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About Bela Bartok

(1881-1945) 20th Century music – Hungary

Hungarian composer and pianist Bela Bartok is considered one of the 20th century’s most important composers. He was extremely interested in folk music and traveled the countryside with fellow countryman and composer Zoltan Kodaly, collecting and researching folk melodies. His analytical study of folk music made him one of the founders of ethnomusicology.

Bartok’s music was influenced by many of his contemporaries, including Richard Strauss, Claude Debussy, Igor Stravinksy and Arnold Schoenberg. His compositional output includes music for opera, ballet, orchestra, small ensemble and piano. His six string quartets, the Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta and the Concerto for Orchestra are considered his masterworks.

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