Composer of the Week: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was a Classical Period composer who is known world-wide, even today. Born in Salzburg, Austria in 1756, Mozart was the ultimate example of a child prodigy. His father, Leopold, encouraged his musical talents and taught him from a young age. In fact, it is said that Mozart could play an early version of the piano “flawlessly” by age four, and was starting to write music as early as age five. By age eleven, Mozart was already touring Europe with his father and writing full pieces of music. By his teenage years, Mozart was becoming known as a mature composer.
Mozart wrote symphonies, operas, concertos and sonatas for various instruments, string quartets, choral pieces and works for the early versions of the piano (called the clavier). He wrote sacred (religious) music like his Requiem Mass, and secular music (non-religious) like his symphonies. Through it all, Mozart’s amazing talent showed. It is said that he had nearly a perfect memory for music, needing to hear something only once or twice before being able to write it down, note for note. His most famous pieces include Symphony #40 in G minor (he wrote 41 total), operas such as The Magic Flute and Don Giovanni, as well as Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, and Requiem.
Map of Salzburg, Austria