Best Classical Music You're Not Listening To

Monday, February 01, 2010

The names Chadwick or Popov might not ring a bell. According to Conductor Leon Botstein, they should be high on your musical radar.

If you don't recognize these composers, don't feel too bad. Botstein says many talented composers from the past 100 years generally go unnoticed.

The maestro, who somehow splits his time between the American Symphony Orchestra and being President of Bard College, specializes in tracking down forgotten classical gems. He recently appeared as a guest on Soundcheck to discuss his latest venture focusing on the works of Henry Cowell.

WNYC asked Botstein to list his favorite composers that aren't widely known, even to the average music buff. Watch the video for his top picks.

Plus, we want to hear from you.  Who are your favorite composers that don’t get a lot of attention, but should?  Please tell us in the comment section below.


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Comments [5]

Joe Strong from Wylie, TX

Here are the names mentioned in the video...

19th Century French Operas:
Amédée-Ernest Chausson
Paul Dukas
Emmanuel Chabrier

20th Century Operas:
Paul Hindemith
Ernst Krenek

Russian Symphonic:
Gavriil Popov
Boris Tchaikovsky
Boris Tishchenko
Alexander Lokshin

19th/20th Century American music:
George Whitefield Chadwick
Henry Cowell
Walter Piston

Catalan Composer:
Robert Gerhard

Feb. 20 2010 01:02 AM
Ellie Schmidt '52

Delighted that President Botstein has a profound interest and great awareness of neglected, fine contemporary composers!
Please bring to President Botstein's attention the loveliness of a special chamber opera: The Always Present Present that tells the charming love story of one of Bard's finest professors, Ted Weiss, a noted American poet, and his gifted wife, Renee. Together they edited the impressive Quarterly Review of Literature. --It would be great to hear that it would be performed at Bard.

Feb. 03 2010 08:47 PM
Scott D. Strader from Atlanta, GA

I've recently been listening to Penderecki's Symphonies and was struck by how nicely they would complement any program. There're a range of styles across them with nothing too astringent for the casual concert-goer.

I will also second Mr. Botstein's choice of Walter Piston. His Symphonies have long been a favorite of mine.

Feb. 02 2010 02:41 PM
Merilyn from Philly

Gavin Bryars, Vasks, Tavenner, Part, Hovhaness, Daniel Lentz, Pete Wyer, Kerniss, Daniel Goode, Pauline Oliveros, Torke, Gann, any number of composers working over the last 50 years...

Feb. 02 2010 01:21 PM
John Clare from San Antonio, TX

I've always felt Sir Andrzej Panufnik was a neglected composer and is never performed enough!

Feb. 02 2010 12:38 PM

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