Leonard Bernstein’s enduring influence

Posted on: September 29, 2014

In Sunday’s (9/28) Washington Post, Anne Midgette writes that Leonard Bernstein “remains a huge, influential, and sometimes maddening presence.… Even 24 years after his death … posterity shows no signs of abandoning him.… ‘I’m pleasantly impressed,’ says Marin Alsop, music director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and a Bernstein protégé, in a recent telephone interview, ‘by the value that his music seems to hold, and the esteem [with which] he’s regarded as a composer.… There’s a new recording of [West Side Story], too, from Michael Tilson Thomas, another of Bernstein’s most successful protégés, music director of the San Francisco Symphony and the New World Symphony.… ‘He created the mold,’ says Tilson Thomas, ‘the model for the socially responsible, inclusive, generous maestro, as opposed to the remote, preoccupied, professorial …. It’s something people still get, and aspire to.’ Certainly Tilson Thomas and Alsop have followed in his footsteps as they spearhead the current push of orchestras to expand beyond their traditional concert halls to find new ways of interacting with the community through educational programs (including BSO’s OrchKids), social media and broadcast initiatives such as Tilson Thomas’s ambitious radio and television series ‘Keeping Score.’ ”

Posted September 29, 2014