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Are there any recent composers of symphonies?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Why do we never hear of modern day composers and symphonies? We hear of Mozart, Brahms, Vivaldi, Dvorak, Beethoven, Bach etc. Where are the current people??

People still love listening to "classical" symphonies, so why aren't people composing them anymore?? Or more to the point, why don't we know the names of any of the current composers? Surely there has to be some out there?

Who is the modern day Tchaikovsky?
post #2 of 14
Sadly, I don't think there are any or at least I haven't heard of them and their music. It would be interesting to have a composer, compose a symphany with not only the classic instruments, but with modern electronic instruments as well. I have always had a wide range of musical interests, but I am not into so called "hit music" the kind that most commercial radio stations cram down our throats. I like high energy types of music like EBM, industrial, alternative rock and gothic. However, I like to listen to classical when I really want to just escape from the every day stuff. One of my favorite symphanies has always beem Tchaikovsky's 1812 overture. I saw the Cleveland Orchestra perform that with real cannons and everything. It was awesome. I feel everyone who enjoys music, should listen to classical once in a while. Gives you a real appreciaition for a true musical artist, that I don't think we will see again in todays world.
post #3 of 14
Does this answer the question?

Mentions how recording, mixing, and sampling has played a part in newer works and lists few composers.

More in depth searching via any search engine should provide more details and a longer list of composers.
post #4 of 14
also, alot of the sound tracks for movies.
are just that.

John Williams comes to mind.
Star Wars ,Raiders of the Lost Ark i have seen the cleveland orchestra do night at the movies. And other newer style stuff before.

i just watched the indy movies over the weekend, the music in there was good.
post #5 of 14
I just played a symphony by a 14 year old American Composer! His name is Jay Greenberg. It was really pretty good.

There are few symphony orchestras that premiere new music, especially now that bottom lines are so tight. They tend to program music they know audiences will pay to hear.
post #6 of 14
Yes, composers are working on all genres of "classical" music these days. Go to your local public or university library and find a competent music librarian. Chances are they can recommend something and will have recordings you can listen to in the library if you can't check them out. If you are fortunate enough to live near a college or university with a decent music department or school, you will likely find local composers or groups that perform more modern western art music.

John Corigliano is probably best know for "Ghost's of Versailles", and opera but also works in orchestral genres.

Brent Michael Davids does both choral and orchestral music combining traditional western music with Native American themes.

I could easily name many fantastic choral composers active today. If I knew more precisely what you were looking for, I could do a bit of research and find it quite easily.

Also, look into music composed in the former Soviet client states for some absolutely stunning combinations of Russian composition with Central Asian folk elements. I'm a huge fan of music from Azerbaijan. Look for recordings by pianist Chingiz Sadhikov.

Yes, I am a music librarian.
post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 
I wasn't after anything in particular (it was a late night rambling post). My husband and I went and saw a classical orchestra play the other night, and we were just commenting that there's no well known composers who are alive! There may be people composing, but no "names" like the last few centuries.
post #8 of 14
If you are involved in that world, you know the current "names."

I studied under W. Francis McBeth, who is still alive.

I was in the first band to perform his (then) brand-new To Be Fed By Ravens in 1973. It still gives me chills when I hear it!

But which composers will become legend? That remains to be seen.
post #9 of 14
James Horner is my favorite of the movie composers... everything he's done is worth hearing, all the way back to the dazzling soundtrack from "The Wrath of Khan." As much as I love that movie, it's really a shame that such great music never got a chance to stand on its own!
post #10 of 14
Originally Posted by musicalbookworm View Post

John Corigliano is probably best know for "Ghost's of Versailles", and opera but also works in orchestral genres.
Oh yeah! Just played something by him as well. I think that was the one that actually had a solo for a Conch Shell!

Have also played Adler, and Schwantner, but I think I played those in wind ensemble (it was a looong time ago.)
post #11 of 14
Slightly OT, but Corigliano also wrote the score for The Red Violin, a movie well worth your time, for itself, as well as the music.
post #12 of 14
Originally Posted by rapunzel47 View Post
Slightly OT, but Corigliano also wrote the score for The Red Violin, a movie well worth your time, for itself, as well as the music.
OMG! I LOVE that movie. It is amazing!
post #13 of 14
Benjamin Britten, Ralph Vaughan-Williams, Philip Glass, William Walton - 'contemporary' if not all alive. But whether they will all stand the test of time like Mozart, who knows?
post #14 of 14
I guess because back then there was no technology to produce half of the rubbish that it out now?

I mean in 100 or so years time, Elvis Presley and the Beatles will be still remembered like Mozart... just different generes.
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