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Alexander Scriabin

Alexander Nikolayevich Scriabin(Александр Николаевич Скрябин) (1872-1915, Moscow) was a Russian composer and pianist. Many of Scriabin's works are written for the piano; the earliest pieces resemble Frédéric Chopin and include music in many forms that Chopin himself employed, such as the etude, the prelude and the mazurka. Later works, however, are strikingly original, employing very unusual harmonies and textures.

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George Benjamin

George Benjamin (born January 31, 1960, London, England) is a British composer of classical music. He is also a conductor, pianist and teacher. Benjamin attended Westminster School and then studied with Olivier Messiaen at the Paris Conservatoire during the second half of the 1970s. Messiaen himself was reported to have described Benjamin as his favourite pupil. He then read music at King's College, Cambridge, studying under Alexander Goehr, and emerged in his early twenties as a mature and confident voice.

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Jennifer Higdon

Jennifer Higdon (born December 31, 1962) is an American composer of classical music and flutist. Higdon was born in Brooklyn, but spent her first 10 years in Atlanta before moving to Tennessee. With almost no advanced flute training, she studied at Bowling Green State University towards a degree in flute performance. While at Bowling Green she met Robert Spano, who was teaching a conducting course there; Spano would go on to be the foremost champion of Higdon's music in the American orchestral community.

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Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach

Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach (1714-1788) - more commonly known as C.P.E. Bach - was a German musician and composer of the early Classical period. The second of eleven sons of Johann Sebastian Bach and Maria Barbara Bach, C.P.E. Bach was born in Weimar on 8th March 1714. He was one of the founders of the Classical style, composing in the and periods. Through the latter half of the eighteenth century, his reputation was very high. This was mainly because of his clavier sonatas, which marked an important development in the history of musical form.

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Claudio Monteverdi

Claudio Monteverdi ("Green Mountain") (Cremona May 15, 1567 – November 29, 1643) was an Italian composer, violinist and singer. His work marks the transition from Renaissance to Baroque music. During his long life he produced work that can be classified in both categories, and he was one of the most significant revolutionaries that brought about the change in style. Monteverdi wrote the earliest dramatically viable opera, Orfeo, and was fortunate enough to enjoy fame during his lifetime.

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Frank Martin

Frank Martin (15 September 1890 – 21 November 1974) was a Swiss composer, who lived a large part of his life in the Netherlands. He was born in Geneva, the tenth and last child of Charles Martin, a pastor. Before he started school, he was already playing the piano and improvising. At nine, he was composing complete, fully formed songs, without having had any instruction in song forms or harmony. A performance of Bach's St. Matthew Passion which he heard at the age of twelve left upon him an ineradicable impression, and Bach became his true master.

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Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina

Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina (b. 3 February 1525 – 2 February 1526; d. 2 February 1594) was an Italian Renaissance composer and the most well-known 16th-century representative of the Roman School of musical composition. Palestrina became famous through his output of sacred music. He had an enormous influence on the development of Roman Catholic church music, and his work has often been seen as the culmination of Renaissance polyphony.

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Jules Massenet

Jules Émile Frédéric Massenet (May 12, 1842 – August 13, 1912) was a French composer from Montaud, France, who was best known for his operas. His compositions were very popular in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and he ranks as one of the greatest melodists of his era. Soon after his death, Massenet's style went out of fashion, and many of his operas fell into almost total oblivion. Apart from Manon and Werther, his works were rarely performed. However, since the mid-1970s, many operas of his such as Thaïs and Esclarmonde have undergone periodic revivals.

Read more about Jules Massenet on Last.fm.

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Dustin O'Halloran

A self-taught pianist from the age of 7, Dustin O'Halloran's personal histories give us some clue to the thickly-woven tapestries of his music: he has lived in LA (where he studied art at Santa Monica College and formed the much-adored Devics with Sara Lov), Italy (in the depths of rural Emilia Romagna) and Berlin. His arresting, heartbreaking music is as much an elegant exercise in nuance and grace as it is a pure, intuitive, personal expression – and here is where we see some explanation into Dustin's quiet rise to notoriety and his continued ascension.

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