Composer Gallery

Here are quick and easy reference guides to the all-time great composers, a roster that we're always expanding. For each composer, you'll find vital statistics (birth, death, nationality), a short biographical sketch and a few fun facts, plus a basic guide to the music and a list of weblinks and resources, plus a few of the most famous tunes and one or two videos. Whether you're heading off to a concert, writing a research paper, looking for reliable, current information, or just want to explore some cool music and video, this is the first stop on your web search.
Baroque

Bach, Johann Sebastian

  • Bach was a formidable intellectual and technical composer, but his music is also uplifting and spiritual, melodic, and rhythmically irresistible. Few names in music are as revered as Bach’s.

More »
20th-Century

Barber, Samuel

American composer noted for craft and emotional power. His Adagio for Strings is one of the more popular classical works of the mid-20th century.
More »
20th Century

Bartók, Béla

  • One of the most celebrated early 20th-century composers. He collected and studied Eastern European folk music, which became the basis of his mature compositions.

More »
Classical

Beethoven, Ludwig van

  • The most famous and influential composer in music history. His life and music provided the template for musical Romanticism.

More »
20th Century

Berg, Alban

A Viennese composer whose romantic modernism is unique and multifaceted. His music communicates with audiences despite his adoption of "atonal" musical techniques.
More »
Romantic

Berlioz, Hector

  • His heart on his sleeve, fanatically dedicated, disillusioned, bushy-haired—Berlioz was the archetypal Romantic composer.  He composed mostly large-scale orchestral and choral works.

More »
20th Century

Bernstein, Leonard

  • American composer of everything from popular musicals to symphonies. He was also the most eminent and successful conductor born in the United States.

More »
Romantic

Bizet, Georges

  • Composer of the opera Carmen and a handful of other popular works.

More »
Romantic

Borodin, Alexander Porfir′yevich

Full-time chemist, part time genius composer.
More »
Romantic

Brahms, Johannes

  • Often called the successor to Beethoven, Brahms achieved greatness in a wide variety of genres. Despite his intellectual rigor, he is one of the most popular Romantic composers.

More »