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Life With Leonard Bernstein | Featured in today’s google doogle

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This is itself, and the most recognizable personality of America {{children | Baby} {1} one of the 1} is growing.
This interview for length and clarity (edited) emended | Has been changed}.Article continues after sponsorship
Tom Huijenga: Your book will surprise me if you have diary because you remember all these small details about your life. For example, you play personal words that family friend Stephen Sondem used to accompany you, while playing anagram game with your father and siblings, Alexander and Nina.
Jamie Bernstein: We made those words so valuable that we really remembered them. But it is true that I kept the magazines. They were an invaluable source material for me, because otherwise I was not more than what was in the book.



Did you decide to keep the diary because you felt your father was the famous Leonard Bernstein?
When I was young, I did not care so much that it was Leonard Bernstein. I had no duty to preserve their heritage; In fact, my brother and sister and I all had a lot of problems in removing ourselves with their heritage and their professional ideas. There was no interest in the entire business side. We just wanted to stay at home and wanted to become a family and play diagrams. It was only after our father’s departure that we realized that this was to be done and we were interested in doing this.
Jamie Bernstein with playwright Lillian Hellman in Martha Vineyard. Hellman collaborated with Bernstein on his music candiedCourtesy of the Bernstein family
You talk about how you knew that your parents were not like other parents. Did you stop
My brother and sister and I have this semi-fun answer for this question: It happened when we were watching Flintstones and Betty and Wilma was going to “Holyroor Bowl” to hear the “Leonard Bernstein” conduct. “Oh God, he’s on Flintstones? Wow, we really have to hit a big time.”
In the fifth grade, you say, you became self-conscious about your father’s fame.
When my father used to appear on television for the first time, it should be ink for the first time, which was also happening with Young People’s Concerts [with New York Philharmonic] when I was only 5 years old. As far as my siblings and I were worried, television was the most important thing in life. So we already knew that something else was going on, but it was a kind of cumulative process. We just wanted to mix and wanted to be like everyone – this was the desire to be normal. And this way gave me the rope to be normal. It felt left to me
Finding your way in life is a thread that is going through the book.
It is difficult to live in a very bright sun and try to find out what you are going to do in that dark light yourself, and it took me a long time to understand it. Of course, by trying to become a composer, I made everything fast. I describe it as a leg on the gas and a leg on the brakes. There were constant conflict, mixed emotions and cross-purpose. It was tedious and neurotic, and took me to find out in all those decades that I was a very quiet and highly effective person if I did not make music with my body. I was a little sad to give it, but overall, I think talking about music is a great deal.
Young Leonard Bernstein, compositionCourtesy of Leonard Bernstein Office
You talk about why it was difficult to buy in “the Bernstein family myths”. But you also say, “Above all else, my father was unpleasant.” How obnoxious were your fathers?
He was excited, and he took the bus in spite of himself; He could not help himself. Apart from this, he knew everything and he had the answer for everything, and liked to talk in a very good length and was bossy. So it was a huge handful, and I think I inherited some of those qualities. I think my brother and sister will both agree that I am very generous and full of opinions and very convinced that I am right about things – which I am not often. Sometimes I think it can be a blessing that I am so prickly, because if I am the same and I was taller then people would think that I was irreversible.
It may be a good time to talk about this word – “Elf’s thread” – which slips through the book, almost like a curse.
A great figure of my father’s “self-hatred”, a great figure Self-hatred is feeling that many of us have a lot of time, and this is my little recipe for every person on this planet, I am sure. But my father suffered from so much suffering. He was struggling with the thread of Elf, because all the actors do.
My personal recipe was that I insisted on trying to become a musician; Which made me feel disgusted with me. It really is a feeling of drowning that you are making a full ass of yourself, and it was a feeling which repeatedly came over me and as I got it.

Older Every now and then, I can feel the stupid idiot, Elf’s thread, but this less often it is not as weak as it was. I think, a thread that relates to it, which is the idea of ​​a crisis of confidence – something that your father had put in his music. And it was not only the spiritual belief that she was in trouble, but also in her marriage and being bisexual.  

I think there were so many contradictory emotions that he was often in pain about it. [Recently] I heard the splendid performance of its pieces in the Ravinia Festival. This was the biggest performance of that piece I’ve ever seen. The piece is a self-portrait of my father. 

 There are songs that sound like, where he says: “I do not think what I say, I do not think I do not show, what I show is not real, what is real I am not.” T know. “You can write by reading the full biography of Leonard Bernstein. In the production of False Free of Ballet American Ballet Theater, Leonard Bernstein in Covent Garden, London, 1946. 

 Jerome Robbins (very correct) choreographed Bernstein’s music. Burn / Getty Images You say about the mass, “with all its flaws, grandeur, its adventurers and its tremendous broken heart – it was just Dad.” What is the “broken heart” part in it? He was completely in such despair about the world, and the way we were not repairing ourselves and how humanity was in the state of this rebellion. 

 He was very sad about the Vietnam War and all the murders we had experienced before writing the piece. So that’s part of a broken heart. The second part is that he was in such a tough emotional struggle all the time – about his wife and his sexuality. 

 He did not talk about it, but I know that it should be something that he really was suffering on. I think he was suffering from the fact that his marriage and his family were not enough, that he wanted something else that he could not go there.

 She was very hard for her, and she did not want it to be true. but it was. Leonard Bernstein, it was safe to say, was complicated, and he also goes for his sexuality. In the book you say, “It was difficult to realize the sexuality of my father.” I did not mean that his sexual preferences were clear. Looking back at this, I wish I would use the word “sexuality.” 

 I meant that his aura was so sexual, sensual – because for him, in fact, music was a form of love making. I think that he brought that sensitivity to his music right and this only works what he did. And so, you know, if you are her child, then it’s complicated. In 1978, after the death of cancer, your father’s marriage came to Felicia Montalegre for 27 years.

 What did you think when you first started feeling that your father was attracted to romantic way for men? Unless I started to hear those rumors in Tanglewood after summer after graduating from high school, I had no problem with this. Then in the later years I was in college, all this really started … coming out. 

 As long as I was in my senior year, he was having sex with Tom Kothran, who was helping him keep the Norton lecture together, so by then it was clear what was happening. My brother and I were going through this process to understand it together, but often happens in families, it is difficult to talk about these things: people have the word to talk about bisexual parents Were not. Now, this is a conversation that you can do. 

 In those days it was all very difficult. So we did not talk about it at all, but we came to understand that this thing was going on around us.And your mother? Some people probably do not know that she really knew what she was getting in the context of your father’s sexuality before getting married. 

 You received a letter at one point. In a file drawer in Leonard Bernstein’s office, a letter was written by the executor of our father with a group of other goods. Someone did not come long ago, maybe five years ago. It said, “25 years after the death of Bernstein should not be overlooked,” or something like that.

 And we thought, “Oh, hell with it. Let’s open it now.” That’s why we opened it and it was a letter from my mother, and it was a great discovery because it made everything clear. Knowing that his eyes were open about this marriage and what he was getting, it was surprising to find.

 It tells a lot about our mother that she writes this letter to our father and says, “Look, you know that I have found it, it’s complicated, but let’s do this because we are one- Let’s love each other Let’s build a family and let’s go ahead “Leonard Bernstein, along with daughter Jamie and son Alexander, listening to the Beatles.

 In the letter of the Bernstein family, in the letter, your mother wrote, “I am ready to accept you, without sacrificing martyrdom and sacrificing myself on the altar of Eli.” But in the end, did not.

He is alright? Okay, I actually say in the book. I hope that’s okay. How do you feel this? It’s very disappointing. I think he is far more than chewing. I think that it went very well for a while, and then it all became unbearable – as well, she became ill. The whole production became sour for him only, and after that the last four years of his life were horrible.

 And it makes me very sad to think You said that you thought that you inherited some things from your father. Do you think you got your mother? I have a pillow to the needle that a family friend has given me. It says, “Mirror, mirror on the wall, I am my mother after all.” Actually, it makes me a bit uncomfortable to see that pillow. 

 I usually turn it backwards because the end of my mother was so tragic that I did not want to be that person, my mother was. But there are other things about my mother that I am starting to feel. Like him, I like to love the atmosphere of the house, that everyone likes to be inside. 

 We have hung in our house in Connecticut, so the family gathers at every opportunity – and I just love so much that all the people should be gathered, this is my favorite thing My mother also loved her: she liked to take care of everyone and was giving a good time to all, and [to] keep them with food and a group spirit. 

 In this century, there has been a steady stream of Bernstein music programs and recordings, and some critics are losing weight. The New York Times had a piece about Mass and reads the title, “Is Mass’ Leonard Bernstein’s Best Job, Or Worst?” Even if the article is a positive account of your father’s controversial theater work, do you think it’s a fair way to frame it?

 Oh, it happens repeatedly: Mass is very polarized, and people either love it or hate it. Did you see Zachary Wolf’s month’s review when it was in Lincoln Center two weeks ago? He extended it. When it came out for the first time, these were all negative reviews.  

And yet, along with the audience who attend the month – and along with some critics – this is a huge experience where they get transferred and excited and they never forget it. It brings all these intense feelings which we usually keep lid. And it is so experienced that you have to be there. It has a little bit of experience in the 1960s, but it actually crosses the period in which it was made.  

And now, because once again we are in this moment of despair in our country – at least, many of us feel this way – the mass resounds again. Leonard Bernstein and his wife, actress Felicia Montalegre, on tour with New York Philharmonic in London, 1959 Lee / Central Press / Hulton Archive / Getty Images was recently another piece in The Washington Post, entitled “Too much Bernstein left a critic with his music.

This article talks about Burnsteen’s music being messed up this year, and is a sentence I want to take myself: “Humans of the humanity are clearly in the music that, as some of them are spectacular, It is constantly trying to get you to notice, prove something about yourself, make some kind of statement. “I think many of his actions have made big statements, but not all – this New bit this way reflect the performance is unreasonable. I mean, take pieces like Serenade, which is my favorite symphonic work of my father.

 I think this is one of the most satisfying pieces of my father. It’s absolutely beautiful, lyrical – and that’s the last movement and that grand slow running. I do not think this is proving one thing. I think it’s just that what it is – just beautiful music Do you feel your father’s presence in your everyday life?  

Well, I’m sure this year. There is no one to escape from the centenary. I am constantly traveling to participate in events related to the centenary and to participate, even if my brother and sister and I might not be able to join them all because at this time our database is well over 3,300, and Still count So yes, he is very much among us. But I was one of the reasons for writing books that I would like to come in contact with the part of my father who was with us only, not for the whole world, so that I can move through that medium. 

 I feel in the book that there were things that you wanted to discuss with them but never did. Now there are things that I want to talk to, that I might not be interested in it. The principal is a politics, and the FBI, and McCarthy’s hearing, which is a mess in the 50’s and their participation in them all. Their FBI file is about 800 pages long.

 And he was following them since the 1940s, because he was lending his name and giving money to any left wing organization which seemed to be meaningful; They did not think twice about giving them their name. J. Edgar Hoover was already tracking it.

 And when i t Now shout about it, I am surprised that the House was not short enough to testify in front of the Non-American Activity Committee – because, you know, all his friends had to go there in front of them. Leonard Bernstein, conductor. Courtesy of Paul de Hueck / Leonard Bernstein Office If you can send an idea to your father through ethereal, then what will happen?

 I would say, “Can you give us anything to get something that we are going through now?” If my father was alive today, then he would be informal with what is going on with our government. But, you know, he will be out on the streets. It will remain music for the benefit of immigrant families.  

Whatever he could think he was doing, I am sure. We can use his good works and good energy right now. One thing about you, and one thing about your father, that you expect readers to go away from the book. I hope that what I have said is that whatever my father did, any aspect of his life was always in reference to love. If he could, he would embrace every person on the planet – and he did it through his music. 

 So when I wrote this book, I am also hoping that I have prepared everything in the context of love, I have prepared it. There are many things about my father who are complex and sometimes useless. He had a handful to say the least. But I hope I have presented them all in the last context of love, because it certainly was how it was.

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