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Sony Classical Presents a Leonard Bernstein Centennial Celebration Honoring His 100th Birthday

Sony Music Masterworks - 08/22/2018

NEW YORK, Aug. 22, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Sony Classical honors the great Leonard Bernstein with a celebration of what would have been the cultural icon's 100th birthday. Bernstein, an American composer, conductor, pianist, writer, humanitarian, and twentieth-century pop-culture icon will be celebrated with a two-month social media and streaming campaign built around a new rollout of his popular legacy of recordings that are part of Sony Classical's library.

Sony Classical's global campaign will feature eight playlists curated especially for the centennial, that explore Bernstein as composer, conductor, pianist, teacher, Broadway icon, and visionary advocate for the music of Gustav Mahler. Sony Classical will also share a wealth of rarely seen photos, new video interviews with Bernstein's daughter, Jamie, as well as longtime New York Philharmonic archivist, Barbara Hawes.

Bernstein spent the first half of his career in New York, culminating in a legendary decade as Music Director of the New York Philharmonic (1958-69). During that time, he was an exclusive artist – as composer as well as conductor and pianist– on the Columbia Masterworks label, now a part of Sony Classical. His many recordings with the New York Philharmonic and their television appearances in an acclaimed, influential series of "Young People's Concerts" made Bernstein – dazzling in his presence and personality – a household name, the most famous American classical musician of his age.

In his first 50 years, Bernstein became America's musical man for all seasons, fearlessly convincing audiences to embrace classical music through television and recordings, informed by his teeming mind and larger-than-life personality. Bold and unmistakable, beloved and controversial – "Lenny," to the world – he had an enduring passion for teaching and his social and political activism made him one of American culture's great humanitarians.

Winner of Grammys, Emmys, Tonys and a Peabody Award, Bernstein also received the Kennedy Center Honor in 1980 as well as international prizes and official decorations from governments around the world.

As he built one of the most spectacular conducting careers of the twentieth century, Bernstein also was tirelessly changing the game for serious contemporary composers. While he conducted orchestras all over the world, he aspired to greatness as a composer not only for the concert hall and ballet and opera stages, but for Broadway and – in one memorable instance – Hollywood.

Capturing it all, as it happened, were his recordings now available on Sony Classical – from his three symphonies, choral and orchestral works, to the beloved Broadway musicals West Side Story, Candide, On the Town and Wonderful Town, and his Oscar-nominated score for the film On the Waterfront

As a conductor, Bernstein established a breathtaking legacy of recordings on Sony Classical, encompassing the breadth of the mainstream classical repertoire and his pioneering cycle of the complete Mahler symphonies. He also championed the music of other contemporary American composers, while making American audiences more keenly aware of music of their time by Dmitri Shostakovich, Igor Stravinsky, Carl Nielsen, Jean Sibelius and other early twentieth century masters.

For updates and access to Leonard Bernstein's archival videos and images, be sure to follow Sony Classical on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

To stream their specially curated Leonard Bernstein playlists and more, click HERE

Sony Music Masterworks comprises Masterworks, Sony Classical, OKeh, Portrait, and Masterworks Broadway imprints. For email updates and information please visit www.sonymusicmasterworks.com 

Would you like the chance to win a Leonard Bernstein Remastered 100-CD box set available from Sony Classical?  CLICK HERE to learn about our giveaway contest happening right now and you could be the one lucky winner!

CONTACT: Colin Yost, 212-833-7549, colin.yost@sonymusic.com

SOURCE Sony Music Masterworks