Personalities | Leonard Bernstein | Modern Era | Opera
A hugely talented composer and conductor, Bernstein inspired the American music scene with his passion and flamboyance. Born in Massachusetts and essentially self-taught on the piano, he studied at Harvard and became an overnight sensation when stepping in for ailing New York Philharmonic conductor Bruno Walter in November 1943. Success as a composer followed, ranging from the movie score for On the Waterfront (1954), to the Broadway musicals On the Town (1944), Wonderful Town (1952) and West Side Story (1957). Bernstein also enjoyed plaudits for his initial foray into opera, the one-act Trouble in Tahiti (1951), which melded contemporary pop-music styles with conventional operatic vocal techniques while depicting the marital woes of a couple living in suburbia. However, his work in the field of opera rarely matched the success of that for the musical stage.
The comic operetta Candide (1956) never took off during its initial run, and it underwent numerous rewrites by Bernstein and no fewer than seven librettists over the course of more than 30 years. Its 1973, revival has become the standard performance version, although that by John Mauceri in 1988–89, a year before his death in New York, was actually Bernstein’s own personal favourite. On the other hand, resurrecting the Trouble in Tahiti characters (and much of the music) for A Quiet Place (1983) was altogether less credible and compelling.
An extensive music information resource, bringing together the talents and expertise of a wide range of editors and musicologists, including Stanley Sadie, Charles Wilson, Paul Du Noyer, Tony Byworth, Bob Allen, Howard Mandel, Cliff Douse, William Schafer, John Wilson...
Classical, Rock, Blues, Jazz, Country and more. Flame Tree has been making encyclopaedias and guides about music for over 20 years. Now Flame Tree Pro brings together a huge canon of carefully curated information on genres, styles, artists and instruments. It's a perfect tool for study, and entertaining too, a great companion to our music books.
The ultimate story of a life of rock music, from the 1950s to the present day.
Fantastic new, unofficial biography covers
his life, music, art and movies, with a
sweep of incredible photographs.