Who’s in Town? Jamie Bernstein Reflects on Dad Leonard Bernstein’s Legacy in ‘The Bernstein Story’ at Strathmore

By Nicole Hertvik - DC Metro Theater Arts
February 14, 2018

The first time music hit me – and it hit me hard – was when I was seven. My mom handed me Leonard Bernstein’s West Side Story, a bright-red album whose rhythms were as hot as the album cover suggested. I was smitten. I spent the next two years dancing to that music in front of my mirror and putting on countless “shows” for my parents. I’d certainly heard music before West Side Story, but it faded when that Bernstein score connected with my young soul and whispered: “This is everything that music can be!”

What a joy, then, to recount that story to Leonard Bernstein’s daughter Jamie, and to personally thank her for the impact her father had on my life. And I’m not the only one feeling the Bernstein love these days: 2018 is the centennial of Leonard Bernstein’s birth and the world is celebrating with Bernstein at 100, a global celebration of Bernstein’s legacy and music.

Jamie Bernstein, the eldest of Bernstein’s three children and an active leader in these celebrations, is in D.C. to narrate “The Bernstein Story,” a February 18th performance with the US Air Force Band at Strathmore. Jamie, who has made a career educating people on her father’s music and legacy, will tell stories about her father to the accompaniment of songs from West Side StoryCandideOn the TownAge of Anxiety and other well-known Bernstein compositions. (Concert presented by Washington Performing Arts)

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Jamie Bernstein