Composer anniversaries for 2012

Screenshot: Oxford Music Online, advanced search, (subscription-access only)

Whereas in my last post I concentrated on composers who died 70 years ago (see The same procedure as every year…), this post is a bit more life-affirming: I’m concentrating on special birthdays and anniversaries in 2012.

This is a truly personal collection of composers; indeed it is a list just of C20 and C21 composers! However, it is also a kind of virtual signposting: this blog might also pay tribute to some of the men and women whom we could celebrate in 2012.

My selection is based on the 91 names listed at (this compares to 1431 names resulting from searching Oxford Music Online for composers born in 1912 only!), and some further more specific searches on OMO. If you have never conducted an advanced search on OMO, the following screenshot above, shows you how to do it.

National Libraries Day, 4 February 2012,

Anyway, my top 5 composers for this year are:
1. John Cage: 5 September 1912 – 12 August 1992
2. Xenakis, Iannis: 29 May 1922 – 4 February 2001
3. Oliveros, Pauline: 30 May 1932 –
4. Monk, Meredith: 20 November 1942 –
5. Bingham, Judith: 21 June 1952 –

If this is too modern for you, how about: Claude Debussy (22 August 1862; 150 years) or indeed John Bull (1562; 450 years)? Whatever you do in 2012, and especially if you have already given up on New Year’s resolutions: make it a musical year, oh and, of course, use libraries. You don’t have to do this on National Libraries Day (4th February 2012), but it might be enjoyable to do so.


About cg474

Since August 2010 I have been working as a librarian at the University of Cambridge (Cambridge, UK). Since October 2015 I am the librarian at the Faculty of Divinity Library. Between August 2010 and November 2013 I was the Deputy Head of Music at Cambridge University Library and at the Pendlebury Library of Music. Between December 2013 and September 2015 I was the Librarian at the Marshall Library of Economics. Since October 2015 I have been the Librarian at the Divinity Library.
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4 Responses to Composer anniversaries for 2012

  1. mj263 says:

    All good names : don’t forget Delius’ 150th or Nancarrow’s centenary. And hug a library on National Libraries Day!


  2. musicb3 says:

    Yes, both of them are, of course, also important. I was trying to stick to at top-5 and 1 for each decade (1900-1950); both _were_ listed on (which is really good to give an overview.), but in the end I just forgot Delius, and I already had 1 1912-born composer.

    If you fancy writing something on Delius before 29 January, I’ll try remembering to write something on Nancarrow before 27 October! 🙂


  3. mj263 says:

    It’s a deal! 🙂


  4. Pingback: To celebrate, to commemorate : Frederick Delius (29th January) | MusiCB3 Blog

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