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Charles Rosen

Charles Rosen (born May 5, 1927) is an American pianist and music theorist.

Rosen has carried out a double career. As a virtuoso pianist he has appeared in numerous recitals and orchestral engagements around the world, and has recorded a number of 20th century works at the invitation of their composers, including works by Igor Stravinsky, Elliott Carter, and Pierre Boulez.

Rosen is also the author of many widely admired books about music. Perhaps his most famous work is The Classical Style (2nd ed., 1997, New York: Norton), which analyzes the nature and evolution of the high classical style as it was developed by Joseph Haydn, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Ludwig van Beethoven. Sonata Forms (2nd ed., 1988, New York: Norton) is in some ways a follow-up on The Classical Style: it is an intensive analysis of the primary musical form used in the classical era. The Romantic Generation (1998, Cambridge: Harvard University Press) covers the work of the early generation of Romantic composers, including Frederic Chopin, Franz Liszt, Robert Schumann, and Felix Mendelssohn. Other books on music by Rosen are the following:

The polymathic Rosen has also published in other areas of the humanities:

Rosen has from time to time held positions as a university professor. He holds a Ph.D. in French Literature from Princeton University, and has taught at Harvard, Oxford University, and the University of Chicago.