Leonard Bernstein (Born: August 25, 1918 – Died: October 14, 1990)
Leonard Bernstein was an American composer, conductor, author, music lecturer, and pianist. Flamboyant, inspired and voracious in his conducting style, Bernstein got his big break conducting the New York Philharmonic in 1943. He was one of the first American-born conductors to lead world-class orchestras. His popularity increased through his appearances not only as conductor and pianist but also as a commentator and entertainer. Bernstein explained classical music to young listeners on such television shows as Omnibus and Young People’s Concerts.
His best-known works are the musicals On the Town (1944; filmed 1949), Wonderful Town (1953; filmed 1958), Candide (1956), and the very popular West Side Story (1957; filmed 1961), written in collaboration with Stephen Sondheim and Jerome Robbins.