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Top Ten Asian Composers


Top Ten Asian Composers

Like any other regional or continental music, Asian music is very diverse and rich. I don’t think there is a word one can use to generalize the Asian music. One thing that is sure is that Asian music is very rich when it comes to the culture, genres, and styles. It would be easier to describe Asian music based on their regions. For example, you can have a general description of Middle East Asian music and Southeast Asian music. With this, I have listed great composers from the different regions of Asia.

  1. Levi CelerioCelerio was born in Manila, Philippines on April 30, 1910 and died on April 2, 2002. He was a Filipino composer known not only in his country but also around the world. He was a very prolific music composer. During his life he has written more than 4,000 songs. Many of them are still influential in the music industry in his country.

    Perhaps, he is best known for being a genius in leaf-playing. Because of his talent as a leaf player, he was placed in the Guinness Book of World Records. One of his greatest achievements is to be awarded the National Artist of the Philippines for Music.

    He has composed very popular Christmas songs such as Pasko na Naman, Misa de Gallo, and Maligayang Pasko at Manigong Bagong Taon (Ang Pasko ay Sumapit). He has also written very popular love songs such as Kahit Konting Pagtingin, Saan Ka Man Naroroon, Dahil sa Isang Bulaklak, Sa Ugoy ng Duyan, and many others.

    Most of his compositions expresses so much emotions particularly love for a special someone and love for parents such as his mother.

  2. Bombay RaviRavi Shankar Sharma, or well known in his stage name Bombay Ravi, was born in 1926. He is an Indian music director and has composed music for Malayalam and Hindi films. He had a successful career in Hindi films.

    Part of his achievements is hit songs and Filmfare nominations for the films Do Badan (1966), Ankhen (1968), Chaudvhin Ka Chand (1960), and Nikaah (1982). It is in the films Khandaan (1965) and Gharana (1961) where he won Filmfare awards.

    Some of his unforgettable compositions are Yeh Mausam Rangeen Shamaa (Modern Girl), Jab Chali Thandi Hawa (Do Badan), Yeh Hawa (Gumraah), Chalo ek baar phir se (Gumrah), and Neele Gagan Ke Tale (Hamraaz).

  3. Chen YiChen Yi is a Chinese composer who was born on April 4, 19543 in Guangzhou, China. She is a famous composer of contemporary classical music. In China, she was the first woman to earn a Master of Arts in composition of music. She earned it from the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing.

    At the tender age of seventeen, she has worked as the concertmaster in Beijing Opera Troupe’s orchestra in Guangzhou. Her famous compositions are Ancient Beauty, Ancient Dances, As Like a Raging Fire, Arirang, As in a Dream, Ba Ban, and many others.

    Her music style is highly influenced by Western composers such as Mozart and Bach.

  4. YirumaI Ru-ma, or better known in the stage name Yiruma, was born in South Korea on February 15, 1978. He is known around the world for his music compositions that are colorful and uplifts the listener’s spirit. His piano music can be characterized as introspective and expressive.

    His popular compositions include Kiss the Rain, Maybe, and River Flows in You. First Love is his most popular album.

  5. Nat YontararakNat Yontararak is a Thai music teacher, composer, and a classical pianist. He was born in Bangkok on 1954. In 1971, he was awarded first place in the first ever Siam Music Festival. He was 16 years old then. In 2006, he was awarded the Silpathorn Award for contemporary artists in Thailand.

    One of his famous works is the Glory to Our Great Kings (piano sonata).

  6. Phoon Yew TienPhoon Yew Tien is the most recorded composer of classical music in Singapore. He is known not only in Singapore but also around the world. Aside from being expert in Western and Eastern styles and genres of music, he is also well-grounded in music for concert hall, music for theatre, and chamber music. He has won the Distinguished Prize in the National Song Writing Competition from 1977 to 1979.

    His popular compositions include Ripples, Butterfly, Dream, and Love Song. All of these are for solo performances.

  7. Ryan CayabyabCayabyab is a Filipino musician. He was one of the resident judges of Philippine Idol 2006. He also became the Executive and Artistic Director of San Miguel Foundation for the Performing Arts.

    His popular works include Iduyan Mo, Kahit Ika’y Panaginip Lang, Tunay na Ligaya, and Nais Ko.

  8. Rizaldi SiagianSiagian was born in Medan, North Sumatra, Indonesia. He earned his B.A. at the University of North Sumatra, while it is in the San Diego State University where he earned his M.A. Currently, he is the University of North Sumatra ethnomusicology department head.

    His popular compositions include Lebah, Gambus Binal, and Gambus Menjelang Magrib.

  9. Kanchman BabbarBabbar is a multi-instrumentalist and a music composer. He learned playing the flute at the age of 14. From there, his musical journey began. During his college days, he is heralded as the best student performer due to his winning performances.

    One of his popular works is

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