Leonard Bernstein in 1955.

(Photo: Public domain)

Nigel Simeone, author of “The Leonard Bernstein Letters,” visits Denver tonight for a talk at the Neustadt JAAMM Fest at Mizel Arts and Culture Center.

Simeone will discuss the well-received book as part of “A Celebration of Leonard Bernstein,” starting at 7 p.m. tonight.

Simeone spoke with CPR’s Charley Samson about Bernstein’s relationship with his family; his struggle to balance conducting and composing; his tense encounters with the House Committee on Un-American Activities; and what he taught Colorado Symphony Music Director Laureate Marin Alsop.

JAAMM, now in its seventh year, celebrates Jewish culture and art.

Watch a video of Bernstein conducting using only facial expressions: 

Watch Bernstein conduct without using his hands or a baton.