Antonio Lucio Vivaldi (March 4, 1678 – July 28, 1741), nicknamed il Prete Rosso ("The Red Priest"), was a Venetian Baroque composer, priest, and famous virtuoso violinist. He was born and raised in the Republic of Venice. The Four Seasons, a popular series of four violin concerti, is his best-known work. His other compositions include over 500 instrumental concertos, sacred choral works and over 40 operas.
Antonio Salieri (18 August 1750 – 7 May 1825) was an Italian composer, conductor and teacher born in the Republic of Venice, but who spent his adult life and career as a faithful subject of the Hapsburg Monarchy. Salieri was a pivotal figure in the development of late 18th century opera. As a student of Florian Leopold Gassmann, and a protege of Gluck, Salieri was a cosmopolitan composer who wrote operas in three languages.
Anton Diabelli (5 September 1781 – 8 April 1858) was an Austrian music publisher, editor and composer. Best known in his time as a publisher, he is most familiar today as the composer of the waltz on which Ludwig van Beethoven wrote his set of thirty-three Diabelli Variations. Diabelli was born in Mattsee near Salzburg. He was trained to enter the priesthood, but also took music lessons with Michael Haydn.
Alessandro Scarlatti (2 May 1660 – 24 October 1725) was an Italian Baroque composer especially famous for his operas and chamber cantatas. He is considered the founder of the Neapolitan school of opera. He was the father of two other composers, Domenico Scarlatti and Pietro Filippo Scarlatti.
Alban Maria Johanne Berg (February 9, 1885 – December 24, 1935) was an Austrian composer. He was a member of the Second Viennese School with Arnold Schoenberg and Anton Webern, and produced compositions that combined Mahlerian Romanticism with a personal adaptation of Schoenberg's twelve-tone technique.
Béla Viktor János Bartók (March 25, 1881 – September 26, 1945) was a Hungarian composer and pianist. He is considered to be one of the greatest composers of the 20th century and is regarded, along with Liszt, as his country's greatest composer (Gillies 2001). Through his collection and analytical study of folk music, he was one of the founders of ethnomusicology.
Claudio Giovanni Antonio Monteverdi (15 May 1567 – 29 November 1643) was an Italian composer, gambist, and singer. Monteverdi's work, often regarded as revolutionary, marked the transition from the Renaissance style of music to that of the Baroque period. He developed two individual styles of composition: the new basso continuo technique of the Baroque and the heritage of Renaissance polyphony.
Achille-Claude Debussy (August 22, 1862 – March 25, 1918) was a French composer. Along with Maurice Ravel, he was one of the most prominent figures working within the field of impressionist music, though he himself intensely disliked the term when applied to his compositions. Debussy is not only among the most important of all French composers but also a central figure in European music at the turn of the twentieth century. He was made Chevalier de la Légion d'honneur in 1903.
Domenico Alberti (c. 1710 – 1740) was an Italian singer, harpsichordist, and composer whose works bridge the Baroque and Classical periods. Alberti was born in Venice and studied music with Antonio Lotti. He wrote operas, songs, and sonatas for keyboard instruments, for which he is best known today. These sonatas frequently employ a particular kind of arpeggiated accompaniment in the left hand that is now known as the Alberti bass.
Dmitri Dmitriyevich Shostakovich (25 September 1906 – 9 August 1975) was a Russian composer of the Soviet period and one of the most celebrated composers of the 20th century. Shostakovich achieved fame in the Soviet Union under the patronage of Leon Trotsky's chief of staff Mikhail Tukhachevsky, but later had a complex and difficult relationship with the Stalinist bureaucracy. His music was officially denounced twice, in 1936 and 1948, and was periodically banned.
Gioachino Antonio Rossini (February 29, 1792 – November 13, 1868) was an Italian composer who wrote 39 operas as well as sacred music, chamber music, songs, and some instrumental and piano pieces. His best known operatic works include Il barbiere di Siviglia, La Cenerentola, La gazza ladra (The Thieving Magpie) and Guillaume Tell. A tendency for inspired, song-like melodies is evident throughout his scores, which led to the nickname "The Italian Mozart.
Giacomo Antonio Domenico Michele Secondo Maria Puccini (22 December 1858 – 29 November 1924) was an Italian composer whose operas, including La bohème, Tosca, Madama Butterfly and Turandot, are among the most frequently performed in the standard repertoire. Some of his arias, such as "O mio babbino caro" from Gianni Schicchi, "Che gelida manina" from La bohème, and "Nessun dorma" from Turandot, have become part of popular culture.
George Frideric Handel (23 February 1685 – 14 April 1759) was a German-English Baroque composer who is famous for his operas, oratorios, and concertos. Handel was born in Germany in the same year as JS Bach and Domenico Scarlatti. He received critical musical training in Italy before settling in London and becoming a naturalised British subject. His works include Messiah, Water Music, and Music for the Royal Fireworks.
Georg Philipp Telemann was a German Baroque music composer and multi-instrumentalist, born in Magdeburg. Self-taught in music, he studied law at the University of Leipzig. Often described as the most prolific composer in history (at least in terms of surviving oeuvre), he was a contemporary of Johann Sebastian Bach, Antonio Vivaldi and a lifelong friend of George Frideric Handel.
George Gershwin (September 26, 1898 – July 11, 1937) was an American composer and pianist. Gershwin's compositions spanned both popular and classical genres, and his most popular melodies are widely known. He wrote most of his vocal and theatrical works, including more than a dozen Broadway shows, in collaboration with his elder brother, lyricist Ira Gershwin.
Henry Purcell (10 September 1659 – 21 November 1695), was an English organist and Baroque composer of secular and sacred music. Although Purcell incorporated Italian and French stylistic elements into his compositions, his legacy was a uniquely English form of Baroque music.
Isaac Albéniz i Pascual (29 May 1860, Camprodon – 18 May 1909, Cambo-les-Bains) was a Spanish Catalan pianist and composer best known for his piano works based on folk music idioms (many of which have been transcribed by others for guitar).
John Coolidge Adams (born February 15, 1947) is a Pulitzer Prize-winning American composer with strong roots in minimalism. His best-known works include On the Transmigration of Souls (2002), a choral piece commemorating the victims of the September 11, 2001 attacks (for which he won the Pulitzer Prize for Music in 2003), and Shaker Loops (1978), a minimalist four-movement work for strings.
Karlheinz Stockhausen (22 August 1928 – 5 December 2007) was a German composer, widely acknowledged by critics as one of the most important (Barrett 1988, 45; Harvey 1975b, 705; Hopkins 1972, 33; Klein 1968, 117) but also controversial (Power 1990, 30) composers of the twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. Another critic calls him "one of the great visionaries of 20th-century music" (Hewett 2007).
Ludwig van Beethoven (baptised 17 December 1770 – 26 March 1827) was a German composer and pianist. He was a crucial figure in the transitional period between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western classical music, and remains one of the most acclaimed and influential composers of all time.
Max Steiner (May 10, 1888 – December 28, 1971) was an Vienna-born American composer of music for theatre productions and films. He probably is known best for the score he composed for Gone with the Wind and for the score and theme song for the film A Summer Place. Steiner was born as Maximilian Raoul Steiner in Vienna, Austria-Hungary.
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, often called Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky in English, was a Russian composer of the Romantic era. Tchaikovsky wrote music across a range of genres, including symphony, opera, ballet, instrumental, chamber and song.