Felicia Cohn Montealegre (3 March 1922 – 16 June 1978) was an American stage and television actress born in Costa Rica. From 1951 until her death, she was the wife of American composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein.
Life and career
Cohn Montealegre was born on March 3, 1922 in Barrio Amón, San José, Costa Rica. She was raised Catholic, and later converted to Judaism, when marrying Leonard Bernstein (her own paternal grandfather had been Jewish). She established herself in New York. She studied piano with Claudio Arrau and met composer and conductor Leonard Bernstein at a party Arrau gave in 1946. She and Bernstein were engaged to be married but this was broken off. Subsequently she had an affair lasting for several years with Broadway and Hollywood actor Richard Hart. After Hart's death, she married Bernstein in 1951. They had three children, Jamie, Alexander and Nina.
She also appeared in several television dramas, including a 1950 dramatization of Henrik Ibsen's A Doll's House on Kraft Television Theatre, in which she played Nora. Another appearance on television includes the 1949 CBS teleplay (part of the "Studio One" series) based on Somerset Maugham's novel Of Human Bondage, in which Montealegre played Mildred opposite Philip Carey of Charlton Heston. Although Montealegre appeared on television, she made no feature films.
Montealegre starred in the 1976 Broadway play Poor Murderer. She features prominently in Tom Wolfe's essay "Radical Chic & Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers".
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- Leonard Bernstein: a life - Meryle Secrest - Google Books. Books.google.ca. Retrieved 2012-05-02.
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