It’s likely that classical music is more accessible to us than we would first imagine. Point of fact, we hear it almost wherever we go these days, be it in a restaurant, a grocery store, an elevator, for the purpose of advertising, or on television as both the theme music as well as incidental music. ‘2001: Space Odyssey is a good instance of the former, as well as the numerous scores that John Williams has constituted in recent years for such blockbuster films as even the Star Wars, as well as Indiana Jones trilogies, are good examples of the latter. A significant amount of film music either uses the “classical” tradition directly or draws inspiration from it.
Pieces that, once discovered, constitute the beginning of a thrilling and enticing journey that will bring a lifetime’s worth of listening pleasure are to be found in the vast and diverse world of “classical” music.
A piece of considerable scope written for the entire orchestra. Typically includes four movements or portions, with the tempo frequently changing between rapid and slow. Beethoven’s ninth symphony was the first piece to break with precedent in that he introduced vocal soloists and a complete choir into the final movement of a symphony. This was done in the final movement of his ninth symphony. Other composers who are known for their works in the genre of symphony include Haydn (who wrote 104 of them), Mozart, Schubert, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Mahler, and, later, Prokofiev and Shostakovich. Haydn created 104 of them.
Also a large-scale composition for the entire orchestra, but this time with an instrumental soloist added in. It’s a piano, violin, or cello while we’re talking about this, but it might be any instrument in the orchestra. The concerto’s defining characteristic is the way in which the soloist and orchestra interact with one another. The Four Seasons by Vivaldi is a collection of four violin concertos that he wrote. Other renowned concerto composers include Mozart, Beethoven, including Tchaikovsky for the piano; Beethoven, Brahms, and Sibelius for the violin; Dvorak and Elgar for the cello; and Sibelius, Brahms, and Tchaikovsky for the piano.
Especially compared to other genres of music, most popular classical music does produce a reasonable amount of money. The overall revenue generated by the music industry in the United States in 2019 was $11.1 billion, as reported by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) (not including concerts). This is not something to be laughing about because, according to the data provided by the RIAA, the majority of the money in 2019 came from streaming and digital downloads.
If classical music within the United States had a market share of just 1 percent, then the money generated by classical music in 2019 would be close to $111 million. Obviously, the survival of classical music is not just dependent on monetary gain.
Around the turn of the century, musical styles that were previously classified as “classical” began to diversify as well as break off into sub-genres to a greater extent than they had ever before. Composers were inspired to create new musical styles as a direct reaction to the divisive political climates that prevailed around the world, as well as the enormous technological achievements of the time.
The 20th century was a pivotal time for the development of most popular classical music, as it witnessed the beginnings of modernism, impressionism, serialism, and minimalism, as well as further influence from non-classical styles like jazz and sometimes even experiments with recorded sound.
Instrumental music and vocal music are each given equal weight and importance in today’s most popular classical music. For example, Mozart and Beethoven each created a number of symphonies that consisted only of instrumental music and lacked any vocal components. (They were both composers, and both wrote operas that featured the voice). The concept behind this comparison is that the timbres, or tone qualities, of various instruments, are analogous to the palettes of various colors that a painter uses when painting. Therefore, composers have the ability to use instruments in addition to the voice to convey a wide range of emotions, not limited to joy and grief.