Amadeus Mozart

Facts about Amadeus Mozart

We found 28 facts about Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Musical genius

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, along with Haydn and Beethoven, is counted among the Viennese classics. He is considered one of the most outstanding and important composers in the history of music. He created a variety of musical genres - from solo works, chamber music, and concertos to symphonies and operas, drawing on a variety of styles. He was a composer and also a keyboard virtuoso.

Amadeus Mozart
He was born on January 27, 1756, in Salzburg.

Although he was an Austrian composer, he is often said to be German. At the time Mozart was born, Salzburg was the capital of an independent archbishopric within the Reich. It was not until 1805-1810 and again from 1814 that the area became part of the Austrian Empire.

He was born in an apartment building at Getreidegasse 9, in the so-called "Hagenauer House."

The composer's house on Makrtplatz and the tenement on Getreidegasse, now house museums dedicated to the musician.

He was the seventh child of Leopold Mozart and Anna Maria, née Pertl.

Leopold Mozart was a court violinist and composer and the author of the first violin textbook.

Amadeus had a sister, Maria Anna, five years older, who was called Nannerl by the household, also musically talented.

The other five siblings died in infancy.

Since both Amadeus and Nannerl showed musical ability, the father gave up his career and devoted himself to the children's musical education.

Amadeus learned to play the harpsichord from the age of five (even as a three-year-old, he listened to his sister play the instrument and toyed with finding thirds - this is how Maria Anna recalled it years later). Reportedly, even then he was making up his first minuets, which his father wrote down for him since he could not yet write himself, and at the age of eight, he composed his first symphony.

The ambitious father decided to showcase his talented children at European princely courts.

Amadeus made his first foreign trip to Munich at the age of six. The family's next tour took them through Pasava (a city in southwestern Germany) and Linz to Vienna. There the siblings, as harpsichordists, performed at both the imperial court and the palaces of the aristocracy.

After the first successes in Vienna, the Mozart family decided to go on another tour.

The mother also went with them. They gave concerts in Munich, Augsburg, Schwetzingen, Mainz, Frankfurt am Main (young Goethe was present at the concert), Koblenz and probably Aachen.

The performances of talented children brought splendor and, above all, material benefits to the family.

Practically all of Amadeus' childhood was spent traveling and giving concerts at European courts, which took a toll on his health, and he felt the effects of this in his adult life. As a "touring attraction," Amadeus acquired a dislike for his father, who despotically supervised his gifted son's doings.

Eight-year-old Amadeus gave concerts at Versailles for Louis XV and at Buckingham Palace for George III.

At the age of thirteen, he became concertmaster of the archbishop's band in 1769.

He visited Italy three times between 1769 and 1773.

During his first stay, he met Giovanni Battista Martini, an Italian composer, pedagogue, and music theorist, in Bologna and was accepted as a member of the famous Accademia Filarmonica, where Martini taught. Amadeus became his student and learned vocal counterpoint under his tutelage.

During this stay, while in Rome at the Sistine Chapel, the fourteen-year-old Mozart heard Gregorio Allegri's "Miserere."

"Miserere" was a piece composed around 1638 and was the last and most famous of the twelve falsobordons (a style of recitation occurring in music from the 15th to 18th centuries) used in the Sistine Chapel from 1514. At one point, transcriptions of the music were banned, and it was only allowed to be performed during special services in the Sistine Chapel. According to a story supported by family letters, Amadeus heard the piece during a Wednesday service. Later that day, he wrote it down completely from memory, returning to the Chapel on Friday to make minor corrections. After less than three months, Amadeus was summoned again to Rome by Pope Clement XIV, who praised his musical genius and awarded him the knighthood of the Order of the Golden Spur, naming him Knight of the Order of the Golden Spur. Previously, only Christoph Willibald Ritter von Gluck, a German composer of the Classical period, had been awarded such a decoration.

In 1773, Amadeus traveled to Vienna with his father, who sought a better position at the Viennese court.

Unfortunately, the position was not obtained, but Amadeus became acquainted with Haydn and his works. He then traveled to Munich, where he finished composing the comic opera "The Alleged Gardener" and conducted its premiere.

In Munich, Amadeus met the sixteen-year-old soprano Aloysia Weber and fell in love with her.

They wanted to travel together, but this was strongly opposed by Mozart's father. So Amadeus embarked on another tour of Europe, this time accompanied by his mother, since the successor to Archbishop Schrattenbach, under whom Leopold Mozart was Kapellmeister, was no longer so forgiving of his constant absences from work and did not approve of his next trip.

They left for Munich and Mannheim, from where, after an extended stay, they went to Paris, where Amadeus played for six months.

During this trip, Mozart's mother fell ill and died. The entire stay in Paris was not one of the successful ones, as Amadeus did not win the recognition of Parisian music lovers (although the performance of his Symphony "Paris KV 297 was a success), nor did he find any job, well, and he lost his mother.

Urged strongly by his father to return to Salzburg, he stopped in Munich and Mannheim on his way back.

He also managed to meet his first love Aloysia Weber, who confessed to Mozart that she no longer reciprocated his feelings. Doubly devastated, by the loss of his mother and his girlfriend's love, he returned to Salzburg, where he accepted a position with Count Hieronymus von Colloredo, then Archbishop Prince.

Mozart received a commission from Munich to write a grand opera for the start of the opera season in that city in December 1780.

He wrote "Idomeneo, King of Crete" and traveled to Munich to supervise rehearsals and conduct the premiere. The planned premiere did not take place due to mourning over the death of Maria Theresa, daughter of Emperor Charles VI of Habsburg, and was postponed until the following January. Mozart's father and sister Maria Anna attended the premiere. Mozart was a great success in Munich, carried almost on his hands in the upper classes. Meanwhile, his employer, treating him as a mere musician in the service of an archbishop prince, forbade Mozart to give concerts. He even refused to give a concert in the presence of the emperor, which could have brought Amadeus almost half of his annual salary. Exasperated, he submitted his resignation, which was accepted by the words: "Let him go, I don't need him."

He left his job with the archbishop and moved to Vienna.

He settled in a room rented from Aloysius Weber's family. Aloysia was already married at the time, but she had a sister, Constance, whom Mozart was very fond of. He liked her so much that the young couple married in 1782.

Like her sister Aloysia, Constance Weber was a singer.

Her marriage to Mozart lasted nine years, and during her marriage, Constance gave birth to six children, of whom only two sons, Franz Xaver Wolfgang and Karl Thomas, survived.

Amadeus practically never left Vienna anymore. His father died, and he began to sink into depression.

In such a depressed state, he threw himself into composing. Two of his best-known operas were written at the time: "The Marriage of Figaro" and "Don Giovanni." Kammermusikus' place at the imperial court also became vacant, Christoph Willibald Gluck died, and Mozart was hired in his place. Until the end of his days, Mozart lived in Vienna. To this day, you can still see one of his apartments at Domgasse 5 near St. Stephen's Cathedral, where Amadeus composed "The Marriage of Figaro."

In 1783, he premiered the Great Mass in C minor KV 427.

In 1786, he received an invitation to Prague, where the production of "The Marriage of Figaro" was to take place.

In 1791, Wolfgang's librettist and friend Emanuel Schikaneder commissioned him to write "The Magic Flute" - a fairy tale opera (singspiel - opera with spoken interludes).

It is one of Mozart's most recognizable operas. Some see in it the author's connections with Freemasonry. One of the opera's characters - Sarastro - sings in his aria about the ideals of friendship and brotherhood, and later the characters undergo an initiation ritual to purify them and create better ones. Based on this, it was hypothesized that Mozart's death was caused by members of the Lodge in retaliation for betraying their rituals.

Contrary to the prevailing opinion about the poverty in which Mozart's family lived, caused by their inability to earn a living, the composer earned a great deal of money in the last decade of his life.

He earned a lot, but spent even more. He lived beyond his means, went into debt to friends, and squandered money on lavish living, parties, and costumes. He was not a vain man but wanted to make a name for himself in the Viennese world of musicians. A lot of expenses were generated by his wife, who, having health problems, often went to the Baden spa. And indeed, in such a situation, the Mozarts could barely make ends meet.

Mozart died as a very young man, he was only 35 years old. He died in Vienna on December 5, 1791.

For many years, it was not known what caused his death. Although a bloodletting by a medic, two hours before his death is considered the immediate cause, the composer was probably already suffering from rheumatic fever with rheumatoid arthritis, with a very high temperature and concomitant neurological complications. He was buried in a 3rd class grave, like most of Vienna's residents. Such a burial was conditioned by two orders of Joseph II Habsburg, which dictated the various elements of the funeral.

Just before his death, Mozart began work on the Requiem funeral mass.

He did not manage to complete this work. In the manuscript, the last notes put by his hand fall on the 8th bar of the Lacrimosa vocal parts. At the request of Mozart's wife, the work was completed by his composer friends Joseph Eybler and Franz Xaver Sussmayr.

After Mozart's death, Constance was in a very bad financial situation.

So she turned to the imperial court for an annuity from the composer. She also organized a series of concerts that brought her a substantial income.

In 1809, Constance remarried.

Her chosen one was the Danish diplomat Georg Nikolaus von Nissen, who was a great admirer of Mozart's work and the author of his first biography, "Mozart's Letters as a Source of biography and Characterization of the Composer." Because of the free language of the author of the letters, which were filled with indiscriminate wit, Mozart's family wanted to burn them. However, Georg recognized the letters as a very important source telling about the composer's personality, and as he claimed: "out of respect for the biographer," he censored them before quoting them in the biography.

Both of Mozart's sons never married and left no offspring.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's direct lineage died out in the mid-19th century.

Mozart was the first great professional composer to write popular music (dances, divertimentos, serenades headed by "Eine Kleine Nachtmusik").

He left behind more than 50 symphonies, dozens of concertos for piano, violin, flute and other solo instruments with orchestral accompaniment, about 20 masses, other works of church music, 13 operas that are still in the repertoires of all opera theaters of the world (Don Giovanni, The Magic Flute, The Abduction from the Seraglio, The Marriage of Figaro, Cosi fan tutte, Idomeneo, King of Crete), many chamber music, solo works.

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