A Tribute to George Gershwin
Michael Feinstein, vocalist and piano
A naturally gifted pianist and singer, Michael Feinstein was just 20 years old when he was hired by Ira Gershwin as an archivist for the lyricist’s phonograph records collection. What started off as a simple job led to years of Feinstein pouring through unpublished sheet music and rare recordings belonging to Ira and his late brother, George Gershwin. This impactful experience with the Gershwin family influenced the course of Feinstein’s life; he achieved great success as a singer of Great American Songbook music, and he is most well-known for his recordings and performances of classic Gershwin songs. In conjunction with Artis—Naples’ season-long honoring of Gershwin’s multidisciplinary artistic legacy, Feinstein reprises his acclaimed show A Tribute to George Gershwin.
Michael Feinstein has built a dazzling career over the last three decades bringing the music of the Great American songbook to the world. From recordings that have earned him five Grammy Award nominations to his Emmy nominated PBS-TV specials, his acclaimed NPR series and concerts spanning the globe — in addition to his appearances at iconic venues such as The White House, Buckingham Palace, Hollywood Bowl, Carnegie Hall and Sydney Opera House — his work as an educator and archivist define Feinstein as one of the most important musical forces of our time.
Feinstein was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio, where he started playing piano by ear as a 5-year-old. After graduating from high school, he moved to Los Angeles when he was 20. The widow of legendary concert pianist-actor Oscar Levant introduced him to Ira Gershwin in July 1977. Feinstein became Gershwin’s assistant for six years, which earned him access to numerous unpublished Gershwin songs, many of which he has since performed and recorded.
Gershwin’s influence provided a solid base upon which Feinstein evolved into a captivating performer, composer and arranger of his own original music. He also has become an unparalleled interpreter of music legends such as Irving Berlin, Jerome Kern, Johnny Mercer, Duke Ellington and Harry Warren. Feinstein has received three honorary doctorates.
Through his live performances, recordings, film and television appearances, and his songwriting (in collaboration with Alan and Marilyn Bergman, Lindy Robbins, Bob Merrill and Marshall Barer), Feinstein is an all-star force in American music.
View this month's program book to get general information about Artis—Naples and to read articles about this month’s activities. View the program insert* for specific information about this event.
* Program inserts will be available online approximately ten days prior to the event.