In this Sept. 24, 1962, file photo, Leonard Bernstein leads the New York Philharmonic Orchestra in the inaugural concert in New York's new Philharmonic Hall. Bernstein would have turned 100 last month on Aug. 25. In celebration of his birthday, the Utah Symphony will perform a program on Sept. 13, 14 and 15 titled "Bernstein on Broadway." The program will feature a wide range of hits from musicals including "On the Town" and "West Side Story."
Associated Press
Leonard Bernstein, a renowned American composer and conductor who died at 72, was born Aug. 25, 1918. On Sept. 13, 14 and 15, the Utah Symphony will celebrate Bernstein's birthday with a program titled "Bernstein on Broadway."
Marion S. Trikosko, Provided by the Library of Congress
Leonard Bernstein was born Aug. 25, 1918 and died Oct. 14, 1990, at age 72. On Sept. 13, 14 and 15, the Utah Symphony will celebrate Bernstein's birth centennial with performances that show Bernstein's influence on Broadway.
Provided by The Leonard Bernstein Office
The year 2018 marks the birth centennial of American composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein. To celebrate the occasion, the Utah Symphony is performing a program titled "Bernstein on Broadway," featuring soprano Morgan James and conductor Teddy Abrams.
Paul de Hueck, Provided by The Leonard Bernstein Office
In celebration of Leonard Bernstein's birth centennial, the Utah Symphony will perform a program on Sept. 13, 14 and 15 titled "Bernstein on Broadway." The program will feature a wide range of hits from musicals including "On the Town" and "West Side Story."
Allan Warren, Provided by The Leonard Bernstein Office
In celebration of Leonard Bernstein's birth centennial, the Utah Symphony will perform a program on Sept. 13, 14 and 15 titled "Bernstein on Broadway." In November, the symphony will continue the Bernstein celebration under the direction of Thierry Fischer, who will lead the ensemble in a semi-staged production of Bernstein's operetta "Candide."
Provided by the Utah Symphony

SALT LAKE CITY — If the Utah Symphony is trying to send a message with its opening concerts of the 2018-19 season, perhaps it’s this: A party never has to die.

Upcoming performances on Sept. 13 in Ogden and Sept. 14 and 15 in Salt Lake City return to something the symphony started last season — a celebration of renowned conductor and composer Leonard Bernstein’s birth centennial. The big day came and went on Aug. 25, but that doesn’t mean the symphony is done celebrating the famed American composer.

Paul de Hueck, Provided by The Leonard Bernstein Office
The year 2018 marks the birth centennial of American composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein. To celebrate the occasion, the Utah Symphony is performing a program titled "Bernstein on Broadway," featuring soprano Morgan James and conductor Teddy Abrams.

If anything, the party has only gotten bigger in Utah since that late summer day. It’s the reason the composer’s firstborn, Jamie Bernstein, traveled from New York to the Beehive State just two days after her father would’ve turned 100 years old. On Aug. 27, a few of Leonard Bernstein’s family and friends — including the conductor’s last student before passing away — kicked off the 26th annual Moab Music Festival.

For Jamie Bernstein, who recently published a memoir titled “Famous Father Girl: A Memoir of Growing Up Bernstein,” the Moab Music Festival, which runs through Sept. 13, illustrates the celebration of her father’s legacy.

“This whole year has been so insane,” she previously told the Deseret News. “There have been so many celebrations worldwide. My brother, sister and I were really hoping for a global celebration, but I’ve got to say, it's beyond anything we imagined — and it's so moving.”

The day the festival in eastern Utah concludes, the Utah Symphony will keep the Leonard Bernstein party going with a program titled “Bernstein on Broadway.” Featuring guest vocalist Morgan James — a performer well-known for her collaborations with jazz collective Postmodern Jukebox — the program is a tribute to Leonard Bernstein’s Broadway works and will include classics from musicals such as “On the Town” and “West Side Story.”

Although this Utah Symphony season kickoff won’t be under music director Thierry Fischer’s baton, the idea for programming a cycle dedicated to Leonard Bernstein's work is very much Fischer's own.

“When you have an American artist like Bernstein — he’s a legend,” Fischer previously toldthe Deseret News. “His piano playing, his composing, his conducting and his commitment to education … he was involved in so many aspects of what music can bring to a community, to a society."

Provided by The Leonard Bernstein Office
Leonard Bernstein was born Aug. 25, 1918 and died Oct. 14, 1990, at age 72. On Sept. 13, 14 and 15, the Utah Symphony will celebrate Bernstein's birth centennial with performances that show Bernstein's influence on Broadway.

But, as the Utah Symphony has already shown, the celebration doesn’t have to end with “Bernstein on Broadway” — and it won’t. In November, the orchestra will collaborate with Utah Opera to perform a semi-staged production of one of Leonard Bernstein’s most famous works: the popular operetta “Candide.” It’s an event Fischer is especially looking forward to conducting as the piece marked his introduction to the great composer.

Fischer first heard “Candide” on the radio as a teenager in his Geneva, Switzerland, home — located about 10 miles from the grave of Voltaire, the French author of the novella on which Leonard Bernstein’s operetta is based. Even as a teenager Fischer recalled being impressed with the composer's creativity and “innovative way of writing music,” he said.

So bringing “Candide” to life later this season will be not only a tribute to the composer but also a warm memory for Fischer. And even though Jamie Bernstein will likely not be in attendance for the Utah Symphony’s production of the operetta, for her, “Candide” is also associated with special childhood memories— albeit in a much more humorous way.

“'I want to see the can-deee!'” Jamie Bernstein remembered crying as a 4-year old back in 1956 as her parents left for the premiere of “Candide.”

“I thought that was what my mother said. She said she was on her way to see candy, so I wanted to go along,” Jamie Bernstein recalled. “And then when they wouldn’t take me I had a total meltdown because it was just clearly not fair that they were going to see candy and not taking their child.”

This snippet from Jamie Bernstein’s childhood is one of many experiences the author includes in her memoir, “Famous Father Girl” (she owes a close friend thanks for teasing her with that name in the second grade).

For Jamie Bernstein, sharing memories of her father with the public is another way to help keep his memory alive. And with its upcoming performances, the Utah Symphony has made it clear it wants to play a role in that objective.

Associated Press
In this Sept. 24, 1962, file photo, Leonard Bernstein leads the New York Philharmonic Orchestra in the inaugural concert in New York's new Philharmonic Hall. Bernstein would have turned 100 last month on Aug. 25. In celebration of his birthday, the Utah Symphony will perform a program on Sept. 13, 14 and 15 titled "Bernstein on Broadway." The program will feature a wide range of hits from musicals including "On the Town" and "West Side Story."

"When it’s the year (Leonard Bernstein) should have been 100 years old, I would have felt really embarrassed not to have a massive celebration for such a legendary American artist," Fischer said. "I really wanted to pay a very, very strong tribute to him.”

If you go …

What: “Bernstein on Broadway”

When: Sept. 13, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Browning Center, Weber State University, Ogden

How much: $15-$46 for adults, $5 for children under age 12

Web:symphonyballet.org

Also …

What: “Bernstein on Broadway”

When: Sept. 14 and 15, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Abravanel Hall, 123 W. South Temple

How much: $15-$68

Web: my.usuo.org