The Classic FM Hall of Fame this year has seen Beethoven take over his composer rival Mozart to be crowned the most popular composer.
Beethoven achieved 19 pieces in this year’s chart, including 3 in the top 10 alone, compared with 16 pieces for Mozart. While the two composers have reached joint first place in 3 previous charts, Beethoven has never secured more pieces in the top 300 than his rival.
Now in its 21st year, more than 170,000 votes were cast in the 2016 Classic FM Hall of Fame.
Following the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens last year, John Williams’ iconic theme has reached its highest ever position, jumping 38 places to reach number 44. Star Wars has beaten Williams’ 5 other entries in the 2016 chart, including Schindler’s List, Jurassic Park and Raiders of the Lost Ark, confirming his place as the most popular living composer.
Howard Shore’s The Lord of the Rings remains the nation’s favourite film score at number 28.
Classic FM presenter John Suchet said: “Ever since we launched the first Classic FM Hall of Fame in 1996, Mozart has taken precedence – that is until now. I think that Beethoven’s new position as the most popular composer has to do with films such as the Oscar-winning The King’s Speech, which famously used his 7th Symphony, but his music is so universally popular. If you land on any street in any town in any country of the world, someone will know Beethoven’s
The full top 300 list is published on Classic FM’s website.