Mike Morris, director of The Vail Series, shared some of his insights about 100 Years of Leonard Bernstein.
Denison is on the tour map of the Czech National Symphony Orchestra’s US tour this year. What connected us to this renowned group of musicians?
The agency handling the tour brought it to our attention, our agent has visited Denison, and thought it would be a good fit. The Leonard Bernstein celebrations are getting a lot of attention, rightly so. And when I learned that Isabel Leonard was going to be the soloist that was the most exciting aspect of the tour for me personally.
What are the things that you are excited about working with Maestro Mauceri and Isabel Leonard and about this concert?
Maestro Mauceri’s personal connection with Mr. Bernstein tells me that he has insight into how the music was intended to be performed. We will hear an authentic interpretation of Mr. Bernstein’s music. We had tried to bring Ms. Leonard to campus a couple of years ago with a noted classical guitarist she was playing some dates with. We couldn’t find available dates, so this was exciting for us. If one watches PBS, one might have noticed an advertisement for Great Performances at the Met, with “Marnie” the opera being performed and none other than Isabel Leonard singing the lead role.
Since it is the 100th birthday of the American composer, conductor, educator Leonard Bernstein, what spirits or values do you hope to bring to our Denison community through this concert?
On my office wall I have a quote from Mr. Bernstein that speaks directly to your question -
“This will be our reply to violence:
to make music more intensely,
more devotedly than ever before.”
The Vail Series Presents:
100 Years of Leonard Bernstein
The Czech National Symphony Orchestra
Under the Direction of John Mauceri
Featuring Guest Soloist Isabel Leonard
February 26, 7:00 pm