Leonard Bernstein and the Israel Philharmonic
This new 45-minute documentary, commissioned by American Friends of the Israel Philharmonic, tracks the decades-long relationship between the Maestro and the Orchestra. The film includes interviews, archival images, and special
This new 45-minute documentary, commissioned by American Friends of the Israel Philharmonic, tracks the decades-long relationship between the Maestro and the Orchestra. The film includes interviews, archival images, and special video footage, and is hosted by playwright, actor, and pianist Hershey Felder.
Celebrate one of the most illustrious Jewish musicians of all time with a light Israeli dinner, followed by a discussion of “Maestro,” currently playing at theaters and streaming on Netflix, with Kathryn Bernheimer and special guests, including CU Professor of Piano Andrew Cooperstock, who organized a Bernstein music festival in Boulder in 2018.
Bernstein’s musical career in Israel began in 1947 when he first conducted a symphony in Tel Aviv for the Palestine Symphony Orchestra. The next year, he conducted an open-air concert for Israeli troops in the middle of the desert during Israel’s War of Independence, within earshot of retreating Egyptian forces. Over the next several decades, he went on to conduct and perform in dozens of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra’s concerts, including leading their first American tour.
Although “Maestro” makes no mention of Bernstein’s passionate support of Israel and her orchestra, his letters to family and colleagues conveyed a man as smitten by the nation and its residents as they were by him. He wrote to Serge Koussevitzky: “There is a strength and devotion in these people that is formidable. They will never let the land be taken from them; they will all die first. And the country is beautiful beyond description.”