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About Aaron Copland

(1900-1990) 20th Century music - United States

American composer Aaron Copland is known for incorporating popular forms, including jazz and folk, into his compositions. Copland was determined to expand the popularity of American classical music. He wanted to create a symphonic music that would distinguish itself from the music of Europe. In order to reach the widest audience, he began composing for the movies and ballet. He wrote scores to Of Mice and Men, Our Town, and The Heiress for which he won an Academy Award. He composed the music for two very popular ballets, Rodeo and Appalachian Spring, the latter of which won him a Pulitzer Prize. He is also well-known for his patriotic A Lincoln Portrait for voice and orchestra and the ever-popular Fanfare for the Common Man. Throughout his life, Copland was also a distinguished conductor, teacher and scholar.

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