What Becomes a Legend Most?

A flood of kitsch and concerts gives Maestro Bernstein an Elvis-like resurrection

Had he lasted a little longer in a life that was lived harder and faster than most (mood: appassionato; tempo: allegro con brio), Leonard Bernstein would have turned 75 this week. But the polymath pianist, conductor, composer, television personality, Harvard man, Broadway baby and quintessential New Yorker died in 1990, leaving a hole in the fabric of American musical life that many have found irreparable. In the three years since Bernstein's death, sales of his records have doubled, his compositions have started to win greater respect, and his legend has waxed. It's almost as if the great man had never left....

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