Leonard Benstein

Jewish Composers: As American As Apple Pie

Reflections For Jewish American Heritage Month

05/28/2013
Special To The Jewish Week

Each time I hear “There’s a place for us” – the stirring plea for tolerance and acceptance sung by the ethnically mismatched lovers of “West Side Story” — I am reminded that it pinpoints a Jewish sensibility that influenced the show’s composer and lyricist. Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim’s musical about prejudice transformed Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet into an American classic.

"West Side Story" showed a composer's Jewish sensibility about prejudice.
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