This week we’re looking at Maestro, Bradley Cooper’s new movie about Leonard Bernstein. Bernstein has been a favorite of mine since I happened upon a lecture he gave in the 70s charting the development of music from a single note to the full musical polyphony we have today, as well as the two polarities in nature that transform sound into art (The Greatest Five Minutes in Musical Education).
Maestro tells the story of Bernstein in three distinct periods, each rendered with the perspective and language of the time, quite literally in the first segment which is filmed in 35mm black and white and spoken in the Mid-Atlantic accent. It’s one of the best attempts I’ve seen at resisting interpreting the past through contemporary sensibilities. As such we get a palpable transmission of the evolution of not only the artist himself but also the culture at large.
This episode is edited from my live Fireside Chat, hosted by the Integral Life practice community. Nomali Perera, the founder of the community (and lover of Maestro), and several listeners weigh in too. I hope you can join us for the next Fireside Chat on Wednesday, February 21, at 1pm PT, 9pm GMT, where we look at culture and politics through an integral lens.
I hope you enjoy the episode and check out Maestro on Netflix and in theaters.