Copland wrote a ballet about one of the most famous "western gangsters" in history: Billy the Kid. The work was written in 1938 and remained popular for over a decade. Unfortunately, his works are no longer
heard or performed often enough today. In my opinion, Copland is one of the greatest American performers in music history, but he is not given the recognition he deserves by today's society. By looking at Copland's works
and analyzing his "Billy the Kid," the necessary proof of his greatness will, without question, show the fact that he is one of the greatest American composers of all time.
Aaron Copland, whose family name was changed from Kapland by immigration officials in New York, was born on November 14, 1900 and died December 2, 1990. His parents were of Lithuanian Jewish descent. His parents emigrated from Russia to the United States. His father owned a department store and they did not live lavishly. As he explained, "I was born on November 14, ...