Classical music is hard to define in specific terms, but it is generally understood to be music rooted in Western European traditions performed by trained musicians in formal settings like concert halls, opera houses, and churches. Its key emphasis is the faithful interpretation of composers' written scores. Classical music's roots lie in the chant melodies of Medieval religious rites. Its contemporary incarnation encompasses everything from opera and the symphony orchestra to chamber ensembles, solo works, choral music, songs, film music, and the avant-garde. Works from the intervening centuries make up the bulk of the recorded repertory, and they mirror the artistic and architectural trends of the Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Romantic, and Modern eras in their sound worlds and conception. The dichotomy between classical and popular music is a fairly recent cultural development. In fact, much of what is considered classical music today grew out of, was influenced by, or was popular music of its time.

Classical Song Highlights

English Chamber Orchestra / Benjamin Britten / Carmel Kaine / Emanuel Hurwitz / Sir Philip Ledger / Sir Neville Marriner / Tess Miller / William Bennett
Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli
Janet Baker / Jacqueline du Pré / John Barbirolli / London Symphony Orchestra
Emma Kirby/Gothic Voices/Christopher Page
Vladimir Ashkenazy / Itzhak Perlman / Barry Tuckwell
Yevgeny Mravinsky / Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra
Gil Shaham / André Previn
Yo-Yo Ma / Edgar Meyer / Mark O'Connor
Carlo Maria Giulini / Chicago Symphony Orchestra
Paul Hillier / Ars Nova Copenhagen / Theatre of Voices
Dame Kiri Te Kanawa/Puccini/Charpentier/Moore