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Phil Collins
Phil Collins
Philip David Charles Collins, LVO (born 30 January 1951 Chiswick, London) is an English singer-songwriter, drummer and actor best known as the lead singer and drummer of English progressive rock group Genesis and as a Grammy and Academy Award-winning solo artist. He has also appeared in several films.

Collins sang the lead vocals on eight American chart-toppers between 1984 and 1989; seven as a solo artist and one with Genesis. His singles, often dealing with lost love, ranged from the drum-heavy "In the Air Tonight", to the dance pop of "Sussudio", to the political statements of his most successful song, "Another Day In Paradise". His international popularity transformed Genesis from a progressive rock group to a regular on the pop charts and an early MTV mainstay. Collins' professional career began as a drummer, first with obscure rock group Flaming Youth and then more famously with Genesis. In Genesis, Collins originally supplied backing vocals for front man Peter Gabriel, singing lead on only two songs: "For Absent Friends" from 1971's Nursery Cryme album and "More Fool Me" from Selling England by the Pound, which was released in 1973. On Gabriel's departure in 1975, Collins became the group's lead singer. As the decade closed, Genesis's first international hit, "Follow You, Follow Me", demonstrated a drastic change from the band's early years. His concurrent solo career, heavily influenced by his personal life, brought both him and Genesis commercial success. According to Atlantic Records, Collins' total worldwide sales as a solo artist, as of 2002, were 150 million.
Coldplay
Coldplay
Coldplay are a rock band formed in London, England in 1997. The group comprises vocalist/pianist/guitarist Chris Martin, lead guitarist Jonny Buckland, bassist Guy Berryman, and drummer/multi-instrumentalist Will Champion. Coldplay have sold 34.6 million albums, and are also known for their hit singles, such as "Yellow", "The Scientist", "Speed of Sound", "Fix You", "Viva la Vida" and the Grammy Award-winning "Clocks".

Coldplay achieved worldwide fame with the release of their single "Yellow", followed by their debut album, Parachutes (2000), which was nominated for the Mercury Prize. Its follow-up, A Rush of Blood to the Head (2002) won multiple awards such as NME's Album of the Year and was later included on Rolling Stone magazine's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time list, ranking at #473. Their next release, X&Y (2005), received a slightly less enthusiastic yet still generally positive reception. The band's fourth studio album, Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends (2008), was produced by Brian Eno and released again to largely favourable reviews. All of Coldplay's albums have enjoyed great commercial success.

Coldplay's early material was compared to acts such as Jeff Buckley, U2, and Travis. Coldplay have been an active supporter of various social and political causes, such as Oxfam's Make Trade Fair campaign and Amnesty International. The group have also performed at various charity projects such as Band Aid 20, Live 8, and the Teenage Cancer Trust.
Morten Lauridsen
Morten Lauridsen
Morten Johannes Lauridsen (born February 27, 1943) is an American composer. He was composer-in-residence of the Los Angeles Master Chorale (1994–2001) and has been a professor of composition at the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music for more than 30 years.
Hitoshi Sakimoto
Hitoshi Sakimoto
Hitoshi Sakimoto (崎元 仁 Sakimoto Hitoshi?, born February 26, 1969) is a Japanese video game composer and arranger. He is best known for scoring the games Final Fantasy Tactics and Final Fantasy XII, though he has composed soundtracks for over 70 games and arranged music for more than 40 others. He began playing music and video games in elementary school, and began composing video game music for money by the time he was 16. Sakimoto's professional career began a few years later in 1988 when he started composing music professionally as a freelancer, as well as programming sound drivers for games. Five years and 40 games later, he achieved his first mainstream success with the score to Ogre Battle: March of the Black Queen. Four years and another 40 games later in 1997, he joined Square (now Square Enix) and composed his first international success, the score to Final Fantasy Tactics.
Joe Cocker
Joe Cocker
John Robert "Joe" Cocker, OBE (born 20 May 1944) is an English rock/blues musician, composer and actor who came to popularity in the 1960s, and is most known for his gritty voice, his idiosyncratic arm movements while performing, and his cover versions of popular songs, particularly those of The Beatles. He is the recipient of several awards, including a 1983 Grammy Award for his song "Up Where We Belong", a duet which he performed with Jennifer Warnes. He was ranked #97 on Rolling Stone's 100 greatest singers list.
Yann Tiersen
Yann Tiersen
Guillaume Yann Tiersen (born 23 June 1970) is a French musician and composer known internationally for composing the score to the Jean-Pierre Jeunet movie Amélie. His music is recognized by its use of a large variety of instruments in relatively minimalist compositions, often with a touch of either European classical music or French folk music, using primarily the piano, accordion or violin together with instruments like the melodica, xylophone, toy piano, ondes martenot, harpsichord and typewriter. His musical style is reminiscent of Frédéric Chopin, Erik Satie, Philip Glass and Michael Nyman.
Szymanowski
Szymanowski
Karol Maciej Szymanowski (3 October 1882 – 28 March 1937) was a Polish composer and pianist.

Among Szymanowski's better known orchestral works are four symphonies (No. 3, Song of the Night with choir and vocal soloists and No. 4, Symphonie Concertante, with piano concertante) and two dream-like violin concertos. His stage works include the ballets Harnasie and Mandragora and the operas Hagith and Król Roger ('King Roger'). He wrote much piano music, including the four Etudes, Op. 4 (of which No. 3 may be his single most popular piece), many mazurkas and the exquisite and highly individual Metopes. Other works include the Three Myths for violin and piano, two masterful string quartets, a sonata for violin and piano, a number of orchestral songs (some to texts by Hafez and James Joyce) and his Stabat Mater, an acknowledged choral masterpiece.
According to Samson (p. 131), "Szymanowski adopted no thorough-going alternatives to tonal organization the harmonic tensions and relaxations and the melodic phraseology have clear origins in tonal procedure, but an underpinning tonal framework has been almost or completely dissolved away."
Paul Simon
Paul Simon
Paul Frederic Simon (born October 13, 1941) is an American songwriter, musician, and member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In 2006, Time magazine called him one of the 100 "people who shape our world." As of 2007, he resides in New Canaan, Connecticut.

He released Paul Simon in 1972, which contained one of his first experiments with world music, the Jamaican-inspired Mother and Child Reunion, and There Goes Rhymin' Simon in 1973. His 1975 album Still Crazy After All These Years is considered to be among his finest work, particularly the title track and the hit single "50 Ways to Leave Your Lover." The One Trick Pony album, Simon's first album with Warner Bros. Records was also paired with a major motion picture of the same name, with Simon in the starring role. Simon's next album Hearts and Bones, while critically acclaimed, did not yield any hit singles and marked a lull in his commercial popularity in the early 1980s.

In 1985, Simon lent his talents to USA for Africa and performed on the famine relief fundraising single "We Are the World". In 1986 he released the immensely popular Graceland, for which he won a Grammy. The album featured the groundbreaking use of African rhythms and performers such as Ladysmith Black Mambazo. In 1990, he followed up Graceland with the commercially successful and consistent successor album The Rhythm of the Saints, which featured Brazilian musical themes.

His 2000 studio album You're the One, did not reach the commercial heights of previous albums but was considered by many fans and critics to be an artistic success and received a Grammy nomination for Album of the Year. Simon's latest album, Surprise, produced by himself and Brian Eno, was released on May 9, 2006. In commenting on US TV show Ellen what drove him to write material for this latest album, Simon noted the events of September 11, 2001 and also turning 60 since his previous album You're the One.
Darius Milhaud
Darius Milhaud
Darius Milhaud (French pronunciation: ; 4 September 1892 – 22 June 1974) was a French composer and teacher. He was a member of Les Six—also known as The Group of Six—and one of the most prolific composers of the 20th century. His compositions are influenced by jazz and make use of polytonality (music in more than one key at once).
Green Day
Green Day
Green Day is an American rock trio formed in 1987. The band has consisted of Billie Joe Armstrong (vocals, guitar), Mike Dirnt (bass guitar, vocals), and Tré Cool (drums, percussion) for the majority of its existence.

Green Day was originally part of the punk rock scene at 924 Gilman Street in Berkeley, California. Its early releases for independent record label Lookout! Records earned them a grassroots fanbase, some of whom felt alienated when the band signed to a major label.

The band has sold over 65 million records worldwide, They also have three Grammy Awards, Best Alternative Album for Dookie, Best Rock Album for American Idiot, and Record of the Year for "Boulevard of Broken Dreams".
Stephen Sondheim
Stephen Sondheim
Stephen Joshua Sondheim (born March 22, 1930) is an American composer and lyricist for stage and film. He is the winner of an Academy Award, multiple Tony Awards (nine, more than any other composer) including the Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre (received 2008), multiple Grammy Awards, and a Pulitzer Prize. He has been described as "the greatest and perhaps best-known artist in the American musical theatre." His most famous scores include (as composer/lyricist) A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Company, Follies, A Little Night Music, Sweeney Todd, Sunday in the Park with George, Into the Woods, and Assassins, as well as the lyrics for West Side Story and Gypsy. He was president of the Dramatists Guild from 1973 to 1981.
Henriette Renie
Henriette Renie
Henriette Renié (1875-1956) was a French harpist and composer, a deeply religious woman who lived in poverty for much of her life, but who was independent and successful in a time when fame was socially unacceptable for women. She codified a method for harp which is widely used.
Timothy Broege
Timothy Broege
Born November 6, 1947 and raised in Belmar, New Jersey, the composer Timothy Broege studied piano and theory with Helen Antonides during his childhood years. His works include the twenty-one Sinfonias for large ensembles, the series of Songs Without Words for chamber ensembles, and a series of Fantasias for solo instruments, as well as music for voices, keyboards, guitar, recorders and school bands. His music has been featured at the Boston Early Music Festival, the Mid-West Band & Orchestra Clinic, and the College Band Directors National Association.
Domenico Alberti
Domenico Alberti (c. 1710 – 14 October 1740) was an Italian singer, harpsichordist, and composer whose works bridge the Baroque and Classical periods.
Alberti was born in Venice and studied music with Antonio Lotti. He wrote operas, songs, and sonatas for keyboard instruments, for which he is best known today. These sonatas frequently employ a particular kind of arpeggiated accompaniment in the left hand that is now known as the Alberti bass. It consists of regular broken chords, with the lowest note sounding first, then the highest, then the middle and then the highest again. This pattern is repeated. Today, Alberti is regarded as a minor composer, and his works are played or recorded only irregularly. The Alberti bass was used by many later composers, and it became an important element in much keyboard music of the Classical music era.
Sean Mortensen
Adele
Adele
Adele Laurie Blue Adkins (born 5 May 1988 in Enfield, North London), She is the first recipient of the Brit Awards Critics' Choice, which was given to artists who, at the time, had yet to release an album. She debuted at number one with her Mercury Prize nominated debut album 19 in the UK album chart and has since then been certified platinum with sales over 500,000 copies.
Casting Crowns
Casting Crowns
Casting Crowns is a Grammy award and Dove Award winning Christian band that employs a soft rock music style. The band was created in 1999 by youth pastor Mark Hall at First Baptist Church in Downtown Daytona Beach, Florida as part of a Youth Group. He also serves as a lead vocalist. Later they moved to McDonough, Georgia and more members joined creating the band now known as Casting Crowns. Some members of the band currently work as ministers for Eagles Landing First Baptist Church in McDonough, Georgia.

Discovered by, among others, contemporary Christian music legend Steven Curtis Chapman, Casting Crowns received a recording contract and vaulted to popularity in 2003 with their self-titled debut album Casting Crowns. The album quickly made them one of the fastest selling debut artists in Christian music history. Lifesong followed in 2005, debuting at #9 on the Billboard 200 Albums Chart. Both albums have been certified Platinum. The band's third album The Altar and the Door debuted at #2 on the Billboard 200 Albums Chart and #1 on the Hot Christian Albums chart upon its release in August 2007. Ten weeks after it came out it was certified Gold.

Casting Crowns has enjoyed tremendous success in the United States. They have released nine singles to date, seven of which have become consecutive number one hits on various Christian music charts. "Voice of Truth" spent a record-breaking fourteen consecutive weeks at #1 beginning in 2003. "Lifesong" spent nine weeks in the top spot, with "Praise You in This Storm" remaining at #1 for seven weeks. Casting Crowns broke their own record in 2007 when the single "East to West" from The Altar and the Door hit sixteen consecutive weeks at #1. The song ended up enjoying the top spot for a total of nineteen weeks, now their most successful single to date.
Sara Bareilles
Sara Bareilles
Sara Beth Bareilles (born December 7, 1979) is an American singer-songwriter and pianist. She achieved mainstream success in 2007 with the hit single "Love Song", which brought her into the number one spot on the Billboard Pop 100 chart.

After graduating from college in 2002, Bareilles performed at local bars and clubs (such as the Hotel Cafe and Genghis Cohen in Los Angeles), building a following, before performing in larger venues. She issued two demos of mostly live tracks in 2003: The First One in April and The Summer Sessions in October. In 2004, she appeared as a singer in a bar in the indie film Girl Play, performing the song "Undertow".

In January 2004, Bareilles released her first studio album, Careful Confessions. She signed a contract with Epic Records' A&R executive Pete Giberga on April 15, 2005. The remainder of the year and early 2006 were spent writing and reworking songs for her upcoming album. Her song, "Gravity," appears briefly in the 2006 independent film Loving Annabelle. She also toured as the opening act in 2006 for Marc Broussard's "Carencro" tour.

In mid-2004 she opened for Rocco DeLuca and the Burden during their inaugural headline tour, supported Guster on their first UK tour and co-headlined a tour with Jon McLaughlin. In 2007, Bareilles toured as the opening act for Aqualung and Mika, and later that year opened for several shows on both Maroon 5 and Paolo Nutini's U.S. tours. She also opened for James Blunt on his U.S. Tour in association with VH1 You Oughta Know.
Pocahontas
Pocahontas
Pocahontas is the thirty-third animated feature in the Disney animated features canon. It was produced by Walt Disney Feature Animation in April 15, 1994 and was originally released to selected theaters on June 16, 1995 by Buena Vista Pictures. The film is the first Disney film to be based on a real historic character. The film is based on the known historical story of Pocahontas but also on the folklore and legend that surround it. In particular, it presents an emotionally charged and highly dramatic account of the meeting between Pocahontas and John Smith. Pocahontas is one of the very few Disney films to feature an interracial romance (though not to the point of marriage),and is part of the Disney Renaissance that began in 1989 with The Little Mermaid.

Pocahontas: An Original Walt Disney Records Soundtrack is the soundtrack to Disney's 1995, thirty-third animated feature Pocahontas. It contains songs from the film written by Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz, conducted by David Friedman, and performed by Judy Kuhn, Mel Gibson, Linda Hunt, Jim Cummings and David Ogden Stiers among others, and singles by Jon Secada and Shanice, and Vanessa L. Williams, along with the film's score composed by Alan Menken. It was released on May 30, 1995 on CD and audio cassette.

The film's sountrack is probably best known for the track that serves as the film's anthem, "Colors of the Wind", which went on to win an Academy Award, a Golden Globe Award, and a Grammy Award. As a single, "Colors of the Wind" went on to reach #4 on the U.S. pop charts in 1995, and was one of Williams' biggest hits.

The soundtrack also won The Academy Award for Best Original Score, sold 2.3 million copies in the remaining two months of 1995 alone, and went on to reach #1 on the Billboard 200.
Scott Joplin
Scott Joplin
Scott Joplin (between June 1867 and January 1868 – April 1, 1917) was an American musician and composer of ragtime music. He remains the best-known ragtime figure and is regarded as one of the three most important composers of classic ragtime, along with James Scott and Joseph Lamb, and also a precursor to Stride Piano. Decades after his death, his music enjoyed a considerable surge of popularity and critical respect in the 1970s, especially for his most famous composition, "The Entertainer."

Even at the time of publication, Joplin's publisher John Stark was claiming that the rags had obtained classical status, and "lifted ragtime from its low estate and lined it up with Beethoven and Bach".
Felix Bernard
Felix Bernard
Felix Bernard (1897 – 1944) was an American conductor, pianist and a composer of popular music. His writing credits include the popular songs Winter Wonderland (with lyricist Richard B. Smith) and Dardanella.
Queen
Queen
Queen were an English rock band formed in 1970 in London by guitarist Brian May, lead vocalist Freddie Mercury, and drummer Roger Taylor, with bass guitarist John Deacon completing the lineup the following year. While it is uncertain how many albums the band has sold, estimations range from 130 million to over 300 million albums worldwide.

The band is noted for their musical diversity, multi-layered arrangements, vocal harmonies, and incorporation of audience participation into their live performances. Their 1985 Live Aid performance was voted the best live rock performance of all time in an industry poll.

Queen had moderate success in the early 1970s, with the albums Queen and Queen II, but it was with the release of Sheer Heart Attack in 1974 and A Night at the Opera the following year that the band gained international success. They have released fifteen studio albums, five live albums, and numerous compilation albums. Eighteen of these have reached number one on charts around the world.

Following Mercury's death in 1991 and Deacon's retirement later in the decade, May and Taylor have performed infrequently under the Queen name. Since 2005 they have been collaborating with Paul Rodgers, under the moniker Queen + Paul Rodgers.
Etta James
Etta James
Etta James (born Jamesetta Hawkins on January 25, 1938) is an American blues, soul, R&B, rock & roll and jazz singer and songwriter. James is the winner of four Grammys, seventeen Blues Music Awards, and was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1993, the Blues Hall of Fame in 2001, and the Grammy Hall of Fame both in 1999 and 2008. In the 1950s and 60s, she had her biggest success as a blues and R&B singer. She is best known for her 1961 ballad "At Last", which has been classified as a "timeless classic" and has been featured in many movies, television commercials, and web streaming services since its release.
Aerosmith
Aerosmith
Aerosmith is an American hard rock band, sometimes referred to as "The Bad Boys from Boston" The band was formed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1970. Guitarist Joe Perry and bassist Tom Hamilton, originally in a band together called the Jam Band, met up with singer Steven Tyler, drummer Joey Kramer, and guitarist Ray Tabano, and formed Aerosmith. By 1971, Tabano was replaced by Brad Whitford, and the band began developing a following in Boston.

They were signed to Columbia Records in 1972 and released a string of multi-platinum albums, beginning with their 1973 eponymous debut album. In 1975, the band broke into the mainstream with the album Toys in the Attic, and their 1976 follow-up Rocks cemented their status as hard rock superstars. The band did not fare well between 1980 and 1984, releasing a lone album, Rock in a Hard Place, which only went gold, failing to match the successes of their previous efforts.

Although Perry and Whitford returned in 1984 and the band signed a new deal with Geffen Records, it wasn't until the band sobered up and released 1987's Permanent Vacation that they regained the level of popularity they had experienced in the 1970s. After 38 years of performing, the band continues to tour and record music.
Alicia Keys
Alicia Keys
Alicia J. Augello-Cook (born January 25, 1981), and has won numerous awards, including eleven Grammy Awards, seventeen Billboard Music Awards, three American Music Awards.

Her debut album Songs in A Minor was a worldwide success, selling nearly 11 millions albums, and received five Grammy Awards in 2002, with Alicia winning Best New Artist and also Song of the Year for "Fallin'".
Bryan Adams
Bryan Adams
Bryan Adams (born Bryan Guy Adams on November 5, 1959) is Grammy Award-winning Canadian singer-songwriter. As of 2008, Adams has released eleven studio albums and 16 albums overall. He has been nominated for 3 Academy Awards and 5 Golden Globes for song writing in motion pictures.

Adams is a Grammy Award-winning Canadian singer-songwriter. Adams' career was launched with his 1980 debut album Bryan Adams, a rock album that garned limited success. His fourth album Reckless was released in 1984 with sales more then five million copies sold in the United States. In 1991, he released Waking Up the Neighbours which debuted at number one on several national music charts. The album reached sales of more than 10 million units worldwide, which 3 million copies was sold in the United States.
Celine Dion
Celine Dion
Céline Marie Claudette Dion (born March 30, 1968 in Charlemagne, Quebec) is a Canadian singer, and occasional songwriter and actress.

Dion had first gained international recognition in the 1980s by winning both the 1982 Yamaha World Popular Song Festival and the 1988 Eurovision Song Contest.

Dion's music has been influenced by genres ranging from rock and R&B to gospel and classical, and while her releases have often received mixed critical reception, she is renowned for her technically skilled and powerful vocals.
Aretha Franklin
Aretha Franklin
Aretha Louise Franklin (born March 25, 1942) is an American singer, songwriter and pianist self-named and commonly referred to as "The Queen of Soul". Although renowned for her soul recordings, Franklin is also adept at jazz, rock, blues, pop, R&B and gospel. In 2008, the American music magazine Rolling Stone ranked Franklin #1 on its list of The Greatest Singers of All Time.

Franklin is one of the most honored artists by the Grammy Awards, with 20 Grammys to date, which include the Living Legend Grammy and the Lifetime Achievement Grammy. She has scored a total of 20 #1 singles on the Billboard R&B Singles Chart, two of which also became #1 hits on the Billboard Hot 100: "Respect" (1967) and "I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me)" (1987), a duet with George Michael. Since 1961, Franklin has scored a total of 45 "Top 40" hits on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

In 1987, Franklin became the first female artist to be entered into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Franklin was the featured singer at the 2009 Presidential inauguration ceremony for Barack Obama.
The Turtles
The Turtles
The Turtles are a U.S. rock group led by vocalists Howard Kaylan and Mark Volman. The band became notable for several Top 40 hits beginning with its cover version of Bob Dylan's "It Ain't Me Babe" in 1965. The group scored its biggest and best-known hit in 1967 with the song "Happy Together".
John Rutter
John Rutter
John Milford Rutter CBE (born 24 September 1945) is a British composer, conductor, editor, arranger and record producer, mainly of choral music.
Anastacia
Anastacia
Anastacia (born Anastacia Lyn Newkirk; September 17, 1968) is an American singer-songwriter. Anastacia has been highly successful in Europe, Asia, South Africa and South America, but has had only minor success in her native United States. Her debut album, Not That Kind, released in 2000, achieved multi-platinum sales in Australia, New Zealand and much of Europe, was critically acclaimed by Elton John and Michael Jackson, and had the 4th biggest European single and biggest Australian single of 2000. She was awarded 'Best-selling International Artist' in 2000. Her next two albums also earned multi-platinum sales throughout Europe and Oceania making her one of the fastest and biggest-selling artists of the new millennium.
In 2005, she was recognized for worldwide sales of over 20 million albums/records. Anastacia is world-renowned for her powerful soul voice, and her small stature – 5 feet 3 inches (160 cm). She was also known for her trademark glasses (often darkly tinted), but she had surgery to correct her vision permanently in August 2005.
Train
Train
Train is a Grammy Award winning rock band formed in San Francisco, California. To date, three of their albums have peaked in the top 10 of the Billboard 200 and have sold a total of over 4 million albums in the US. Three of their songs have been top 20 hits on the Billboard Hot 100 including their biggest hit "Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me)". Train has found success on modern adult contemporary radio stations, where they have had eight songs in the top 20 of the Hot Adult Top 40 Tracks chart.

Members:
Patrick Monahan
Scott Underwood
Jimmy Stafford
Brandon Bush
Johnny Colt
Bruce Springteen
Georges Bizet
Georges Bizet
Georges Bizet (25 October 1838 – 3 June 1875) was a French composer and pianist of the Romantic era. He is best known for the opera Carmen.

Bizet was born at 26 rue de la Tour d'Auvergne in the 9th arrondissement of Paris in 1838. He was registered with the legal name Alexandre César Léopold Bizet, but he was baptised on 16 March 1840 with the first name Georges, and he was always known thereafter as Georges Bizet. His father Adolphe Armand Bizet (1810-86) was an amateur singer and composer, and his mother, Aimée Léopoldine Joséphine née Delsarte (1814-61), was the sister of the famous singing teacher François Delsarte.

He entered the Paris Conservatory of Music on 9 October 1848, a fortnight before his tenth birthday. His teachers there were Pierre Zimmermann (fugue and counterpoint; often assisted by his son-in-law Charles Gounod), Antoine François Marmontel (piano), François Benoist (organ) and, on Zimmermann's death, Fromental Halévy, whose daughter he himself later married. He won first prizes for organ and fugue in 1855 and completed his earliest compositions.

His first symphony, the Symphony in C, was written in November 1855, when he was seventeen, evidently as a student assignment. It was unknown to the world until 1933, when it was discovered in the archives of the Paris Conservatory library. Upon its first performance in 1935, it was immediately hailed as a junior masterwork and a welcome addition to the early Romantic period repertoire. The symphony bears a stylistic resemblance to the first symphony of Gounod, first played earlier in the same year, and which Bizet had arranged for two pianos although present-day listeners may discern a similarity to music of Franz Schubert, whose work was little known in France at the time the symphony was written.
In 1857, a setting of the one-act operetta Le docteur Miracle won him a share in a prize offered by Jacques Offenbach. He also won the music composition scholarship of the Prix de Rome, the conditions of which required him to study in Rome for three years. There, his talent developed as he wrote such works as the opera buffa Don Procopio (1858-59). There he also composed his only major sacred work, Te Deum (1858), which he submitted to the Prix Rodrigues competition, a contest for Prix de Rome winners only. Bizet failed to win the Prix Rodrigues, and the Te Deum score remained unpublished until 1971. He made two attempts to write another symphony in 1859, but destroyed the manuscripts in December of that year. Apart from this period in Rome, Bizet lived in the Paris area all his life.
Shortly after leaving Rome in July 1860, but while still touring in Italy, he had the idea of writing a symphony in which each of the four movements would be a musical evocation of a different Italian city – Rome, Venice, Florence and Naples. On hearing of his mother's serious illness he cut short his Italian travels and returned to Paris in September 1860; she died a year later. The Scherzo of the symphony was completed by November 1861, but it was not until 1866 that the first version of the whole symphony was written. He subjected it to a number of revisions through to 1871, but died before ever producing what he considered the definitive version. For this reason, the work is sometimes described as "unfinished", but this is an inaccurate description as it was fully scored. It was published in 1880 as the Roma Symphony.
Chopin
Chopin
Frédéric Chopin (1 March 1810 – 17 October 1849) was a Polish composer and virtuoso pianist of the Romantic period. He is widely regarded as the greatest Polish composer, and ranks as one of music's greatest tone poets.

He was born in the village of Żelazowa Wola, in the Duchy of Warsaw, to a Polish mother and French-expatriate father, and in his early life was regarded as a child-prodigy pianist. In November 1830, at the age of 20, Chopin went abroad; following the suppression of the Polish November Uprising of 1830–31, he became one of many expatriates of the Polish "Great Emigration."

In Paris, he made a comfortable living as a composer and piano teacher, while giving few public performances. A Polish patriot,

Chopin's extant compositions were written primarily for the piano as a solo instrument. Though technically demanding, Chopin's style emphasizes nuance and expressive depth rather than virtuosity. Chopin invented musical forms such as the ballade and was responsible for major innovations in forms such as the piano sonata, waltz, nocturne, étude, impromptu and prelude. His works are mainstays of Romanticism in 19th-century classical music.
Francis Poulenc
Francis Poulenc
Francis Jean Marcel Poulenc (French pronunciation: (7 January 1899 - 30 January 1963) was a French composer and a member of the French group Les Six. He composed music in genres including art song, solo piano music, chamber music, oratorio, opera, ballet music, and orchestral music. Critic Claude Rostand, in a July 1950 Paris-Presse article, described Poulenc as "half monk, half delinquent" ("le moine et le voyou"), a tag that was to be attached to his name for the rest of his career.
Toby "Radiation" Fox
Franz Liszt
Franz Liszt
Franz Liszt (Hungarian: Ferencz Liszt, in modern usage Ferenc Liszt, from 1859 to 1865 officially Franz Ritter von Liszt) (October 22, 1811 – July 31, 1886) was a Hungarian composer, virtuoso pianist and teacher. He was also the father-in-law of Richard Wagner. In 1865 he became abbot in the Roman Catholic Church.
Liszt became renowned throughout Europe during the 19th century for his great skill as a performer. He was said by his contemporaries to have been the most technically advanced pianist of his age and perhaps the greatest pianist of all time. He was also an important and influential composer, a notable piano teacher, a conductor who contributed significantly to the modern development of the art, and a benefactor to other composers and performers, notably Richard Wagner, Hector Berlioz, Camille Saint-Saëns, Edvard Grieg and Alexander Borodin.
As a composer, Liszt was one of the most prominent representatives of the "Neudeutsche Schule" ("New German School"). He left behind a huge and diverse body of work, in which he influenced his forward-looking contemporaries and anticipated some 20th-century ideas and trends. Some of his most notable contributions were the invention of the symphonic poem, developing the concept of thematic transformation as part of his experiments in musical form and making radical departures in harmony.
Oliver!
Oliver!
Oliver! is a British musical, with music and lyrics by Lionel Bart. It first appeared in the West End in 1960, enjoying a long run, and was made into a film directed by Carol Reed in 1968.

The musical is loosely based upon the novel Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens. That it was the first musical adaptation of a Charles Dickens work to become a stage hit was one of the reasons why it attracted such attention. There had been two previous Dickens musicals in the 1950s, both of them television adaptations of A Christmas Carol, but the dramatic story of Oliver Twist was the first Dickens work to be presented as a successful stage musical. Another reason for the success of the musical was the revolving stage set, an innovation designed by Sean Kenny.

The show launched the careers of several child actors, including Davy Jones, later of The Monkees; Phil Collins, later of Genesis; and Tony Robinson, who later played the role of Baldrick in the television series Black Adder. The singer Steve Marriott (Small Faces, Humble Pie) also featured in early line-ups, eventually graduating to the role of Artful Dodger in the West End production.

The plot of Dickens's original novel is considerably simplified for the purposes of the musical, with Fagin being represented more as a comic character than as a villain, and large portions of the latter part of the story being completely left out. Although Dickens' novel has been called antisemitic in its portrayal of the Jew Fagin as evil, the production by Bart (himself a Jew) featured many Jewish actors in leading roles: Ron Moody (Ronald Moodnik), Georgia Brown (Lilian Klot), and Martin Horsey.
Les Miserables
Les Miserables
Les Misérables, colloquially known as Les Mis or Les Miz, is a musical composed in 1980 by the French composer Claude-Michel Schönberg with a libretto by Alain Boublil. Sung through, it is perhaps the most famous of all French musicals and one of the most performed musicals worldwide. On October 8, 2006, the show celebrated its 21st anniversary and became the longest-running West End musical in history and is still running (though it has changed venues).

Among the most famous songs of this Tony award-winning musical are "I Dreamed a Dream", "One Day More", "A Heart Full of Love", "Stars", "Bring Him Home", "Do You Hear the People Sing?", "Master of the House", and "On My Own."

The musical is based on the 1862 novel Les Misérables by Victor Hugo. Set in early 19th century France, it follows the intertwining stories of a cast of characters as they struggle for redemption and revolution. The characters include a paroled convict named Jean Valjean who, failing attempts to find work as an honest man with his yellow ticket of leave, breaks his parole and conceals his identity; the police inspector Javert who becomes obsessed with finding Valjean; Fantine, the single mother who is forced to become a prostitute to support her daughter; Cosette, who eventually falls in love with a French student named Marius Pontmercy. After Fantine dies, Cosette becomes Jean Valjean's adopted daughter; the Thénardiers, the unscrupulous innkeepers who thrive on cheating and stealing; Éponine, their young daughter who is hopelessly in love with Marius; Gavroche, a young beggar boy; and student leader Enjolras who plans the revolt to free the oppressed lower classes of France. The main characters are joined by an ensemble that includes prostitutes, student revolutionaries, factory workers, and others.
Fiddler on the Roof
Fiddler on the Roof
Fiddler on the Roof is a musical with music by Jerry Bock, lyrics by Sheldon Harnick, and book by Joseph Stein, set in csarist Russia in 1905.

Fiddler on the Roof was originally entitled Tevye. It is based on Tevye and his Daughters (or Tevye the Milkman) and other tales by Sholem Aleichem which he wrote in Yiddish and published in 1894. The story centers on Tevye, the father of five daughters, and his attempts to maintain his family and religious traditions while outside influences encroach upon their lives. He must cope with both the strong-willed actions of his three older daughters—each daughter's choice of husband moves progressively further away from established customs—and with the edict of the Tsar that evicts the Jews from their village.

The musical's title stems from a painting by Marc Chagall, one of many surreal paintings he created of Eastern European Jewish life, often including a fiddler. The Fiddler is a metaphor for survival, through tradition and joyfulness, in a life of uncertainty and imbalance.

The original Broadway production of the show, which opened in 1964, was the first musical to surpass the 3,000 performance mark, and it held the record for longest-running Broadway musical for almost 10 years until Grease surpassed its run. The production earned $1,574 for every dollar invested in it.

The show was highly acclaimed and nominated for ten Tony Awards, winning nine, including Best Musical, score, book, direction and choreography. It spawned four Broadway revivals, a successful 1971 film adaptation, and has enjoyed enduring international popularity. It is also a very popular choice for school and community productions.
Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift
Taylor Alison Swift (born December 13, 1989) is an American country-pop singer-songwriter. In 2006, she released her debut single "Tim McGraw", which peaked at number six on the Billboard country charts. Later in October 2006, she released her self-titled debut album, which produced five hit singles on the Billboard Hot Country Songs charts and was certified 3× Multi-Platinum by the RIAA. The New York Times described Swift as "one of pop's finest songwriters, country’s foremost pragmatist and more in touch with her inner life than most adults".

According to Nielsen SoundScan, Swift was the biggest selling artist of 2008 in America with combined sales of more than four million albums. Swift's Fearless and her self-titled album finished 2008 at number three and number six respectively, with sales of 2.1 and 1.5 million. She was the first artist in the history of Nielsen SoundScan to have two different albums in the Top 10 on the year end album chart. Fearless has topped the Billboard 200 in 11 non-consecutive weeks. No album has spent more time at number one since 1999-2000. It also was the first album by a female artist in country music history to log eight weeks at #1 on The Billboard 200. In mid-January 2009, Swift became the first country artist to top the 2 million mark in paid downloads with three different songs. As of the week ending February 8, 2009, Swift's single "Love Story" became the country song with most paid downloads in history and the first country song to top the Mainstream Top 40 chart. According to the 2009 issue of Forbes, Swift is ranked as the 69th most powerful celebrity with over $18 million dollars in earnings this year.
Michelle Branch
Michelle Branch
Michelle Jacquet Branch-Landau (born July 2, 1983) is an American singer, songwriter and guitarist. She made her debut in 2000, and released the platinum-selling albums The Spirit Room and Hotel Paper in August 2001 and June 2003 respectively. During this period, she collaborated with Santana on the single "The Game of Love", which won a Grammy Award. In 2004, she formed the musical duo The Wreckers with fellow musician Jessica Harp. Michelle Branch will release her first solo album with Warner Bros. Nashville, Everything Comes and Goes, in February 2009.
Linkin Park
Linkin Park
Linkin Park is an American rock band from Agoura Hills, California. Since their formation in 1996, the band has sold more than 50 million albums and won two Grammy Awards. They achieved mainstream success with their debut album, Hybrid Theory, which was certified Diamond by the RIAA in 2005. Their following studio album, Meteora, continued the band's success, topping the Billboard 200’s album charts in 2003, and was followed by extensive touring and charity work around the world.

Recognized for their adaptation of the nu metal and rap rock genre into a radio-friendly yet densely-layered style in Hybrid Theory and Meteora, the band moved away from this and explored a variety of other genres in their latest studio album, Minutes to Midnight. The album topped the Billboard charts and had the third best debut week of any album that year. They are also known for their several collaborations, most notably with rapper Jay-Z in their mash-up album Collision Course, and many other artists on Reanimation.
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