This volume forms part of the "Life and Times" series of compact and accessible biographies which cover key political, literary and musical figures. This title is about the life and work of American composer George Gershwin (1898-1937). Gershwin was the brige between serious music and light entertainment, the creator of "Rhapsody in Blue", "Porgy and Bess" and "An American in Paris". The book evokes the pace and colour of New York in the 1920s and 1930s and places Gershwin at the centre of the Jazz Age. His rise from a talented son of Russian-Jewish immigrants on Manhattan's Lower East Side to his unassailable position as the leading composer of his time makes Gershwin the embodiment of the American dream.
Ruth Leon is a writer and broadcaster who specialises in theatre, music and dance. She is the author of Applause: New York's Guide to Performing Arts.