Composer Aaron Copland was born in Brooklyn of Lithuanian Jewish descent, on November 14, 1900. Before emigrating from Russia to the United States, Copland's father, Harris Morris Copland, Anglicized his surname "Kaplan" to "Copland".
Aaron Copland (1900 - 1990) As much as anyone, Aaron Copland established American concert music through his compositions, polemics, promotions, and just plain hard work. He belongs to a generation of composers which not only raised our native music to a thoroughly professional level, but put it on an equal footing with contemporary developments in European modernism. As Igor Stravinsky once remarked, "Why call Copland a great American composer? He's a great composer."