Which Composers Wrote in the Classical Period of Music?
- The Classical Period
- The Three B’s
- Other Notable Composers
The Classical period of music is a time when composers were influenced by the past and wrote in a style that was popular at the time.
The Classical Period
The Classical period falls between the years of 1730 and 1820. This was a time of great change and transition in music. The Baroque period ended and the Classical period began. The music of this time period was primarily characterized by two things: simplicity and emotion.
The baroque period preceded the classical period
The baroque period of music history extends from 1600-1750. It is important to note that the transition from Renaissance to Baroque did not happen overnight, nor did all composers shift their musical style at the same time. Rather, the change took place gradually over a period of several decades, and different composers made the transition at different times.
The baroque period is often considered to be the first “golden age” of classical music. This is because it marked the beginning of a time when composers were able to write down their music using notation, and when people began to think of themselves as “composers” rather than just “musicians.” The baroque period also saw the development of new genres of music, such as opera and oratorio, and new ways of thinking about harmony and form.
Composers who wrote in the baroque period include Johann Sebastian Bach, George Frideric Handel, Antonio Vivaldi, Claudio Monteverdi, Heinrich Schütz, Dieterich Buxtehude, Marc-Antoine Charpentier, Henry Purcell, Giovanni Battista Pergolesi, Arcangelo Corelli, Alessandro Scarlatti, François Couperin, Georg Philipp Telemann, Johann Pachelbel, and many others.
The classical period was marked by the three main composers
The classical period in European classical music history is generally considered to extend from about 1730 to 1820. Although contemporary with the Baroque and early Romantic periods, the classical period is usually said to include Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, and Schubert, and overlaps with the late part of the Rococo era and early part of the French Revolutionaries period. These composers are today collectively known as the “Viennese Classicals”.
The Three B’s
The Classical period of music is generally said to fall between the years of 1750 and 1830. This was a time of great change and development in music, with composers such as Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven becoming well-known names.
Bach was the first of the three main composers
Bach was the first of the three main composers of the classical period. He wrote both religious and secular music, and his works includeThe Well-Tempered Clavier, The Brandenburg Concertos, and Mass in B minor.
Beethoven is considered the most important composer of the classical period. He composed such classics as Symphony No. 5, Symphony No. 9 “Choral,” and Piano Concerto No. 5 “Emperor.”
Mozart was a prolific composer who penned such masterpieces as The Marriage of Figaro, Don Giovanni, and The Magic Flute.
Beethoven was the second of the three main composers
Beethoven was the second of the three main composers (the other two being Haydn and Mozart) who dominated music during what is called the Classical period. Beethoven was born in the city of Bonn, in the Electorate of Cologne, a principality of the Holy Roman Empire, on December 16th, 1770. He died in Vienna, Austria on March 26th, 1827 at the age of 56.
Brahms was the third of the three main composers
During the Classical period, there were three main groups of composers who were greatly respected throughout Europe. They were called the “Three B’s” because their last names all started with the letter B. They were Ludwig van Beethoven, Johann Sebastian Bach and Johannes Brahms.
Other Notable Composers
While the Classical period is most commonly associated with Bach, Haydn, and Mozart, there were other notable composers who wrote during this time. These include George Frideric Handel, Luigi Boccherini, Antonio Salieri, and Christoph Willibald Gluck.
Haydn was a notable composer of the classical period
Haydn was born in Rohrau, Austria, in 1732. He was apprenticed to several Vienna composers and became an assistant Kapellmeister to Nicola Porpora, a composer of operas. Haydn later became Kapellmeister to PrincePaul Anton Esterhazy and traveled with him to Hungary. There he composed most of his symphonies and string quartets. Haydn’s first great opera, The Creation, was written in 1798. His last work was the oratorio The Seasons, which he completed in 1801.
Schubert was a notable composer of the classical period
Franz Schubert (January 31, 1797 – November 19, 1828) was an Austrian composer of the late Classical and early Romantic eras. Despite his short lifetime, Schubert left behind a vast oeuvre, including more than 600 secular vocal works (mainly Lieder), seven complete symphonies, sacred music, operas, incidental music and a large body of piano and chamber music. His major works include the Piano Quintet in A major, D. 667 (Trout Quintet), the Symphony No. 8 in B minor (“Unfinished”), the three last piano sonatas (D. 958–960), the opera Fierrabras (1823), incidental music to the play Rosamunde (1823), and the song cycles Winterreise (1827) and Schwanengesang (1828).
Schubert was extremely prolific during his short lifetime. He composed some 1500 works in total, many acknowledged as pinnacles of symphonic, concertante, chamber, solo instrumental, keyboard and song literature. His works are frequently performed around the world – indeed many of his songs have become standards among singers.
Mozart was a notable composer of the classical period
Some of the most notable composers of the classical period include Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Joseph Haydn, and Ludwig van Beethoven. These three composers are some of the most celebrated musicians in history, and their works have had a lasting impact on the development of Western music.