Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

1756-1791 created by Jeremy Ullman

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The Early Years

Mozart had a very active childhood. His father, Leopold, was a very good musician in Austria, and taught Mozart about music. He eventually realized that Mozart was a musical prodigy, because at the age of four, Mozart had learned to play the harpsichord and the violin. At age five, he started to write music and composed a minuet. At six, he played for the Viennese Royal Court and the Emperor and Empress of Austria. From ages 7-10, he, his father, and his sister, Maria Anna (or Nannerl) were touring Europe, playing for Queen Marie Atoinette of France, King George III of England, and other royal peoples. He also had an outstanding memory, he could listen to a piece of music being played once, go back home, and play it himself, but with his hands crossed over each other and backwards.
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Where He Lived

Mozart was born in Salzburg, Austria on January 27, 1756. Before he toured Europe, he lived in Salzburg with his mother, father, older sister, and many other family members. After he finished his tour, he returned to Salzburg. When he was 25, he moved to Vienna, Austria and married a woman named Constanze Weber. They had six children, but sadly only two survived into adulthood. At the age of 35, he died from rheumatic fever. While he was ill, he became paranoid and thought that his rival, Antonio Salieri, had poisoned him and that's why he was sick. Since he was very poor, he was buried in a pauper's grave in Vienna.
Mozart - Requiem

Requiem Dies Irae

This piece, Mozart's final piece, was commissioned to him by the Austrian count Franz Von Walsegg. He paid Mozart half the commission upfront, and said the rest would be payed when he finished the piece. He was about halfway done with the Requiem when he died of a rheumatic fever. Since their family was so poor, Constanze secretly asked one of Mozart's colleagues, Franz Xavier Süssmayr, to finish the piece so that she could receive the rest of the commission. So, Süssmayr finished the Requiem, gave it to Constanze, and Constanze gave it to Walsegg. Eventually, people started to ask Constanze about the piece, because part of it did not sound like his style of music. Soon thereafter, she confessed to having given the piece to Süssmayr to finish.

Other Music

  • Rondo alla Turka
  • Sanctus
  • Le Nozze Di Figaro
  • Symphony No. 41 "Jupiter"
  • Symphony No. 1
  • Eine Kleine Nachtmusick
  • Piano Concerto No. 9 "Jeunehomme"
  • Symphony No. 31 "Paris"
  • Symphony No. 35 ""Haffner"
  • Symphony No. 36 "Linz"
  • Symphony No. 38 "Prague"
  • Twelve Variations of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star
  • Many, many other pieces of music

The Legacy

Mozart was an astounding composer, writing over 600 pieces of music since he was five years old. He wrote concertos for all types of instruments, such as for the piano, flute, bassoon, oboe, harp, violin and horn. He wrote operas, symphonies, minuets, sonatas, and many other pieces of music. He shocked Europe as a five year old and wrote some of the greatest pieces of music in all of history, like Symphony No. 41 "Jupiter" and symphony No. 1. He left behind so much great music in only 30 years of being a composer, and he still amazes people to this day.

Works Cited

'The Boy Mozart' - portrait of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.. Photograph. Encyclopædia Britannica ImageQuest. Web. 12 May 2016.
<http://quest.eb.com/search/113_915588/1/113_915588/cite>

Cherlin, Deborah. "Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)." SIRS Discoverer. Fall 1996: n.p. SIRS Discoverer. Web. 13 May 2016.

Kids Music Corner. Web. 22 Sep. 2015.

Map of Austria. Illustration. Encyclopædia Britannica ImageQuest. Web. 12 May 2016.
<http://quest.eb.com/search/309_735613/1/309_735613/cite>

"Mozart 25." Youtube. N.p., n.d. Web. 13 May 2016. <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rNeirjA65Dk>.

"Musical Works of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart." Musical Composers. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 May 2016. <http://www.wolfgang-amadeus.at/en/musical_works_of_Mozart.php>.