The most played classical music works and composers in 2022 –

Reference online magazine Bachtrack has published figures and statistics for classical music in 2022. We find some surprising results.

Bachtrack, the most important online magazine for announcements of classical music events (concerts, opera, dance), was published on January 5. annual statistics. It lists at least 27,124 music events, mostly in Europe and the United States, mostly from the biggest institutions.

Although these figures are not complete, they offer a sufficiently representative panorama of the overall situation to identify current trends.

Maurice Ravel’s “La Valse” is the most performed piece

Among the classics, we start with a classic: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. The Austrian is the most performed composer of the year, ahead of Beethoven and Bach. With four of his most acclaimed operas (The Marriage of Figaro, No. 1, The Magic Flute, No. 3, Don Giovanni, No. 7, and Cosi fan tutte, No. 10), he is also the most is a popular composer. the lyric stage, closely followed by Giacomo Puccini and Giuseppe Verdi.

Still not much change from previous years. Little surprise about the most played piece in 2022, because it’s La Valse by Maurice Ravel. Still in 92nd place in 2019 – Backtrack did not collect data in 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic – it dethroned Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3.

>> To listen: Maurice Ravel’s “La Valse” performed by the hr-Sinfonieorchester – Frankfurt Radio Symphony, conductor Alain Altınoğlu

One article Musicologist Tristan Labouret from Bakhtrak explains the reasons for this success. Among the arguments put forward, he notes that “Ravel and his work have been given a new breath for several years.” The number of publications about him is proven. In turn, Sophie Bourdais Telerama another hypothesizes that “the apocalyptic nature of La Valse, composed in 1919 by Ravel, still reeling from the First World War, corresponds to the sense of anxiety and instability that permeates our time.”

As for his major “Bolero,” it tops this ranking, which lists only the major bodies, only at number 40, while his “Piano Concerto in G major” is at number 12.

Arvo Pärt, the most performed live composer

This makes the French the 7th most performed composer. Two men of the 20th century enter the top 10 with Richard Strauss at number 9. And this is perhaps one of the most significant insights from these statistics: 20th-century music is being heard more now than ever before.

As for living composers, American Philip Glass (85) in 2022 stands out especially in terms of lyrical production. This year, four of his operas were performed on world stages: “Akhnaten”, “Orpheus”, “Les enfants terribles” and “Einstein on the Beach”.

Works that allowed their author to rise to the 5th rank of the most performed contemporary composers in 2022. He is preceded by Thomas Ades (4th), John Adams (3rd), John Williams (2nd). Estonian composer Arvo Pärt (87 years old) is at the head of this rating.

>> To listen: “Spiegel im Spiegel” by Arvo Pärt performed by Jurgen Kruse (piano) and Benjamin Hudson (violin)

In an article for Télérama, Sophie Bourdais points out that, however, there are big differences between countries, and that Switzerland is not among the most avant-garde countries in terms of contemporary music, like France…

What about women?

Russian composer Sofia Goubaidoulina, here in Basel in 2006. [La compositrice russe Sofia Goubaidoulina, ici en 2006 à Bâle. – Keystone]According to Bakhtrak figures, the position of women will improve slightly in 2022. Nine of them are in the top 20 of the most played live composers: Russia’s Sofia Gubaydulina in 7th place, followed by Anna Klein (8th) and Kaija. Saariaho (12th).

The same is true of female conductors, who performed better in 2022 than in previous years, with twelve women among the world’s 100 most active conductors. The most active is Chinese Elim Chan (29th), who is currently the chief conductor of the Antwerp Symphony Orchestra.

Radio Topic: Catherine Buser

Web adaptation: Andréanne Quartier-la-Tente

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