The rise of classical music (1500-2000) North America


Kálmán or Glass? Rachmaninoff or Horowitz? 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 1500 and 2000+ in North America

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 : Kálmán (Hungarian-born composer of operettas) or Glass (American composer) ? Cage (American avant-garde composer (1912-1992)) or Shore (Canadian composer notable for his film scores) ? 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 en North America, between 1500 and 2000+. 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 in North America for the years 1500-2000+

Who are these greatest composers, the most famous over the 1500-2000+ era in North America? 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. Goldsmith, Bartók, Gershwin, Copland, Schoenberg, Kreisler, Ma...

At this time, soClassiQ has listed more than 18000 composers. So here is a selection of some composers for the years 1500-2000+, in North America, widely recognized around the world:


Milton <strong>Babbitt</strong> Milton BabbittThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1916-2011 (20th century)

Angelo <strong>Badalamenti</strong> Angelo BadalamentiThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
age 83 (20th century)

Samuel <strong>Barber</strong> Samuel BarberThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1910-1981 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

John <strong>Barry</strong> John BarryThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1933-2011 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Béla <strong>Bartók</strong> Béla BartókThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1881-1945 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Amy <strong>Beach</strong> Amy BeachThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1867-1944 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Joshua <strong>Bell</strong> Joshua BellThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
age 52 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Robert Russell BennettThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1894-1981 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Cathy BerberianThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1925-1983 (20th century)
Lyrical singer, Performer & Composer

Elmer <strong>Bernstein</strong> Elmer BernsteinThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1922-2004 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Leonard <strong>Bernstein</strong> Leonard BernsteinThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1918-1990 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Marc <strong>Blitzstein</strong> Marc BlitzsteinThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1905-1964 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Ernest <strong>Bloch</strong> Ernest BlochThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1880-1959 (20th century)

Jerry BockThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1928-2010 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

William <strong>Bolcom</strong> William BolcomThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
age 82 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Victor <strong>Borge</strong> Victor BorgeThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1909-2000 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Paul <strong>Bowles</strong> Paul BowlesThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1910-1999 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Glenn <strong>Branca</strong> Glenn BrancaThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1948-2018 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Bruce BroughtonThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
age 75 (20th century)
Conductor & Composer

Leo <strong>Brouwer</strong> Leo BrouwerThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1939-2003 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Ole <strong>Bull</strong> Ole BullThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1810-1880 (Romantic)
Performer & Composer

Adolf <strong>Busch</strong> Adolf BuschThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1891-1952 (20th century)
Performer & Composer


Curt <strong>Sachs</strong> Curt SachsThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1881-1959 (20th century)

Lalo <strong>Schifrin</strong> Lalo SchifrinThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
age 88 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Thomas <strong>Schippers</strong> Thomas SchippersThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1930-1977 (20th century)
Conductor & Composer

Arnold <strong>Schoenberg</strong> Arnold SchoenbergThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1874-1951 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Gunther <strong>Schuller</strong> Gunther SchullerThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1925-2015 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

William SchumanThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1910-1992 (20th century)
Conductor & Composer

Ruth Crawford <strong>Seeger</strong> Ruth Crawford SeegerThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1901-1953 (20th century)

Roger <strong>Sessions</strong> Roger SessionsThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1896-1985 (20th century)

Anoushka <strong>Shankar</strong> Anoushka ShankarThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
age 39 (20th century)
Lyrical singer, Performer & Composer

Edward ShearmurThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
age 54 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Howard <strong>Shore</strong> Howard ShoreThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
age 73 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Alexander <strong>Siloti</strong> Alexander SilotiThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1863-1945 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Leonard <strong>Slatkin</strong> Leonard SlatkinThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
age 76 (20th century)
Conductor & Composer

Nicolas SlonimskyThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1894-1995 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Dang Thai <strong>Son</strong> Dang Thai SonThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
age 62 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Stephen <strong>Sondheim</strong> Stephen SondheimThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
age 90 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

John Philip <strong>Sousa</strong> John Philip SousaThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1854-1932 (Romantic)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Max <strong>Steiner</strong> Max SteinerThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1888-1971 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Jim SteinmanThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
age 72 (20th century)
Lyrical singer, Performer & Composer

Eduard SteuermannThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1892-1964 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

Fritz StiedryThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1883-1968 (20th century)
Conductor & Composer

William Grant <strong>Still</strong> William Grant StillThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1895-1978 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Igor <strong>Stravinsky</strong> Igor StravinskyThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1882-1971 (20th century)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

MasterpiecesComplete works

Frank Van der <strong>Stucken</strong> Frank Van der StuckenThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1858-1929 (Romantic)
Conductor, Performer & Composer

Zoltán SzékelyThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1903-2001 (20th century)
Performer & Composer

George <strong>Szell</strong> George SzellThe rise of classical music (1500-2000)
1897-1970 (20th century)
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


Other timelines

Commemorations 2020, 2021, ...

Last update : 2020-10-01

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