Leonard Bernstein Honored by Library of Congress

The Library of Congress has honored American composer, conductor, writer, and teacher Leonard Bernstein (1918-1990) with an online preview exhibit from The Leonard Bernstein Collection, one of the largest special collections in the Library's Music Division.

Bernstein, who would have been 80 on August 25, was one of the 20th century's most important musical and cultural figures. He composed scores for numerous plays, movies, and musicals---West Side Story perhaps the best-known of them all---as well as symphonies and operas. For many years he conducted at the annual Tanglewood Music Festival, where he was artistic advisor from 1970 through 1974. Bernstein was also deeply involved in education and social causes.

The preview offers a sampling of more than 400,000 items, including music and literary manuscripts, correspondence, photographs, audio and video recordings, and fan mail. A more extensive selection of documents will be made available in the future, according to the Library. From the Library's Bernstein Home Page, fans can link to the Official Leonard Bernstein website, as in-depth an endeavor as can be found anywhere on the Internet.