Gay American Composers and Benjamin Britten

Homosexual American Composers of the 20th Century

Due to their specified social circles, based on their sexual orientation, gay American composers of the 20th century were able to create a specific genre of their own that delved deeply into their desires and political turmoil, more so than most heterosexual composers of similar backgrounds.
Through my research I have come to discover that many of my favorite American composers were and are homosexual. Aaron Copland, Samuel Barber, John Cage, Henry Cowell, Gian Carlo Menotti (Italian-born American), Francis Poulenc, and Stephen Sondheim are celebrated American composers who happen to also be gay. I believe that there is a connection between them due to their preferences. When people have a certain political belief, they tend to stick together; such as the democratic and republican parties. The same goes for religions. People of the same religion generally travel and inhabit areas in groups. Being gay is a type of culture, one that brings people closer due to their beliefs, personal feelings and in some cases, the inappropriate stigma against them.
When a group of people comes together, and the individual allows said group into their lives, the influence is apparent. If multiple artistic individuals come together, these individuals feed off of each other’s talent, wisdom, philosophies and ideals. I believe that being a homosexual composer in the 20th century was an extremely difficult situation, and I believe that music by these gay American composers reflects a special type of vulnerability, but overall strength that was very rare back then. We truly see into the hearts of these composers because of their gay social influences.
Hubb’s book, The Queer Composition of America's Sound: Gay Modernists, American Music, and National Identity, starts of introducing Aaron Copland as “America’s most prominent composer”. That is a lofty title for any person to live up to. The introduction discusses the Army’s praise...