The festival, which celebrates both the 90th anniversary of Bernstein's birth and the 50th anniversary of his appointment as the Philharmonic's music director, features over 30 events and runs through Dec. 13.
The festival kicks off at 7 PM with a gala celebrating the start of Carnegie Hall's 118th season. The all-Bernstein evening features the San Francisco Symphony conducted by musical director Michael Tilson Thomas. Also scheduled to perform are two-time Tony Award winner Christine Ebersole, soprano Dawn Upshaw, baritone Thomas Hampson and cellist Yo-Yo Ma.
The program for the evening follows:
Symphonic dances from West Side Story
Selections from A Quiet Place, including Prelude from Act I, "You're Late," Interlude, Morning. Good morning, and Postlude from Act I
"I Can Cook Too" from On the Town
Meditation from Mass
"What a Movie!" from Trouble in Tahiti
"To What You Said" from Songfest
Selection from Fancy Free
"Gee, Officer Krupke" from West Side Story
"Ya Got Me" from On The Town
"Great Performances" will present a national broadcast of the concert Oct. 29 on PBS; check local listings.
Tickets, priced $56-$190, are available by visiting www.carnegiehall.org. Carnegie Hall is located in Manhattan at 57th Street and Seventh Avenue.
On Nov. 14, 2008, the New York Philharmonic will present an all-Bernstein program led by music director designate Alan Gilbert. The evening will include Bernstein's music for the concert hall, theatre and film, including two West Side Story suites.
The City Center Encores! series will also pay tribute to Bernstein with a semi-staged production of the classic Bernstein, Comden and Green musical On the Town. The musical comedy will play City Center Nov. 19-23, 2008.
Some of the many other highlights of the Festival follow.
•Oct. 17 at 8 PM at Carnegie Hall's Stern Auditorium
The New York Pops at Carnegie Hall: The Bernstein Songbook
Tony winner Lillias White and Christiane Noll will join The New York Pops and conductor Constantine Kitsopoulos for an evening of Bernstein's best-loved songs.
•Oct. 22 at 7:30 PM at Carnegie Hall's Zankel Hall
Standard Time with Michael Feinstein
Vocalist/pianist Feinstein will explore Bernstein's song output.
•Oct. 24 at 8 PM at Carnegie Hall's Stern Auditorium
Bernstein's Mass featuring Marin Alsop and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra as well as the Morgan State University Choir and Brooklyn Youth Chorus.
There will also be several film screenings: "The Joy of Music: Leonard Bernstein on Film" (Oct. 15-Nov. 1 at the Walter Reade Theater at Lincoln Center); "Leonard Bernstein: Reaching for the Note" (Oct. 16 at the Jewish Museum at 5th Avenue and 92nd Street); and "Bernstein's Broadway" (Nov. 8-23 at the Paley Center for Media).
The Festival will also feature panel discussions and lectures, exhibitions, educational activities and family concerts.
In addition to his classical composition, Bernstein's Broadway work includes On the Town, Peter Pan, Wonderful Town, All in One, The Lark, Candide, West Side Story, The Firstborn, 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and The Madwoman of Central Park West.
Single tickets for Bernstein festival performances and events will go on sale in summer 2008. For ticket information and programming updates, visit www.bernsteinfestival.org.