George Gershwin Alone-coming to Skokie

 

Her’s back–yes Hershey Felder will be back here in Skokie soon.
We have an offer only for readers of chicagocritic.com:

Hershey Felder as George Gershwin Alone

Saturday, November 10 8 pm

Sunday, November 11 2 pm

$5 Off Tickets*

Use code: HFCJM5

That fascinating and embraceable show is back! Hershey Felder as George Gershwin Alone features internationally-acclaimed actor, playwright and concert pianist, Hershey Felder. He creates a uniquely American theatre experience with a portrayal of George Gershwin that combines the deep insight of a biographical theatre piece with an exhilarating concert-level piano performance. Felder connects all the historical dots and musical notes and concludes with a stirring complete performance of the Gershwin masterpiece, Rhapsody in Blue.

North Shore Center for the Performing Arts in Skokie

9501 Skokie Blvd

(847) 673-6300 |NorthShoreCenter.org

*Must mention code HFCJM5. Some restrictions and fees may apply. Offer not valid on previously purchased tickets or combined with other offers. Subject to availability.

Here is my review from 2009:

George Gershwin Alone

An “imagination” with music

Music and Lyrics by George & Ira Gershwin

Book by Hershey Felder

Directed by Joel Zwick

“George Gershwin is an American songwriter who grew up to be a composer.”
—Irving Berlin

Gershwin lives—at Royal George Theatre!

If science had invented a time machine, one of the places I’d like to visit would be a concert by George Gershwin. I got my wish on Tuesday, September 28, 2004—I spent an evening with Gershwin listening and singing his famous songs. It was magical, it was marvelous, it was S ’Wonderful! Hershey Felder, a George Gershwin look-alike, convincingly portrays the American genius of 20th Century music. Blessed with outstanding acting ability and able to enchantingly tell a story, Hershey Felder totally captivates.

He makes Gershwin come a live with a mixture of early 20th Century optimism, Jewish humor and passionate focus on his art. Felder deftly explains Gershwin’s creativity, his inspirations and his composing process—then—utilizing words and music, enlightens us as to how a genius arrives at greatness. Gershwin comes alive visually and musically in this entertaining evening.

Felder gives Gershwin charm to spare yet demonstrates his unwavering passion for music—and—his need to “be famous.” Gershwin’s story mirrored America’s boundless manic affair with entertainment. Gershwin’s music was misunderstood and underappreciated in his lifetime much as Mozart. He fused contemporary jazz and blues rhythms with classic forms to create an ”American Style.” I believe Gershwin is the reigning genius of American music.

Felder, a terrific actor, expert musician (and composer) and playwright, reverently presents favorites like “Swanee,” “Someone To Watch Over Me,” “I Got Rhythm,” “They Can’t Take That Away From Me,” and others until our hears are ringing with Gershwin’s melodies. The scene featuring Porky and Bess music was breathtaking!.

Felder presents hints into Gershwin’s character, his loves, his need for fame and his loyalty to his family—and his extreme passion for creating music. Felder spends ample time showing us how “Rhapsody In Blue” was first presented in 1924 and how Paris taxi horns influenced “An American In Paris.” Our appreciation of Gershwin grows with each anecdote as Felder translates the stories through the genius’ music. It is Felder’s own love for the audience that connects us to him (and Gershwin). Felder’s enthusiasm is contagious, his passion for Gershwin rivals Gershwin’s passion as both are fanatics about music. It takes a major talent to present a genius and Hershey Felder is equal to the task.

Take a trip into the world of the 20’s—30’s with Gershwin and bring your singing voice along since Felder leads a sing-along reminiscent of an after-show party Gershwin frequented. It’s S’ Wonderful fun!

Highly Recommended

Tom Williams

September 28, 2004