Extroverted. Acrobatic. Exciting. Contagious. The list of adjectives that may be used to describe Leonard Bernstein is a long one. Two thousand and eighteen marks his centennial – Bernstein at 100 – and Santa Cecilia could not miss the occasion to give him his due. Bernstein had a privileged relationship with the Accademia in the 1980s, when he was made Honorary President of Orchestra di Santa Cecilia. His concerts are remembered as the most exciting events during those years, and from those years a great deal of significant work remains, in recordings and on video. His personality, one of the twentieth century’s most influential, came through with all its sincerity and enthusiasm in every activity he undertook. As conductor, he was known for his overwhelming involvement in the music, but the same may be said for him as composer, pianist, teacher, author of musicals –West Side Story among others – writer, and public figure engaged in civil activism. He was explosive, contagious, eclectic and wilful: an artist who experienced his era with passion, and who always looked upon the world with positive trust. His music gathers every possible stimulus in this life experience for a kaleidoscopic set of heterogeneous elements embracing the great tradition of German music, jazz, pop songs, and religious music – always animated by the vitality that was “Lenny” Bernstein’s most characteristic trait.