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Thread: most prolific composers

  1. #31
    Senior Member TresPicos's Avatar
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    So, I spent a day browsing Wikipedia, looking for prolific composers...

    These are the current standings. Please be aware that the numbers in many cases are estimates, and that some lesser known composers might be missing altogether. But still...

    1. Sechter 8000+
    2. Caldara 3400
    3. Telemann 3000+
    4. Piazzolla 3000
    5. Villa-Lobos 2000+
    5. di Lasso 2000+
    7. M Praetorius 1300+
    7. Vanhal 1300+
    9. J S Bach 1100+
    10. A Scarlatti 1000?

    11. Schubert 998
    12. Vivaldi 950
    13. C P E Bach 875
    14. Czerny 861
    15. M Haydn 830+
    16. Palestrina 800+
    17. J Haydn 750+
    18. Seixas 700+
    18. D Scarlatti 700+
    18. Farkas 700+

    21. Reutter 677
    22. Händel 640
    23. Mozart 626
    24. Preyer 600+
    25. Molter 600
    26. Boccherini 590
    27. Pinkham 560
    28. Charpentier 550+
    29. Segerstam 540
    30. Purcell 530+

    Just outside the list:
    Pachelbel, Hovhaness, Sammartini, Donizetti, Milhaud, J C Bach, Martinu, Josquin, Liszt, Reinecke, Dittersdorf, Weber, Sweelinck, Busoni, Saint-Saëns, Cimarosa and others.

  2. #32
    Senior Member Sid James's Avatar
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    I didn't know that Piazzolla was so prolific (3000 works). I guess that, as with most of those other composers, most of his output has not seen the light of day, so to speak...

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    How can Seixas have so many works, if almost everything he composed was lost in the Lisbon earthquacke of 1749? I'm a big fan of his and am sorry to acknoledge we have only about 120 pieces of him.

  4. #34
    Senior Member TresPicos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bdelykleon View Post
    How can Seixas have so many works, if almost everything he composed was lost in the Lisbon earthquacke of 1749? I'm a big fan of his and am sorry to acknoledge we have only about 120 pieces of him.
    If he wrote 700+ pieces (estimate from German Wikipedia), then that's what he should get credit for, I think, even though 600 harpsicord sonatas happened to be lost in the earthquake.

  5. #35
    Senior Member TresPicos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andre View Post
    I didn't know that Piazzolla was so prolific (3000 works). I guess that, as with most of those other composers, most of his output has not seen the light of day, so to speak...
    It's easier to be prolific if every work is a two-minute tango rather than a 75-minute symphony.

  6. #36
    Senior Member danae's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TresPicos View Post
    It's easier to be prolific if every work is a two-minute tango rather than a 75-minute symphony.
    Sadly I'd have to agree with this. Sadly, because I really like Piazzola's music and I respect the man.

  7. #37
    Senior Member TresPicos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by danae View Post
    Sadly I'd have to agree with this. Sadly, because I really like Piazzola's music and I respect the man.
    Well, I'm sure he wrote all those two-minute tangos for better reasons than just becoming more prolific, so there's really no reason to lose any respect here.

  8. #38
    Senior Member TresPicos's Avatar
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    Another prolific composer: Rowan Taylor (3000+)

  9. #39
    Senior Member presto's Avatar
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    I think it’s Telemann that’s regarded as the most prolific composer of all time with 3000 works, many of great length and complexity.
    I bet he certainly wrote more semi-quavers than anyone else

  10. #40
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    The most prolific composers that spring to mind: Telemann, Hovhaness (yes, I know they've already been mentioned), Vivaldi, Milhaud, Leif Segerstam, Saint-Saëns, Leo Ornstein.

  11. #41
    Senior Member elgars ghost's Avatar
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    Weber surprises me with his inclusion in the 'bubbling under' list - I know he wrote about 90 songs but I can only assume there must also be a hell of a lot of obscure piano and chamber works that bulk up his output?

  12. #42
    Senior Member Nix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TresPicos View Post
    So, I spent a day browsing Wikipedia, looking for prolific composers...

    These are the current standings.
    Shouldn't the ranking be based on number of hours of music, not number of works? Though I understand that the former is more difficult to put together. I came across a guinness world records type book at a used book store about a year ago that listed the top 10 composers who wrote the most hours of music. Sadly, they only accounted for what seemed like big names... it had the usual suspects, Haydn, Bach, Schubert, with Telemann taking the number one position.

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    Senior Member joen_cph's Avatar
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    Carson Cooman (1982 - ).
    A busy man, this fellow seems to be approching his opus 1000 now. Never heard a note, but he seems to have a certain reputation in the USA
    http://www.musicweb-international.co...an_8559329.htm
    http://www.carsoncooman.com/index.html

    Niels Viggo Bentzon (1919 - 2000)
    664 opuses, including many sets of multiple works (14 x 48 Preludes & Fugues)
    http://www.musicweb-international.co...00/bentzon.htm
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Niels_Viggo_Bentzon

    Fartein Valen (1887 - 1952).
    The main works don´t form a very big production, but in addition to that he wrote 25,000 etudes for piano.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fartein_Valen
    Last edited by joen_cph; Dec-03-2013 at 08:45.

  14. #44
    Senior Member HaydnBearstheClock's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TresPicos View Post
    So, I spent a day browsing Wikipedia, looking for prolific composers...

    These are the current standings. Please be aware that the numbers in many cases are estimates, and that some lesser known composers might be missing altogether. But still...

    1. Sechter 8000+
    2. Caldara 3400
    3. Telemann 3000+
    4. Piazzolla 3000
    5. Villa-Lobos 2000+
    5. di Lasso 2000+
    7. M Praetorius 1300+
    7. Vanhal 1300+
    9. J S Bach 1100+
    10. A Scarlatti 1000?

    11. Schubert 998
    12. Vivaldi 950
    13. C P E Bach 875
    14. Czerny 861
    15. M Haydn 830+
    16. Palestrina 800+
    17. J Haydn 750+
    18. Seixas 700+
    18. D Scarlatti 700+
    18. Farkas 700+

    21. Reutter 677
    22. Händel 640
    23. Mozart 626
    24. Preyer 600+
    25. Molter 600
    26. Boccherini 590
    27. Pinkham 560
    28. Charpentier 550+
    29. Segerstam 540
    30. Purcell 530+

    Just outside the list:
    Pachelbel, Hovhaness, Sammartini, Donizetti, Milhaud, J C Bach, Martinu, Josquin, Liszt, Reinecke, Dittersdorf, Weber, Sweelinck, Busoni, Saint-Saëns, Cimarosa and others.
    For J. Haydn, I've seen sources that counted over 1000 works.

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