10 Great European Opera Composers

Introduction

Opera is a great culture way to spend your time. It’s got drama and music, plus sometimes there are horses or swords involved. Opera composers are like the authors of these works; they spend their lives writing beautiful music that people love to listen to. Opera composers have been around for hundreds of years, so we’ve rounded up some important ones who you should know about:

Giuseppe Verdi

Giuseppe Verdi was born in 1813, and lived until 1901. He was an Italian composer who composed operas. He wrote music for the opera Otello, which premiered in 1887; it’s still performed today. He also wrote some other operas, including Rigoletto (1851) and La Traviata (1853).

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born in Salzburg, Austria on January 27, 1756. He died just two months shy of his 35th birthday in Vienna, Austria on December 5, 1791.

In his short life (he died at 34), Mozart wrote over 600 works including symphonies, concertos and chamber music; piano and violin sonatas; operas; choral works; sacred music – all within just 25 years! His influence was felt immediately after his death with many composers aspiring to follow in his footsteps by composing pieces in styles similar to those of Classical period composers such as Johann Sebastian Bach or Antonio Vivaldi.

Richard Wagner

Richard Wagner was a German composer, conductor, theatre director and philosopher. He is best known for his operas (Der Ring des Nibelungen), which are among the most frequently performed in the world. The popularity of these works led to a rapid decline in both the number of new works being written and also their quality. Wagner produced an enormous amount of music throughout his career; in addition to his operas he wrote many other pieces including symphonies, choral works, chamber music and solo piano pieces. Many of these have been recorded on CD by some great performers such as Sir Georg Solti conducting The Dresden State Orchestra or Claudio Abbado leading The Chicago Symphony Orchestra – both available on Amazon Prime Music!

Giacomo Puccini

Giacomo Puccini was born in Lucca, Italy and went on to become one of the most famous opera composers of all time. His most well known works include La Bohème, Tosca and Madama Butterfly.

Puccini’s career began when he was just 12 years old and he wrote his first opera at age 16. He studied music at the Milan Conservatory but didn’t finish his studies there due to financial difficulties experienced by his family during World War I. He continued composing however despite these setbacks and eventually became one of Italy’s most respected composers by the end of his life (he died in 1924).

Georg Friedrich Handel

Georg Friedrich Handel was born in Halle, Germany in 1685. He moved to England in 1712 and became a naturalized British citizen in 1727. Handel wrote over 40 operas, including “Rinaldo” (1711), “Giulio Cesare” (1724) and “Alcina” (1735).

Gaetano Donizetti

Gaetano Donizetti was born in Bergamo, Lombardy in 1797. He was a prolific composer of operas and died at the age of 51 in 1848. His most famous opera is Lucia di Lammermoor which has been performed over 500 times worldwide since its premiere in 1835. The story takes place in Scotland during the 1600s and tells of a love triangle between Enrico Ashton (who is betrothed to Lucia), Edgardo di Ravenswood (a rival suitor) and Lord Arturo Bucklaw (Lucia’s father).

Georges Bizet

  • Born in Paris in 1838
  • Died in 1875 at the age of 36
  • Wrote operas including Carmen, The Pearl Fishers and The Fair Maid of Perth. His first opera La Jolie Fille de Perth was not a success but Carmen has become one of the most popular operas ever written.

Richard Strauss

Richard Strauss was a prolific composer, conductor and opera director of the late Romantic and early modern eras. His work is known for its melodic inventiveness and harmonic color. He was also a prominent musician of his time.

Richard Strauss was born on June 11th 1864 in Munich, Germany. He studied composition with Arnold Schoenberg at the Royal Academy of Music in Berlin from 1884 until 1886 where he developed his own style which combined elements from both classical music and Romanticism such as Wagnerian leitmotifs but also atonal passages that are characteristic of his later compositions such as Don Juan Opus 20 (1888).

Strauss’ first major success came with Der Rosenkavalier (1911), an opera set in 17th century Vienna that incorporates elements from traditional operettas while maintaining its serious tone by using classical forms such as sonata form for musical structure instead of using spoken dialogue like most comic operas do today.”

Hector Berlioz

Hector Berlioz was a French composer, conductor and critic. He is known for his musical output, which includes over 80 works in all genres but has been described as “a supreme poet who excelled in every field of music”. His best-known works are the opera Les Troyens and the symphony Fantastique, both based on Shakespeare.

Berlioz produced an enormous amount of music throughout his life; in addition to eight completed operas he left behind several symphonies (including one with narration), concertos, overtures and chamber music pieces. He also wrote musical criticism for various publications including Le Corsaire..

Claudio Monteverdi

In the 16th century, Claudio Monteverdi was born in Cremona, a city in northern Italy. He studied at the University of Bologna and served as a priest before becoming an opera composer. His most famous work is Orfeo (1607), which tells the story of Orpheus and Eurydice through music. It became an important piece for other composers to study because it was one of the first operas to have been written using all recitative instead of spoken dialogue between songs; this style would later become known as Baroque opera

Opera composers are great people to know.

Opera composers are great people to know. They have a lot of knowledge about opera and can tell you all kinds of interesting things. For example, they could tell you:

  • The history of opera
  • About famous singers who have performed in their operas
  • About the music they wrote

Conclusion

Opera is a great art form, and we hope that you have learned a little bit more about how it came to be. If you are interested in learning more about opera composers, we recommend checking out these books:

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