Famous 18th Century Musicians

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Find out more about the greatest 18th Century Musicians, including Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Ludwig van Beethoven, Joseph Haydn, George Frideric Handel and Franz Schubert.
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 1 
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
(One of the Greatest Composers in the History of Western Music)
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
42
Birthdate: January 27, 1756
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Salzburg, Austria
Died: December 5, 1791

A child prodigy, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is regarded as one of the greatest classical composers ever. A prolific composer, he had a profound influence on Western music. Many of his works are considered pinnacles of choral, symphonic, operatic, chamber, and concertante music. Before his death, at the age of 35, he had composed over 600 works.

 2 
Ludwig van Beethoven
(One of the Most Admired Composers and Pianists in the History of Western Music)
Ludwig van Beethoven
41
Birthdate: December 17, 1770
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Bonn, Germany
Died: March 26, 1827

German composer and pianist, Ludwig van Beethoven, remains one of the most admired composers in the history of Western music even two centuries after his death. Born into a musical family, he was initially tutored by his father. He found success early as a pianist and went on to become an admired composer despite suffering from hearing-impairment.

 3 
Johann Sebastian Bach
(One of the Greatest Composers of All Time)
Johann Sebastian Bach
18
Birthdate: March 31, 1685
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Eisenach, Germany
Died: July 28, 1750

Johann Sebastian Bach was an 18-th century German composer of the Baroque period. He redefined both church and secular music. He served as the court musician of Duke Johann Ernst and King Augustus III. He created more than 300 cantatas and vocal music such as Mass in B minor.

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 4 
Antonio Lucio Vivaldi
(Baroque Composer & Virtuoso Violinist Known for His Violin Concertos 'The Four Seasons')
Antonio Lucio Vivaldi
7
Birthdate: March 4, 1678
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Venice, Italy
Died: July 28, 1741

Italian Baroque composer, virtuoso violinist, and teacher, Antonio Lucio Vivaldi, is regarded as one of the greatest Baroque composers. He was extremely popular during his lifetime and composed many instrumental concertos and operas. He was also a Roman Catholic priest and worked at a home for abandoned children. Even though he died in 1741, his music continues to be popular.

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 5 
George Frideric Handel
(German-British Composer Known for His Works: ‘Water Music’ and ‘Music for the Royal Fireworks’)
George Frideric Handel
11
Birthdate: February 23, 1685
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Halle (Saale), Germany
Died: April 14, 1759

George Frideric Handel was a Baroque composer renowned for his oratorios, operas, anthems, and organ concertos. A great composer, Handel's works had a strong influence on popular Classical-era composers like Beethoven and Mozart. George Frideric Handel's life and work have also inspired several films, such as the 1942 British biographical film The Great Mr. Handel.

 6 
Joseph Haydn
(Composer of the Classical Period Known As 'Father of the Symphony' & 'Father of the String Quartet')
Joseph Haydn
8
Birthdate: March 31, 1732
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Rohrau, Austria
Died: May 31, 1809

Joseph Haydn was an Austrian composer who played a key role in the progression of chamber music during the Classical period. He is often referred to as the Father of the String Quartet and Father of the Symphony for his contributions to musical form. Joseph Haydn is also credited with mentoring and tutoring Mozart and Beethoven, respectively.

 7 
Niccolo Paganini
(Italian Violinist and Composer Best Known for His Work '24 Caprices for Solo Violin Op. 1')
Niccolo Paganini
7
Birthdate: October 27, 1782
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Genoa
Died: May 27, 1840
Italian multi-instrumentalist and composer Niccolò Paganini established himself as one of the key figures of modern violin technique. Son of a trader-turned-street musician, he started his stint with music by learning to play the mandolin. Some of his most celebrated compositions were the 24 Caprices for Solo Violin Op. 1.
 8 
Antonio Salieri
(Composer, Conductor)
Antonio Salieri
5
Birthdate: August 18, 1750
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Legnago, Italy
Died: May 7, 1825

Antonio Salieri was an Italian classical composer, conductor, and teacher considered a key figure in the development of late 18th-century opera. He was a protégé of eminent composer Christoph Willibald Gluck. For several years, he served as the director of the Italian opera by the Habsburg court. His works were performed widely across Europe during his lifetime. 

 9 
Johann Pachelbel
(One of the Most Influential Composers and Organists of the Middle Baroque Era)
Johann Pachelbel
4
Birthdate: 1653 AD
Birthplace: Nuremberg, Germany
Died: March 7, 1706

Johann Pachelbel was a German composer, teacher, and organist who is credited with helping the south German organ schools achieve their peak. His contributions to the progression of the fugue and chorale prelude have established him as one of the most prominent composers of the middle Baroque era. During his lifetime, his music became a model for several German composers.

 10 
William Herschel
(Astronomer Known for His Discovery of 'Uranus' and 'Infrared Radiation')
William Herschel
4
Birthdate: November 15, 1738
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Hanover, Germany
Died: August 23, 1822

William Herschel was a German-born British astronomer and composer. He pioneered the use of astronomical spectrophotometry and discovered infrared radiation. Impressed by his work, King George III appointed him the Court Astronomer. Herschel often collaborated with his sister, Caroline Lucretia Herschel, a fellow astronomer. In 1816, he was made a Knight of the Royal Guelphic Order. 

 11 
E. T. A. Hoffmann
3
Birthdate: January 24, 1776
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Königsberg, Germany
Died: June 25, 1822

E. T. A. Hoffmann was a German author, jurist, artist, composer, and music critic. His stories served as an inspiration and laid the foundation for The Tales of Hoffmann by Jacques Offenbach. The Nutcracker by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky is also based on Hoffmann's The Nutcracker and the Mouse King. Hoffmann is among the most influential authors of the Romantic Movement.

 12 
Maria Anna Mozart
3
Birthdate: July 30, 1751
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Salzburg, Austria
Died: October 29, 1829
 13 
Domenico Scarlatti
(Italian Composer Best Known for His ‘555 Keyboard Sonatas’)
Domenico Scarlatti
3
Birthdate: October 26, 1685
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Naples, Italy
Died: July 23, 1757

Italian Baroque composer Domenico Scarlatti was no stranger to music, being the son of famous composer Alessandro Scarlatti. From being the official composer for the queen of Poland, to teaching music to the princess of Spain and creating 555 keyboard sonatas, the legendary harpsichordist had an illustrious life.

 14 
Thomas Moore
(Irish Poet and Singer Known for His Lyrics to the Popular Song ‘The Last Rose of Summer’)
Thomas Moore
3
Birthdate: May 28, 1779
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Dublin, Ireland
Died: March 25, 1852

Irish author Thomas Moore was chiefly branded a Whig ally. It is believed he had a role in burning the memoirs of his friend Lord Byron, an act now considered a literary crime. His iconic Irish Melodies contained his most popular works, such as The Last Rose of Summer.

 15 
Leopold Mozart
(Composer)
Leopold Mozart
3
Birthdate: November 14, 1719
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Augsburg, Germany
Died: May 28, 1787

German violinist and composer Leopold Mozart is best remembered as the father and music teacher of legendary composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. However, Leopold was often blamed for exploiting his son’s musical talent by pushing him to perform as a child. He also had a troubled relationship with his adult son.

Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach
3
Birthdate: March 8, 1714
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Weimar, Germany
Died: December 14, 1788
 17 
Johann Christian Bach
3
Birthdate: September 5, 1735
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Leipzig, Germany
Died: January 1, 1782
 18 
Christoph Willibald Gluck
(Composer of Italian and French Opera in the Early Classical Period)
Christoph Willibald Gluck
3
Birthdate: July 2, 1714
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Erasbach, Germany
Died: November 15, 1787

Composer Christoph Willibald Gluck left home when his father went against his passion for music and pushed him into forestry. He then reached Milan, where he learned Italian instrumental music and later fused Italian and French opera music. His best-known works include Orfeo ed Euridice and La rencontre imprévue.

 19 
Arcangelo Corelli
(Italian Violinist and Composer of Baroque Era Known for His Sonata and Concerto Compositions)
Arcangelo Corelli
2
Birthdate: February 17, 1653
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Fusignano, Italy
Died: January 8, 1713

Italian composer and violinist Arcangelo Corelli is regarded as a pioneer of the concerto grosso and the sonata. Named after his father who died 5 months before his birth, Corelli rose to be a major figure of Baroque music and became a favorite of priests and the royalty.

 20 
Chevalier de Saint-Georges
(Known as the first classical composer of African descent)
Chevalier de Saint-Georges
4
Birthdate: December 25, 1745
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Baillif, Guadeloupe
Died: June 10, 1799
 21 
Carl Maria von Weber
(A Significant Composer of the Romantic Era & Crucial Figure in the Development of German 'Romantische Oper')
Carl Maria von Weber
4
Birthdate: November 18, 1786
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Eutin, Germany
Died: June 5, 1826

Carl Maria von Weber was a German composer, virtuoso pianist, guitarist, and conductor. A significant musical figure in the Romantic era, he played a key role in the development of the German Romantische Oper (German Romantic opera). He also made significant contributions to vocal and choral music. He was a music critic as well and wrote music journalism. 

 22 
Georg Philipp Telemann
4
Birthdate: March 14, 1681
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Magdeburg, Germany
Died: June 25, 1767
 23 
Luigi Boccherini
(Italian Composer and Cellist of the Classical Era)
Luigi Boccherini
3
Birthdate: February 19, 1743
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Lucca, Italy
Died: May 28, 1805

Italian-Spanish composer and cellist Luigi Boccherini of Classical era is noted for his influence in developing string quartet as a musical genre. Two of his best-known works include String Quintet in E major, Op. 11, No. 5 (G 275) that became famous for its minuet third movement; and Cello Concerto, No. 9 in B-flat Major, G. 482.

 24 
Johann van Beethoven
3
Birthdate: November 14, 1740
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Bonn, Germany
Died: December 18, 1792
 25 
Big Bill Broonzy
4
Birthdate: June 26, 1893
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Lake Dick, Arkansas, United States
Died: August 15, 1958
Giovanni Battista Pergolesi
2
Birthdate: January 4, 1710
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Iesi, Italy
Died: March 16, 1736
 27 
Ignatius Sancho
(Composer, Writer)
Ignatius Sancho
4
Birthdate: 1729 AD
Birthplace: Atlantic Ocean
Died: December 14, 1780
 28 
Giuseppe Tartini
(Italian Composer of the Baroque Era Known for His Violin Sonata in G Minor)
Giuseppe Tartini
2
Birthdate: April 8, 1692
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Piran, Slovenia
Died: February 26, 1770

Italian violinist Giuseppe Tartini initially studied and also established himself as a skilled fencer. Arrested for marrying an acquaintance of the archbishop of Padua, he fled to a monastery in Assisi, where he got addicted to music, later inventing the difference tone and a theory of harmony.

 29 
Johann Nepomuk Hummel
(Composer and virtuoso pianist)
Johann Nepomuk Hummel
2
Birthdate: November 14, 1778
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Bratislava, Slovakia
Died: October 17, 1837
 30 
Muzio Clementi
(Composer)
Muzio Clementi
3
Birthdate: January 23, 1752
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Rome, Italy
Died: March 10, 1832
 31 
John Field
(Pianist, composer and teacher.)
John Field
2
Birthdate: July 26, 1782
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Dublin
Died: January 23, 1837
 32 
Michael Haydn
(Composer of the Classical period, the younger brother of Joseph Haydn)
Michael Haydn
3
Birthdate: September 14, 1737
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Rohrau, Austria
Died: August 10, 1806
 33 
Johann Joseph Fux
2
Birthdate: 1660 AD
Birthplace: Langegg bei Graz, Austria
Died: February 13, 1741
 34 
Alessandro Scarlatti
(Former Baroque composer, known especially for his operas and chamber cantatas)
Alessandro Scarlatti
2
Birthdate: May 2, 1660
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Palermo, Italy
Died: October 22, 1725
 35 
Luigi Cherubini
(Composer)
Luigi Cherubini
2
Birthdate: September 14, 1760
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Florence, Italy
Died: March 15, 1842
 36 
Dieterich Buxtehude
(Organist and Church Music Composer of the Baroque period)
Dieterich Buxtehude
1
Birthdate: 1637 AD
Birthplace: Helsingborg, Sweden
Died: May 9, 1707

While some scholars believe Dieterich Buxtehude was born in Denmark, others claim he was from Germany. The composer and organist was a significant figure of the Baroque period and had Johann Sebastian Bach as his student. As a church musician, he also composed for family events and festivals.

Tyāgarāja
3
Birthdate: May 4, 1767
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Thiruvarur
Died: January 6, 1847
 38 
Dimitrie Cantemir
(Moldavian Prince Who Became an Advisor to Tsar Peter the Great of Russia)
Dimitrie Cantemir
2
Birthdate: October 26, 1673
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Dimitrie Cantemir, Romania
Died: September 1, 1723
 39 
Anna Magdalena Bach
(Former singer and the second wife of Johann Sebastian Bach)
Anna Magdalena Bach
2
Birthdate: September 22, 1701
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Zeitz, Germany
Died: February 27, 1760
 40 
Louis Spohr
(Former violinist, composer, and conductor whose compositions illustrate an early aspect of the Romantic period in German music)
Louis Spohr
2
Birthdate: April 5, 1784
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Brunswick, Germany
Died: October 22, 1859
 41 
Turlough O'Carolan
2
Birthdate: 1670 AD
Birthplace: Nobber, Ireland
Died: March 25, 1738
 42 
Marin Marais
(Composer)
Marin Marais
3
Birthdate: May 31, 1656
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: August 15, 1728
François-André Danican Philidor
2
Birthdate: September 7, 1726
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Dreux, France
Died: August 31, 1795
 44 
Wilhelm Friedemann Bach
2
Birthdate: November 22, 1710
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Weimar, Germany
Died: July 1, 1784
 45 
Emanuel Schikaneder
2
Birthdate: September 1, 1751
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Straubing, Germany
Died: September 21, 1812
 46 
Franz Xaver Süssmayr
2
Birthdate: July 22, 1766
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Schwanenstadt, Oberösterreich, Austria
Died: September 17, 1803
 47 
Louise Farrenc
(Composer)
Louise Farrenc
1
Birthdate: May 31, 1804
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: September 15, 1875
 48 
Jan Dismas Zelenka
(Composer & Musician of the Baroque Period Known for His Extensive Composition 'Sub olea pacis et palma virtutis')
Jan Dismas Zelenka
1
Birthdate: October 16, 1679
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Louňovice pod Blaníkem, Bohemia, Holy Roman Empire
Died: December 23, 1745

Composer-musician Jan Dismas Zelenka of Baroque period was known for his compositions that are characterized by adventurous compositional structure with an energetic harmonic invention and complex counterpoint. He achieved the feat of composing Sub olea pacis et palma virtutis for coronation of Charles VI as King of Bohemia and conducting it performance before the King shortly after the latter’s coronation.

 49 
Thomas Arne
(Composer)
Thomas Arne
2
Birthdate: March 12, 1710
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: London
Died: March 5, 1778
 50 
Johann Stamitz
(Bohemian Violinist and Composer who is Considered the Founding Father of 'The Mannheim School')
Johann Stamitz
1
Birthdate: June 18, 1717
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Havlíčkův Brod, Czechia
Died: March 27, 1757

Johann Stamitz was a Bohemian violinist and composer. He is considered the founding father of the Mannheim school, of which his sons Carl and Anton Stamitz were students. Johann Stamitz is best remembered for his 10 orchestral trios and 58 symphonies.