'Porgy and Bess' set to hit the Kimmel Center stage in March

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The Philadelphia Orchestra is kicking off the month of March with George Gershwin's Porgy and Bess, set in the slums of 1930's Charleston, South Carolina.

"Gershwin himself went and spent time there to absorb some of the local cultures," says Jeremy Rothman, Vice President of Artistic Planning for The Philadelphia Orchestra.

Porgy is a disabled street beggar in love with Bess, "who struggles with drug addiction and is in an abusive relationship, but for him, love is blind," Rothman explains.

The story is set to the sounds of jazz and southern blues.

The Morgan State University Choir will join the orchestra along with Angel Blue and Lester Lynch, "two of the leading operatic voices in the world today," Rothman says.

They'll be singing some of the greatest hits from the opera, "Summertime, got plenty o' nuttin, all these fantastic tunes that we all know," Rothman says.

Marin Alsop is conducting the masterpiece.

"Marin Alsop is one of the leading conductors in American music, and one of the greatest American conductors out there," Rothman says.

On Saturday, March 7, The Orchestra is putting on Carnival of The Animals.

"Fish, lions, dinosaurs, donkeys elephants," Rothman says, adding that it's a special treat for the little ones and the musicians as well. "You'll hear the Philadelphia Orchestra come out of their shells a little bit and have some fun."

Dancers from the Rock School for Dance will join the fun in a family concert for all ages.

"Look, this is also a repertoire that a lot of us may have grown up with," Rothman says. "If you want to bring your own kids, your grandkids, you'll surely enjoy this fantastic performance."

The Philadelphia Orchestra: Porgy and Bess |Tickets
March 5-7

The Philadelphia Orchestra: Carnival of the Animals |Tickets
March 07, 11:30am
Kimmel Center's Verizon Hall
300 S Broad St, Philadelphia, PA 19102
Copyright © 2020 WPVI-TV. All Rights Reserved.