Leonard Bernstein (1918 – 1990) was an American composer, conductor, author, music lecturer, and pianist. He was among the first American born and educated conductors to receive worldwide acclaim and has been praised as one of the most prodigiously talented and successful musicians in American history.
Celebrated for his long tenure as the music director of the New York Philharmonic, Bernstein also conducted many of the world's leading orchestras. As a composer he wrote in many styles encompassing symphonic and orchestral music, ballet, film and theatre music, choral works, opera, chamber music and pieces for the piano.
Among his works are some of the most memorable scores of the 20th century such as Peter Pan, Candide, Wonderful Town, On the Town, On The Waterfront, and of course the forever loved West Side Story.
In the words of John Mauceri who said it best, "He has left us an aural image of his time and place and, at the same time, an eternal voice of humanity."