with Gershwin himself at the piano. When the 25-year old composer took the stage at the end of a very long concert, he electrified the audience, and changed the course of American music forever, creating a style that fully embraced and reflected the popular music of his time. He also became, overnight, the most famous composer in the world. The two-time GRAMMY Award-winning Albany Symphony is throwing a gigantic 100th birthday-party concert for Rhapsody in Blue, featuring Kevin Cole, the world’s foremost interpreter of George Gershwin’s piano music. The program also includes An American in Paris, Carlos Simon’s AMEN! and Simon Says, a world premiere trombone concerto by Jack Frerer. The Albany Symphony's Music Director and Conductor David Alan Miller spoke with us about the piece and the celebration.