Modern Music and American History

  • Richard Strauss composed Don Juan

    Richard Strauss in 1888, the year he composed Don Juan, a work emblematic of the élan vital and "breakaway mood" of modernism
  • Mahler started making symphonies

    In February and March 1888 Mahler sketched and completed his First Symphony, then in five movements. At around the same time Mahler discovered the German folk-poem collection Des Knaben Wunderhorn ("The Youth's Magic Horn"), which would dominate much of his compositional output for the following 12 years.
  • The Beginning of the Modern Music Era

    The Modern Period in Western music history lasted from approximately 1890 to 1945. As with Romanticism, Modernism is both a historical time period as well as a philosophical aesthetic. In everyday conversation, “modern” typically means current or recent.
  • Galveston hurricane

    Galveston hurricane leaves an estimated 6,000 to 8,000 dead. According to the census, the nation's population numbers nearly 76 million.
  • The 17th Amendment

    Seventeenth Amendment to the Constitution is ratified, providing for the direct election of U.S. senators by popular vote rather than by the state legislatures.
  • Igor Stravinsky made The Rite of Spring

    The Rite of Spring is a ballet and orchestral concert work by the Russian composer Igor Stravinsky. It was written for the 1913 Paris season of Sergei Diaghilev's Ballets Russes company; the original choreography was by Vaslav Nijinsky with stage designs and costumes by Nicholas Roerich. When first performed at the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées on 29 May 1913, the avant-garde nature of the music and choreography caused a sensation.
  • World War I occurred

    U.S. enters World War I, declaring war on Germany (April 6, 1917) and Austria-Hungary (Dec. 7, 1917) three years after conflict began in 1914.
  • The First Woman elected to the U.S. House of Representatives

    Jeannette Rankin of Montana is the first woman elected to the U.S. House of Representatives.
  • The 18th Amendment

    Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution is ratified, prohibiting the manufacture, sale, and transportation of liquor. It is later repealed by the Twenty-First Amendment in 1933.
  • Treaty of Versailles

    Treaty of Versailles, outlining terms for peace at the end of World War I, is rejected by the Senate.
  • Arnold Schoenberg experimented serialism

    Composer Arnold Schoenberg began experimenting with a form of atonality called serialism in the 1920s. In serialism, all twelve pitches of a chromatic scale had to sound before any could repeat.
  • Carl Dahlhaus was born

    Dahlhaus was born in Hanover on 10 June 1928. The Second World War interrupted his early education; he served on the front and as an anti-aircraft auxiliary.