Second Rhapsody (Gershwin, George)

Since this work was first published after 1922 with the prescribed copyright notice, it is unlikely that this work is public domain in the USA. However, it is in the public domain in Canada (where IMSLP is hosted), the EU, and in those countries where the copyright term is life+70 years or less.

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MP3 file (audio)
Kerikan (2012/10/24)

Performer Pages Jeff Manookian (pianist)
Performers Intermountain Classical Orchestra; Joel Rosenberg, conductor
Publisher Info. Windsor Editions
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Sheet Music

Arrangements and Transcriptions

For 2 Pianos (Composer)

PDF scanned by Unknown
Guifré (2012/2/19)

Editor First edition (reissue)
Publisher. Info. New York: New World Music Corporation, 1932. Plate N.W.106-44.
Misc. Notes Non PD US
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General Information

Work Title Second Rhapsody
Alternative. Title Rhapsody in Rivets
Composer Gershwin, George
Key F major
Year/Date of CompositionY/D of Comp. 1931
First Performance. 1932-01-29 in Boston, Symphony Hall.
Boston Symphony Orchestra, Serge Koussevitzky (conductor); George Gershwin (piano solo)
First Publication. 1932 - 2-piano verion.
1951 - R. McBride's reorchestration
Gershwin's original orchestration remains unpublished.
Average DurationAvg. Duration 10 minutes
Composer Time PeriodComp. Period Early 20th century
Piece Style Early 20th century
Instrumentation Piano and Orchestra
External Links Wikipedia article

Misc. Comments

The form most commonly heard today is a re-orchestrated version by Robert McBride created fourteen years after Gershwin's death. McBride was assigned by Frank Campbell-Watson (the music editor for Gershwin's publisher New World Music) to completely rescore the piece. Since this version is the only one offered by the publisher, it has been almost impossible for orchestras to perform the piece as Gershwin envisioned it.

Most of Gershwin's orchestrations have been vastly simplified. For example, the string quartet portion of the adagio was inexplicably rescored for violin, clarinet, oboe, and cello. Many string passages were reassigned to other instruments, or instruments that formerly had solos now have other instruments doubling their passages. Also, eight measures excised by the composer were re-added to the recapitulation by the editor.

Michael Tilson Thomas has been a promulgator of Gershwin's original version, as he sought out the original manuscript in the library as the basis of his 1985 recording and for his later performances.