The great composers of the 20th century

 

Tchaikovsky or Bruckner? Brahms or Schumann? It is difficult for inquiring minds to tackle such abundant fields as classical music and opera, covering 10 centuries of history: there are thousands of composers. Making a selection of musicians, such as a “top 10” for example, is a difficult and subjective exercise. A musical selection is often the expression of personal preferences or artistic opinions, very interesting but also very different according to critics or musicologists, or simply influenced by the context: will an English composer not be instinctively privileged by an English critic?

For example: in France, Charles Gounod, a 19th century French composer, is more easily mentioned than the Norwegian Edvard Grieg, who is more recognized in the world.

Timeline of classical music composers, between 1890 and 2000+ (modern & contemporary era)

Whoever wants to discover classical music or opera does not always have an experienced music lover, an expert or an educator at his or her side to support and guide him or her in these fields. So : Tchaikovsky (Russian composer) or Bruckner (Austrian composer) ? Mahler (Austrian late-Romantic composer) or Strauss (German composer and orchestra director) ? However, the knowledge available about musicians is enormous. It was processed to select the 10, 25, 50... most popular composers around the world, for those living or having lived between 1890 and 2000+ (modern & contemporary era). And this objectively, and for the first time (soClassiQ exclusivity).

Composers rendered as a timeline to bring a little perspective:

ComposersConductorsLyrical singersPerformers WorldwideEuropeNorth AmericaSouth AmericaAsiaOceaniaAfrica 2021

This timeline is interactive to navigate through the ages , or eras : medieval music, renaissance, baroque music (Bach...), classical period (Mozart...), romantic music (Beethoven...), XXth (Stravinsky), or across continents (with ).

Top 10 classical musiccomposers for the years 1890-2000+

Who are these greatest composers, the most famous over the 1890-2000+ era? The works of these musician have shaped the history of classical music and lyric art. There are those you probably know, or at least by name and the others.

Here are these 10 classical music composers, renowned artists from around the world:


Curious to know their most emblematic works? Just a click away to discover them.

The selections of musicians (classical music composers) proposed by soClassiQ are based exclusively on algorithms. The same applies to their works, the performers, the lyrical singers, les orchestras, the conductors and the venues : opera houses, concert halls or festivals.

What about the others? 25, 50 or more?

Summarizing to 10 musician names such a wide and diverse field may seem extreme or too simplistic for those who know classical music and lyrical art well, for those who can easily name 50 or more classical music composers. Gounod, Ravel, Rachmaninoff, Satie, Debussy, Bartók, Elgar...

At this time, soClassiQ has listed more than 18000 composers. So here is a selection of some composers for the modern & contemporary era, widely recognized around the world:

B

Mily <strong>Balakirev</strong> Mily BalakirevThe great composers of the 20th century
1837-1910 (Romantic)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Samuel <strong>Barber</strong> Samuel BarberThe great composers of the 20th century
1910-1981 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

John <strong>Barry</strong> John BarryThe great composers of the 20th century
1933-2011 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Béla <strong>Bartók</strong> Béla BartókThe great composers of the 20th century
1881-1945 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Amy <strong>Beach</strong> Amy BeachThe great composers of the 20th century
1867-1944 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Joshua <strong>Bell</strong> Joshua BellThe great composers of the 20th century
age 52 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Alban <strong>Berg</strong> Alban BergThe great composers of the 20th century
1885-1935 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Luciano <strong>Berio</strong> Luciano BerioThe great composers of the 20th century
1925-2003 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Leonard <strong>Bernstein</strong> Leonard BernsteinThe great composers of the 20th century
1918-1990 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Andrea <strong>Bocelli</strong> Andrea BocelliThe great composers of the 20th century
age 62 (20th century)
Lyrical singer, Performer & Composer

Lili <strong>Boulanger</strong> Lili BoulangerThe great composers of the 20th century
1893-1918 (20th century)
Composer

Nadia <strong>Boulanger</strong> Nadia BoulangerThe great composers of the 20th century
1887-1979 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Pierre <strong>Boulez</strong> Pierre BoulezThe great composers of the 20th century
1925-2016 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Johannes <strong>Brahms</strong> Johannes BrahmsThe great composers of the 20th century
1833-1897 (Romantic)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Benjamin <strong>Britten</strong> Benjamin BrittenThe great composers of the 20th century
1913-1976 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Max <strong>Bruch</strong> Max BruchThe great composers of the 20th century
1838-1920 (Romantic)
Conductor & Composer

Anton <strong>Bruckner</strong> Anton BrucknerThe great composers of the 20th century
1824-1896 (Romantic)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Hans von <strong>Bülow</strong> Hans von BülowThe great composers of the 20th century
1830-1894 (Romantic)
Conductor, Performer & Composer


G

Niels <strong>Gade</strong> Niels GadeThe great composers of the 20th century
1817-1890 (Romantic)
Conductor & Composer

George <strong>Gershwin</strong> George GershwinThe great composers of the 20th century
1898-1937 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Michael <strong>Giacchino</strong> Michael GiacchinoThe great composers of the 20th century
age 52 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Alberto <strong>Ginastera</strong> Alberto GinasteraThe great composers of the 20th century
1916-1983 (20th century)
Composer

Umberto <strong>Giordano</strong> Umberto GiordanoThe great composers of the 20th century
1867-1948 (20th century)
Composer

Philip <strong>Glass</strong> Philip GlassThe great composers of the 20th century
age 83 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Alexander <strong>Glazunov</strong> Alexander GlazunovThe great composers of the 20th century
1865-1936 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Jerry <strong>Goldsmith</strong> Jerry GoldsmithThe great composers of the 20th century
1929-2004 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Antônio Carlos <strong>Gomes</strong> Antônio Carlos GomesThe great composers of the 20th century
1836-1896 (Romantic)
Performer & Composer

Henryk <strong>Gorecki</strong> Henryk GoreckiThe great composers of the 20th century
1933-2010 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Glenn <strong>Gould</strong> Glenn GouldThe great composers of the 20th century
1932-1982 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Charles <strong>Gounod</strong> Charles GounodThe great composers of the 20th century
1818-1893 (Romantic)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Percy <strong>Grainger</strong> Percy GraingerThe great composers of the 20th century
1882-1961 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Enrique <strong>Granados</strong> Enrique GranadosThe great composers of the 20th century
1867-1916 (Romantic)
Performer & Composer

Edvard <strong>Grieg</strong> Edvard GriegThe great composers of the 20th century
1843-1907 (Romantic)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Sofia <strong>Gubaidulina</strong> Sofia GubaidulinaThe great composers of the 20th century
age 88 (20th century)
Performer & Composer


M

Yo-Yo <strong>Ma</strong> Yo-Yo MaThe great composers of the 20th century
age 64 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Lorin <strong>Maazel</strong> Lorin MaazelThe great composers of the 20th century
1930-2014 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Edward <strong>MacDowell</strong> Edward MacDowellThe great composers of the 20th century
1860-1908 (Romantic)
Performer & Composer

Gustav <strong>Mahler</strong> Gustav MahlerThe great composers of the 20th century
1860-1911 (Romantic)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Clint <strong>Mansell</strong> Clint MansellThe great composers of the 20th century
age 57 (20th century)
Lyrical singer, Performer & Composer

Neville <strong>Marriner</strong> Neville MarrinerThe great composers of the 20th century
1924-2016 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Bohuslav <strong>Martinů</strong> Bohuslav MartinůThe great composers of the 20th century
1890-1959 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Pietro <strong>Mascagni</strong> Pietro MascagniThe great composers of the 20th century
1863-1945 (20th century)
Conductor & Composer

Jules <strong>Massenet</strong> Jules MassenetThe great composers of the 20th century
1842-1912 (Romantic)
Performer & Composer

Olivier <strong>Messiaen</strong> Olivier MessiaenThe great composers of the 20th century
1908-1992 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Darius <strong>Milhaud</strong> Darius MilhaudThe great composers of the 20th century
1892-1974 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Dimitri <strong>Mitropoulos</strong> Dimitri MitropoulosThe great composers of the 20th century
1896-1960 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Ennio <strong>Morricone</strong> Ennio MorriconeThe great composers of the 20th century
1928-2020 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Moritz <strong>Moszkowski</strong> Moritz MoszkowskiThe great composers of the 20th century
1854-1925 (Romantic)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Nikolai <strong>Myaskovsky</strong> Nikolai MyaskovskyThe great composers of the 20th century
1881-1950 (20th century)
Composer


N

Carl <strong>Nielsen</strong> Carl NielsenThe great composers of the 20th century
1865-1931 (Romantic)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Luigi <strong>Nono</strong> Luigi NonoThe great composers of the 20th century
1924-1990 (20th century)
Conductor & Composer


S

Camille <strong>Saint-Saëns</strong> Camille Saint-SaënsThe great composers of the 20th century
1835-1921 (Romantic)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Esa-Pekka <strong>Salonen</strong> Esa-Pekka SalonenThe great composers of the 20th century
age 62 (20th century)
Conductor & Composer

Pablo de <strong>Sarasate</strong> Pablo de SarasateThe great composers of the 20th century
1844-1908 (Romantic)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Erik <strong>Satie</strong> Erik SatieThe great composers of the 20th century
1866-1925 (Romantic)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Jordi <strong>Savall</strong> Jordi SavallThe great composers of the 20th century
age 79 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Fazıl <strong>Say</strong> Fazıl SayThe great composers of the 20th century
age 50 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

András <strong>Schiff</strong> András SchiffThe great composers of the 20th century
age 66 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Alfred <strong>Schnittke</strong> Alfred SchnittkeThe great composers of the 20th century
1934-1998 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Arnold <strong>Schoenberg</strong> Arnold SchoenbergThe great composers of the 20th century
1874-1951 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Clara <strong>Schumann</strong> Clara SchumannThe great composers of the 20th century
1819-1896 (Romantic)
Performer & Composer

Alexander <strong>Scriabin</strong> Alexander ScriabinThe great composers of the 20th century
1872-1915 (Romantic)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Rodion <strong>Shchedrin</strong> Rodion ShchedrinThe great composers of the 20th century
age 87 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Howard <strong>Shore</strong> Howard ShoreThe great composers of the 20th century
age 73 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Dmitri <strong>Shostakovich</strong> Dmitri ShostakovichThe great composers of the 20th century
1906-1975 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Jean <strong>Sibelius</strong> Jean SibeliusThe great composers of the 20th century
1865-1957 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Georg <strong>Solti</strong> Georg SoltiThe great composers of the 20th century
1912-1997 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Karlheinz <strong>Stockhausen</strong> Karlheinz StockhausenThe great composers of the 20th century
1925-2007 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Leopold <strong>Stokowski</strong> Leopold StokowskiThe great composers of the 20th century
1882-1977 (20th century)
Conductor & Composer

Eduard <strong>Strauss</strong> Eduard StraussThe great composers of the 20th century
1835-1916 (Romantic)
Conductor & Composer

Richard <strong>Strauss</strong> Richard StraussThe great composers of the 20th century
1864-1949 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Igor <strong>Stravinsky</strong> Igor StravinskyThe great composers of the 20th century
1882-1971 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Josef <strong>Suk</strong> Josef SukThe great composers of the 20th century
1874-1935 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Arthur <strong>Sullivan</strong> Arthur SullivanThe great composers of the 20th century
1842-1900 (Romantic)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Franz von <strong>Suppè</strong> Franz von SuppèThe great composers of the 20th century
1819-1895 (Romantic)
Conductor & Composer

Johan <strong>Svendsen</strong> Johan SvendsenThe great composers of the 20th century
1840-1911 (Romantic)
Conductor & Composer

Georgy <strong>Sviridov</strong> Georgy SviridovThe great composers of the 20th century
1915-1998 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Władysław <strong>Szpilman</strong> Władysław SzpilmanThe great composers of the 20th century
1911-2000 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Karol <strong>Szymanowski</strong> Karol SzymanowskiThe great composers of the 20th century
1882-1937 (20th century)
Performer & Composer


U

Viktor <strong>Ullmann</strong> Viktor UllmannThe great composers of the 20th century
1898-1944 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer


Y

Eugène <strong>Ysaÿe</strong> Eugène YsaÿeThe great composers of the 20th century
1858-1931 (Romantic)
Conductor, Performer & Composer


Some composers to be celebrated very soon

Next month, more than 40 important artists and musicians will be honoured. In November 2020 some of them may celebrate a special anniversary. For others, amateurs and enthusiasts will celebrate the bicentenary of their birth or the fiftieth anniversary of their death for example. Among them, some famous composers:

on 8, César Franck (1822-1890), 130th anniversary (Death),
on 12, Henryk Gorecki (1933-2010), 10th anniversary (Death),
on 14, Aaron Copland (1900-1990), 120th anniversary (Birth),
on 18, Ignacy Jan Paderewski (1860-1941), 160th anniversary (Birth),
on 22, Wilhelm Friedemann Bach (1710-1784), 310th anniversary (Birth),
...

There are others to discover. And it is not too late to focus on the October 2020 celebrations (30+).

Always good opportunities to discover or deepen, (re)listen, explore the vastness and diversity of classical music...

See also...

Timelines : Composers

Indexes

Other timelines

Commemorations 2020, 2021, ...

Last update : 2020-10-01

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