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Dearest LennyLetters from Japan and the Making of the World Maestro$
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Mari Yoshihara

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190465780

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190465780.001.0001

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Exploring the Uncharted

Exploring the Uncharted

(p.184) 19 Exploring the Uncharted
Dearest Lenny

Mari Yoshihara

Oxford University Press

In the late 1980s, the Amberson staff began exploring the possibility of Bernstein touring China with the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO) to work with young Chinese musicians. While building a relationship with the Chinese government officials required a great deal of diplomatic skills, realizing the tour demanded financial resources unavailable in China. After much careful negotiation, the organizers secured the sponsorship of Japan’s Nomura Securities and presented a strong proposal to the Chinese officials. All of the complex planning came to an abrupt halt with the Tiananmen Square Massacre on June 4, 1989, which caused the organizers to cancel the China portion of the project. Bernstein’s dream of working with Chinese students and sharing music with Chinese audiences was shattered by political and military suppression.

Keywords:   Leonard Bernstein, China, London Symphony Orchestra (LSO), Center for United States–China Arts Exchange (CUSCAE), Harry Kraut, Tiananmen Square Massacre

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