Yale University Press publishes this week Nigel Simeone’s book ‘The Leonard Bernstein Letters’. Simeone says he read through 10,000 of them before selecting the 650 that appear in the book. They go from Bernstein’s adolescence in 1932 to right before his death in 1990.

Bernstein was an enthusiastic letter writer, and this book is the first to present such a wide-ranging selection of his correspondence. The letters have been selected for the insights they offer into the passions of his life – musical and personal -and the extravagant scope of his musical and extra-musical activities.

Bernstein’s letters tell much about this complex man, his collaborators, his mentors, and others close to him. His galaxy of correspondents encompassed, among others, Aaron Copland, Stephen Sondheim, Jerome Robbins, Thornton Wilder, Boris Pasternak, Bette Davis, Adolph Green, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, and family members including his wife Felicia and his sister Shirley. The majority of these letters have never been published before.

Yale University Press, 624 p., 6 1/8 x 9 ¼, ISBN: 9780300179095



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