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Felicia Cohn Montealegre (San Jose, Costa Rica, February 6, 1922 – East Hampton, New York, June 16, 1978) was a Costa Rican actress married to composer and director Leonard Bernstein .
Cohn Montealegre was born in the Barrio Amón of the Carmen district, San José, Costa Rica, was the daughter of the Costa Rican Clemencia Montealegre Carazo, and Roy Elwood Cohn, director of the American Smelting and Refining Company (not to be confused with Roy Cohn , Joseph McCarthy’s assistant) Her maternal grandfather was Jewish although she grew up Catholic and converted to Judaism by marrying Leonard Bernstein.
Known as the “most beautiful woman in Costa Rica and established in New York, she studied piano with Claudio Arrau [appointment required] knowing Leonard Bernstein at a party given by Arrau in 1946 [citation required]. He had a long relationship with the actor Richard Hart and after his death in 1950 he married Bernstein in 1951. They had three children, Jamie (1952), Alexander (1955) and Nina (1962). of the Upper West Side.
In 1970, she and her husband organized a charity event for the Black Panthers where The New York Times initially supported but later had negative reactions due to an irreverent article by Tom Wolfe that coined the term «Radical Chic » The couple responded in solidarity with the concern for civil rights and individual liberties.
Bernstein assumed his bisexuality in 1976 and left Felicia for his partner Tom Cothran. The following year, when she was diagnosed with lung cancer, she returned accompanying her until her death.
As an actress she participated in the recitation of Kaddish Symphony and in The Martyrdom of Saint Sebastian (Debussy).
On television he starred in Henrik Ibsen’s Dollhouse and on Broadway in “Poor Murderer” in 1976. In 1955 he starred opposite Louis Jourdan in Jacques Deval’s “Tonight in Samarkand” in Princeton.
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