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  1. #1
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    My List of Core Classical Works

    Music lovers,

    I have compiled a list of just over 200 compositions, (including operas), that can be considered a core repertoire of classical music. It might be useful to for either the classical "newbie" or, possibly, the more seasoned classical lover who simply wants to check his taste or collection against another source.

    Let me hasten to say this list is not my own invention; rather it is a compliation of recommendations from a number of sources. In quite a few cases I don't actually own a recording of the composition in question.

    Check it out ... HERE

  2. #2
    If you can't run-walk. Bernd's Avatar
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    That's great....

    ....Thank you Bill.

    Just what I needed. Somehow classical music passed me by, even though I have a couple of professional classical working musican friends.
    After dipping my big toe into the jazz pool and found much that I like I shall do the same with classical and your list will help.
    How is the repaired pre-amp?
    Hope all is well your and thanks again.

    Peace

    "Let The Earth Bear Witness."

  3. #3
    Color me gone... Resident Loser's Avatar
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    Surprisingly...

    ...most of what I currently have is on the list...equally surprising is that Mozart's Die Zauberflote, Don Giovanni, or The Marriage Of Figaro did not make the list...

    jimHJJ(...all of which I think are equal to the Verdi inclusions...)
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  4. #4
    Super Moderator Site Moderator JohnMichael's Avatar
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    Thanks for a good link. I have a number of the ones listed but this will help me expand my collection.
    JohnMichael
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  5. #5
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    I agree, actually

    Quote Originally Posted by Resident Loser
    ...most of what I currently have is on the list...equally surprising is that Mozart's Die Zauberflote, Don Giovanni, or The Marriage Of Figaro did not make the list...

    jimHJJ(...all of which I think are equal to the Verdi inclusions...)
    I prefer Mozart operas to Verdi's myself, and would rather have included those you mention. On the other hand, and being diffident as I am, I decided to go with the wider consensus rather than my own prefs.

    I'm very fond of contemporary classical, (e.g. Carter, Boulez, Messaien, Schnittke, Ligeti, Penderecki, Stockhausen, Wuorinen et al.), but very few of those made it to the list.

  6. #6
    Suspended PeruvianSkies's Avatar
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    Thanks for the list as per our other thread...

  7. #7
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    Great list, Feanor!

    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor
    Music lovers,

    I have compiled a list of just over 200 compositions, (including operas), that can be considered a core repertoire of classical music. It might be useful to for either the classical "newbie" or, possibly, the more seasoned classical lover who simply wants to check his taste or collection against another source.

    Let me hasten to say this list is not my own invention; rather it is a compliation of recommendations from a number of sources. In quite a few cases I don't actually own a recording of the composition in question.

    Check it out ... HERE
    Wow! That represents a lot of work. Great job! I have recordings of most of them but by no means all.

    I do have some other suggestions which I have put in below. You seem to have something against composers with names beginning with "R" , it seems, like Rachmaninoff, Ravel, and Rossini! I also suggest Puccini and Vaughan Williams. I also think basic lists tend to ignore overtures, which are some of the most popular works: Mozart, Beethoven, Weber, Rossini, Mendelssohn, Berlioz, Suppe, Auber, and Wagner, and some others, and I have suggested some of them.

    Bach

    4 Lute Suites
    4 Orchestral Suites
    4 great toccatas and fugues, Passacaglia, Schuebler Chorales
    Keyboard Concertos (harpsichord but often done with piano)
    Transcriptions for orchestra by Stokowski and others; transcriptions for guitar

    Beethoven

    String Quartets
    Missa Solemnis
    Fidelio (opera)
    Overtures

    Berlioz

    Harold in Italy for viola and orchestra
    Overtures

    Borodin

    Symphony No. 2 -- a strong work
    Overture to Prince Igor, Polovtsian Dances
    In the Steppes of Central Asia

    Brahms

    Ein Deutsches Requiem (A German Requiem) -- one of the great choral works
    3 String Quartets

    Bruch

    Scottish Fantasy

    Chopin

    Sonata No. 2

    Elgar

    Symphony No. 1

    Franck

    Organ Music--Heroic Piece, Chorales, etc. Franck was one of the most original composers for organ.

    Haydn


    Cello Concertos
    Paris Symphonies (Nos. 82-87)
    London Symphonies (Nos. 93-104, and lots of others, especially those to which someone has given a name

    Mozart

    6 Quartets dedicated to Haydn (aka Haydn Quartets)
    Requiem
    Mass in C
    Don Giovanni
    The Marriage of Figaro
    Overtures

    Mussorgsky

    Boris Godunov

    Prokofiev

    Alexander Nevsky Cantata

    Puccini

    La Boheme
    Madam Butterfly
    Tosca
    Turandot

    Rachmaninoff

    Piano Concerto 2 and 3 are more popular than 1 and 4
    Isle of the Dead (tone poem)
    Symphony No.2
    Symphonic Dances
    Various Piano Pieces

    Ravel

    String Quartet
    Rapsodie Espagnole
    Mother Goose Suite, Alborada, Bolero, etc.
    Piano pieces like Gaspard

    Rossini

    The Barber of Seville
    Overtures

    Schubert

    Trout Quintet

    Schumann

    String Quartets (3)
    Symphonies 2 and 4 are nice, too

    Sibelius

    4 Lemminkainen Suites (aka 4 Legends from the Kalevala)
    Karelia Suite, Luonnotar, En Saga, Pohjola's Daughter, The Bard, etc.

    Suppe

    Overtures

    Tchaikovsky


    Swan Lake
    Sleeping Beauty

    Vaughan Williams

    Symphony No. 1
    Symphony No. 2

    Wagner

    The Flying Dutchman
    Siegfried Idyll
    Overtures
    "Opposition brings concord. Out of discord comes the fairest harmony."
    ------Heraclitus of Ephesis (fl. 504-500 BC), trans. Wheelwright.

  8. #8
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Great suggestions!

    Hard to dispute that any of these should not be on a "core" list. As a chamber music fan in particular, I think I'm going to have to add ..
    • Beethoven's string quartets, especailly the "Rasumovsky", Op 59
    • Ravel's String Quarter in F major
    • Schubert's 'Trout' Quintet, D 667
    I'm also going to have to added some of my own chamber favorites:
    • Shostakovich' String Quartet No 8, (also I think Nos 3, 7, 10)
    • Carter's String Quarter No 1
    • Janacek's String Quartet No 1, 'Kreutzer'
    • Messaien's 'Quartet for the End of Time'
    And other than chamber music, at least ..
    • Canteloube's 'Songs of the Auvergne'

  9. #9
    Man of the People Forums Moderator bobsticks's Avatar
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    Thanks Feanor for taking the time. I have many of those mentioned but must admit that my collection is a bit shy on modern composers so this will be a good starting point.

    Coincidently, I grabbed another copy of Prokoviev's "Alexander Nevsky" this afternoon.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobsticks
    Thanks Feanor for taking the time. I have many of those mentioned but must admit that my collection is a bit shy on modern composers so this will be a good starting point.

    Coincidently, I grabbed another copy of Prokoviev's "Alexander Nevsky" this afternoon.
    A great work. Which one did you get?

    When I was a child, I sometimes listened to an old recording with Jennie Tourel as the mezzo. Now I have several recordings on LP and Dutoit/MSO on CD, which I like a lot and the sound is superb. Jard van Nes did a wonderful job with the mezzo solo.
    "Opposition brings concord. Out of discord comes the fairest harmony."
    ------Heraclitus of Ephesis (fl. 504-500 BC), trans. Wheelwright.

  11. #11
    Man of the People Forums Moderator bobsticks's Avatar
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    I was quick on my feet and grabbed a copy of the Slatkin/St.Louis Symphony on Mobile Fedelity when the opportunity presented itself. It will have to go some way to best Dutoit but has received solid reviews. Guess what my afternoon project is for tomorrow??

  12. #12
    Crackhead Extraordinaire Dusty Chalk's Avatar
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    Actually, Pictures at an Exhibition is a piano piece, the orchestration was done by Ravel. I recommend them both, because it's almost as good as Peter and the Wolf to introduce a newb listener to the tonal colours an orchestra is capable of.

    I didn't see any Saint-SaŽns on there -- Organ Symphony should be on any top 100 list, and the second piano concerto is one of my personal favourites, right up there with Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto.

    And I can't believe you don't have any Rachmaninoff on there -- Hello? 2nd Piano Concerto?

    I'm glad you included some Schubert piano solo music, but I think the Wanderer fantasy is probably his shining moment, but that's a personal preference, as long as you have something on there, I'm happy with that.

    Chopin: Ballades, Nocturnes, Waltzes, Polonaises, Mazurkas is kind of cheating. I personally prefer the Nocturnes, but there's a nice lady on Head-Fi who's more knowledgeable about things Chopin who prefers his ...Waltzes? Preludes? I forget...

    And I think you meant 2nd Piano Sonata, not Concerto, since that's where the funeral march came from.

    Also, I didn't see any Massenet on there.
    Eschew fascism.
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  13. #13
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    My vinyl years

    Feanor - WOW ! That is indeed quite a list...but as I scanned through it, I realized that in vinyl I have a large number of the works you list. I'm sure for the newcomer, there is a lot in that list to take into account - at least they could audition some of those masterpieces. I find as I get older (now being 83) I tend to appreciate chamber music more than the massive orchestral compositions. I was happy to see Schubert's Trout Quintet mentioned somewhere by someone in this thread....???.....(I can't get used to the word 'thread')....because when a friend of mine mentioned the 'Trout' some years ago, I only liked a part of it....but now I recognize the beauty in all of that marvelous work. And every time I hear this work I hear the hym "Stand up, Stand up for Jesus" as one of the themes...??? I wonder if anyone else hears that hymn...or even KNOWS it. Bingo

  14. #14
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Revised & Improved

    Folks, I have revised and slightly expanded the list. I have added a few of your suggestions, (e.g. Dusty's), but mostly my own. I removed a few "redundant" symphonies, e.g. one or two Beethoven, Brahms, Bruckner, and a couple of Verdi operas, (but added Mozart operas).

    List is at the same place, namely ... HERE


    Quote Originally Posted by Dusty Chalk
    Actually, Pictures at an Exhibition is a piano piece, the orchestration was done by Ravel. I recommend them both, because it's almost as good as Peter and the Wolf to introduce a newb listener to the tonal colours an orchestra is capable of.

    I didn't see any Saint-SaŽns on there -- Organ Symphony should be on any top 100 list, [ADDED] and the second piano concerto is one of my personal favourites, right up there with Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto.

    And I can't believe you don't have any Rachmaninoff on there -- Hello? 2nd Piano Concerto? [ADDED]

    I'm glad you included some Schubert piano solo music, but I think the Wanderer fantasy is probably his shining moment, but that's a personal preference, as long as you have something on there, I'm happy with that.

    Chopin: Ballades, Nocturnes, Waltzes, Polonaises, Mazurkas is kind of cheating. I personally prefer the Nocturnes, but there's a nice lady on Head-Fi who's more knowledgeable about things Chopin who prefers his ...Waltzes? Preludes? I forget...

    And I think you meant 2nd Piano Sonata, not Concerto, since that's where the funeral march came from. [will check]

    Also, I didn't see any Massenet [yawn] on there.

  15. #15
    Suspended PeruvianSkies's Avatar
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    I have the...

    Quote Originally Posted by bobsticks
    Thanks Feanor for taking the time. I have many of those mentioned but must admit that my collection is a bit shy on modern composers so this will be a good starting point.

    Coincidently, I grabbed another copy of Prokoviev's "Alexander Nevsky" this afternoon.
    SACD's of ALEXANDER NEVSKY, IVAN THE TERRIBLE, and PICTURES AT AN EXHIBITION, plus PETER AND THE WOLF and the MOFI stuff is always the best to grab up.

  16. #16
    Man of the People Forums Moderator bobsticks's Avatar
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    An outstanding choice to be sure. Claudine Carlson is breathtaking on "The Fields of the Dead". A bit of a feel from the tenth row...

    Name:  prokofiev_nevsky_mofi.jpg
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  17. #17
    Suspended PeruvianSkies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobsticks
    An outstanding choice to be sure. Claudine Carlson is breathtaking on "The Fields of the Dead". A bit of a feel from the tenth row...

    Name:  prokofiev_nevsky_mofi.jpg
Views: 41
Size:  11.3 KB
    i'll hafta track that down at some point.

  18. #18
    Man of the People Forums Moderator bobsticks's Avatar
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    Very good but not great as it loses a few points for sonics--definetly light in the lower regions but since much of Prokofiev's stuff was originally recorded on old Russian telephone equipment, whatchagonnado?

  19. #19
    Suspended PeruvianSkies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobsticks
    Very good but not great as it loses a few points for sonics--definetly light in the lower regions but since much of Prokofiev's stuff was originally recorded on old Russian telephone equipment, whatchagonnado?
    Those Rooskies sure knew how to do quality eh?

  20. #20
    Man of the People Forums Moderator bobsticks's Avatar
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    Well, when the result of experimenting with banned technology was to be found floating in the Neva, a victim of the subtlties of the Ob'edinennoe Gosudarstvennoe Politicheskoe Upravlenie, the recording engineers of the day may have chosen discretion as the better part of valor.

    So, y'know, cheers to a certain level of freedom.

  21. #21
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Dusty ...

    Quote Originally Posted by Dusty Chalk
    Actually, Pictures at an Exhibition is a piano piece, the orchestration was done by Ravel. I recommend them both, because it's almost as good as Peter and the Wolf to introduce a newb listener to the tonal colours an orchestra is capable of.

    I didn't see any Saint-SaŽns on there -- Organ Symphony should be on any top 100 list, and the second piano concerto is one of my personal favourites, right up there with Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto.

    And I can't believe you don't have any Rachmaninoff on there -- Hello? 2nd Piano Concerto?

    I'm glad you included some Schubert piano solo music, but I think the Wanderer fantasy is probably his shining moment, but that's a personal preference, as long as you have something on there, I'm happy with that.

    Chopin: Ballades, Nocturnes, Waltzes, Polonaises, Mazurkas is kind of cheating. I personally prefer the Nocturnes, but there's a nice lady on Head-Fi who's more knowledgeable about things Chopin who prefers his ...Waltzes? Preludes? I forget...

    And I think you meant 2nd Piano Sonata, not Concerto, since that's where the funeral march came from.

    Also, I didn't see any Massenet on there.
    Thanks again, and my revised list includes some of your suggestion. (The original ought to have had too, but for a glitch in my automated selection process.) On the other hand, I'm not huge lover of the romantic era which is another, less technical, reason why I originally overlooked some of these composers and works.

    No matter! Mostly remedied at the same place, namely ... HERE

  22. #22
    Crackhead Extraordinaire Dusty Chalk's Avatar
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    Yeah, I saw that. That's pretty much why I added Massenet -- although I agree with your assessment, I still thought "that kind of music" should be represented.

    Where's Pat D? I wouldn't mind his reaction to this list...

    EDIT: Never mind, somehow I missed his response. Thanks to Jack for "bumping" it for me. I'll go back and read more thoroughly.
    Last edited by Dusty Chalk; 04-13-2007 at 06:19 PM.
    Eschew fascism.
    Truth Will Out.
    Quote Originally Posted by stevef22
    you guys are crackheads.
    I remain,
    Peter aka Dusty Chalk

  23. #23
    Forum Regular Jack in Wilmington's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pat D
    Wow! That represents a lot of work. Great job! I have recordings of most of them but by no means all.

    I do have some other suggestions which I have put in below. You seem to have something against composers with names beginning with "R" , it seems, like Rachmaninoff, Ravel, and Rossini! I also suggest Puccini and Vaughan Williams. I also think basic lists tend to ignore overtures, which are some of the most popular works: Mozart, Beethoven, Weber, Rossini, Mendelssohn, Berlioz, Suppe, Auber, and Wagner, and some others, and I have suggested some of them.

    Bach

    4 Lute Suites
    4 Orchestral Suites
    4 great toccatas and fugues, Passacaglia, Schuebler Chorales
    Keyboard Concertos (harpsichord but often done with piano)
    Transcriptions for orchestra by Stokowski and others; transcriptions for guitar

    Beethoven

    String Quartets
    Missa Solemnis
    Fidelio (opera)
    Overtures

    Berlioz

    Harold in Italy for viola and orchestra
    Overtures

    Borodin

    Symphony No. 2 -- a strong work
    Overture to Prince Igor, Polovtsian Dances
    In the Steppes of Central Asia

    Brahms

    Ein Deutsches Requiem (A German Requiem) -- one of the great choral works
    3 String Quartets

    Bruch

    Scottish Fantasy

    Chopin

    Sonata No. 2

    Elgar

    Symphony No. 1

    Franck

    Organ Music--Heroic Piece, Chorales, etc. Franck was one of the most original composers for organ.

    Haydn


    Cello Concertos
    Paris Symphonies (Nos. 82-87)
    London Symphonies (Nos. 93-104, and lots of others, especially those to which someone has given a name

    Mozart

    6 Quartets dedicated to Haydn (aka Haydn Quartets)
    Requiem
    Mass in C
    Don Giovanni
    The Marriage of Figaro
    Overtures

    Mussorgsky

    Boris Godunov

    Prokofiev

    Alexander Nevsky Cantata

    Puccini

    La Boheme
    Madam Butterfly
    Tosca
    Turandot

    Rachmaninoff

    Piano Concerto 2 and 3 are more popular than 1 and 4
    Isle of the Dead (tone poem)
    Symphony No.2
    Symphonic Dances
    Various Piano Pieces

    Ravel

    String Quartet
    Rapsodie Espagnole
    Mother Goose Suite, Alborada, Bolero, etc.
    Piano pieces like Gaspard

    Rossini

    The Barber of Seville
    Overtures

    Schubert

    Trout Quintet

    Schumann

    String Quartets (3)
    Symphonies 2 and 4 are nice, too

    Sibelius

    4 Lemminkainen Suites (aka 4 Legends from the Kalevala)
    Karelia Suite, Luonnotar, En Saga, Pohjola's Daughter, The Bard, etc.

    Suppe

    Overtures

    Tchaikovsky


    Swan Lake
    Sleeping Beauty

    Vaughan Williams

    Symphony No. 1
    Symphony No. 2

    Wagner

    The Flying Dutchman
    Siegfried Idyll
    Overtures
    Definately agree with Weber. Should be on everyones classical must have list

  24. #24
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Credits

    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor
    Music lovers,

    I have compiled a list of just over 200 compositions, (including operas), that can be considered a core repertoire of classical music. It might be useful to for either the classical "newbie" or, possibly, the more seasoned classical lover who simply wants to check his taste or collection against another source.

    Let me hasten to say this list is not my own invention; rather it is a compliation of recommendations from a number of sources. In quite a few cases I don't actually own a recording of the composition in question.

    Check it out ... HERE
    I'm gratified by the responses to this post, and I thank those who made comments and suggestions. Above all, it seems there are more people around here who appreciate classical music, even if not primarily.

    I'm thinking now that I ought to provide credits for my sources. As I mentioned, this list is not primarily my own preferences, but comes from other sources that I consult to guide my own music acquisitions. The following are the major credits, (although I have taken some from you and other sources, and some are indeed my own preferences):
    Don't forget: my orignal content was flawed by in the inadvertant omission of quite a few items, (e.g. of Ravel, Rachmaninov): this was remedied. My revised list is still at the same link, above.
    Last edited by Feanor; 04-14-2007 at 06:40 AM.

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