Brahms (1833 - 1897)
: May 7, 1833 in Hamburg, Germany
: April 3, 1897 in Vienna, Austria
Johannes Brahms (7 May 1833 – 3 April 1897) was a German composer and pianist. Born in Hamburg, Brahms spent much of his professional life in Vienna, Austria, where he was a leader of the musical scene. In his lifetime, Brahms's popularity and influence were considerable; indeed he is sometimes grouped with Johann Sebastian Bach and Ludwig van Beethoven as one of the "Three Bs".
Brahms composed for piano, chamber ensembles, symphony orchestra, and for voice and chorus. A virtuoso pianist, he premiered many of his own works; he worked with some of the leading performers of his time, including the pianist Clara Schumann and the violinist Joseph Joachim. Many of his works have become staples of the modern concert repertoire.
Brahms is often considered both a traditionalist and an innovator. His music is firmly rooted in the structures and compositional techniques of the Baroque and Classical masters. He was a master of counterpoint, the complex and highly disciplined art for which Johann Sebastian Bach is famous, and of development, a compositional ethos pioneered by Joseph Haydn, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Ludwig van Beethoven, and other composers. While many contemporaries found his music too academic, his diligent, highly constructed works were a starting point and an inspiration for a generation of composers.