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The Intersection of Science, Art, Music & Humanities

Our Town and Why We Love Leonard Berstein

Sunday, February 04, 2018

Our small city of Colorado Springs may have an overblown national reputation for being at perpetual political odds, but for the next six weeks, we will come together to mark the centennial-year legacy of Leonard Bernstein and his career focus on this country's struggle with a crisis of faith and belief in our common humanity.

The festival features wonderful music, laced with themes of anti violence, human rights, and Bernstein's deep empathy for the universal human element in every musical style, which consistently shows up in his brilliant body of work.  

Leonard Bernstein is easily the most important American musician of his time.

Today's Sunday Morning Stop at the Intersection of Science, Art, Music and Humanities video above features Bernstein's Symphony no. 1, titled Jeremiah, played by the Orchestre National de l'ORTF, which began Lenny's career focus on humanity.  

Jeremiah was the featured choice of Colorado Springs Philharmonic conductor Josep Caballe-Domenech for last weekend's opening night of the festival. 

The program ​opened with his Overture to Candide and included Lenny's favorite Mahler, Songs of Wayfarer, his brilliant Jeremiah, and it closed with his West Side Story Symphonic Dances. 


According to our Bernstein festival program, "Lenny was a conductor, composer, musician, and teacher. He made music come alive for generations of concertgoers and concert halls come alive. His avant garde sensibilities were accentuated by a deep love for history's great composers. On Broadway, he turned Times Square upside down, speaking a language of rhythm and joyous bluster. Leonard Bernstein always endeavored to make music accessible for all. His bequest is one of joy and humanity, music and innocence."

​This was Lenny's response to the Kennedy assassination:​ "This will be our reply to violence: to make music more intensely, more beautifully more devotedly than ever before." 

And that he did. 

Have a lovely Sunday morning.

Ellen Troyer, with Spencer Thornton, MD, David Amess, and the Biosyntrx staff