Rhapsody in Blue is George Gershwin’s most famous composition and a defining piece of the American Jazz Age, but almost no one has heard the original 1924 version for piano and jazz band. Dramatically different from the orchestral piece we know today, it was written for Paul Whiteman’s jazz band featuring highly unusual instrumentation. Come hear the original composition, and dive into the fascinating story of a piece that marked a new era of American music.
Pianist Elizabeth Schumann has a diverse career portfolio of performances, projects, and recordings. The Washington Post noted her playing as “deft, relentless, and devastatingly good—the sort of performance you experience not so much with your ears as your solar plexus.” Elizabeth has performed solo recitals at the Kennedy Center, Ravinia’s “Rising Stars” Series, Vienna’s Bösendorfer Saal, Australia’s Huntington Festival, Toronto’s Koerner Hall, and on National Public Radio’s “Performance Today”. The first-place winner of the Bösendorfer International Piano Competition and Pacific International Piano Competition, she was awarded over 25 prizes in other major competitions, including the Cleveland, Hilton Head, Montreal, and World International Piano Competitions. Elizabeth was honored with the prestigious Gilmore Young Artists Award and was highlighted in the PBS television documentary on the Gilmore International Keyboard Festival.