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.
Medieval

Hildegard of Bingen

  • An 11th-century composer, author, and political and spiritual advisor, known for her liturgical works and credited with writing the first morality play.

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Late Romantic/Early Modern

Holst, Gustav

The composer of one of the most popular orchestral works of all time, The Planets.
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Romantic/20th century

Ives, Charles

Innovative composer who mixed popular and church music from his youth with far-reaching experiments in musical techniques. He is one of the most renowned and influential American composers.
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20th Century

Joplin, Scott

The “King of Ragtime,” during its heyday in the 1890s-1910s, Joplin published more than 40 rags, and also composed two operas.
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Renaissance

Josquin des Prez

  • The Beethoven of the Renaissance; his style set the standard for vocal part-music in the 1500s, and he was constantly imitated and referred to.

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Romantic

Liszt, Franz

As much a superstar in his time as Michael Jackson was in ours, he revolutionized the art of piano playing. As a composer he remains most famous for his tuneful and brilliant Hungarian Rhapsodies.
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Romantic

Mahler, Gustav

  • Last of the great line of German symphonists. One of the musicians who bridged Romanticism and the early Modernist era at the turn of the 20th century.

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Romantic

Mendelssohn(-Bartholdy), Felix

  • “The Mozart of the Nineteenth Century,” according to Robert Schumann. Mendelssohn’s Romanticism was tempered by a love of J.S. Bach and other German classic composers.

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Baroque

Monteverdi, Claudio

  • "Papa" of opera. His music was an important bridge from Renaissance to Baroque aesthetics.

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Classical

Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus

  • Mozart was a supreme melodist and is one of the most popular classical composers of all time. “Mozartean” is practically synonymous with elegance and grace.

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