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Ludwig van Beethoven - German composer and pianist. A crucial figure in the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western art music, he remains one of the most famous and influential of all composers.

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Peter Tchaikovsky (1840-1893) was a Russian composer. He composed a wide range of musical works, though his most popular music is probably from his ballets including Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty and The Nutcracker. The circumstances of his tragic death are not fully understood.

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Franz Peter Schubert (1797 – 1828) was an Austrian composer. Schubert died at 31 but was extremely prolific during his lifetime. His output consists of over six hundred secular vocal works, seven complete symphonies, sacred music, operas, incidental music and a large body of chamber and piano music. Today, Schubert is ranked among the greatest composers of the late Classical era and early Romantic era and is one of the most frequently performed composers of the early nineteenth century.

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Camille Saint-Saëns (1835-1921) was a child prodigy and had many interests and talents in addition to composing. His most popular compositions include the Organ Symphony, Danse macabre (used as the theme for the TV series Jonathan Creek) and Carnival of the Animals, which he refused to publish in his lifetime.

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Gustav Mahler (1860-1911) was a late-Romantic Austrian composer and one of the leading conductors of his generation. Aside from early works such as a movement from a piano quartet composed when he was a student in Vienna, Mahler's works are designed for large orchestral forces, symphonic choruses and operatic soloists.

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Ralph Vaughan Williams,seen here with foxie, is arguably the greatest composer Britain has seen since the days of Henry Purcell. In a long and extensive career, he composed music notable for its power, nobility and expressiveness, representing, perhaps, the essence of ‘Englishness’.

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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) began composing music at the age of 5 and continued for the rest of his life, creating beloved works such as The Magic Flute and the unfinished "Requiem." One of the most prolific classical composers, Mozart created more than 600 pieces of music.

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