In January of 2011, chief music critic at the The New York Times, Anthony Tommasini, concluded a two week project in which he discussed the world’s finest composers by unveiling a list he had personally compiled: Top 10 classical music composers in history. (For reference, his top 10 went like this: 1. Bach; 2. Beethoven; 3. Mozart; 4. Schubert; 5. Debussy; 6. Stravinsky; 7. Brahms; 8. Verdi; 9. Wagner; and 10. Bartok.) As can be expected, much discussion was generated by his list, but it was the following written response from 8-year-old Lucas Amory — son of noted violists Misha Amory and Hsin-Yun Huang — that really stood out.
Eloquent, informed, and adorable.
Transcript follows. Image courtesy of The New York Times.
Hi Mr Tommasini,
I read about you in the newspaper. Like you, I adore music. So I’ve written two lists: The 10 Greatist Composers and: The Ones I Like Best. Lets start with 10 Greatist:
1, 2, 3: You’re right about those: Bach, Beethoven, and Mozart.
4: I disagree about that; I’d go with Haydn. Haydn is as good as Mozart, but goes with 4.
4A: If I hurt your feelings I’m sorry.
5: This one my dad chose for me: Schubert. I gotta say, I’ll have to agree. I don’t know why, but I’ll do it.
6: This is hard. I’ll go with Brahms. He was supposed to be lower but when I learned he burned his music…
7: Tchaikovsky. Most definaly. He was an awesome composer.
8, 9: Chopin is 8. Schumanns nine.
TURN OVER FOR THE TEN COMPOSERS I LIKE BEST
1. Even though my favorite piece is Tchaikovskys Violin Concerto, someone else is beside him: Schumann. Schumann wins.
1A: Uh-huh you get the picture
7: You won’t believe it: Paganini
Well, that’s about it.
P.S. I go to Lucy Moses School. I’m 8 years old.