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Composers You Should Know: Classical

Lists, facts, dates, links, and more, organized by time period

Notable Classical Composers (1750 - 1820)

If you wish to be generally familiar with classical music, here is a short list of composers you should know from this period.

Name

Birth

Death

Nationality

Representative Pieces

Bach, Carl Philipp Emanuel
 ML410 .B16

1714

1788

German

Die Israeliten in der Wüste (oratorio)
Flute Concerto in D Minor (flute and string orchestra)
Fantasia in G Minor (keyboard)

Bach, Johann Christian
 ML410 .B15

1735

1782

German

Sinfonia Concertante in A Major (orchestra)
Zanaida (opera)
Piano Sonata in D Major

Beethoven, Ludwig van
 ML410 .B4

1770

1827

German

Symphonies Nos. 5 & 9
Missa Solemnis (mass)
Pathétique sonata (piano)
Fidelio (opera)
Bagatelle in A Minor (piano)

Billings, William
 ML410 .B588

1746

1800

American

Chester (four voices)
Africa (four voices)

Boccherini, Luigi
 ML410 .B66

1743

1805

Italian

Cello Concerto in Bb Major
Over 150 String Quintets

Bortniansky, Dmitry

1751

1825

Russian

Divine Liturgy
Sacred Concerto No. 15 (choir)

Cherubini, Luigi
 ML410 .C5

1760

1842

Italian

Requiem in C Minor (mass)
Medée (opera)

Haydn, Joseph
 ML410 .H4

1732

1809 

Austrian

String Quartet Opus 20 "Sun"
Symphony No. 94 in G Major "The Surprise"
Mass in Time of War

Haydn, Michael

1737

1806

Austrian

Requiem in C Minor (mass)
Symphony No. 28
Saint Leopold Mass in G Major

Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus
 ML410 .M9

1756

 1791

Austrian

Requiem (mass)
The Magic Flute (opera)
30 Piano Concertos
Eine Kleine Nachtmusik (orchestra)

Salieri, Antonio

1750

1825

Italian

Falstaff (opera)
Les Danaïdes (opera)

Schubert, Franz
 ML410 .S3

1797

1828

Austrian

Symphony No. 9 in C Major "The Great" (orchestra)
Gretchen am Spinnrade (voice and piano)
Marches militaires (piano 4-hands)

Classical Composers (1750 - 1820)

If you are a student of Music History or Composition, here is a more detailed list of composers you should know from this period.

Name

Birth

Death

Nationality

Representative Pieces

Abel, Carl Friedrich

1723

1787

German

27 Pieces for Unaccompanied Viola da Gamba
Symphony No. 3 in D Major

Bach, Carl Philipp Emanuel
 ML410 .B16

1714

1788

German

Die Israeliten in der Wüste (oratorio)
Flute Concerto in D Minor (flute and string orchestra)
Fantasia in G Minor (keyboard)

Bach, Johann Christian
 ML410 .B15

1735

1782

German

Sinfonia Concertante in A Major (orchestra)
Zanaida (opera)
Piano Sonata in D Major

Beethoven, Ludwig van
 ML410 .B4

1770

1827

German

Symphonies Nos. 5 & 9
Missa Solemnis (mass)
Pathétique sonata (piano)
Fidelio (opera)
Bagatelle in A Minor (piano)

Berezovsky, Maksym

~1745

1777

Ukranian

Divine Liturgy (esp. Otche Nash) (choir)

Billings, William
 ML410 .B588

1746

1800

American

Chester (four voices)
Africa (four voices)

Boccherini, Luigi
 ML410 .B66

1743

1805

Italian

Cello Concerto in Bb Major
Over 150 String Quintets

Bortniansky, Dmitry

1751

1825

Russian

Divine Liturgy
Sacred Concerto No. 15 (choir)

Cherubini, Luigi
 ML410 .C5

1760

1842

Italian

Requiem in C Minor (mass)
Medée (opera)

Cimarosa, Domenico

1749

1801

Italian

Il matrimonio segreto (opera)

Clementi, Muzio
 ML410 .C64

1752

1832

Italian

Gradus ad Parnassum (piano)

Danzi, Franz

1763

1826

German

Wind Quintet Op. 67, No. 2 in E Minor

Dittersdorf, Karl Ditters von

1739

1799

Austrian

Six String Quartets
6 Sinfonias after Ovid's Metamorphoses (orchestra)

Dussek, Johann Ladislaus

1760

1812

Czech

Piano Sonata in F# Minor, Op. 61 "Elegie Harmonique"
Sonata in C Minor (harp)

Eberl, Anton

1765

1807

Austrian

Grand Quintet in G Minor (piano, clarinet, 2 violas, & cello)
Piano Concerto in Eb Major

Field, John
 ML410 .F445

1782

1837

Irish

Piano Concerto No. 2
Nocturne No. 1 (piano)

Gluck, Christoph Willibald
 ML410 .G5

1714

1787

German

Orfeo ed Euridice (opera)
Don Juan (ballet)

Gossec, François Joseph

1734

1829

French

Le Triomphe de la Republique (opera)
Gavotte (violin and piano)

Haydn, Joseph
 ML410 .H4

1732

1809 

Austrian

String Quartet Opus 20 "Sun"
Symphony No. 94 in G Major "The Surprise"
Mass in Time of War

Haydn, Michael

1737

1806

Austrian

Requiem in C Minor (mass)
Symphony No. 28
Saint Leopold Mass in G Major

Hummel, Johann Nepomuk
 ML410 .H93

1778

1837

Austrian

Te Deum (choir and orchestra)
Piano Concerto in A Minor
Serenade en potpourri (No. 1) (chamber ensemble)

Kraus, Joseph Martin

1756

1792

Swedish

Symphony in D Major (orchestra)
Pantomimes (ballet)

Lesueur, Jean-François

1760

1837

French

Marche du Sacre de Napoleon 
​Ossian, ou Les bardes (opera)

Martini, Giovanni Battista

1706

1784

Italian

Requiem (mass)
Harpsichord Sonata No. 3

Méhul, Étienne

1763

1817

French

Stratonice (opera)
Symphony No. 2 (orchestra)

Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus
 ML410 .M9

1756

 1791

Austrian

Requiem (mass)
The Magic Flute (opera)
30 Piano Concertos
Eine Kleine Nachtmusik (orchestra)

Mysliveček, Josef

1737

1781

Czech

L'Olimpiade (opera)
Sinfonie Concertante in D Major (orchestra)

Pleyel, Ignaz

1757

1831

Austrian/French

String Quartets, esp. in A Major
Symphony in D Major (orchestra)

Reicha, Anton

1770

1836

Bohemian/French

Wind Quintets, Op. 88
L'Art de varier (piano)

Salieri, Antonio

1750

1825

Italian

Falstaff (opera)
Les Danaïdes (opera)

Schubert, Franz
 ML410 .S3

1797

1828

Austrian

Symphony No. 9 in C Major "The Great" (orchestra)
Gretchen am Spinnrade (voice and piano)
Marches militaires (piano 4-hands)

Soler, Antonio

1729

1783

Spanish

Six Concertos for Two Organs
Fandango (harpsichord)

Sor, Fernando

1778

1839

Spanish

Serenade in E Major (guitar)
Studies, Op. 60 (guitar)

Stamitz, Carl

1745

1801

German/Czech

Clarinet Concerto No. 11
Symphony in D Minor (orchestra)

Stamitz, Johann

1717

1757

Czech

Orchestral Trios
Symphony in D Major (orchestra)

Wesley, Samuel

1766

1837

English

Psalm 42 (choir)
Symphony No. 4 in D Major (orchestra)