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Bernstein at the Barbican: Sir Simon Rattle conducts the LSO to mark the American composer’s centenary

15 December, 2017 — By Sebastian Taylor

Leonard Bernstein

The centenary of American composer-conductor Leonard Bernstein is being marked by two concerts at the Barbican over the next week given by the London Symphony Orchestra under conductor Sir Simon Rattle.

First up this Saturday (December 16, 7.30pm, from £15) is a double-bill of works. The concert opens with his second symphony titled The Age of Anxiety inspired by WH Auden’s poem of the same name. When beginning to write his symphony, Bernstein said that Auden’s poem was “one of the most shattering examples of pure virtuosity in the history of English poetry”.

The second work is Bernstein’s swinging, bluesy musical Wonderful Town, performed in a concert version with soloists Danielle de Niese, Alysha Umphress, Nathan Gunn and Duncan Rock.

Then, on Thursday evening (December 21, 6.30pm, from £12), Wonderful Town is being performed again in a bite-size early-evening concert starting at 6.30pm.

Barbican, Silk Street, EC2, 020 7638 8891, www.barbican.org.uk

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