Mozart
"The classical period produced more instrumental than vocal music, a wealth of
serious and comic operas as well as vocal religious music also appeared during
this time"(Ferris, 231). One of the best composer of this time was Wolfgang

Amadeus Mozart. In this paper I will go through his childhood, his friends and
family, and of course his music. Enjoy!!! Child of the Enlightenment The world
that Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart entered ceremoniously in 1756 was brimming in
change. Historians refer to this era as the Age of Enlightenment, one of
unparalleled scientific, philosophical, and political ferment. Within Mozart’s
lifetime it set in motion forces that would fundamentally alter life not only in
his native, Salzburg, but also around the globe. The Enlightenment was not, to
be sure, a democratic movement. In France, the absolutism of the Sun King, Louis

XIV, continued under Louis XV and XVI. But in Austria, Empress Maria Theresa
introduced a greater measure of tolerance and freedom among her subjects, laying
a foundation for the democratic revolutions that followed. Wolfgang’s father

Leopold came from a family of Augsburg bookbinders. He received a solid Jesuit
education, more intellectual than evangelical after a year at the Benedictine

University in nearby Salzburg; Leopold stopped attending classes to pursue a
career as a musician. "Leopold figured as Mozart’s most important first
model. He taught his son the clavier and composition"(Mercardo 763).

Wolfgang’s mother Anna-Maria brought as much talent to her 32-year marriage as
did Leopold. Though deprived of a formal education, she was highly intelligent
and quick-witted— qualities that attracted the sober and reserved Leopold.

Only two of their seven children survived infancy. Wolfgang’s musically
talented sister Nannerl was five years older. Yet in this painting, the 12-year-
old looks like a spinster of seventy—complete with budding double chin.

Wolfgang, too, looks far older than his 7 years, and controls the action from
his place at its center. The Child Prodigy Indeed, Mozart marks the beginning of
the Western fascination with the child prodigy. Dressed in the festive outfit
given Wolfgang in 1762 by the Empress Maria Theresa, this boy of not quite seven
years old looks, for all the world, like a miniature adult who has simply
skipped childhood. "Mozart was keenly aware of his exceptional ability, which
had been fostered and rutted in him by his father from a very early
age"(Schroter). Other nineteenth-century artists represented

Wolfgang—variously said to be anywhere from 11 to 14 as a curly-locked angel.

For them, how else could the divine music that poured out of a child-size body
be explained? The idealization of Mozart’s genius was complete by the end of
the nineteenth century. Mozart composes with his violin in one hand and music
has appeared miraculously on his stand in the other. The message is
unmistakable: "Mortals use quills, Mozart simply wills"(Solomon) On the Road

The temptation to take his two prodigies on the road proved irresistible to

Leopold, who assumed sole responsibility for Mozart’s education. Between 1762
and 1766, the Mozarts appeared at almost every major court in Europe. Wolfgang
dazzled audiences with his ability to read difficult music at sight and to
improvise. In London, as elsewhere, the Mozarts hobnobbed with the leading
musicians. Probably the most important of these was Johann Christian Bach, the
youngest son of Johann Sebastian. It is no accident that Mozart’s early
symphonies, composed in London, are often stylistically indistinguishable from
those of J. C. Bach. When Mozart was 13, his prowess as a keyboard player,
violinist, improviser, and composer were already legendary. "When Mozart was

21 he wrote "Paris" Symphony, N31 while he was in Paris looking for a music
position. He was thoroughly disenchanted with the French and their
music"(Internet). From 1768 to 1775, between stays in Salzburg, he and Leopold
made three further forays to Italy and Germany. Wolfgang evolved from a prodigy
into a serious composer. Public Successes A self-confident Mozart assured his
father in 1782 that he would be able to support a wife and family in Vienna, As
a result which he called "Clavierland. Of its earlier devastation, the
dominant architectural style in Vienna is Baroque, aided in the 1700s by an
influx of Italian sculptors, stucco workers, and painters. The dominant
architect and architectural historian was Italian-trained Johann Fischer von

Erlach(1656-1723), whose densely decorated structures still stand out today."

He planned to achieve this by writing music for the public: operas, symphonies,
and concertos featuring himself as pianist. Although public performances were
less frequent than today, they were for that reason on a more lavish scale. Of a
set of piano concertos, Mozart commented "There are passages here and there
from which