48 Facts About Leonard Bernstein

1. Leonard Bernstein was an American composer, conductor, author, music lecturer and pianist.

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2. Leonard Bernstein once recalled his first musical epiphany, touching a piano in a long-ago hallway.

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3. Leonard Bernstein was just 25-years-old when he successfully led the orchestra through its program.

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4. Leonard Bernstein discusses humor in music and conducts Till Eulenspiegel's merry pranks with the New York.

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5. Leonard Bernstein discusses humor in music and conducts Till Eulenspiegel's merry pranks with the New York Philharmonic.

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6. Leonard Bernstein shaking hands with Dmitri Shostakovich after a performance in Moscow, 1959.

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7. Leonard Bernstein was born in 1918 and died in 1990.

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8. Leonard Bernstein is remembered, honored, and celebrated by friend and Madison Symphony Orchestra conductor John DeMain in an event that explores Bernstein's music contributions as a American composer and conductor.

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9. Leonard Bernstein is a member of both the American Theater Hall of Fame, and the Television Hall of Fame.

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10. Leonard Bernstein was an eclectic composer whose music fused elements of jazz, Jewish music, theatre music and the work of earlier composers like Aaron Copland, Igor Stravinsky, Darius Milhaud, George Gershwin, and Marc Blitzstein.

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11. In total Leonard Bernstein was awarded 16 Grammys for his recordings in various categories, including several for posthumously released recordings.

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12. Leonard Bernstein recorded extensively from the mid-1940s until just a few months before his death.

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13. Leonard Bernstein performed a wide repertoire from the Baroque era to the 20th century, although perhaps from the 1970s onwards he tended to focus more on music from the Romantic era.

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14. Leonard Bernstein was named in the book Red Channels: The Report of Communist Influence in Radio and Television as a Communist along with Aaron Copland, Lena Horne, Pete Seeger, Artie Shaw and other prominent figures of the performing arts.

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15. As he went on in his career, Leonard Bernstein would go on to fight for everything from the influences of "American Music" to the disarming of western nuclear weapons.

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16. In 1990, Leonard Bernstein received the Praemium Imperiale, an international prize awarded by the Japan Arts Association for lifetime achievement in the arts.

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17. In his opening address Leonard Bernstein said that he had decided to devote what time he had left to education.

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18. Leonard Bernstein added, "I'm sure that Beethoven would have given us his blessing.

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19. On December 25, 1989, Leonard Bernstein conducted Beethoven's Symphony No 9 in East Berlin's Schauspielhaus as part of a celebration of the fall of the Berlin Wall.

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20. In December 1989, Leonard Bernstein conducted live performances and recorded in the studio his operetta Candide with the London Symphony Orchestra.

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21. Leonard Bernstein continued to make his own TV documentaries during the 1980s, including The Little Drummer Boy, in which he discussed the music of Gustav Mahler, perhaps the composer he was most passionately interested in, and The Love of Three Orchestras, in which he discussed his work in New York, Vienna, and Israel.

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22. Leonard Bernstein was at the time a committed supporter of nuclear disarmament.

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23. Leonard Bernstein served as artistic director and taught conducting there until 1984.

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24. Leonard Bernstein gave spoken introduction and actor Maximilian Schell was featured on the programs, reading from Beethoven's letters.

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25. In 1979, Leonard Bernstein conducted the Berlin Philharmonic for the first time, in two charity concerts for Amnesty International involving performances of Mahler's Ninth Symphony.

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26. At the same time, Leonard Bernstein made a studio recording of the opera for Deutsche Grammophon and the opera itself was filmed by Unitel and released on DVD by Deutsche Grammophon in late 2006.

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27. In 1978, Leonard Bernstein returned to the Vienna State Opera to conduct a revival of the Otto Schenk production of Fidelio, now featuring Gundula Janowitz and Rene Kollo in the lead roles.

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28. Leonard Bernstein played an instrumental role in the exiling of the world-renowned cellist and conductor, Mstislav Rostropovich, from the USSR in 1974.

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29. In 1972 Leonard Bernstein recorded Bizet's Carmen, with Marilyn Horne in the title role and James McCracken as Don Jose, after leading several stage performances of the opera at the Metropolitan Opera.

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30. In 1970 Leonard Bernstein wrote and narrated a ninety-minute program filmed on location in and around Vienna as a celebration of Beethoven's 200th birthday.

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31. Leonard Bernstein conducted the gala opening concert featuring vocal works by Mahler, Beethoven and Vaughan Williams, and the premiere of Aaron Copland's Connotations, a serial-work that was merely politely received.

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32. Leonard Bernstein always denied that this had been his intent and has stated that he made these remarks with Gould's blessing.

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33. Leonard Bernstein gave a brief address to the audience starting with "Don't be frightened; Mr Gould is here.

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34. Leonard Bernstein championed US composers, especially those that he was close to like Aaron Copland, William Schuman and David Diamond.

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35. In 1960 Leonard Bernstein made his first commercial recording of a Mahler symphony and over the next seven years he made the first complete cycle of recordings of all nine of Mahler's completed symphonies.

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36. Leonard Bernstein seems to have limited himself to only conducting certain Shostakovich symphonies, namely the numbers 1, 5, 6, 7, 9, and 14.

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37. In his first season in sole charge, Leonard Bernstein included a season-long survey of American classical music.

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38. In late 1956, Leonard Bernstein conducted the New York Philharmonic in concerts that were to have been conducted by Guido Cantelli, who had died in an air crash in Paris.

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39. Leonard Bernstein was a visiting music professor from 1951 to 1956 at Brandeis University, and he founded the Creative Arts Festival there in 1952.

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40. Leonard Bernstein recorded the 2nd symphony with the orchestra in 1958 for Columbia and 1987 for Deutsche Grammophon.

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41. Throughout his career, Leonard Bernstein often talked about the music of Ives, who died in 1954.

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42. In 1951, Leonard Bernstein conducted the New York Philharmonic in the world premiere of the Symphony No 2 of Charles Ives, which was written around half a century earlier but had never been performed.

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43. In 1947, Leonard Bernstein conducted in Tel Aviv for the first time, beginning a lifelong association with Israel.

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44. On July 4, 1946, Leonard Bernstein conducted the European premiere of Fancy Free with the Ballet Theatre at the Royal Opera House in London.

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45. Leonard Bernstein mounted a student production of The Cradle Will Rock, directing its action from the piano as the composer Marc Blitzstein had done at the premiere.

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46. Leonard Bernstein wrote and conducted the musical score for the production Davidson mounted of Aristophanes' play The Birds in the original Greek.

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47. At a very young age, Leonard Bernstein listened to a piano performance and was immediately captivated; he subsequently began learning the piano seriously when the family acquired his cousin Lillian Goldman's unwanted piano.

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48. Leonard Bernstein was an American composer, conductor, author, music lecturer, and pianist.

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