The Romantic Era
The Life of Vaughan Williams;
An Englishman, Williams collected the folk songs of the countryside and immortalized them in his works. This is one of his major claims to fame.
The Life of Aaron Copland;
An American Composer, Copland traveled quite a bit. His major Claims to fame would be his immortal works.
The Life of Samuel Barber;
Barber was an American composer who mainly worked in the US. His main claim to fame is his Adagio For Strings, which is widely popular.
The Post-War Era
He was born in New York City and is American. His major Claims to fame are his compositions which "have won him the Pulitzer Prize, the Grawemeyer Award, three Grammy Awards, and an Academy Award (“Oscar”) and have been performed and recorded by many of the most prominent orchestras, soloists, and chamber musicians in the world."
From 'Program Notes' and http://www.johncorigliano.com/