Maestro is the next big movie to feature the life of a classical musician. This time it is based on the life of the legenary conductor and composer Leonard Bernstein. Due for limited theatrical release in the US on 22 November and globally in early December, it will be streamed on Netflix from 20 December. Directed, written, produced by, and starring Bradley Cooper in the title role, opposite Carey Mulligan, Maestro tells the towering love story behind the lifelong relationship between Leonard Bernstein and Felicia Montealegre Cohn Bernstein.
The soundtrack to the movie includes some of Bernstein’s most unforgettable works, including West Side Story, Candide, On the Town, Mass, Chichester Psalms and Symphonies Nos. 2 and 3. It also includes music by Beethoven, Mahler, Schumann and Walton, telling the story of Bernstein’s career and marriage in music.
Deutsche Grammophon will be releasing the original soundtrack album for the movie, played by the London Symphony Orchestra and Yannick Nézet-Séguin, who also worked closely with Cooper as conducting consultant throughout the creative process.
The album will be released digitally on 17 November 2023, and on CD and vinyl on 1 December.
Listen to a taster track featuring an excerpt from the Finale of Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 “Resurrection”, with soprano Rosa Feola, mezzo-soprano Isabel Leonard, the London Symphony Chorus and the LSO, conducted by Cooper who has been surrounded and captivated by classical music since childhood.
Cooper, who also co-wrote Maestro with Josh Singer, worked closely with Bernstein’s three children, Jamie, Nina and Alexander in preparation for the filming. To make his portrayal of both the man and the artist as authentic as possible, he immersed himself in the classical world, spending hours with the New York Philharmonic and other orchestras, and learning from conductors Michael Tilson Thomas, Gustavo Dudamel and Yannick Nézet-Séguin who assisted Cooper on set, notably on location at Ely Cathedral for a magical re enactment of Bernstein’s famous recording of Mahler’s “Resurrection” Symphony. He now hopes the soundtrack will inspire listeners to explore further the output of a man he considers to have been the most influential musician of the 20th century.
DG is currently reissuing a number of the landmark recordings Bernstein made with the Yellow Label during the last decade or so of his life. Out on 1 December (digitally and on 2 CDs), The Maestro – Very Best of Bernstein is a compilation album offering the perfect introduction to his work, while his iconic recording of Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 with the New York Philharmonic is available now on 2 LPs. Bernstein’s readings of Mozart’s Symphonies Nos. 35 “Haffner” and 41 “Jupiter”, Mahler’s Fifth Symphony and the same composer’s Sixth Symphony and Kindertotenlieder will be issued in new Dolby Atmos remastered versions on 3 November, 24 November and 22 December respectively. Finally, the label is releasing a 10 album Digital Library A–Z presenting Bernstein’s complete recordings for Deutsche Grammophon & Decca. Six albums are already available, and the remaining four will be issued weekly between now and the end of November. Together they encompass over 260 hours of superlative Bernstein recordings.