The problem with defining classical music (or music, or art) is that the definition (if it were ever established) would change in time.<P>One restrictive definition is "music of the classical period in Europe (1750??-1825??)". Then there's music in classical form or style (symphony, concerto, quartet, etc). And there's also music that lasts (Brandenburgs, Don Giovanni, the Eroica, The Planets, Christmas carols?? --- gag!!, etc).<P>Let me attempt a "current rule of thumb" (subject to periodic change) that incorporates the 3 meanings of "classic". <P>Classical music is written to be performed indefinitely, sounding the same each time. (This eliminates most, if not all, pop, rock, folk, etc, which is not always written, and is almost always PERFORMER-ORIENTED). It must survive its creator, and be documented (by publisher or recording --- since CDs are forever) TODAY. <P>Using this rule of thumb, Leroy Anderson's music is classical. John Rutter's is not (but likely will be). Eric, when you play music of Korngold, it's classical, but music of Elfman is not.<P>The above rule is pretty good (
) for determining what is or is not "classical". It is not meant to be a deterrant to enjoying any piece of music. It's just good to be able to distinguish what you are listening to.<BR>Shos<P>PS: Donna, this should make you very happy.