Download Famous Father Girl: A Memoir of Growing Up Bernstein Audiobook

Famous Father Girl: A Memoir of Growing Up Bernstein Audiobook, by Jamie Bernstein Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Jamie Bernstein Narrator: Jamie Bernstein Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: June 2018 ISBN: 9780062848413
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The oldest daughter of revered composer/conductor Leonard Bernstein offers a rare look at her father on the centennial of his birth in a deeply intimate and broadly evocative memoir.

The composer of On the Town and West Side Story, chief conductor of the New York Philharmonic, television star, humanitarian, friend of the powerful and influential, and the life of every party, Leonard Bernstein was an enormous celebrity during one of the headiest periods of American cultural life, as well as the most protean musician in twentieth century America. 

But to his eldest daughter, Jamie, he was above all the man in the scratchy brown bathrobe who smelled of cigarettes; the jokester and compulsive teacher who enthused about Beethoven and the Beatles; the insomniac whose 4 a.m. composing breaks involved spooning baby food out of the jar. He taught his daughter to love the world in all its beauty and complexity. In public and private, Lenny was larger than life.

In Famous Father Girl, Bernstein mines the emotional depths of her childhood and invites us into her family’s private world. A fantastic set of characters populates the Bernsteins’ lives, including: the Kennedys, Mike Nichols, John Lennon, Richard Avedon, Stephen Sondheim, Jerome Robbins, and Betty (Lauren) Bacall.

An intoxicating tale, Famous Father Girl is an intimate meditation on a complex and sometimes troubled man, the family he raised, and the music he composed that became the soundtrack to their entwined lives. Deeply moving and often hilarious, Bernstein’s beautifully written memoir is a great American story about one of the greatest Americans of the modern age.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “An in-depth, intimate view…Bernstein paints a fascinating picture of the dizzying magic that Leonard Bernstein brought to his music—and the complexity to his home life.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Leonard Bernstein’s…daughter recalls a father both out-scale grand and cozily familiar, playing the piano in the wee hours in his bathrobe.”

    Library Journal

  • “The challenges of living with a flamboyant, self-centered, and brilliant father…A cleareyed portrait of a spirited, and troubled, family.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “Jamie Bernstein has taken on perhaps the hardest task in literature, writing a memoir about a famous parent which manages to be both honest and tender.”

    Adam Gopnik, author of Paris to the Moon

  • “Jamie Bernstein’s compulsively readable adventure tale…tells of her growing up under the seductive spell of her father, the composer, the conductor, the true legend.”

    John Guare, author of The House of Blue Leaves

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About the Author

Jamie Bernstein is a writer, broadcaster, and filmmaker. She travels the world as a concert narrator, and her documentary, Crescendo: The Power of Music, is now available on Netflix. She lives in New York City.