New book to include 350 long-overlooked Bernstein love letters

Posted on: August 21, 2019

“A newly revealed cache of letters shows that in the last decade of his life Leonard Bernstein embarked on a passionate relationship with a Japanese man … Kunihiko Hashimoto, now 66,” writes Dalya Alberge in Saturday’s (8/17) Guardian (U.K.). “Hashimoto’s role in Bernstein’s life had been almost completely overlooked until Mari Yoshihara, a Japanese academic, discovered some 350 letters at the Library of Congress in Washington…. They first met in 1979 … after a concert…. said Yoshihara, professor of American Studies at the University of Hawaii … Hashimoto’s letters span about 11 years until the summer of 1990…. Yoshihara [says], ‘Hashimoto played a crucial role in some of Bernstein’s major projects in his late career, including organizing the Hiroshima peace concerts in 1985.’ … Her forthcoming book, Dearest Lenny: Letters from Japan and the Making of the World Maestro … is a scholarly study of Bernstein interwoven with the history, politics and economics of the 20th century … [The book] also includes previously unpublished missives from … Kazuko Amano [who] began writing fan letters to Bernstein in 1947 and became a close family friend over more than four decades.”

Posted August 21, 2019