By Ricky O’Bannon
Earlier this year, musicologist Balazs Mikusi was flipping through a folder of unidentified musical scores at Budapest’s National Szechenyi Library when four pages caught his attention.
As he read the notes on the page, Mikusi said his pulse quickened when he realized the score belonged to Mozart’s famous Piano Sonata No. 11 in A Major. After Mikusi’s find was verified by Mozart experts, the original manuscript, which contained a few minor differences from the now famous version, was revealed to the public and given a concert performance in late September.
In the past decade several original manuscripts, unknown pieces or early drafts by classical masters have been rediscovered everywhere from dusty library shelves to a lava-encased Italian fishing boat. Few of these long-lost scores will become staples of the classical canon, but for scholars they often reveal more about the work and thought process of some iconic composers.
Below is a timeline of some of the noteworthy classical music rediscoveries in the past decade.