Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: "It is a mistake to think that the practice of my art has become easy to me."
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Who was Mozart? A Fast & Friendly Guide
Johannes Chrystostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart (1756–1791) was arguably the most gifted musician in the history of classical music. His inspiration is often described as 'divine', but he worked assiduously, not only to become the great composer he was, but also a conductor, virtuoso pianist, organist and violinist. Mozart's music embraces opera, symphony, concerto, chamber, choral, instrumental and vocal music, revealing an astonishing number of imperishable masterpieces.
- Mozart was born in Salzburg, in 1756. Mozart's father, Leopold, was an ambitious composer and violinist.
- Though he was and still is considered a genius, he was also tactless, arrogant and had a scatological sense of humour.
- Mozart composed his first opera, Apollo et Hyacinthus when he was only 11. A year later the Emperor Joseph II commissioned him to write La finta semplice.
- In August 1782 he married Constanze Weber. The Mozarts' marriage seemed to be a happy one. Constanze was easy-going, free-spending and usually pregnant. Only two of their six children survived.
- Post-marriage, some of Mozart's best started to appear -the Haffner and Linz symphonies and five string quartets, for example.
- Between 1784 and 1786, he composed nine piano concertos and three of these concurrently with The Marriage of Figaro.
- The year 1787 saw the premiere of Mozart's second opera, Don Giovanni.
- Mozart had a great run of successes in his final years - Eine Kleine Nachtmusik and the Clarinet Quintet in A, three of his 41 symphonies; Cosí fan Tutte, three piano trios, the Coronation piano concerto, two piano sonatas and three string quartets.
- His health began to fail and his work rate slowed in 1790. He got better, though, and in 1791 alone composed the most famous The Magic Flute, the Requiem (unfinished), and the Clarinet Concerto.
- Mozart did not live long enough to complete his Requiem. He died in Vienna, in 1791, before his 36th birthday.
Mozart: 15 Facts about the great composer
Born in Salzburg in 1756, Mozart is now recognised as one of the best classical composers of all times, with repertoire spanning opera to symphonies
He composed his first sonata at the age of six, and his last just three years before his death in 1791 - what is it about Mozart's sonatas that tells us so much about his life?
The story behind one of Mozart's most celebrated pieces reveals that he didn't intend it for the clarinet.
If the Classical genius used social media, it might look a little something like this...
Lorenzo Da Ponte (1749–1838) wrote the words for 28 operas by 11 composers, including three of Mozart's greatest - Don Giovanni, The Marriage of Figaro and Così fan tutte. But this librettist's own life was scandalous enough to make an opera in its own right.
Meet the cast of characters in Mozart's life - his family, his friends, his rivals and his loves
Classic FM takes a look at some of the artists, musicians and composers who achieved great things before they hit 18.
Mozart’s opera, The Magic Flute, is a fantastical tale that’s as moving as it is witty, and features some of Mozart’s most beautiful pieces
He's already been mistaken for Benjamin Franklin and Falco
The gravestone of the son of the great composer has reportedly been badly damaged
Celebrate Sir Neville Marriner's 90th birthday with this exciting new recording. John Suchet's Album of the Week, 31 March 2014.
Immaculate playing from a young prodigy. Classic FM Drive Featured Album, 10 March 2014.
Top Mozart Pieces
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