“Riffs” from Prelude, Fugue, and Riffs
Student Participation: Listening
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Learn fundamental concepts of music and engage in creative activities through a deeper exploration of the ideas and themes of the Link Up repertoire.
Leonard Bernstein (1918–1990), a celebrated American composer and conductor, began playing piano at an early age when his aunt gave him her upright piano. During his childhood in Massachusetts, he continued his piano studies and went on to study music at Harvard University and the Curtis Institute of Music. From the time Bernstein started a jazz band as a teenager, jazz had a vibrant influence on his music. At age 25, he made his conducting debut with the New York Philharmonic at Carnegie Hall. He earned special acclaim for his Young People’s Concerts, which were broadcast to television viewers around the country. Fun fact: The first of these televised concerts was recorded live at Carnegie Hall! Bernstein’s compositions span orchestral music, chamber music, opera, and musical theater. He was also a generous humanitarian, who believed that artists would help create a more peaceful world.