Bernstein, from Massachusetts, was America’s first internationally-famed symphony composer & conductor. With this he broke the mold which had held that first rank symphony conductors were trained in Europe. While his fame came from the symphony, our general reading of his work shows him into a lot of American music, including jazz. Large parts of his work lived out at the edge of symphony, such as his play & movie score “West Side Story.” At some point it seemed as though he had “played or conducted in almost everything,” classical and American.
In Bernstein’s 30′s he held and recorded a seminar on the musical practices and elements of American jazz. In the course of the presentations he would play a conventional American work. He would then explain some jazz musical elements and explain, with this style, here’s how the same piece sounds, by way of illustration. His recorded seminar on CD is still available.
Bernstein’s work will be described and illustrated for KCSM by musician and actor Hershey Felder. Felder has made a career of presentations showing the style, manner, and work of some leading classical musicians.
Join Chuy Varela & Melanie Berzon Friday afternoon 29 Aug on KCSM’s memorial to hear the presentation and tracks from Leonard’s life work.