Charles Ives


Name: Charles Edward Ives
Date of Birth: October 20, 1874
Date of Death: May 19, 1954
Discipline/Occupation(s): Composer
Nationality: American
Period/Era/Style: Romantic/20th Century – Modernism
Contribution(s): Ives was an American modernist composer. He is one of the first American composers of international renown, though his music was largely ignored during his life, and many of his works went unperformed for many years. Over time, he came to be regarded as an “American original”. He combined the American popular and church-music traditions of his youth with European art music, and was among the first composers to engage in a systematic program of experimental music, with musical techniques including polytonality, polyrhythm, tone clusters, aleatory elements, and quarter tones, foreshadowing many musical innovations of the 20th century.

Sources of Ives’ tonal imagery are hymn tunes and traditional songs, the town band at holiday parade, the fiddlers at Saturday night dances, patriotic songs, sentimental parlor ballads, and the melodies of Stephen Foster.

Biography: Biography   |   Reception   |   Compositions   |   Politics


Playlist

  • Symphony No. 1 in D minor (1898-1902)
  • Symphony No. 2 (1897-1902, revised 1910)
  • Symphony No. 3: The Camp Meeting (1901-1904, rev. 1911)
  • Symphony No. 4 (1916)
  • A Symphony: New England Holidays (1919)
  • Universe Symphony (completed by L. Austin)
  • The Unanswered Question (1908, rev. 1935)
  • Variations on “America” (1891)
    • for Organ (original version)
    • for Piano (arr. Nina Deutsch)
    • for Orchestra (arr. by William Schuman)
    • for Military Band (arr. by W. Rhoads)
  • Sonata for Violin & Piano, No. 3
  • 27 Studies for piano, 8 lost
    • No. 6, 7, 21, 23

Albums:

Ives: Orchestral Works, Vol. 1

Ives: Orchestral Works, Vol. 2

Ives: Orchestral Works, Vol. 3

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Summery:

Charles Edward Ives (Oct. 20, 1874 – May 19, 1954), Composer
American; 20century era; Modernism
Ives was an American modernist composer. He is one of the first American composers of international renown, though his music was largely ignored during his life, and many of his works went unperformed for many years. Over time, he came to be regarded as an “American original”. He combined the American popular and church-music traditions of his youth with European art music, and was among the first composers to engage in a systematic program of experimental music, with musical techniques including polytonality, polyrhythm, tone clusters, aleatory elements, and quarter tones, foreshadowing many musical innovations of the 20th century.

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Gustav Mahler

Gustav Mahler (1860 – 1911) was an Austro-Bohemian late-Romantic composer, and one of the leading conductors of his generation. As a composer he acted as a bridge between the 19th century Austro-German tradition and the modernism of the early 20th century. While in his lifetime his status as a conductor was established beyond question, his own music gained wide popularity only after periods of relative neglect which included a ban on its performance in much of Europe during the Nazi era. After 1945 his compositions were rediscovered by a new generation of listeners; Mahler then became one of the most frequently performed and recorded of all composers, a position he has sustained into the 21st century. In 2016, a BBC Music Magazine survey of 151 conductors ranked three of hissymphonies in the top ten symphonies of all time.


Composer full Name: Gustav Mahler
Date of Birth:  07 July 1860
Date of Death: 18 May 1911
Nationality: Austrian/Austro-Bohemian
Period/Era/Style: Late Romantic/20th Century
Biography: Born in Bohemia (then part of the Austrian Empire) as a German-speaking Jew of humble circumstances, Mahler displayed his musical gifts at an early age. After graduating from the Vienna Conservatory in 1878, he held a succession of conducting posts of rising importance in the opera houses of Europe, culminating in his appointment in 1897 as director of the Vienna Court Opera (Hofoper). During his ten years in Vienna, Mahler—who had converted to Catholicism to secure the post—experienced regular opposition and hostility from the anti-Semitic press. Nevertheless, his innovative productions and insistence on the highest performance standards ensured his reputation as one of the greatest of opera conductors, particularly as an interpreter of the stage works of Wagner, Mozart, and Tchaikovsky. Late in his life he was briefly director of New York’s Metropolitan Operaand the New York Philharmonic.

Mahler’s œuvre is relatively limited; for much of his life composing was necessarily a part-time activity while he earned his living as a conductor. Aside from early works such as a movement from a piano quartet composed when he was a student in Vienna, Mahler’s works are generally designed for large orchestral forces, symphonic choruses and operatic soloists. These works were frequently controversial when first performed, and several were slow to receive critical and popular approval; exceptions included his Second Symphony, Third Symphony, and the triumphant premiere of his Eighth Symphony in 1910. Some of Mahler’s immediate musical successors included the composers of the Second Viennese School, notably Arnold Schoenberg, Alban Berg and Anton Webern. Dmitri Shostakovich and Benjamin Britten are among later 20th-century composers who admired and were influenced by Mahler. The International Gustav Mahler Institute was established in 1955 to honour the composer’s life and work.

Early life: Family background   |   Childhood   |   Student days
Early conducting career 1880–88: First appointments   |   Prague and Leipzig   |   Apprentice composer
Budapest and Hamburg, 1888–97:   Royal Opera, Budapest   |   Stadttheater Hamburg
Vienna, 1897–1907: Hofoper director   |   Philharmonic concerts   |   Mature composer   |   Marriage, family, tragedy
Last years, 1908–11: New York   |   Illness and death


Playlists: 

 

Symphonies
Song Cycles
Chamber Works

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