2020 Classical Anniversaries: Beyond Beethoven

Jul 22, 2020

As you may have heard, 2020 marks an important anniversary in the classical music world: the 250th birthday of Ludwig van Beethoven. Naturally, Beethoven’s music is getting plenty of exposure, both on Classical 88.7 and in live concerts (whenever those resume). 

But Beethoven isn’t the only composer celebrating a milestone this year. This week’s Classical Tulsa introduces some of the other composers marking important anniversaries in 2020, including:

The 500th birthday of Vincenzo Galilei (1520-1591), an Italian Renaissance lutenist and music theorist best remembered as the father of Galileo Galilei.

The 200th anniversary of Belgian violinist Henri Vieuxtemps (1820-1881), one of the great virtuosos of the 19th century, whose seven concertos attest to his sublime musicality.

Two 150th birthdays: Hungarian Franz Lehár (1870-1948), one of the last of the great Viennese waltz composers, and Frenchman Florent Schmitt (1870-1958), forever overshadowed by his friends Claude Debussy and Maurice Ravel.

And two centennials: American Harold Shapero (1920-2013), poised to be the next great American composer until his neoclassical style fell out of fashion, and Alexander Arutiunian (1920-2012), who incorporated the distinct music of his native Armenia into all his works – including one widely played concerto.

Join me for music by all six of these composers, this Friday (July 24) at noon on Classical 88.7 KWTU HD-1.