Anyone who loves music, especially modern jazz of the '50's & '60's, will love this. If you happen to also like the symphonic-sound, even better! The idea of Leonard Bernstein and the New York Philharmonic Orchestra as back-ups to the Dave Brubeck quartet is mind-blowing. The principal piece, "Dialogues for Jazz Combo and Orchestra," was written by Howard Brubeck, and played flawlessly by Bernstein and the New York Philharmonic. Intermingled with orchestra's presentation of the four movements of "Dialogues" (Allegro, Andante-Ballad, Adagio-Ballad, & Allegro-Blues) were the jazz-quartet's special magic. Much as a conventional classical-score would provide spaces for a solo classical artist, "Dialogues" provided spaces for Brubeck's jazz accompaniments; sometimes blended with the full orchestra, sometimes alone. The original presentation was December 10-13, 1959. "Dialogues" was releases several times over the years, later re-titled as "The Dave Brubeck Quartet Plays Music from West Side Story." Still a stunning experience on CD. Listen to all 4 movements uninterrupted, just as you would hear a symphony by Rimsky-Korsakov, Dvorak, Beethoven, or Bach.
The "B-side" of the original L.P. contained 4 jazz pieces by the quartet, principally from "West Side Story" - Maria, I Feel Pretty, A Quiet Girl, and Tonight. The newer CD version includes some wonderfully welcomed Brubeck classics.