Ira Gershwin

Ira Gershwin

Lyricist


Biography


Ira Gershwin (December 6, 1896 – August 17, 1983) was an American lyricist who collaborated with his younger brother, composer George Gershwin, to create some of the most memorable songs of the 20th century.

With George he wrote more than a dozen Broadway shows, featuring songs such as "I Got Rhythm", "Embraceable You", "The Man I Love" and "Someone to Watch Over Me". He was also responsible, along with DuBose Heyward, for the libretto to George's opera Porgy and Bess.

The success the brothers had with their collaborative works has often overshadowed the creative role that Ira played. However, his mastery of songwriting continued after the early death of George. He wrote additional hit songs with composers Jerome Kern ("Long Ago (and Far Away)"), Kurt Weill and Harold Arlen.

His critically acclaimed book Lyrics on Several Occasions of 1959, an amalgam of autobiography and annotated anthology, is an important source for studying the art of the lyricist in the golden age of American popular song


Shows by Ira Gershwin

Title
Synopsis

An American in Paris is a story of finding love, happiness, and a new lease on life. The musical is set in the City of Lights, Paris, as it emerges from the shadows of World War II. As the weight of the Nazi Occupation begins... read more

Crazy For You -- the “new Gershwin musical comedy” with a book by famed comedic playwright Ken Ludwig -- is the classic tale of a boy, a girl, and a theater in need of salvation. Stage-struck Bobby Child works as a banker for... read more

Benvenuto Cellini, the great Florentine sculptor, is sentenced to hang, but he is pardoned when the duke realizes that he has not completed a previously commissioned sculpture. Freed, he is able to turn his attention to his f... read more

Funny Face is best known as a musical film released in 1957, based on the 1927 Broadway version by George Gershwin and Ira Gershwin. The story revolves around Jo, a shy, bookshop clerk-come-amateur philosopher, who is discove... read more

When the orphaned Dick and Susie Trevor are evicted and living on the street with a thunderstorm on the horizon, they are eager to sacrifice him- or herself to help the other. They both end up falling in love with the wrong... read more

On the surface, Liza Elliot is a happy career woman and the editor of a well-known fashion magazine. However, her private depression pushes her to seek psychiatric help from Dr. Brooks. It turns out that Liza is haunted by... read more

The plot centers on Captain Billy Buck Chandler, a transatlantic aviator who flies around the world in pursuit of the championship swimmer Edith, whom he loves. Edith is the current star attraction of Prince Nicolai Erraclyov... read more

"Of Thee I Sing" is a political satire focusing on the election campaign and Presidency of John P. Wintergreen. Wintergreen is a real empty shirt “ with no viable platform he runs simply on love. He even promises that if el... read more

Taking place in 1927 during the time of Prohibition, the show takes place at a beach house owned by Jimmy Winters. When Jimmy arrives at the house with his new bride, he finds Shorty McGee living there. Jimmy just assumes tha... read more

‘Tip-Toes’ tells the story of Tip-Toes and her two uncles, vaudevillians called “The Three Kayes”, who travel down to Palm Beach, Florida. They try to pass themselves off as “swells” so that Tip-Toes can get a rich husband. I... read more

Overview

Nationality
American
Born
12/6/1896
Died
8/17/1983
Show Categories
Musical
Genres
Romance, Comedy, Farce, Drama, Satire