Steve Reich *X 3 1936 — The Life You Give

Steve Reich, born Stephen Michael Reich, October 3, 1936, in New York, New York, U.S.A., is the composer who was one of the leading exponents of Minimalism, a style based on repetitions and combinations of simple motifs and harmonies.Reich was the son of an attorney and a singer-lyricist. He majored in philosophy at Cornell University… Continue reading Steve Reich *X 3 1936 — The Life You Give

Dmitri Shostakovich *IX 25 1906 — The Life You Give

Dmitri Shostakovich, born Dmitri Dmitriyevich Shostakovich, on September 12 [September 25, New Style], 1906, in St. Petersburg, Russia, is the composer renowned particularly for his 15 symphonies, numerous chamber works, and concerti, many of them written under the pressures of government-imposed standards of Soviet art.Shostakovich was the son of an engineer. He entered the Petrograd… Continue reading Dmitri Shostakovich *IX 25 1906 — The Life You Give

Leonard Cohen *IX 21 1934 — The Life You Give

Leonard Cohen, born Leonard Norman Cohen, September 21, 1934, in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, is the singer-songwriter whose spare songs carried an existential bite and established him as one of the most distinctive voices of 1970s pop music.Already established as a poet and novelist (his first book of poems, Let Us Compare Mythologies, was published in… Continue reading Leonard Cohen *IX 21 1934 — The Life You Give

Francesca Caccini *IX 18 1587 — The Life You Give

Francesca Caccini, also called Francesca Signorini, Francesca Signorini-Malaspina, or Francesca Raffaelli, byname La Cecchina, born September 18, 1587, in Florence, Italy, is the composer and singer who was one of only a handful of women in 17th-century Europe whose compositions were published. The most significant of her compositions—published and unpublished—were produced during her employment at… Continue reading Francesca Caccini *IX 18 1587 — The Life You Give

Neil Peart *IX 12 1952 — The Life You Give

Ask just about any rock drummer who their influences are and chances are Rush's Neil Peart will be high on the list. With his technically demanding, precise, and deeply complex rhythmic style, few rock drummers scaled the heights that Peart did both on record and on-stage as part of the renowned Canadian prog rock trio… Continue reading Neil Peart *IX 12 1952 — The Life You Give

The Life You Give: Arvo Pärt *IX 11 1935

Arvo Pärt, born September 11, 1935, in Paide, Estonia, is the composer who developed a style based on the slow modulation of sounds such as those produced by bells and pure voice tones, a technique reminiscent of the medieval Notre-Dame school and the sacred music of Eastern Orthodoxy; Pärt was a devout Orthodox Christian. His… Continue reading The Life You Give: Arvo Pärt *IX 11 1935

The Life You Give: Theodor Adorno *IX 11 1903

Theodor Adorno, born Theodor Ludwig Wiesengrund, on Sept. 11, 1903, Frankfurt am Main, Germany, is the philosopher who also wrote on sociology, psychology, and musicology.Adorno obtained a degree in philosophy from Johann Wolfgang Goethe University in Frankfurt in 1924. His early writings, which emphasize aesthetic development as important to historical evolution, reflect the influence of… Continue reading The Life You Give: Theodor Adorno *IX 11 1903

The Life You Give: Antonin Dvořák *IX 8 1841

Antonín Dvořák, born Antonín Leopold Dvořák, September 8, 1841, in Nelahozeves, Bohemia, Austrian Empire [now in Czech Republic], is the first Bohemian composer to have achieved worldwide recognition, noted for turning folk material into 19th-century Romantic music.Dvořák was born, the first of nine children, in Nelahozeves, a Bohemian village on the Vltava River north of… Continue reading The Life You Give: Antonin Dvořák *IX 8 1841

Robert the Devil, by Giacomo Meyerbeer *IX 5 1791 / TLYG

Giacomo Meyerbeer, born Jakob Liebmann Meyer Beer, September 5, 1791, in Tasdorf, near Berlin, Germany, is the opera composer who established in Paris a vogue for spectacular romantic opera.Born of a wealthy Jewish family, Meyerbeer studied composition in Berlin and later at Darmstadt, where he formed a friendship with C.M. von Weber. His early German… Continue reading Robert the Devil, by Giacomo Meyerbeer *IX 5 1791 / TLYG

The Life You Give: Anton Bruckner *IX 4 1824

Anton Bruckner, born Josef Anton Bruckner, Sept. 4, 1824, in Ansfelden, Austria, is the composer of a number of highly original and monumental symphonies. He was also an organist and teacher who composed much sacred and secular choral music.Bruckner was the son of a village schoolmaster and organist in Upper Austria. He showed talent on… Continue reading The Life You Give: Anton Bruckner *IX 4 1824

“Hänsel und Gretel” by Engelbert Humperdinck *IX 1 1854 / TLYG

Engelbert Humperdinck, born September 1, 1854, in Siegburg, Prussia [Germany], is the composer known for his opera Hänsel und Gretel.Humperdinck studied at Cologne and at Munich. In 1879 a Mendelssohn scholarship enabled him to go to Italy, where he met Richard Wagner, who invited him to assist in the production of Parsifal at Bayreuth. He… Continue reading “Hänsel und Gretel” by Engelbert Humperdinck *IX 1 1854 / TLYG

Charlie Parker *VIII 29 1920 / The Life You Give

Charlie Parker, born Charles Parker, Jr., also called Bird or Yardbird, on August 29, 1920, in Kansas City, Kansas, U.S.A., is the alto saxophonist, composer, and bandleader, a lyric artist generally considered the greatest jazz saxophonist. Parker was the principal stimulus of the modern jazz idiom known as bebop, and—together with Louis Armstrong and Ornette… Continue reading Charlie Parker *VIII 29 1920 / The Life You Give

The Life You Give: Hermann Nitsch *VIII 29 1938

Hermann Nitsch was an Austrian avant-garde painter, composer, and performance artist who worked in experimental and multimedia modes. He was a co-founder of the notorious art movement known as the Viennese Aktionists. With his project Orgien Mysterien Theater ("the Orgiastic Mystery Theater"), Nitsch immersed his audiences in scenes and symbols heavily charged with meaning: religious… Continue reading The Life You Give: Hermann Nitsch *VIII 29 1938

The Life You Give: Karlheinz Stockhausen *VIII 22 1928

Karlheinz Stockhausen, born Aug. 22, 1928, in Mödrath, near Cologne, Germany, is the composer, and important creator and theoretician of electronic and serial music who strongly influenced avant-garde composers from the 1950s through the ’80s.Stockhausen studied at the State Academy for Music in Cologne and the University of Cologne from 1947 to 1951. In 1952… Continue reading The Life You Give: Karlheinz Stockhausen *VIII 22 1928

The Life You Give: Enrique Granados *VII 27 1867

Enrique Granados, born July 27, 1867, in Lérida, Spain, is the pianist and composer who was a leader of the movement toward nationalism in late 19th-century Spanish music.Granados made his debut as a pianist at 16. He studied composition in Barcelona with Felipe Pedrell, the father of Spanish nationalism in music. He studied piano in… Continue reading The Life You Give: Enrique Granados *VII 27 1867

The Life You Give: Carl Orff *VII 10 1895

Carl Orff, born July 10, 1895, in Munich, Germany, is the composer known particularly for his operas and dramatic works and for his innovations in music education.Orff studied at the Munich Academy of Music and with the German composer Heinrich Kaminski and later conducted in Munich, Mannheim, and Darmstadt. His Schulwerk, a manual describing his… Continue reading The Life You Give: Carl Orff *VII 10 1895

The Life You Give: Gustav Mahler *VII 7 1860

Gustav Mahler, born July 7, 1860, in Kaliště, Bohemia, Austrian Empire, is the composer and conductor, noted for his 10 symphonies and various songs with orchestra, which drew together many different strands of Romanticism. Although his music was largely ignored for 50 years after his death, Mahler was later regarded as an important forerunner of… Continue reading The Life You Give: Gustav Mahler *VII 7 1860

The Life You Give: George Walker *VI 27 1922

Although he started out as a highly promising concert pianist in a grand style (some of his most prominent concerts featured concertos by Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninov, and Brahms), George Walker was writing substantial music from his mid-twenties. By the time he was 40, he had solidly established himself as a flexible, fully contemporary composer and it… Continue reading The Life You Give: George Walker *VI 27 1922

The Life You Give: Paul McCartney *1942

Paul McCartney, born James Paul McCartney, June 18, 1942, in Liverpool, England, is the vocalist, songwriter, composer, bass player, poet, and painter whose work with the Beatles in the 1960s helped lift popular music from its origins in the entertainment business and transform it into a creative, highly commercial art form. He is also one… Continue reading The Life You Give: Paul McCartney *1942

The Life You Give: Igor Stravinsky *1882

Igor Stravinsky, born Igor Fyodorovich Stravinsky, June 5 [June 17, New Style], 1882, Oranienbaum [now Lomonosov], near St. Petersburg, Russia, is the composer whose work had a revolutionary impact on musical thought and sensibility just before and after World War I, and whose compositions remained a touchstone of modernism for much of his long working… Continue reading The Life You Give: Igor Stravinsky *1882

The Life You Give: Charles Gounod *1818

Charles Gounod, born Charles-françois Gounod, June 17, 1818, in Paris, France, is a composer noted particularly for his operas, of which the most famous is Faust.Gounod’s father was a painter, and his mother was a capable pianist who gave Gounod his early training in music. He was educated at the Lycée Saint-Louis, where he remained… Continue reading The Life You Give: Charles Gounod *1818