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A little Classical 101

post #1 of 30
Thread Starter 
A friend of mine asked me to compile a list of 100 pieces of classical music that belong in every collection. Not necessarily particular recordings, but just pieces to look out for. So I did it and I couldn't resist adding just one extra......here's my list of 101 pieces of classical music that belong in every collection.

1.Johann Sebastian Bach – The Brandenburg Concertos
2.Johann Sebastian Bach – The Goldberg Variations
3.Johann Sebastian Bach – Mass in B Minor
4.Johann Sebastian Bach – St. Matthew Passion
5.Johann Sebastian Bach – The Well-Tempered Clavier
6.Bela Bartok – Concerto for Orchestra
7.Ludwig van Beethoven – Piano Concert o No. 5
8.Ludwig van Beethoven – Piano Sonata No. 8
9.Ludwig van Beethoven – Piano Sonata No. 29
10.Ludwig van Beethoven – Symphony No. 3
11.Ludwig van Beethoven – Symphony No. 5
12.Ludwig van Beethoven – Symphony No. 7
13.Ludwig van Beethoven – Symphony No. 9
14.Ludwig van Beethoven – Violin Concerto
15.Hector Berlioz – Symphonie Fantastique
16.Georges Bizet – Carmen
17.Johannes Brahms – Piano Concerto No. 2
18.Johannes Brahms – Symphony No. 1
19.Johannes Brahms – Symphony No. 3
20.Johannes Brahms – Symphony No. 4
21.Johannes Brahms – Violin Concerto
22.Anton Bruckner – Symphony No. 8
23.Anton Bruckner – Symphony No. 9
24.Fryderyk Chopin – Ballades
25.Fryderyk Chopin – Nocturnes
26.Claude Debussy – La Mer
27.Claude Debussy – Images for Piano
28.Claude Debussy – Preludes for Piano
29.Antonin Dvorak – Cello Concerto
30.Antonin Dvorak – Symphony No. 9
31.Edward Elgar – Cello Concerto
32.Gabriel Faure – Requiem
33.Cesar Franck – Violin Sonata
34.Edvard Grieg – Piano Concerto
35.George Frideric Handel – The Messiah
36.George Fridieric Handel – Water Music
37.Joseph Haydn – The Creation
38.Joseph Haydn – Symphony No. 94
39.Joseph Haydn – Symphony No. 102
40.Joseph Haydn – Symphony No. 104
41.Franz Liszt – Les Preludes
42.Franz Liszt – Piano Sonata
43.Gustav Mahler – Das Lied von der Erde
44.Gustav Mahler – Symphony No. 2
45.Gustav Mahler – Symphony No. 5
46.Gustav Mahler – Symphony No. 9
47.Felix Mendelssohn – Midsummer Night’s Dream
48.Felix Mendelssohn – Octet
49.Felix Mendelssohn – Violin Concerto
50.Claudio Monteverdi – Vespers
51.Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart – Clarinet Concerto
52.Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart – Don Giovanni
53.Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart – The Marriage of Figaro
54.Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart – Piano Concerto No. 20
55.Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart – Requiem Mass
56.Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart – Symphony No. 40
57.Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart – Symphony No. 41
58.Modest Mussorgsky – Boris Godunov
59.Modest Mussorgsky – Pictures at an Exhibition
60.Sergey Prokofiev – Romeo and Juliet
61.Sergey Prokofiev – Symphony No. 5
62.Giacomo Puccini – La Boheme
63.Giacomo Puccini – Madama Butterfly
64.Sergey Rachmaninov – Piano Concerto No. 2
65.Sergey Rachmaninov – Piano Concerto No. 3
66.Maurice Ravel – Daphnis et Chloe
67.Maurice Ravel – Gaspard de la Nuit
68.Nikolai Rimsky Korsakov – Scheherazade
69.Gioachino Rossini – The Barber of Seville
70.Camille Saint-Saens – Symphony No. 3
71.Arnold Schoenberg – Transfigured Night
72.Franz Schubert – String Quartet No. 14
73.Franz Schubert - String Quintet
74.Franz Schubert - Symphony No. 8
75.Franz Schubert – Symphony No. 9
76.Franz Schubert – Winterreise
77.Robert Schumann – Carnaval
78.Robert Schumann – Fantasie
79.Robert Schumann – Piano Concerto
80.Robert Schumann – Piano Quintet
81.Dmitri Shostakovich – Symphony No. 5
82.Dmitri Shostakovich – Symphony No. 10
83.Jean Sibelius – Symphony No. 2
84.Jean Sibelius – Symphony No. 5
85.Bedrich Smetana - Ma Vlast
86.Richard Strauss – Don Quixote
87.Richard Strauss – Der Rosenkavalier
88.Igor Stravinsky – The Firebird
89.Igor Stravinsky – The Rite of Spring
90.Pytor Illyich Tchaikovsky – Piano Concerto No. 1
91.Pytor Illyich Tchaikovsky – Sleeping Beauty
92.Pytor Illyich Tchaikovsky – Symphony No. 6
93.Pytor Illyich Tchaikovsky – Violin Concerto
94.Vaughan Williams – Symphony No. 5
95.Verdi - Aida
96.Verdi – Otello
97.Verdi – Requiem
98. Vivaldi - The Four Seasons
99.Wagner – Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg
100.Wagner – The Ring Cycle
101.Wagner – Tristan und Isolde
post #2 of 30
101 list is still restrictive!

I would love to add:

Beethoven's String Quartets!
post #3 of 30
I couldn't help noticing that the list is light on contemporary classical music. Question: If you had to lose six pieces in exchange for some postwar additions, what would they be? Just curious...

Btw, has anyone heard Ruth Crawford-Seeger's "String Quartet 1931"? It's quite beautiful.
post #4 of 30
tru blu, love the sig, one of my favorite rap artists of all time.

Also, for anyone looking for specific recs (and links to recordings) to some of the list above, check my sig. There's a lot of overlap between the 2 lists, but not everything.
post #5 of 30
Gustav Holst's "The Planets" deserves a place on that list. And Mahler 5 is a beastly piece, too.
post #6 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tru blu View Post
I couldn't help noticing that the list is light on contemporary classical music. Question: If you had to lose six pieces in exchange for some postwar additions, what would they be? Just curious...

Btw, has anyone heard Ruth Crawford-Seeger's "String Quartet 1931"? It's quite beautiful.
If I was to take away a few I would honestly take away the Four Seasons by Vivaldi, the Smetana Ma Vlast, the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto, the Vaughan Williams 5th, and maybe Scheherazade by Rimsky Korsakov


And I would replace them with.... (and we're talking post world war II only)
Britten's Peter Grimes (which debuted at the conclusion of the war)

Boulez's Piano Sonata No. 3

Messiaen - Quartet for the End of Time (begun during the war and finished afterwards)

Riley - In C

Stockhausen - Mantra

Part - Tabula Rasa

The reason this list does not contain any of those pieces is a two part reason. Firstly, its a fairly short list so I had to make due. Secondly, I don't feel the majority of music written since 1950 is essential for building a library of classical music in the same way that 1650 through 1950 is. Maybe that's old-fashioned thinking. But music is not of the overall quality which it once was.


I agree, Beethoven's String Quartets should be in every collection.

Also look at Tyson's signature list, his list recommends fantastic recordings of much of this list and more of his favorites.
post #7 of 30
Thanx for responding, David. What amazes me is that I'm actually familiar with all those pieces, and I don't think your list dips in quality due to their addition. Didn't mean to put you on the spot, but I was just thinking that WWII ended in 1945—six decades ago—so there must be six pieces that would make sense. It's cool to have an expert opinion.
post #8 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tru blu View Post
Thanx for responding, David. What amazes me is that I'm actually familiar with all those pieces, and I don't think your list dips in quality due to their addition. Didn't mean to put you on the spot, but I was just thinking that WWII ended in 1945—six decades ago—so there must be six pieces that would make sense. It's cool to have an expert opinion.
Hey thanks for the compliment. A few pieces on my list that are post WWII are Bartok's Concerto for Orchestra (its actually contemporary with WWII), Shostakovich's 10th, and Prokofiev's 5th which is contemporaneous with WWII.
post #9 of 30
Faure's Violin Sonata No. 1 should be on there as well.
post #10 of 30
I'm gonna throw in two of my own just for the sake of argument:

Henryk Górecki - "Symphony No. 3, Op. 36: Symphony of Sorrowful Songs"

Morton Feldman - "Triadic Memories"
post #11 of 30
Olivier Messiaen, Milton Babbitt, Steve Reich.

other than that, marvelous.
post #12 of 30
Edited because I missed something the first time I read it, whoops...
post #13 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caribou679 View Post
101 list is still restrictive!

I would love to add:

Beethoven's String Quartets!
Considering that his late quartets are monumental works of art and are arguably the most important pieces of music he wrote, I'd say it deserves a place in classical 101.
post #14 of 30
I'm not that much of a classical music neophyte but I do enjoying reading these posts. It's a nice addition to one of the best music forums on the net. I wanted to suggest that you list performances over pieces. My strategy toward classical music has been to carefully search out great preformances of great pieces. I haven't been let down by this strategy yet. I will also add that you balanced modern and more historic pieces nicely. I fine myself leaning toward more historic pieces lately.
post #15 of 30
No Nielsen, Martinů, Britten, Orff, Szymanowski, Janáček or Barber?

I'd clear out the saccharine Mozart to make room for some really worthwhile music.
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