OK everyone, this is the last Top 10 Top 10 list – Personal Faves.Â Here are the rules:
1) These are your personal FAVORITES.Â No explanations, no reasoning.Â Don’t choose someone just because you think he or she is a particularly good or great composer.Â Choose someone because you love his or her music.Â [Note: the two need not be mutually exclusive.]
2) These are your personal favorites at this very moment in time.Â Try to let it flow – don’t hem and haw.Â Five minutes hence, you might have a totally different list.Â In fact, you could come back five minutes later and post a whole new list.Â I would love it if you did that.Â Maybe the You of five minutes ago really didn’t understand the You of now and your new perspective on life, love, and music.
3) Your list need not reflect any particular order.Â It can if you want it to though.Â Also – and this is very important – just because someone’s not on your list doesn’t mean you don’t love them.
4) Our working definition of ‘composer’ is anyone whose primary means of musical conveyance is the written note.Â Feel free to understand this broadly.
Discuss! We’ve had some astonishingly interesting and in depth discussions on these lists.Â Between like 5 people.Â And I love those 5 people, and respect them and value their opinions and I’ve learned a tremendous amount from them.Â But I have a little thing called Google Analytics, and, Dear Readers, I know that there’s many more of you out there.Â This is a get-to-know you activity – absolutely not a debate.Â Just fun, y’all!!
I’ll start.Â In no particular order (excepting Beethoven):
My Top 10 Personal Favorite Composers
1. Ludwig van Beethoven
2. Alfred Schnittke
3. Maurice Ravel
4. Jean Sibelius
5. Claude Debussy
6. Giaocomo Puccini
7. Stephen Sondheim
8. Henry Purcell
9. Joseph Haydn
4. Leo Brouwer
5. John Adams
I should probably have put Bach instead of Villa-Lobos, but that’s okay
In no stream-of-consciousness order:
(And slightly below those:)
Brahms, Ravel, Stravinsky, DuruflÃ©, Schoenberg, Debussy, Poulenc, BartÃ³k, Prokofiev, Puccini.
Here’s my list and the seminal pieces (IMHO) that put them on it:
Schubert (Lieder, esp. Schwanengesang)
Bernstein (West Side Story, Candide)
Ravel (Daphnis et Chloe, Pavane, Bolero)
Souza (Washington Post, among others)
Brubeck (Time Out)
1 through 9: Will C. White.
Bach…and then, alphabetically:
Thanks for all the great lists!
Honorable mention: Wagner, Mozart, Bach, Poulenc
Yeah, I’m surprised there’s not more JanÃ¡Äek on these lists. [Bravo, KÃ¼nkel] Certainly one of my favorites!
Sorry to be so fickle, if not clichÃ©, but my favorite composer is the one I’m currently working on. I just find myself thoroughly enamored by whomever I recently played (and really practiced/rehearsed/performed).
10. J William Rappaport, Esq.
In no order at all:
Giaches de Wert
Johann Rudolf Ahle
Strange that out of 150+ favorites (so far) there’s only one woman: BjÃ¶rk.
that’s because BjÃ¶rk RULZ!!
also, just a reminder – this is all about personal taste, no apologies, no discussion. David Stech, I’m looking squarely in your direction.
… just kidding, Will!
The thing is, my list doesn’t change that much over time…
It would be kind of a boring game if you played it only with me 🙂
OK, here is the (usual, boring) real one:
Tried to put them in order, because Why not?
April 22, 2011
Brahms, Beethoven, Dvorak, R. Strauss, Prokofiev, Mahler, Ravel, Saint-saens, Puccini, Bob Dylan. Hon. Mention: Haydn, Shostakovich, Wagner, Bizet, Bernstein.