“The Virginia Arts Festival and the Virginia Symphony Orchestra have joined forces, compiling a program that sweeps through Bernstein’s repertoire,” writes Rashod Ollison in Friday’s (4/12) Virginian-Pilot (Norfolk). “The shows, part of a national celebration of Bernstein at 100, are Friday at the Ferguson Center for the Arts in Newport News and Saturday at Chrysler Hall in Norfolk. Bernstein’s daughter Jamie will host the concerts and speak of her father’s legacy. JoAnn Falletta, music director for the VSO, will conduct the classical part of the Bernstein shows. While studying for her master’s degree at the Juilliard School in New York City, Falletta met the legendary conductor-composer. He sometimes visited the school to teach master classes in conducting…. Her biggest lesson from those master classes was the passion Bernstein stressed in the music, not just the technical details. ‘It was about what was human in the music, what was emotional in the music,’ Falletta says.… ‘Somewhere’ from ‘West Side Story’ is … one of Falletta’s personal favorites.… Falletta says, ‘We hear it at the end of the story when both gang leaders are dead. There’s a kind of a deep sense of loss and yet there’s hopefulness.’ ”

Posted April 16, 2018