Leonard Bernstein’s Daughter on ‘Surreal’ Experience Seeing Maestro Film About Her Family: ‘What a Ride’

Nina Bernstein Simmons, Alexander Bernstein and Jamie Bernstein attend the red carpet for Maestro
Nina, Alexander and Jamie Bernstein on the “Maestro” premiere through the 61st New York Movie Pageant at David Geffen Corridor on Oct. 2, 2023.Photograph:

Jamie McCarthy/Getty

Leonard Bernstein’s daughter Jamie and her siblings had a “surreal” expertise seeing their household’s life portrayed on the large display.

At a press convention Tuesday attended by PEOPLE, Jamie, 71, reacted to seeing Maestro at its New York Movie Pageant premiere inside David Geffen Corridor, the place her late musician father carried out many occasions earlier than.

She mentioned she and her siblings Alexander and Nina attended the Monday evening premiere collectively and felt their late dad and mom there with them.

“Seeing it in Geffen Corridor — you realize, the very corridor the place we watched our dad conduct a whole bunch of occasions as we had been rising up — was so gratifying,” she mentioned, “and such an virtually mystical circularity for our lives that we shared with the three of us collectively, and with our dad and mom.”

“Seeing the ultimate model on that enormous display with the unimaginable Dolby Atmos sound was simply overwhelmingly thrilling,” continued Jamie. “And in addition very surreal, after all.”

Bradley Cooper directed Maestro and stars as Bernstein reverse Carey Mulligan as his spouse, the actress Felicia Montealegre. Maya Hawke portrays Jamie within the movie.

Josh Singer, Jamie Berstein and Kristie Macosko Krieger attend the 61st New York Film Festival - Maestro Press Conference
Josh Singer, Jamie Berstein and Kristie Macosko Krieger on the New York Movie Pageant on Oct. 3, 2023.

Theo Wargo/Getty 

Bernstein died in 1990 at age 72, and Montealegre died of most cancers in 1978 at 56. Jamie mentioned seeing the movie be made was an “monumental journey” for his or her household.

“All the best way alongside it has been surreal to see these two individuals turning into increasingly more and extra like our personal dad and mom, however at completely different ages, and typically they’re older than we at the moment are and typically they’re method youthful and typically we are the youngsters,” she mentioned.

An impudent smile on little Jamie's face as she sits at her father's side when he works at the piano shows she has no awe of the Bernstein genius.
Leonard Bernstein with daughter Jamie, c. Nineteen Fifties.

Bettmann Archive/Getty

“You possibly can think about, it is like having a really unusual dream, the place you are in your own home however it’s type of not your own home, and also you’re together with your dad and mom however they’re type of not your dad and mom however they’re,” mentioned Jamie. “It has that type of dreamlike high quality for us. However what a experience.

Jamie, who revealed the memoir Well-known Father Woman: A Memoir of Rising Up Bernstein in 2018, mentioned Cooper stored her and her siblings concerned all through the method.

“Bradley was so beneficiant about together with my brother and sister and me with him on his personal journey with this movie — which was one thing he did not must do, essentially,” she mentioned. “As soon as we gave him permission to make the movie, he may’ve simply gone off and by no means consulted with us once more, had he wished to. However, as an alternative he made us a part of his personal journey.”

Maestro co-writer Josh Singer mentioned Cooper had private recordings and tapes of the Bernstein household that he “listened to advert nauseam.” Singer added, “A lot in order that he used to have the ability to write stuff and I would go, ‘Oh, which guide did you get that from?’ and he’d go, ‘No, no, no; I simply wrote that.’ ”

“He actually may channel Lenny in that method. That is how deep he went. Bradley was a lightning rod as soon as he got here on,” mentioned Singer.

Maestro is on Netflix Dec. 20.

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