The 7 Best Ways to Celebrate Leonard Bernstein’s 100th Birthday | Observer

Observer

-

20 August 2018 07:00

Leonard Bernstein. William H. Alden/Evening Standard/Getty Images

Leonard Bernstein, America’s best known composer, conductor, author, TV host, music lecturer and pianist, would have turned 100 on August 25. It’s certainly cause for celebrationnot only was he one of the first composers born and educated in the U.S. to receive worldwide acclaim, but through his operettas, symphonies, and out-of-the-box musical programs he demystified traditional music forms for the mid-20th century public. In short, he changed the way classical music was considered and consumed in America. Avid fans will no doubt be looking for events to celebrate this auspicious occasion, and if you’re not as well versed in Bernstein, it’s time to get on it. Here are seven inventive ways to help you pay tribute to this modern American master. Start with mixing yourself his favorite drink…

Pour One Out for Leonard

As just a 21-year-old, Leonard Bernstein developed a taste for Rob Roys while drinking with Olga Koussevitzky, the wife of Bernstein’s mentor and teacher Serge Koussevitzky, during his time at Tanglewood, where the Boston Symphony Orchestra plays in summer. The Rob Roy was  invented in the late 1800s at the Waldorf Astoria to honor the eponymous operetta, which celebrated the deeds of a Scottish hero. It’s usually described as a Manhattan with Scotch whiskey. In case a pilgrimage to the Waldorf Astoria is not in the cards, all you need is two ounces of Scotch, one ounce of sweet vermouth and two dashes of bitters. Garnish with brandied cherry or a lemon twist.

Binge-Watch Bernstein’s Young People’s Concerts on YouTube