Maestro – The Original Soundtrack Album
Posted November 17, 2023
Maestro – The Original Soundtrack Album
The peerless versatility of Leonard Bernstein:
Yannick Nézet-Séguin conducts the London Symphony Orchestra on a soundtrack that ranges from On the Town to Symphony No. 3 “Kaddish”
Maestro is the real deal: the rousing, complex and heartbreaking rhapsody its subject deserves”
Listen to the track from the Finale of Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 “Resurrection”, conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin and Bradley Cooper, featured in the Maestro trailer here
Directed, written, produced by, and starring Bradley Cooper in the title role, opposite Carey Mulligan, Maestro is a towering and fearless love story chronicling the lifelong relationship between Leonard Bernstein and Felicia Montealegre Cohn Bernstein. A love letter to life and art, Maestro at its core is an emotionally epic portrayal of family and love. Deutsche Grammophon is delighted to be releasing the original soundtrack album for the movie, which has already garnered widespread critical acclaim. All the music in the film was chosen by Cooper, and the new recordings on the soundtrack were made by the London Symphony Orchestra and Yannick Nézet-Séguin, who also worked closely with the actor-director as conducting consultant before and throughout the film-making process.
The album will be released digitally on 17 November 2023, and on CD and vinyl on 1 December. A preview 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, comes out on 27 October. Maestro is released in cinemas in the US on 22 November, in the UK on 24 November, and in the rest of the world between 1 and 8 December. It will then arrive on Netflix on 20 December.
Maestro’s director and star has been surrounded and captivated by classical music since childhood. “Many an opera and classical album were playing in our house growing up,” recalled Bradley Cooper, who was speaking before the current SAG-AFTRA strike. “I spent hours conducting an imaginary orchestra to the best of my 8-year-old ability. There was one recording of Leonard Bernstein on heavy rotation. So the pilot light I needed to make Maestro turned on many years before I actually came across the project.”
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. The latter then 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.
“Bernstein, from a very young age and throughout his life, was all about building bridges,” says Yannick Nézet-Séguin. “While his artistic output left him unclassifiable, performing and composing for symphony orchestras, Broadway shows, film, and ballet, he constantly fought society’s urge to categorize him, to pigeonhole him into one genre or another.”
The album reflects that uncategorisable musical character, presenting excerpts from works as varied as West Side Story, Candide, On the Town, Mass, Chichester Psalms and Symphonies Nos. 2 and 3, among others. It also includes music by Beethoven, Mahler, Schumann and Walton, used to illustrate key moments in Bernstein’s career and marriage. It was with Schumann’s “Manfred” Overture, for example, that he made his debut with the New York Philharmonic at the age of just 25, standing in at the last moment for an indisposed Bruno Walter.
Dr. Clemens Trautmann, President Deutsche Grammophon welcomes the younger generation’s celebration of this musical polymath. “Reality and fiction merge in Netflix’s Maestro – as do past and present – when we watch Bradley Cooper’s impressive portrayal of legendary Yellow Label artist Leonard Bernstein and listen to Yannick Nézet-Séguin, one of today’s leading conductors and himself an exclusive DG artist, on the official soundtrack, released with the same iconic yellow cartouche on the cover that used to adorn Lenny’s groundbreaking symphonic and opera releases. Yannick has championed Bernstein’s works throughout his career, his recordings including a gripping interpretation of Mass with The Philadelphia Orchestra. In our 125th-anniversary year, we at Deutsche Grammophon feel proud to have helped shape Bernstein’s recorded legacy and to have worked with the visionary Bradley Cooper, who shows us how contemporary – timeless, even – Lenny’s music and life story are. This album reflects our ongoing passion for collaborating with film-makers and bringing the worlds of cinema and classical music together.”
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.
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About Deutsche Grammophon
One of the most prestigious names in global classical music since its foundation in 1898, Deutsche Grammophon has always stood for the highest standards of artistry and sound quality. Home to the greatest artists of all time, the famous yellow label is a beacon to which music lovers all over the world look for outstanding musical interpretations, audio recordings and visual productions. Highly dedicated to the development of new repertoire in art music, Deutsche Grammophon fosters and promotes a whole range of popular contemporary artists and eminent composers. The label also prides itself on its innovative use of the latest technology to provide music digitally to audiences worldwide.