Leonard Bernstein Essay

515 Words3 Pages
When one considers the history of classical music, often images of Vienna, Prague, and other European cities come to mind. Centuries of European musical achievement and development have implanted in society the idea that classical music is an inherently European creation. Considering the accomplishments of countless composers such as J.S. Bach, Ludwig van Beethoven, and Antonin Dvorak, this preconception is certainly not unfounded. However, Leonard Bernstein's rise to international fame proved that one cannot neglect American composers in a discussion of the development of Western music. Combining elements of a vast array of musical styles, Bernstein's unique compositions reached a wide variety of audiences and often bridged gaps between distinct musical genres. Through his long conducting career, profoundly influential compositional output, and televised music lectures, Leonard Bernstein left a lasting legacy which came to define American music in the 20th century. Louis Bernstein (as he was originally named) was born on August 25, 1918 in Lawrence, Massachusetts to Ukrainian-Jewi...
Open Document