Alex and Jamie Bernstein

Leonard Bernstein with his children Jamie and Alex

Alec Baldwin: This is Alec Baldwin and you’re listening to Here’s The Thing from WNYC Radio.

Announcer: Carnegie Hall in New York City, the home of the world’s greatest musical event.

Alec Baldwin: In the 1950s television was a powerful new spotlight in search of a talent that could shine back just as bright.

Announcer: And here is Mr. Bernstein.

Alec Baldwin: When it landed on Leonard Bernstein, the young conductor more than shined back. His primetime show, Leonard Bernstein’s Young People's Concerts with the New York Philharmonic, was a benchmark of quality programming and seduced the entire country.

Bernstein: No matter how many times people tell you stories about what music means, forget them. Stories aren’t what music means at all. Music is never about anything. Music just is. Music is notes, beautiful notes and songs put together in such a way that we get pleasure out of listening to them. That’s all there is to it

Alec Baldwin: Bernstein was a masterful teacher explaining classical music with a passion and clarity that couldn’t help but influence an entire generation of musicians and artists. In those days there were far fewer celebrities and Bernstein was one of the biggest. He wore it well, taking his seat at the piano at the center of the party.

Alexander Bernstein: He really enjoyed the public, Leonard Bernstein. He loved –

Alec Baldwin: Being Leonard Bernstein.

Alexander Bernstein: He loved it and he loved being famous and he loved meeting everybody in the world and he –

Jamie Bernstein: And staying in fancy hotels and flying first class and he’d take us along and share it with us like, ‘Isn’t this cool?’


Alec Baldwin: Bernstein was a musician, a conductor, a teacher and a composer of classical music, as well as Broadway musicals. He was also a father.

Jamie Bernstein: I’m the bossy one.

Alec Baldwin: Bernstein and his wife, Felicia, had three children – Jamie, Alexander and Nina, and while they knew him in the tux and tails, they also knew him as the dad who loved games. He was a killer at anagrams and always up for tennis or squash or skiing or touch football.

Jamie Bernstein: The word games, you have no idea.

Alec Baldwin: Two of Bernstein’s children, Jamie and Alexander, spoke with me about their legendary father and what it was like to grow up with people like Stephen Sondheim and Jerome Robbins as regular houseguests.

Jamie Bernstein: When we were really little, Alexander and I used to share a bedroom when we were like you know really little and we lived in the Osborne, which is that grand old building, and Alexander and I slept you know at sort of right angles to each other in this bedroom and we would go to sleep listening to the grownups carrying on downstairs. This is what we fell asleep to, the noise of the, you know, the laughing and the roaring around the piano, singing –

Alexander Bernstein: Clinking of glasses.

Jamie Bernstein: The clinking of the glasses and the smell of the cigarette smoke wafting up the staircase.

Alexander Bernstein: Lots of smoke.

Jamie Bernstein: We could not wait to be grownups, ‘cause obviously all grownups did was have fun.

Alec Baldwin: That’s interesting.

Jamie Bernstein: That’s how it seemed to us and it seemed like our dad certainly had fun when he was working, too, so we never saw anything that resembled drudgery, which is probably a thing that most kids perceive in their working parents that oh, it’s such a tough day –

Alec Baldwin: And what about your mother? Was your mother someone – was she someone who was his companion and she was along for the ride and all of it and loving it, or was she someone who was sitting in a room going, “When’s it gonna stop?” He’s the Energizer Bunny with a martini in his hand and a Pell Mell in the other.

Jamie Bernstein: Scotch, not martini.

Alec Baldwin: Scotch. What did he smoke?

Jamie Bernstein: Ballantine’s.

Alec Baldwin: A Ballantine’s beer – oh scotch, Ballantine’s scotch –

Jamie Bernstein: No, Ballantine’s scotch which is awful. I don’t know why he liked it so much.

Alec Baldwin: He had a Ballantine’s and what brand of cigarettes did he smoke?

Alexander Bernstein: An L&M in the other.

Alec Baldwin: He had an L&M. [Laughter]

Jamie Bernstein: Yes.

Alexander Bernstein: And she had a Chesterfield –

Alec Baldwin: My grandfather smoked Chesterfields.

Alexander Bernstein: And a vodka in the other.

Alec Baldwin: But your mother was his trusted companion. She was in – she was all in.

Alexander Bernstein: Absolutely.

Jamie Bernstein: She was all in and I think it drove her crazy every bit as much as she loved it all. She was very social, too.

Alec Baldwin: Where was she from?

Jamie Bernstein: Chile.

Alec Baldwin: And where did they meet?

Alexander Bernstein: They met at a party given by Claudio Arrau, a pianist and –

Jamie Bernstein: Who was her teacher, because she was studying piano.

Alexander Bernstein: Who was – she had told her parents that she was coming to New York to study piano, but she really wanted to be an actress. So she came here –

Alec Baldwin: And she’s a beautiful woman.

Jamie Bernstein: Gorgeous.

Jamie Bernstein: And she was a beautiful woman.

Alec Baldwin: Very beautiful. Bernstein was no fool.

Jamie Bernstein: So she had this understanding with Arrau that she would be sort of studying with him, but meanwhile she was studying with Herbert Berghof –

Alec Baldwin: I’m going to call my parents. Now make the sound of the piano in the background. [laughter] 'Claudio, por favor, play some Chopin

Jamie Bernstein: 'Un poquito de Brahms, por favor.'

Alec Baldwin: 'Poquito de Debussy while I call my parents now in – '

Jamie Bernstein: Exactly.

Alec Baldwin: South America.

Alexander Bernstein: I think it was very much like that.

Jamie Bernstein: It was and the legend has it that our mother sat at his feet and fed him shrimps one by one.

Alec Baldwin: Bernstein, yeah.

Jamie Bernstein: That was the beginning of the romance, yeah. Yeah, not Arrau. [Laughter]

Alexander Bernstein: Or she might’ve been doing that.

Jamie Bernstein: And they got engaged but then they –

Alec Baldwin: Where was he at in his career then?

Jamie Bernstein: So he had already had his big debut at the New York Philharmonic because that was in 1943.

Alec Baldwin: Where he filled in for?

Jamie Bernstein: Where he filled in the ailing Bruno Walter as he’s always referred to in that circumstance. I thought his first name was Ailing.

Alexander Bernstein: Right, exactly. [Laughter]

Jamie Bernstein: Anyway, so this must’ve been like maybe four, five years later and they – so he was riding high but he was not yet –

Alec Baldwin: That’ll be a name I stay in a hotel in. I love good names for hotels. I’m gonna stay in a hotel under the name of Ehling, E-H-L-I-N-G.

Jamie Bernstein: That would be –

Alec Baldwin: Ehling Bruno Walter is the name I would use at a hotel.

Jamie Bernstein: [Laughter]

Alec Baldwin: And so the Ehling Bruno Walter, E-H-L-I-N-G –

Jamie Bernstein: He had the flu.

Alec Baldwin: Had the flu –

Jamie Bernstein: He had the flu and so –

Alec Baldwin: And your father comes in.

Jamie Bernstein: He had to come in –

Alec Baldwin: What year was that?

Jamie Bernstein: That was November 14, 1943.

Alec Baldwin: Wow.

Announcer: Good Afternoon, United States Rubber Company again invites you to Carnegie Hall …

Jamie Bernstein: And he had to get up there on a moment’s notice and he’d been up all night the night before because he’d had a premiere of a song cycle of his called, I Hate Music, and it had premiered the night before so of course there was a party.

Alec Baldwin: Where?

Jamie Bernstein: Where – at Town Hall and it was very well received and of course there was a party afterwards and they were up all the livelong night, and at the time you know our dad was living in Carnegie Hall in those little apartments they used to have at the top.

Alec Baldwin: Sure, yeah.

Jamie Bernstein: So he gets back to Carnegie Hall at, you know, 5:00 in the morning and passes out and then like an hour-and-a-half later the phone rings and it’s Bruno Zirato of the New York Philharmonic saying, ‘This is it, kid,’ you have to go on this afternoon.

Alec Baldwin: You’re on.

Jamie Bernstein: And it was on the radio. It was a national broadcast which is why it was such a big deal.

Announcer: Leonard Bernstein has now taken the platform - 

Jamie Bernstein: It was highly covered in the press probably because it was the middle of the war and everybody needed a feel-good story.

Alec Baldwin: Yes.

Jamie Bernstein: American boy makes good kinda thing, so one guy said, ‘It’s like a shoestring catch in centerfield. Make it and you’re a hero. Muff it and you’rea dope. Bernstein made it.’


Alec Baldwin: Did he ever reflect on that to you, meaning when people have that kind of debut, he came up that night and everything changed after that night.

Jamie Bernstein: Right. He pretty much knew that it was a sort of Cinderella tale and that he just got this unbelievable lucky break, yeah.

Alec Baldwin: And did he believe or was it ever discussed even by your mother or people like that, did your father realize, he must have, that his sexuality and that his good looks were as much a part of his talent as everything else?

Alexander Bernstein: I think there’s no doubt about that.

Alec Baldwin: [Laughter]

Alexander Bernstein: And I think he –

Alec Baldwin: He played it.

Alexander Bernstein: He played it probably from high school on you know and as soon as he started playing the piano and knew he had this incredible talent and could play at parties and get all this attention and –

Alec Baldwin: He had ‘em eating out of his hand.

Alexander Bernstein: Oh my god and –

Jamie Bernstein: Except you know –

Alec Baldwin: [Crosstalk] We’re all eating the shrimp out of their hand.

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah.

Jamie Bernstein: But at age 25 he was still a little geeky. I mean the pictures of him with the Philharmonic after the debut where he’s all exhausted and tousled and sweaty he actually looks like, like a Bar Mitzvah boy.

Alec Baldwin: [Laughter]

Jamie Bernstein: He looks a little funny and I think he kind of grew into his grooviness over the subsequent years.

Alec Baldwin: So your father, this charismatic, maniac, handsome, talented maestro he had three children over ten years.

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah.

Alec Baldwin: Yeah and then what was that like for him in terms of were there – did he have some kind of – ‘cause it sounds to me like this isn’t out of the question. Did he have certain kind of rules in terms of how he protected you from the public and the schools you went to and the way you lived your life or was he just very loosy Goosey about it?

Jamie Bernstein: You know I would say that he was not a big rule maker.

Alec Baldwin: Was your mother in charge?

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah, she made the rules.

Jamie Bernstein: She was the one who really designed the way our lives went on a day-to-day basis. He was busy being the maestro and then he would come home and play with us and hang out but –

Alec Baldwin: And have fun.

Jamie Bernstein: And have fun but he was not really the designer of the domestic scene.

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah, he was great, though, when he was home he was really home. You know he didn’t have an office to go to and if he was studying a score –

Alec Baldwin: Were you even aware of who your father was?

Jamie Bernstein: When you’re growing up your family is just your family. You have no, no objectivity about it and your parents are just your parents and you don’t really think about how different they might be from the others until you get older. At some point when we were pretty young, there was an episode of the Flintstones –

[Audio of Betty and Wilma: 'What time is it, Betty?' 'It’s 10 minutes to 9:00.']

Jamie Bernstein: Betty and Wilma were gonna go to the Hollyrock Bowl.

[Audio of Betty And Wilma: 'I love to watch Leonard Bernstone conduct. Mmm and the first thing on the program is that gorgeous symphony by Rocky Maninoff.' (Laughter)]

Jamie Bernstein: That’s when we knew he had really hit the big time.

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah.

Alec Baldwin: How old were you?

Jamie Bernstein: Pretty young.

Alec Baldwin: You’re kids, little kids.

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah, we were –

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah like you know 9 and 6, something like that.

Alexander Bernstein: Probably even less.

Alec Baldwin: Was there a downside to it? Did you feel like there were things that were tough for you with him?

Alexander Bernstein: In looking back on it now or when we got older, probably you look back and think about some downsides but at the time it really didn’t seem so bad at all. It was a lot of fun.

Jamie Bernstein: When we were really little it was just a lark. I often try to think back to come on, you know there must’ve been some –

Alexander Bernstein: He was happy.

Jamie Bernstein: – shadows, but we had a pretty fantastic early childhood. It was – it was kind of wonderful.

Alec Baldwin: He’s not some tortured introspect. He was a happy guy and he was a celebrity and he was loved.

Jamie Bernstein: He was tortured and introspective.

Alec Baldwin: He was.

Jamie Bernstein: He was but back in those early days of our family life that was overshadowed by the joy and the happiness, the busyness and the family life and all of that.

Alec Baldwin: He kept that from you.

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah. We sure never saw it. [Crosstalk]

Alec Baldwin: He kept it from you.

Jamie Bernstein: I’ll tell you in my memory the moment when it changed was November 22, 1963, the day JFK was assassinated. That was when the shadow fell over and life became sort of real. Up until that point you know grownups just had fun, as far as we could perceive, and then that day we saw our parents fall apart. They were crying ‘cause they were friends of the Kennedys.

Alec Baldwin: Of course.

Jamie Bernstein: They had been to the White House. They had dinner just the four of them, imagine.

Alec Baldwin: They had been centerpieces of Kennedy’s cultural –

Jamie Bernstein: Yes.

Alec Baldwin: – programming in the White House.

Alexander Bernstein: Exactly.

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah, so they were –

Alec Baldwin: Your father was what he brought into the White House.

Jamie Bernstein: They could not have been more connected to the Kennedy Administration and everything that it stood for. So on that day when he was assassinated our parents just fell apart and so did the whole rest of the family and all their friends and they pulled down the shades and sat around crying all day and just watched TV, so we were all there watching TV. Now we could perceive that there were shadows and that there were ups and downs. That wasn’t visible to us until that time.

Alec Baldwin: How the world itself can affect people psychologically.

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah.

Alec Baldwin: What about your mom in terms of her music appreciation? I mean she studied the piano but did she go on to have any kind of a serious career even in her young years when she was with Arrau? Did she play? Did she study? Once she met and married your father, did all that stop?

Alexander Bernstein: Her piano playing stopped. She would play sometimes at home and quite beautifully but –

Alec Baldwin: But she wasn’t as passionate about it.

Alexander Bernstein: No, but she –

Alec Baldwin: What was she passionate about?

Alexander Bernstein: She was passionate about her acting and she kept at that. Sometimes she would –

Alec Baldwin: And what was some of the things she was working on during her career?

Jamie Bernstein: She did a lot of early television, Playhouse 90 and Kraft Theatre and all those live dramas that they had –

Alec Baldwin: In New York.

Jamie Bernstein: In early television she did a lot of that and a lot of stage work.

Alec Baldwin: Did that stop at some point?

Jamie Bernstein: It kind of receded as she became Mrs. Maestro and a mom, which was a double job that could keep anybody busy 24/7.

Alec Baldwin: Of course, and was she generally happy to do those things or did she ever voice, ‘cause it’s interesting to me to have someone who is in the world of music, herself. She was a – she studied with Arrau. It’s a serious opportunity there. She had aspirations about music and acting. Did she miss those things? Did she ever say gosh, if only? Did she have a little bit of wistfulness about it?

Jamie Bernstein: I think she was pretty ambivalent about it.

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah and she didn’t really talk a lot about her inner self too much really well.

Alec Baldwin: Ah.

Jamie Bernstein: What she did talk about a little bit was that she had some stage fright issues, and so when she started performing less in public she would say that she was relieved and that being you know this Mrs. Bernstein persona was a way of not having to confront her fears about performing. But I think you know anybody who has performed has a part of them that still wants to perform, but she knew that it was just gonna be too hard to have these you know two rampant egos in the household.

Alec Baldwin: Probably a good call. Coming up more about Bernstein’s early years in Massachusetts and his final concert at Tanglewood which his brother described as, 'Lenny coming home to die.' This is Alec Baldwin. I’m talking with two of Leonard Bernstein’s children, Jamie and Alexander. You’re listening to Here’s The Thing from WNYC Radio.

Alec Baldwin: I see someone like your dad, who sounds very child-like, did the Young People’s Concerts, father, fun and joy and family and love, bursting with love. Leonard Bernstein is someone to me who when he’s on the podium is just shooting out of him like a rainbow. with love. Love is just bursting out of him like a rainbow. Love of this and love of that, and love of life and love of sex and love of sound of love of women and love of beauty and I wonder is it because of the result of his classical training, did he not have enough childhood?

Jamie Bernstein: Um, his childhood was not about music – at all.

Alec Baldwin: He was raised where?

Jamie Bernstein: Well, he was born in Lawrence, Massachusetts and then shortly thereafter they moved to the Boston area, first they lived in Roxbury.

Alex Bernstein: And moved a lot.

Alec Baldwin: Why? What did his dad do?

Alex Bernstein: He was a hair products salesman.

Alec Baldwin: He was a salesman. And his mom, was she musical?

Alex Bernstein: Not in the least.

Alec Baldwin: How did the music get into his life?

Jamie Bernstein: Well, here’s the thing. There was this Aunt Clara who moved to Florida and so she sent all her furniture over to her brother Sam’s house and along with all the couches and breakfronts arrived this upright piano. Our dad was 10 years old. The piano got hauled into the house and, as our father told it, he touched a piano and that was it. He knew. It’s one of those stories and he taught himself theory. He just played the piano. He figured – he could figure it all out.

Alec Baldwin: And 10 is late in the modern world.

Jamie Bernstein: And the thing about his dad, Sam Bernstein, is that Sam you know it was the Depression, but Sam was very proud that he was able to tide his family over the Depression because he had this very successful beauty supply business, the Samuel J. Bernstein Hair Company. ‘In Boston, it’s Bernstein’ was the slogan, and he had the New England franchise for the Frederic’s Permanent Wave Machine which was –

Alec Baldwin: Right and everybody knows that even in the Depression there’s two things you don’t let go of – booze and vanity.

Jamie Bernstein: Correct.

Alexander Bernstein: There ya go.

Alec Baldwin: You had your hair done.

Jamie Bernstein: And so all those women would go and be attached to that machine that looks like Bride of Frankenstein.

Alec Baldwin: [Laughter]

Jamie Bernstein: They were all doing it so they got through the Depression and Sam was so proud that he was able to pass the Samuel J. Bernstein Hair Company along to his eldest son to run and, of course, Lenny had no intention of running the Samuel J. Bernstein Hair Company, ‘In Boston, it’s Bernstein’ and it was a real problem between the two of them.

Alec Baldwin: Even though he had a great head of hair.

Jamie Bernstein: Yes he did.

Alec Baldwin: He had a swell head of hair. Then what happens?

Alexander Bernstein: And Sam was not going to let him be a Klezmer musician –

Jamie Bernstein: ‘Cause he came from the old country.

Alexander Bernstein: You know he was playing at weddings and funerals and that was it. You know that’s what a musician does.

Jamie Bernstein: In the old country a musician was a beggar, a homeless guy who went from steddle to steddle playing the fiddle and getting a few kopecks at the wedding. You call that a living?

Alec Baldwin: So what happened?

Alexander Bernstein: So little by little it became clear that he was immensely talented at this and went to the Boston Latin School and then to Harvard and –

Alec Baldwin: And he gets to Harvard to study what? Music.

Alexander Bernstein: No, they had no music department then.

Alec Baldwin: They had no music department then.

Alexander Bernstein: No.

Jamie Bernstein: You couldn’t major in it so he – was he a literature guy?

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah.

Alec Baldwin: He was born in 1918.

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah.

Alexander Bernstein: 1918, so he’s there you know –

Jamie Bernstein: Class of ’39.

Alexander Bernstein: ’39 it’s –

Alec Baldwin: No music department at Harvard there and just the immediately prior to the war, not –

Alexander Bernstein: Mm-hmm.

Alec Baldwin: And then when he leaves Harvard where does he go?

Alexander Bernstein: He goes to Curtis.

Jamie Bernstein: Curtis Institute.

Alec Baldwin: So from Curtis is where he goes to the next level. He was –

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah.

Alec Baldwin: Curtis is where the music –

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah but at Harvard he’s writing music, he’s putting on shows constantly –

Alec Baldwin: But Curtis is the real temple of musical study that he enters.

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah.

Alec Baldwin: And this is the real formalizing of his musical education.

Alexander Bernstein: And he studies with Fritz Reiner, you know –

Alec Baldwin: Right, right.

Alexander Bernstein: Studies conducting –

Alec Baldwin: It all goes up a big level here.

Jamie Bernstein: A big level and –

Alec Baldwin: Theory and –

Jamie Bernstein: It was tough. He was very lonely. It was a tough year or two for him at Curtis.

Alec Baldwin: He’s there for how long?

Alexander Bernstein: A little over a year, I think he did –

Alec Baldwin: And then what happens?

Alexander Bernstein: A long time and then he came to New York –

Jamie Bernstein: Desperate to find work.

Alexander Bernstein: He was ready to hit New York and –

Alec Baldwin: To do what?

Alexander Bernstein: He started – he wrote –

Jamie Bernstein: Arrangements.

Alexander Bernstein: Arrangements and stuff under an assumed name, Lenny Amber.

Jamie Bernstein: Lenny Amber. He arranged Ornette Coleman charts. He did all sorts of weird things. He did a – didn’t he do like a four hands version of "El Salon Mexico" for Aaron Copland.

Alexander Bernstein: Well that was the big thing that he got to know Aaron Copland and he got to –

Alec Baldwin: Okay, how did that happen?

Jamie Bernstein: He was still in college when he met Aaron.

Alec Baldwin: Harvard or Curtis?

Jamie Bernstein: Harvard.

Alexander Bernstein: Harvard, yeah.

Alec Baldwin: So at Harvard he meets Copland under what circumstances? ‘Cause if he’s not in a music program how does he rub shoulders with Copland?

Alexander Bernstein: I think he gets invited to –

Jamie Bernstein: He came to New York for the weekend.

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah, to New York.

Jamie Bernstein: He was invited to a –

Alec Baldwin: So he’s seeking out and sniffing out the musical world –

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah.

Alec Baldwin: – even though he’s at Harvard studying something else.

Alexander Bernstein: And he’s at a concert, I think, and –

Jamie Bernstein: It was a ballet performance.

Alexander Bernstein: He’s sitting next to Aaron.

Alec Baldwin: Ooh.

Alexander Bernstein: And they get to know each other.

Jamie Bernstein: And it turned out to be Aaron’s birthday, and Aaron invited our dad back to his loft for the party.

Alec Baldwin: So Clara ships the piano to the house. That’s ooh moment number one. He gets seated next to Copland, ooh moment number two.

Jamie Bernstein: And then goes to the birthday party and plays Copland’s piano variations in front of the whole crowd which our dad was in the habit of doing and clearing rooms ‘cause it’s a very gnarly piece, and so he said, ‘Are you sure you want me to play it at this party ‘cause it usually clears the room.’ And Aaron said, ‘Not at this party.’

Alec Baldwin: And he played it and didn’t clear the room.

Jamie Bernstein: He did not clear that room.

Alec Baldwin: It’s all of Copland’s – yeah, it’s all of Copland’s contemporaries and he plays and a friendship –

Jamie Bernstein: Sprang right up.

Alec Baldwin: And a relationship with Copland commences there.

Jamie Bernstein: Right, lifelong.

Alec Baldwin: And other than I would say probably as much if not more than Slatkin and your father was one of the great interpreters of Copland. I mean the two of them were my two favorites. Bernstein and Slatin and are my two favorite Coplandizer’s. And then what is the quick series of steps that gets him to the associate directorship of the Philharmonic?

Alexander Bernstein: I think an introduction to Koussevitzky, going to Tanglewood, conducting at Tanglewood –

Alec Baldwin: So he was a guest conductor at Tanglewood.

Alexander Bernstein: No he’s a student.

Alec Baldwin: Student conductor at Tanglewood Orchestra.

Alexander Bernstein: Student at Tanglewood –

Jamie Bernstein: Tanglewood had just been invented by Koussevitzky and –

Alec Baldwin: Right, by Koussevitzky.

Jamie Bernstein: – our dad was in that first class.

Alec Baldwin: And so Koussevitzky is the one who builds Tanglewood.

Jamie Bernstein: Right.

Alec Baldwin: He is – oh he’s the music director of the BSO who oversees the construction of that.

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah.

Alec Baldwin: What are some of your best memories of your dad there? What would you – do you remember what was his – well go ahead, give me – here you’re laughing –

Jamie Bernstein: Well we’re laughing because our dad loved to go to Tanglewood so much his entire life. Every time he went up there it was like he would be rejuvenated. He would turn into a kid again.

Alec Baldwin: It’s a holy place. Can we say that again, that the Berkshires is a holy place? So your father loved it there.

Alexander Bernstein: And we both worked at Tanglewood.

Alec Baldwin: What did you do?

Alexander Bernstein: I went for a few more years than Jamie.

Jamie Bernstein: We were guides.

Alexander Bernstein: We were guides which was – it’s a fancy name for just doing anything that they needed to be done, but you know you man the gates and you’d show people around. That was the guide part. Sometimes there would be tours but –

Jamie Bernstein: And also you would stand be –

Alexander Bernstein: You would help backstage.

Jamie Bernstein: Right.

Alexander Bernstein: And help the artists and move them around and pick them up at the airport and stuff like that and it was just heaven to be up there for a summer.

Jamie Bernstein: And there was also this sense – I think our dad had it from the very beginning that you know everybody was sort of out in this beautiful weather and this beautiful place with all these fun people and there would be shenanigans.

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah.

Jamie Bernstein: We just fell right into the shenanigans sensibility of the place that you know it was just fun and everybody was partying all night and you know having romances and –

Alec Baldwin: It’s funny you say that because it is probably one of the two or three most romantic places I’ve ever been. I mean you can go – for those people listening who don’t know the Tanglewood is in the Berkshires in Massachusetts and it’s the summer residency of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. And you go up there to Lenox, massive piece of land, just a massive tract of land, and in that way in a good way that you can talk about going somewhere with someone and driving that decompressing road trip that as you drive and drive and you get closer and closer you just feel your body relaxing, and then you get to the excitement of going to Tanglewood. And you go and you get your basket and your food and your wine and your –

Jamie Bernstein: That’s the real fun is to be out on the lawn under the stars.

Alec Baldwin: The lawn is even –

Alexander Bernstein: It’s heaven.

Alec Baldwin: The lawn is even better in a way.

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah.

Alec Baldwin: If you’ve got the basket and the girl and the wine or whatever your preference is there, and I think I’ve never seen more people who are getting it right, you know what I mean, in terms of having a lovely evening and if they get smashed on top of it, you know. I guess what I’m saying is there’s nothing like getting smashed at Tanglewood.

Jamie Bernstein: Ain’t it the truth.

Alexander Bernstein: [Laughter]

Alec Baldwin: It’s the best kind of smashed.

Jamie Bernstein: You know the year that I was a guide there was the –

Alec Baldwin: [Laughter]

Jamie Bernstein: What?

Alec Baldwin: He said no comment. [Laughter]

Jamie Bernstein: [Laughter] No comment. The year that I was a guide there was the year the Fillmore East came up there like three different times and I saw –

Alexander Bernstein: The Who.

Jamie Bernstein: The Who and Jimi Hendricks at the Shed –

Alec Baldwin: So you’re saying that Bill –

Jamie Bernstein: Graham.

Alec Baldwin: Graham, he had his production company – Fillmore East meaning as a production company. They shipped the artists up there.

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah, they come up in a convoy of Rider trucks –

Alexander Bernstein: And Sly and the Family Stone played –

Jamie Bernstein: With all those you know Marshall amps –

Alec Baldwin: They played The Shed.

Jamie Bernstein: They played in The Shed.

Alexander Bernstein: They played in The Shed.

Alec Baldwin: Who played?

Jamie Bernstein: The Who.

Alexander Bernstein: The Who played The Shed.

Alec Baldwin: In The Shed?

Jamie Bernstein: And I was –

Alec Baldwin: That’s like a bathroom to them.

[ARCHIVAL TAPE: We’d like to say how happy we are to be back in Tanglewood …]

Jamie Bernstein: They trashed that lawn. That’s why they were never invited back, because you should – you would not have wanted to see that lawn the next day.

Alec Baldwin: Thank god. If I was on that board I would’ve – I used to – isn’t it funny how we’ve changed. Back then it would’ve been The Who and I’m like we’re not having them here.

Jamie Bernstein: [Laughter]

Alec Baldwin: We can’t have them, their likes here in Tanglewood.

Jamie Bernstein: They tried it.

Alec Baldwin: Who else did Graham have up there?

Alexander Bernstein: Oh Mr. Kiley who ran the – head, head of groundskeepers was just beside himself.

Alec Baldwin: Yeah, he had a coronary.

Jamie Bernstein: Really, it was a disaster.

Alec Baldwin: Your father loved it there, though.

Jamie Bernstein: He loved it and he loved to stay up all night yacking with the students. That was what really –

Alec Baldwin: Who did your dad admire in his constellation? Who did he – I heard a story once from someone. They said that they were at your family’s home and your father’s standing there with a cigarette in his hand and a drink in the other and someone says I just came from seeing the Beatles. And the quote was a very simple one, they said that Bernstein turned to my friend and said, ‘You came and saw the Beatles? I can’t wait to see them myself.’ He said, ‘I’m mad for them.’

Alexander Bernstein: [Laughter]

Alec Baldwin: And he just had a passion for all disparate forms of music.

Alexander Bernstein: Absolutely true.

Alec Baldwin: He did.

Jamie Bernstein: He did and he really did love the Beatles a lot, and we were so lucky as we were growing up because I was a complete Beatle maniac.

Alec Baldwin: Sure.

Jamie Bernstein: And my dad loved their music, too, so together we would discover the Beatles and when they had a new album I would run out and get it and go straight to my father’s studio and say, ‘Look, look. I’ve got Rubber Soul.’ And he’d say, ‘Great. Let’s put it on right now’ and we’d stick the record on and I learned more about music by listening to the Beatles with my dad than I think I did any other way.

Alec Baldwin: You know my dad passed away he was very young. My dad was only 55. He was a year older than I am now. He had a very rare form of cancer and he died of lung cancer when he was 55, and your dad didn’t live a very long life, either. How old were both of you when your dad passed away?

Jamie Bernstein: Well, he died at 72 which is not –

Alexander Bernstein: 45 I was –

Jamie Bernstein: Hmm? You were –

Alexander Bernstein: 35.

Jamie Bernstein: 35 and I was 39.

Alec Baldwin: So you were – so you were grown, adult people.

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah but like you our mother died when she was 56 and we were much younger when that happened. She died in 1978 so we were in our early 20s and our sister –

Alec Baldwin: Your dad died in what year?

Jamie Bernstein: He died in 1990.

Alec Baldwin: Right.

Jamie Bernstein: So by then we were you know adults more or less. But when our mother died we were still a very young family. Nina was only 15.

Alexander Bernstein: 16, yeah.

Jamie Bernstein: Or something.

Alec Baldwin: What did your mother die from?

Jamie Bernstein: Lung cancer.

Alec Baldwin: Was she a smoker?

Jamie Bernstein: Yup.

Alec Baldwin: My point is that your dad didn’t live a very long life. Did he die suddenly? Was he sick for a long time? Did he know he was in trouble?

Alexander Bernstein: He knew he –

Alec Baldwin: Did he die suddenly or did he get sick and he knew he was in trouble?

Alexander Bernstein: He got – he was sick for like six months of being really sick.

Alec Baldwin: He was diagnosed with?

Alexander Bernstein: He had all sorts of chest problems –

Alec Baldwin: Sure.

Alexander Bernstein: You know, through his life but it was not cigarette-related.

Jamie Bernstein: Mesothelioma it was.

Alexander Bernstein: Mesothelioma which was probably an asbestos thing when he was a kid or who knows.

Alec Baldwin: Right.

Alexander Bernstein: I mean it didn’t help that he smoked, obviously, but –

Alec Baldwin: Right, the combination –

Jamie Bernstein: And he had emphysema and –

Alexander Bernstein: But you know just the having the oxygen and stuff that was the last you know month or so. He died in October and his last concert was at Tanglewood in August of 1990 –

Alec Baldwin: That summer.

Alexander Bernstein: That summer.

Alec Baldwin: Okay, so –

Alexander Bernstein: He could barely get through the performance but –

Alec Baldwin: The last thing your father conducted was a public performance in the summer. He did the Beethoven 7 –

Jamie Bernstein: Yup.

Alec Baldwin: At Tanglewood in August of 1990 –

Alexander Bernstein: Yup.

Alec Baldwin: And died that October.


Alec Baldwin: I think about your dad and did he just – when he knew he was sick and he knew he was in trouble health-wise, ‘cause my dad knew he was in trouble. I mean there was a moment I had with my dad where he looked at me with this look in his eye like he knew it was over, and he had a tear run down his face and my father said, ‘I’ll never know my grandchildren.’

Jamie Bernstein: Aw.

Alec Baldwin: And when I think about this with your dad, a guy like that who had so much more he wanted to do, did he ever express that to you? Did he ever talk about that he wasn’t done?

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah, he did, you know, and I think you know he had this fantastic climactic moment at the very end of 1989, the year before he died, when he conducted at the fall of the Berlin Wall and he did the "Ode to Joy" and instead of singing 'Freude' which means 'Joy' they sang 'Freiheit' which means 'Freedom.'


Jamie Bernstein: It was such a big deal for him to be there when the Berlin Wall came down and it was such a momentous occasion.

Alec Baldwin: Where were you when that happened?

Jamie Bernstein: I wish I had been there and in retrospect I regret that I wasn’t there, but I had just given birth to my son, Evan, like less than eight weeks earlier.

Alec Baldwin: So you have an excuse.

Jamie Bernstein: That was my excuse so I watched it on the couch on Christmas Day while I was nursing my infant son. I watched it on TV because they showed the whole thing on live broadcast.

Alec Baldwin: They broadcasted it. What about you?

Alexander Bernstein: I don’t even have an excuse and I can’t remember why I didn’t go. I can’t believe that I wasn’t there. It’s just unbelievable.

Jamie Bernstein: You know, we didn’t know he was gonna be gone within the year, so you know he was always there and there were always these occasions where you could go and meet him on the road and there were hundreds of them and it was kind of a pain to go get in with that whole retinue and the whole madness of the tour thing and so wanted only –

Alexander Bernstein: By then it had become entourage city, you know.

Jamie Bernstein: Right after that he got really sick with the flu and –

Alec Baldwin: What year was that?

Jamie Bernstein: 1989.

Alexander Bernstein: ’89, yeah.

Alec Baldwin: At the fall, itself.

Jamie Bernstein: It was like – Christmas of 1989 and I remember visiting him about a month later, less than a month later, in Key West and he was just not feeling right and he told me so. He said, ‘I just I’m not – I don’t feel right.’ That was the beginning of the slow decline and then things got a lot worse in May and he just kind of struggled through all his gigs over the summer and then barely made it through that Beethoven 7, and we were all in the audience clutching each other’s hands –

Alec Baldwin: Were you?

Jamie Bernstein: – like is he gonna make it? Is he gonna make it? ‘Cause he was –

Alec Baldwin: What was his life like after your mom passed away? He didn’t remarry, did he?

Alexander Bernstein: No he did not and he – it was –

Alec Baldwin: Why do you think he didn’t?

Alexander Bernstein: He was so miserable for a long time after she died.

Alec Baldwin: He needed her.

Alexander Bernstein: He needed her and he was just devastated –

Alec Baldwin: He wasn’t prepared for that at all.

Alexander Bernstein: – for a long, long time until we went on vacation probably, I don’t know, eight months later, something like that and he – we sort of started seeing signs of a person again.

Jamie Bernstein: Tell about what happened in Jamaica when after the Christmas dinner and then we went to the bar.

Alexander Bernstein: Oh my god. This was the vacation in Jamaica. Bunch – our family and a couple of friends. And we went down to the bar and there were probably a couple of people in there and he sits down at the piano in the bar and this was after dinner, after you know a lot of Scotch, whatever, a lot of wine and he plays "Rhapsody in Blue" from beginning to end. It was the most amazing performance you could possibly imagine. I mean he just ripped it.


Alex Bernstein. It was unforgettable and then that’s kind of when I knew he was back.

Alec Baldwin: Through the music. He tells you where he’s at through the music

Alex Bernstein. Oh my god, so um, obviously he never married again.

Alec Baldwin: Why do you think he never married again? You see a guy like that, my god, he could have had any woman in New York. He didn’t have room in his life for that?

Alex Bernstein: No, and there were some men that he was very close to.

Alec Baldwin: And would you say that once your mother passed away was your father’s life as a bisexual man did he just live it more vividly once your mother was gone?

Alexander Bernstein: No, not so much ‘cause –

Alec Baldwin: Was he much more out – was he much more living color about it?

Alexander Bernstein: His mother was still alive.

Alec Baldwin: Oh.

Alexander Bernstein: And I think that played a great role in –

Alec Baldwin: That was kind of a governor there that –

Alexander Bernstein: That was kind of a governor, yup.

Alec Baldwin: And then when she died –

Alexander Bernstein: And no, so he still had a public persona that was – [Crosstalk]

Alec Baldwin: It was a different time.

Jamie Bernstein: She outlived him.

Alexander Bernstein: Yup.

Jamie Bernstein: She was 92 when he died and she said memorably, ‘This will shorten my life.’

Alec Baldwin: Wow. And so he, and so he – you think that he kept that quiet and kept that private. Not only could it was it that his nature to be a little more private like that?

Alexander Bernstein: It was partly his nature. He sort of came out sort of a few times, [laughter] and I think once he was hoping people would take more notice of it than they did, I think, but I think he didn’t want his mother to have to deal with it with her friends and you know having people talking about it.

Alec Baldwin: If he was alive now how old would your dad be?

Alexander Bernstein: 95, I think?

Jamie Bernstein: If he was alive now he’d be 90 – yeah.

Alec Baldwin: He’d be 95.

Alexander Bernstein: His, yeah, centennial will be in 2018.

Alec Baldwin: Who was someone, I mean I’m sure there were boundless people ‘cause your father was very generous of heart it seems, a very passionate. But who were some of the people other than Koussevitzky and Copland that we’ve covered before? Who were some of the people that were contemporaries of your father that you remember him speaking very glowingly about? Who did he admire? Who was he – who was he close friends with?

Alexander Bernstein: Lukas Foss would be one.

Jamie Bernstein: They were at Curtis together. That’s where they met and they stayed friends and colleagues their entire lives, and Lukas was a stupendous pianist in addition to being an excellent composer. So he played our dad’s Age of Anxiety, which is a sort of like a piano concerto, although it’s called a symphony and Lukas could just play the hell out of it, and our dad premiered many of Lukas’s pieces with the Philharmonic –

Alec Baldwin: They were close friends.

Jamie Bernstein: And so that was – he was one of them. Michael Tilson-Thomas was someone that our dad kind of nurtured along when he was – when Michael was very young.

Alec Baldwin: So he was Tilson-Thomas’s Koussevitzky to a degree.

Jamie Bernstein: Yes, to a degree.

Alec Baldwin: Who else did he perfor – who else did he mentor?

Jamie Bernstein: Oh well he was Mister Mentor.

Alexander Bernstein: Seiji Ozawa to a great degree, I think.

Alec Baldwin: My god.

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah.

Alec Baldwin: Another guy with great hair – Seiji.

Alexander Bernstein: John Mauceri.

Jamie Bernstein: Great hair.

Alec Baldwin: The great hair school of conducting. Nothing like that hair flying through the air – looks great.

Jamie Bernstein: It’s amazing how many great hair conductors there are, isn’t it?

Alec Baldwin: Yeah, so Ozawa.

Jamie Bernstein: Right, well when he was conducting at the Philharmonic he –

Alec Baldwin: What about Sondheim? What was his relationship with Sondheim?

Jamie Bernstein: Oh that was a big, big relationship, big friendship and a colleagueship.

Alec Baldwin: Sure.

Jamie Bernstein: You know West Side Story changed their lives forever.

Alec Baldwin: Jerry Robbins – all of them had this phenomenal success.

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah.

Alec Baldwin: Initially, "West Side Story" was supposed to be, if I’m right, and Irish-Jewish gang.

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah.

Alexander Bernstein: Lower East Side.

Alec Baldwin: A Lower East Side –

Jamie Bernstein: It was going to be "East Side Story."

Alec Baldwin: [Laughter] It was gonna be "Lower East Side Story."

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah, absolutely.

Jamie Bernstein: Tempers would flare over the Easter/Passover holidays.

Alec Baldwin: Right, right.

Jamie Bernstein: Right. And then –

Alec Baldwin: The shillalies versus the –

Jamie Bernstein: Mezuzahs.

Alec Baldwin: The mezuzahs.

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah.

Alec Baldwin: Yeah.

Jamie Bernstein: Something like that and then apparently Jerry Robbins saw some article about gang wars with Puerto Ricans on the upper West Side and he went ding, you know, but the bulb went –

Alec Baldwin: It was Jerry.

Jamie Bernstein: I think it was Jerry or was it Arthur?

Alexander Bernstein: Arthur always said it was Arthur so I don’t know.

Jamie Bernstein: Or maybe it was Arthur.

Alec Baldwin: Probably the most romantic line in a movie I’ve ever heard, and it always brings me to tears when he turns to her and they have the moment at the dance and he turns to her and says, ‘You’re not lying to me, are you?’ And she says, ‘I have not yet learned to lie about such things.’

Jamie Bernstein: That’s right. ‘I have not yet learned to joke that way.’ [Crosstalk]

Alec Baldwin: To joke – is that it?

Alexander Bernstein: You’re not joking with me.

Alec Baldwin: Is that what she says? You’re not joking – I have not yet learned to jo – give it to me again.

Jamie Bernstein: [Laughter] You know why we’re laughing –

Alec Baldwin: Here we go. Ready? You say it.

Jamie Bernstein: Okay.

Alec Baldwin: Here we go. We have a live performance – go.

Alexander Bernstein: You’re not joking with me?

Jamie Bernstein: I have not yet learned to joke that way. I think now I never will.

Alec Baldwin: There you go. There it is ladies and gentlemen.

Jamie Bernstein: And the reason we’re laughing is because there’s a recording of our dad conducting West Side Story for a – in a recording session and he got Alexander and my sister Nina to do that dialogue.

[TAPE: Excerpt from "West Side Story"]

Alec Baldwin: Now speaking of films, your father only composed, I mean other than them transferring "West Side" to film, your father only composed one film score.

Jamie Bernstein: That’s right.

Alec Baldwin: And it was a hell of a film score.

Jamie Bernstein: Hell of a film score, "On the Waterfront."

Alec Baldwin: And very Bernstein-esque and why do you think he only did – your father is someone, I mean I see people – this is interesting ‘cause I see so many people, Billy Joel, Sting, I mean you see Elton John make his foray into it, but I see so many people who I think to myself, Billy, especially, who is a friend, I say my god you could be doing so much music – a movie score if you wanted to and they just don’t. They don’t have a passion for it. Why did your father just do the one, do you think?

Jamie Bernstein: Well, because he really did not enjoy the experience.

Alec Baldwin: Why?

Jamie Bernstein: Because he was being bossed around.

Alec Baldwin: Kazan.

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah, well what happened – the example he gave was that he wrote you know this soaring music that the dynamics that he composed were all in his head and all recorded a certain way and then when they’re mixing they just dunk the fader on it so that, as our dad put it, so that you could hear Marlon Brando’s grunt.

Alexander Bernstein: They would say okay, we need 15 bars of passion and then you know 30 seconds of you know, [Crosstalk] and he just couldn’t write that way.

Alec Baldwin: Think that way.

Alexander Bernstein: It was impossible. He – and he loved [Crosstalk] – he loved the movie but he just hated doing the work.

Alec Baldwin: Do you have children?

Alexander Bernstein: I have a daughter, yes.

Alec Baldwin: You have a daughter who is how old?

Alexander Bernstein: She’ll be 14 in two weeks.

Alec Baldwin: You have a daughter that’s 14.

Alexander Bernstein: Yeah.

Alec Baldwin: And what is she into? What does she do?

Alexander Bernstein: She’s into her first year of high school and loving it and she’s into theatre in a big way. She loves to act and sing –

Alec Baldwin: You’re raising your kids in the city or outside the city?

Alexander Bernstein: In the city.

Alec Baldwin: You’re raising your daughter inside the city and she likes acting.

Alexander Bernstein: She likes acting but she’s also you know she loves her English class and History class and –

Jamie Bernstein: Math.

Alexander Bernstein: Her school and her friends and her –

Alec Baldwin: What about you?

Jamie Bernstein: I have two. I have a daughter –

Alec Baldwin: And how old are they now?

Jamie Bernstein: They’re in their 20s now. They’re in their early 20s.

Alec Baldwin: What do they do?

Jamie Bernstein: My daughter Frankie lives in Brooklyn. She’s a writer and my son is still in school up in the Berkshires, as a matter of fact.

Alec Baldwin: Really.

Jamie Bernstein: He’s up in – he lives in Lee, Massachusetts.

Alec Baldwin: Now for both of you your children, I mean obviously they know – they didn’t have to watch – in their case they weren’t watching Leonard Bernstone. That wasn’t – the cartoon wasn’t the gateway into an understanding of who their grandfather was.

Jamie Bernstein: That’s true.

Alec Baldwin: But they know who he is.

Alexander Bernstein: Oh yeah.

Alec Baldwin: And have you had – do they have an appetite and a passion to understand who he is and see who he is?

Jamie Bernstein: My kids don’t. They’re very careful about sort of keeping their distance from that whole connection. I think it makes them a little shy, a little anxious, and so they don’t – they don’t embrace it –

Alec Baldwin: What do you think that’s based on without getting too personal, ‘cause I have an opinion about that ‘cause of my daughter.

Jamie Bernstein: Oh really? Well –

Alec Baldwin: What they want is that they sense celebrity has become so exponentially out of control now. They prefer their privacy. If knowing that I was related directly to Leonard Bernstein was going to lead to something appropriate or comfortable or right, that’d be one thing but nowadays everybody is after the wrong thing and it’s –

Alexander Bernstein: That’s really interesting. I mean I think about that a lot, because our father really loved being famous and we had fun with it and it was just a different type of thing in those days. It –

Alec Baldwin: It was different.

Alexander Bernstein: It’s more of an industry now.

Alec Baldwin: Right.

Alexander Bernstein: And he started seeing that more and more starting in the eighties and he talked about it a lot, and he once said to me, ‘I’m so sick of Leonard Bernstein. I’ve had it with him.’

Leonard Bernstein (archival): I’ve always had a problem about time, but when I had a problem about time at the age of 25 or 30, when you are still thinking at least in part that you are immortal, and nothing is ever going to change the way you are, or abbreviate it, everything is all right. I mean I would go on concert tours and compose in the airport or on the train. I wrote half of the "Age of Anxiety" in airports and trains and hotels. I can’t do that anymore. And it’s been some time since I could. One of the reasons is one’s standards get higher and higher – self identification with the composer you are performing become closer and close to the point where there are performances which are the ones – when I know it’s been a really good performance, it’s one in which I have the feeling that I’ve written the piece, standing there, and when it’s over I don’t know where I’m standing.

Alec Baldwin: As he grew older, Bernstein’s connection to the music of Gustav Mahler whom he had championed throughout his career became even stronger.

Alexander Bernstein: I think he felt a deep association, I mean apart from the music itself, obviously, an association with Mahler as a conflicted musician, Mahler being Jewish in a non-Jewish world and being a tonal composer in an atonal – more atonal world becoming so, being a European man who came to America, you know, that somebody from the classical tradition coming to America and suddenly finding themselves in this crazy world so I think there was an affinity there.

Jamie Bernstein: Plus, he was the combination of composer and conductor.

Alexander Bernstein: Yup.

Jamie Bernstein: Which there aren’t that many of.

Alec Baldwin: I would love to have known your father. Your father was so singular and remains so singular. Because number one, whenever he came on, I was happy. Whenever he came on, I was excited and he never disappointed me. When I would see him I’d say what you get from Bernstein you can only get from Bernstein. He was the original in his field.

Leonard Bernstein’s children, Jamie and Alexander, say their father was so original in part because he just never stopped celebrating music, celebrating life.

Jamie Bernstein: He never slept.

Alec Baldwin: [Laughter]

Jamie Bernstein: He was a terrible insomniac. I think that’s probably why he managed to squeeze in so much action. He was always at it, you know, and –

Alec Baldwin: I wish he was around. He and I could’ve hung out together. I’m an insomniac. Could you imagine Bernstein and I in your kitchen watching YouTube together?

Jamie Bernstein: You could’ve come over at 4:00 AM and you could’ve hung out. It would’ve been great.

Alec Baldwin: We could’ve been watching old movies together.

Jamie Bernstein: Yeah and you would’ve gone to the piano and played all the old –

Alec Baldwin: Bernard Hermann scores.

Alexander Bernstein: Exactly.

Jamie Bernstein: Yes everything.

Alec Baldwin: This is Alec Baldwin. To learn more about Leonard Bernstein and Artful Learning, an educational organization that his son Alex spearheads, go to

[End of Audio]

Produced by Emily Botein and Kathie Russo
Hosted by Alec Baldwin
WNYC Studios