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Leonard Bernstein's second Omnibus episode is on jazz music. Instead of following the traditional 1950s historical approach to the genre, Bernstein uses storytelling and live performances to examine the "very innards of jazz" and help his audience understand the principal features of this typically American music.
Launched by the Ford Foundation in the 1950s as a way of improving Americans' cultural knowledge, the hit television series quickly drew a cult following, winning multiple awards, including no less than seven Emmys. It was broadcast first by ABC, then CBS, and finally NBC. medici.tv offers here the seven episodes curated and hosted by Leonard Bernstein, episodes in which he made his TV debut as a music educator. To say that these appearances proved incredibly successful is an understatement: on November 29, 1954—just 15 days after the critically-acclaimed first episode on Beethoven's Fifth Symphony—he was on the cover of Life magazine!