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Random order and currently only, based on what I listen to mostly, not necessarily their "general importance":

- Nørgård,
- Saariaho,
- Gubaidulina,
- Silvestrov.

For no. 5,
Holliger, Narbutaite, Ruders, Murail, Slonimsky and Crumb are among the (many) other current candidates.
 

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Joen_cph, just as I hit "send," I thought, "I wonder if...."

And sure enough.

Hey, now I want to go listen to some Sergei Slonimsky, so it's not all bad.
Unfortunately, the youtube selection of his works is quite conservative. Overall, almost 15 symphonies are available, one way or the other, as recordings etc.

Some do polystylism. Symphony 33 shows him in a dark "Shosty XV/Schnittke mood" and includes theatrical elements (21:40), etc.
 

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Musicologist Slonimsky was uncle to the composer Slonimsky, or so he said in the course of regaling us with stories about music in the USSR in 1985, at the Cabrillo Music Festival (where I was seated behind Elliott Carter, and at which concert works by Schnittke (Concerto Grosso #1) and and Carter (Double Concerto) were performed, under the direction of Charles Wuorinen of all people -- well, Mr. W. was not a stranger to Carter, but I never thought I'd see him conduct Schnittke... he did a great job, with EIC violinist Maryvonne Le Dizes-Richard as one of the soloists).

Favorite living composers (or composers whose music I always want to hear immediately upon learning they've written a new piece... a sure sign you are passionate about their work):

Pierre Boulez (France)
Gyorgy Kurtag (Hungary)
Valentin Silvestrov (Ukraine)
Pascal Dusapin (France)
Pawel Szymanski (Poland)
Oh yes, Szymanski. Coming to think of it, not just the 2 piano etudes or the piano concerto are fine, also the Partita for Harpsichord and Orchestra is a fascinating work.
 

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I think Nørgård´s music is much too varied for the characterization above.

There´s the early, late-Sibelius-like period (1.Symphony, 1.Clarinet Trio, Solo Intimo for solo cello, 2 accessible piano sonatas), for example.
And there´s the percussion concerto, For A Change, very manifest in its simple vitality. Try the Mortensen recording coupled with Siddharta, on Dacapo.
 

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A guess:

among contemporary composers, probably the only comparable rivals for the relative commercial success of the Liverpool Oratorio and Standing Stone (both allegedly top sellers on the classical list when released, but later quite forgotten) were West Side Story and Gorecki´s 3rd ?

Maybe also Nyman´s Piano Concerto and Preisner´s Requiem, due to the movie use. I don´t think Ligeti´s Lux Aeterna was ever a major hit.
 
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