Alan Durman is a pianist and singer with a special interest in the music of the American Songbook, and, in particular, George Gershwin. He has recorded three World Premiere albums of piano selections from Gershwin’s shows.
He grew up in Reading, Berkshire in the UK and began piano lessons at age 8. He studied the piano with Edgar Knight, and gained a degree from Birmingham University. He is also a Licentiate of the Royal Academy of Music.
His special interest in the music of George Gershwin began as a student, and, after research in London, Paris, Vienna, New York and Washington DC, in 2011 he wrote a book, ‘George Gershwin: An American in London’, about Gershwin’s visits to London and Europe in the 1920s.
During his research he discovered piano selections from Gershwin’s shows in London, some well-known and some long forgotten, which had never been recorded, and, in 2013, he recorded these as ‘George Gershwin: British Piano Selections’ on his own record label, Drury Lane Records.
In 2014 he recorded selections from Gershwin’s New York shows and the 1937 movies ‘Shall We Dance’ and ‘A Damsel in Distress’ in ‘George Gershwin: Piano Selections’, and he completed the recording of selections from all Gershwin’s major shows in 2015 with ‘George Gershwin: Piano Selections Vol II’.
These recordings have been very well received. Presenter David Mellor said, “Alan Durman is very proficient as a Gershwin exponent” and “It’s like sitting in a superior piano bar hearing Alan play!”, after playing tracks on Classic FM. Gershwin expert, international artist & founder of the American Songbook Foundation, Michael Feinstein, called Alan’s recordings “Beautiful performances that sound so deliciously authentic”. Alan has also performed these selections in one-man shows around the UK. His Facebook page ‘Alan Durman on Gershwin’ has several hundred followers around the world.
He has released a 4th album, ‘Relax With Gershwin’, on Gershwin’s birthday, September 26th, 2017, which features a personal selection of the composer’s quieter moments, making an ideal album for relaxed listening. “This performer is, more than any other contemporary artist, closer in his style and interpretations to those of Gershwin himself. A 21st-Century Oscar Levant.” (K.J. McElrath, Curator “George Gershwin” Facebook Page)
In 2018, one of his tracks was featured in the BBC4 television documentary “Discovering ‘Rhapsody in Blue’- George Gershwin”
In January, 2014, he performed a sell-out one man show at Hereford’s Courtyard Theatre called ‘George Gershwin: An American in London’. Read the Hereford Times article about it here – http://www.herefordtimes.com/leisure/music/10928260.Rhapsody_in_London_with_Alan_Durman/
Watch a five-minute Youtube compilation from it here:
In October 2014, he presented a new one-man show at the Courtyard in Hereford called ‘George Gershwin: An American in New York’. Read an article about it at:
Watch a Youtube compilation from it here: