10 best composers of the world according to New York Times

Review of the best according to the editors. About the selection criteria. The the material is subjective, is not advertising and is not serves as a guide to the purchase. Before purchase is needed consultation with a specialist.

Although the world of music is highly influenced by fashion trends, there are an area that has remained unchanged for over a hundred years is a classic. Creations of classical composers enjoyed great success during the life of their creators, and over time they became recognizable all over the world. Classical music is studied at higher educational institutions and even used for therapeutic purposes, in view of its beneficial effects on the human psyche. Relatively recently a music expert representing an authoritative publication New York Times, conducted a large-scale study to determine the top ten most eminent music authors in history of humanity. Let’s find out which of the composers are considered the best in the world.

Rating of the best composers of the world according to the New York Times

Nomination a place Composer rating
Rating of the best composers of the world according to the New York Times 10 Bela Bartok 4.1
9 Richard Wagner 4.2
8 Giuseppe Verdi 4.3
7 Johannes Brahms 4.4
6 Igor Stavrinsky 4.5
5 Claude Debussy 4.6
4 Franz Schubert 4.7
3 Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart 4.8
2 Ludwig van Beethoven 4.9
1 Johann Sebastian Bach 5.0

Bela Bartok

Rating: 4.1

Bela Bartok

One of the most recognized innovators of the 20th century has made invaluable contribution to world music. The future composer was born in Romanian a village called Nadsentmiklos in 1881. From an early age his parents instilled in him a love of music. Bartok’s mother played piano, and father was an amateur musician who participated in activities of the local orchestra. By the age of five, he could, along with father perform a piano piece. First public debut held when Bartok was 11 years old. He played on a charity orchestra in the Transcarpathian city of Vinogradov, performing not only Beethoven, but also music of his own composition. Soon after, the young composer left for Bratislava, where he studied with Laszlo Erkel, and then entered the music academy, where he accepted without entrance exams.

Since its release, Bartok has begun a brilliant musical career. He authored works such as the opera Castle Duke Bluebeard “, ballet compositions” The Wooden Prince “and “Wonderful Mandarin.” The latter was not accepted by censorship, who considered its too obscene. In addition, Bartok created several works inspired by folklore, one of them is “Balkan dances.” During the Nazi period, the composer refused from performances in Germany and even withdrew from the Austrian Union composers since he was a staunch anti-fascist. When did war, Bartok emigrated to the United States, where he lived in New York. In the name of The famous composer was named one of the craters of Mercury.

Richard Wagner

Rating: 4.2

Richard Wagner

German composer has had a tremendous impact on the musical European culture and art theory in general. His opera compositions at one time were truly revolutionary. Play music Wagner started in 1828, this was facilitated by his adoptive father, actor Ludwig Geyer. From 1831 he studied music at the university. Leipzig For a long time Wagner worked as a theater choirmaster, then the conductor, and even later – the court bandmaster at Saxon courtyard. The composer’s fame began with the opera Rienzi. The last stands. “In 1849 he took part in events Dresden uprising, supporting the struggle to establish Germany’s republican government to replace the monarchy. After defeat of the revolutionaries went to Zurich. It is there wagner started work on his famous cycle “The Ring of the Nibelung”, and also created the musical drama “Tristan and Isolde.” In 1864 the composer moved to Munich, where he wrote the opera Siegfried and Doom of the gods. “The last period of his life he lived in Venice.

Wagner’s music was a reflection of his philosophical concept, in whose main place was given to musical drama. He considered her the highest embodiment of art and the main meaning of his creativity. The reformist views of the composer were clearly visible already in his early creations, such as The Flying Dutchman or Tannhäuser. Wagner’s operas gave a serious impetus to development modernist movements in European and Russian music. Besides work over compositions, he also proved himself in writing articles on musical theory, as well as the theory and history of art. Main the essence of Wagner’s philosophy is the belief that achievement world harmony is possible only if unity of beauty and universal freedom – two fundamental principles.

Giuseppe Verdi

Rating: 4.3


The creativity of this Italian composer marked the heyday of 19th century Italian opera. He left behind 28 masterpieces of opera, which later served a source of inspiration for many of his successors. Interesting coincidence: Verdi was born in 1813, in the same year as his future creative rival Wagner. Giuseppe Verdi grew up in poor family and had every chance of becoming a innkeeper, like a father. But noticing son’s craving for art, parents gave him spinet (small desktop keyboard instrument), and also sent for training to Pietro Baistrocchi. Verdi then studied music literacy in Busetto, the director of the Philharmonic Society. In age eighteen years old, he tried to enter the Milan Conservatory, however, was not accepted due to a “low level piano game “(currently this musical the conservatory bears his name), so he continued his studies in private okay.

Verdi’s first public appearance took place in 1830. But well-deserved fame and recognition by critics came to the composer with the premiere of the opera Othello. After a long and productive creative period, he decided to follow the example of his second wife, singer Giuseppina Strepponi, and end her musical career. However, Verdi soon returned to the world of opera, writing “Rigoletto”, and then Traviatti, which brought him great success and international fame.

Johannes Brahms

Rating: 4.4

Johannes Brahms

German composer and musician Johannes Brahms is one of key figures of the period of romanticism. He was born in Hamburg in a family double bass player, from whom he inherited a love of music. Since childhood Brahms studied piano, winds and strings, as well as theory of composition. Already at the age of 10 he performed at concerts. After graduating from a private school, fourteen-year-old Brahms gave his first solo piano concert. His debut in quality The composer took place in 1852, after writing the fis-moll sonata. A year later, Brahms met Robert Schumann and Ferenc Liszt, which had a positive effect on his musical career. Immediately after that, he created a number of outstanding works as piano and chamber music. A couple of years, Brahms served with princely court as a court musician, but he quickly bored with such a job.

Of particular importance in the composer’s work was 1868, when the premiere of one of his most recognizable works, which was called the “German Requiem”. Success also awaited subsequent works. Becoming famous, Brahms traveled a lot in Europe. With age, he began to hurt, but he did not stop work on music almost until the last days of his life. Behind all the time he wrote over eighty works of various genres, with the exception of the opera. Most brilliant talent and original style The composer appeared in his symphonies.

Igor Stravinsky

Rating: 4.5

Igor Stravinsky

Famous Russian composer and pianist Stravinsky considered one of the most prominent representatives of the musical culture of XX centuries. He grew up in a family of musicians, from childhood he studied playing the piano, then took private lessons from Rimsky-Korsakov, under whose leadership created his first works. Soon young talent was noticed by theatrical figure Diaghilev, and he invited Stravinsky to write ballets for his troupe. These three ballet under the names “Firebird”, “Parsley” and “Sacred Spring” brought him international fame. Before the First World War Stravinsky’s war with his family went to Switzerland, then moved to the capital of France, never returning to their homeland. There he wrote his the opera Nightingale and The History of a Soldier. A little later, his debut took place. as a pianist when he took part in a concert own composition.

In the 30s of the 20th century, Stravinsky worked mainly on concerts, creating compositions for violin and piano. Also he travels a lot with tours, including to the USA, where the composer then moves in connection with the outbreak of World War II. Stravinsky lives in California for a long time, where he writes several outstanding works, including the ballet “Orpheus” and the opera “Adventures” “. The first Stravinsky Museum in the world was opened in 1990, It is located in the Ukrainian city of Ustilug, Volyn Region.

Claude Debussy

Rating: 4.6

Claude Debussy

The composer’s music is an intermediate link between classic romanticism and modernism of the XX century. He is considered the most outstanding representative of the impressionist movement.

Claude Debussy was born and raised in a suburb of Paris, in a family poor merchant. From an early age he studied music and at ten years entered the Paris Conservatory, where he studied piano led by pianist Antoine Marmontel. While studying Debussy repeatedly conflicted with conservative teachers who did not approve of the student’s penchant for musical experiments. For a long time the composer spent in to the family of the Russian philanthropist von Meck, traveling with them as home music teacher. He was particularly impressed with the trip to Russia, where Debussy met with the work of Tchaikovsky, about which then He spoke with admiration.

Upon returning to the French capital, Debussy significantly expanded a circle of acquaintances, thanks in large part to singer Wannier, to whom he subsequently he dedicated several romances, including the famous Mandolin and “To the mute.” For his subsequent work, the composer was awarded Grand Roman Prize. In the future, his creative search for a new style contributed to the acquaintance with Eric Satie. One of the most important Debussy compositions became an impressionistic prelude “Afternoon Faun Rest”.

Franz Schubert

Rating: 4.7

Franz Schubert

Franz Schubert is the most important figure in the genre of classical romanticism. His music shows unprecedented time originality and independence. Compositions by this author today remain popular among connoisseurs of classical music.

Schubert was born in a suburb of Vienna, in the family of a parish teacher schools and part-time amateur musician. Father taught him to play on the violin, and the older brother introduced the piano. Despite the apparent musical talent, future composer graduated from a teacher seminary and worked as a teacher in the same school as his father. He made music in his free time. The first work was Opera “The Pleasure of Satan.” Success came to Schubert after ballads “Forest King”, created in 1816. A couple of years later he left hometown in Zheliz and started giving private music lessons daughters of Count Esterhazy. His first and only public Franz Schubert gave a concert in 1828, it was the moment of his highest triumph in life. However, after a little more than six months, the great composer died of typhoid fever.

Despite his short life, Schubert left behind a legacy in in the form of nine symphonic, dozens of chamber and piano works, and more than 600 songs. One of the most popular and recognizable to this day is considered his collection “Swan song “written shortly before death.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Rating: 4.8

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Mozart is an outstanding Austrian composer in every respect and virtuoso musician, one of the founders of the classical genre a concert. Possessed a phenomenal talent, manifested in a very early childhood. Mozart’s work had a tremendous impact on further development of the musical culture of Europe and the whole West. After living only 35 years, the young genius left behind about 600 works, most of which are recognized as masterpieces.

Mozart was born in the family of a court violinist, his childhood passed in salzburg. He began to study music at the age of three, and at five already composed his own small plays. Desiring to develop talent little virtuoso, his father went on a trip with him, during whom Beethoven gave concerts in houses of various nobility, and in the end, he and his father and sister were invited to Vienna, to an audience with Empress Maria Theresa. The composer’s youth passed in creativity and performances. In 1782 he introduced in the capital Austria’s opera “Abduction from the Seraglio”, which quickly became popular, including in neighboring countries.

At the peak of fame, Beethoven combined concert and teaching activity, receiving substantial fees for both. The most the vivid creations of this period are considered the opera “The Wedding of Figaro” and “Don Juan”. But after a short time, his fame declined, which led to financial difficulties. Yet Mozart worked on music literally for the rest of his life. His last and the unfinished work was the famous Requiem.

Ludwig van Beethoven

Rating: 4.9

Ludwig van Beethoven

Legendary composer, representative of the Vienna Classical schools, one of the most performed over the centuries and even until today. He worked in all genres of his time, but the most masterpieces are considered to be instrumental composition.

Beethoven was born and raised in the German city of Bonn. His father was tenor, and grandfather as bandmaster. The first creation of the composer saw light when he was 12 years old. He was actively studying music, but death mother forced a 17-year-old boy to postpone education and get a job to the orchestra to help the family financially. Then beethoven yet continued to study, attending lectures at the University of Vienna and engaging in private. Haydn was his teacher, then he studied with Salieri. Already from his first speeches, Beethoven earned the fame of virtuoso, in addition, his style of performance sharply stood out for his courage and originality.

During his stay in the capital of Austria, the composer created a large number of piano sonatas, as well as several concerts. In 1796 Beethoven began to lose hearing due to inflammation of his inner ear, which nearly led him to suicide. But fortunately, he resisted from this step and in the end gave the world his most brilliant works, including the opera Fidelio, Sixth and Ninth symphonies.

Johann Sebastian Bach

Rating: 5.0

Johann Sebastian Bach

Bach is considered by many to be the greatest composer and organist of all times whose work served as the foundation for inspiration most famous musicians who lived in the following tens and even hundreds of years. During his life he created more than a thousand compositions various genres. Most of Bach’s works relate to categories of sacred music as he was convinced Protestant.

Bach grew up in a family of hereditary musicians, at 10 years old a boy remained an orphan and raised by an older brother who taught his playing musical instruments. At 15, he went to study in Luneburg, and after graduating from vocal school took the post of courtier musician at the Duke Ernst in Weimar. Bach then served as an organist in church, and in his spare time he was engaged in writing orchestral works. By the end of his Weimar activity, the composer was widely known and revered. In 1717, Bach hired for a post Kapellmeister Prince Anhalt-Ketensky. It was then that were created famous Bradenburg concerts. And since 1729 the maestro was Head of the Leipzig College of Music.

One of the most difficult creations of a brilliant musician is considered cycle “Art of the Fugue”, in the creation of which Bach applied his whole experience and unique talent in writing polyphonic compositions. The cycle was not completed as it was written shortly before death of the composer. In the last years of his life, his popularity decreased and only in the XX century there was a rethinking of its meaning essays. Bach’s music is currently considered the most valuable cultural heritage and is among the compositions featured on gold disk of the Voyager spacecraft.

Attention! This rating is subjective, not advertising and does not serve as a guide to the purchase. Before the purchase consultation with a specialist is necessary.

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