A Brief History Of Mozart, The Genius
There would probably be no Mozart piano as we know it without the contributions of Wolfgang Amadeus (1756-91). Over time, the name Mozart has become synonymous with classical piano and for very good reason. Within a relatively short life span of only 35 years, Mozart wrote 16 operas, 27 concerti, 25 string quartets, 41 symphonies, and more. Knowing a little of the man’s history could explain the method behind his madness, as we’ve come to discover that Mozart’s father, Leopold Mozart, was also a musician — a violinist in fact and composer to the archbishop of Austria.
Leopold didn’t sway his children toward a different career path as so many other artistically inclined fathers did at this time. Instead, Leopold traveled throughout Europe and performed with his children: the Mozart whom we know today and his sister, Maria Anna. Both children played the harpsichord and piano, sometimes together and at other times, separately. Mozart however, also played violin and organ. He published his first work in Paris in 1764 only to become the archbishop’s honorary concertmaster four years later.
With the arrival of a new archbishop, Mozart felt that his creative freedom was being stifled and he asked to step down from his achieved position. A brewing hostility between Mozart and the archbishop (coupled with physical removal from the residence) granted his wish. He later went to Germany and Paris to be with his mother and somehow managed to write seven violin sonatas, seven piano sonatas, a ballet, and the ‘Paris Symphony’ between. Additional compositions during this time include ‘Coronation Mass’, ‘Idomeneo’, ‘Missa Solemnis’, and ‘Post Horn Serenade.’
Married to Constanze Weber in 1782, Mozart wrote ‘Mass in C Minor’ and ‘The Abduction from the Seraglio.’ In 1787, Emperor Joseph II hired Mozart as chamber composer but the financial compensation was not enough to relieve the genius from the debts he acquired over his short career. Mozart simply couldn’t draw in the large crowds he once attracted as a young prodigy.
Mozart Piano Works
His last ten years of life showed no signs of slowing down however. For during that time, he composed most of his piano concertos, the ‘Cosi Fan Tutte’, ‘Don Giovanni’, ‘Haffner’, ‘Jupiter’ symphonies, ‘La Clemenza di Tito’, ‘Linz’, ‘Prague’, ‘The Marriage of Figaro’ and ‘The Magic Flute’.
Mozart did not finish writing his ‘Requiem’ due to illness and he died in 1791 with the grave digger being the funeral’s only attendant. Despite numerous rumors, there is no evidence to suggest foul play in his death.
Other Famous Mozart Piano Works :
- Concerto for Piano and Orchestra, No. 28
- Eine kleine Nachtmusik
- Fantasy in D Minor
- Overture from -The Marriage of Figaro
- Rondo a la Turk
- Sonata for Flute and Piano in F Major, Mvt. 1
- Sonata for Piano in C Major, K.545, Allegro
- Sonata for Piano in C Major, K.545, Andante
- Sonata for Piano in C Major, K.545, Rondo: Allegro
- Symphony No. 41 in C Major, -Jupiter, 1st Mvt.
- The -Queen of the Night aria, from -The Magic Flute
- Variations on Ah! Vous Dirai-je, Mamanecho (Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star)