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AFI #9 - AFI's Greatest Movie Musicals - An American in Paris (1951) - Third Movement from 'Concerto in F for Piano and Orchestra' (George Gershwin) - Oscar Levant and the MGM Symphony Orchestra

Part of the AFI 100 Years... series, AFI's Greatest Movie Musicals is a list of the top 25 musicals in American cinema. The list was unveiled by the American Film Institute (AFI) at the Hollywood Bowl on September 3, 2006. Unlike most of the previous lists, it only includes 25 winners and was not presented in a televised program.

On September 3, 2006, AFI revealed the top 25 movie musicals of all time in The Big Picture — AFI's Greatest Movie Musicals, a one night only presentation produced by the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association in cooperation with AFI. A jury of over 500 film artists, composers, musicians, critics and historians selected the Gene Kelly song-and-dance classic SINGIN' IN THE RAIN as the most memorable movie musical of all time.

Rounding off the top 10 were movie musicals from the 1930s to today, including: WEST SIDE STORY (#2); THE WIZARD OF OZ (#3); THE SOUND OF MUSIC (#4); CABARET (#5); MARY POPPINS (#6); A STAR IS BORN (#7); MY FAIR LADY (#8); AN AMERICAN IN PARIS (#9); and MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS (#10).

Spanning a century of film music and counting down from 25 to number one throughout the evening, Director John Mauceri and the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra performed excerpts from each of the winning musicals, many of them accompanied by favorite movie scenes shown on the Bowl's big video screens. While television broadcasts have announced the previous nine installments of AFI's 100 Years... series, following the success of last year's AFI's 100 Years of Film Scores, this is now the second time an AFI countdown was revealed before a live audience.


An American in Paris is a 1951 American musical film inspired by the 1928 orchestral composition by George Gershwin. Starring Gene Kelly, Leslie Caron, Oscar Levant, Georges Guétary, and Nina Foch, the film is set in Paris, and was directed by Vincente Minnelli from a script by Alan Jay Lerner. The music is by George Gershwin, with lyrics by his brother Ira, with additional music by Saul Chaplin, the music director.

The story of the film is interspersed with dance numbers choreographed by Gene Kelly and set to Gershwin's music. Songs and music include "I Got Rhythm", "I'll Build A Stairway to Paradise", " 'S Wonderful", and "Our Love is Here to Stay". The climax of the film is "The American in Paris" ballet, a 16 minute dance featuring Kelly and Caron set to Gershwin's An American in Paris. The ballet alone cost more than $500,000.

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