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The Influence of Western European Composers throughout the Romantic and Classical Period: 1750- 1900; E.T. Feb. 17/ 2011

  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756- 1791)

    Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756- 1791)
    Born in Salzburg, Austria, Mozart was a child prodigy who traveled Europe, playing for people of the highest stature. One thing that distinguished Mozart from the rest of the composers was his inclusion of a number of topics in one piece (e.g. inclusion of many emotional styles or emotions which would flow naturally together). An example of this is Piano Sonata in F major, no. 2 (1750)
  • Period: to

    The Influence of Western European Composers throughout the Romantic and Classical Period: 1750- 1900

  • Ludwig van Beethoven (1770- 1827)

    Ludwig van Beethoven (1770- 1827)
    Beethoven was a famous composer who left a lasting impression in Europe. He expanded the direction of symphonies during his time: larger works (in terms of length and sections) as well as added a CODA. These changes can be noted in Symphony No. 3 in E flat Major (Eroica) which was originally written for Napoleon (1804) URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SqDPZOtKtMc
  • Franz Schubert (1797- 1928)

    Franz Schubert (1797- 1928)
    Well respected for songs for voice and piano, Schubert was a Viennese composer known for his German lieder (German for songs), which contained many duets between vocalists and pianists. One of his best lieds was his take on a section of Goethe’s Faust, called Gretchen am Spinnrade, where Schubert intrinsically sets the tone for both the pianist and singer (1808)
  • Gioachino Rossini (1792- 1868)

    Gioachino Rossini (1792- 1868)
    During the first part of the 19th century, Rossini was known for creating and using bel canto style operas, which means, “beautiful singing style”. This would allow the written melodies to express the soloist’s voice with many embellishments in the melody line. Rossini’s The Barber of Seville was an example of this (1816)
  • Franz Liszt (1811- 1886)

    Franz Liszt (1811- 1886)
    Liszt, a famous Hungarian composer, invented the idea of the solo recital. Since concerts used to incorporate different types of solo performances (arias, singing, piano, etc.), Liszt brought forth the idea of the “recital”, where one type of music would be played (a single instrument). The term solo recital had been adopted from the English term for poetic recitals. One of many solo recitals by Liszt included Variation on a Waltz by Diabelli (1822)
  • Robert Schumann (1810- 1856)

    Robert Schumann (1810- 1856)
    As a German composer, Schumann also composed lieder, where his contribution to German song was the idea of a song cycle, composing a set of songs with a common theme, for example, Papillons (1829)
  • Hector Berlioz (1803- 1869)

    Hector Berlioz (1803- 1869)
    Berlioz was an important figure in program music, and the art of orchestration. As a French composer, Berlioz revised the Treatise on Instrumentation, specifying that instruments were primarily to depict the narrative of a story. This received much criticism, as other composers, like Schumann, challenged him saying that “if you understand music, you don’t need a description”. One of Berlioz’s pieces which he is most famous for, is Symphonie Fantastique (1830)
  • Frederic Chopin (1810- 1849)

    Frederic Chopin (1810- 1849)
    Chopin, a Polish composer, was known for his character pieces, which were short, specific pieces intended to convey a general mood with no typical form. These pieces were inspired by various types of dances, and Italian operas. Chopin wrote many nocturnes, short pieces depicting a mood, his most famous being Nocturne in D Major, Op. 27 No. 2 (1835) URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kmo0H3jxGCA
  • Giuseppe Verdi (1813- 1901)

    Giuseppe Verdi (1813- 1901)
    Known to have been influenced by earlier bel canto operas, Verdi departed from bel canto operas, and incorporated more of a nationalistic feel to his music with the use of more instruments as well as choruses into his operas (not only solo parts). Rigoletto, a playwright originally by Victor Hugo, is one of Verdi’s more well known pieces, and demonstrates his change to opera music in the later 19th century (1851)
  • Richard Wagner (1813- 1883)

    Richard Wagner (1813- 1883)
    One of the most controversial and influential musicians of the late 19th century, Wagner developed the theory of Gesamtkunstwerk, meaning “Total Art Work”. This theory stated that all the elements of a story should be equally valued and tell a story on their own. He was also known for using leitmotives, short segments of melody which reoccur through the opera. One of Wagner’s most famous pieces which incorporated Gesamtkunstwerk and leitmotives was Tristan und Isolde (1859)
  • Citations

    Mitchell, A. “Introduction to the History of Music II.” Music 1AA3. Hamilton, ON. Winter 2008. Lecture.
    Music with Ease. Pictures of Famous Composers, 2005- 2011. Web. 17 February 2011.

    YouTube. “Artur Rubinstein- Chopin- Nocturne in D flat major, Op. 27 No.2”. YouTube. N. p. May 2009. Web. 17 February 2011.
    YouTube. “Beethoven Symphony No.3 in E flat major, ‘Eroica’ Op.55 (1)”. YouTube. N. p. March 2010. Web. 17 February 2011.