Isabella Leonarda (1620-1704)
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21 of the greatest women composers in classical music
4. Isabella Leonarda (1620-1704)
At 16, Leonarda entered a convent where she stayed for the rest of her life. She was one of the most productive woman composers of her time, as well as a teacher for the other nuns. Her 'Sonate da chiesa' was historic in that it was an instrumental composition rather than vocal. She is one of only two Italian women known to have written instrumental music.