Composers who passed their sell-by date?
Our esteemed colleague mamianka suggested this second question and I think it might prove interesting. So, the question is:
Are there any composers who showed great potential when young whom you consider didn't live-up to their early promise? Or perhaps composers whose late works you think suggest they should have 'retired' before they did?
I will reserve some of my opinions for later.
My candidates would be:
Malcolm Arnold - Plagued by alcoholism and a severe nervous breakdown, Arnold's last works sound like the music of a man who is all written out. I have the same opinion of ...
... Alfred Schnittke - I hear his (and Arnold's) late works described as 'spare' and 'economical' when what I hear is the music of composer's too ill to be able to compose high quality music anymore.
Erich Wolfgang Korngold - As much as I love Korngold's late music and the contribution he made to a new symphonic style of film music, I can't help but yearn for more of the kind of music he wrote as a teenager and youth, where he showed an uncanny degree of maturity and skill that completely belied his tender years.
William Walton - One can only wonder at his early works written
Jehan Alain (died at 28)
Juan Crisostomo Arriaga (died at 19)
Lili Boulanger (died at 24)
Veniamin Fleishman (died at 28)
Mieczysław Karłowicz (died at 32)
Guillaume Lekeu (died at 24)
Giovanni Battista Pergolesi (died at 26)
Franz Schubert (died at 31)