Mozart Week 2018

“Each year around the time of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart‘s birth in January, the Mozarteum Foundation Salzburg hosts the Mozart Week with opera performances and orchestral, chamber, and soloist concerts. World-renowned Mozart interpreters, orchestras, and ensembles are responsible for the unparalleled reputation of this unique event. This week of concerts, which was first held in 1956, invites visitors from around the world to rediscover Mozart’s works from ever-changing perspectives and to hear them afresh.”  

Mozarts Geburtshaus, the house in which Mozart was born on 27 January 1756, on Getreidegasse, is now one of the most frequently visited museums in the world. The exhibition, which spreads over three floors, carries the visitors into Wolfgang’s world, telling when he began to make music, who his friends and patrons were, how the relationship with his family looked like, how strong was his passion for the opera… Here can be seen portraits, original manuscripts and documents, as well as personal objects and musical instruments on which he has played: his childhood violin and the clavichord on which he composed a few of his wonderful works.  

In the heart of the Salzburg historic district, next to the Residenzplatz and in front of the Salzburg Museum, you will find Mozartplatz – Mozart Square. The Mozart statue standing there is dedicated to the city’s most famous son, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Designed by German sculptor Ludwig Schwanthaler, the Mozart monument stands in the middle of the square. Bavaria’s King Ludwig I was one of the driving forces behind the installation of a statue in honor of Mozart. He personally invested a significant sum of money and also financed a marble base, which is today one of the holdings of the Salzburg Museum. The monument was built in 1842, more than 50 years after the death of the great composer.

In Makartplatz there is Mozart-Wohnhaus, the residence where Mozart lived between 1773 and 1781 (the year when he left for Vienna). The building was severely damaged in the Second World War’s bombings, but it was faithfully reconstructed and today hosts the second important Mozart museum in Salzburg. 

The fascinating history of how Mozart Residence was saved and reconstructed can be read on the page of The Mozarteum Foundation from the anniversary year 2016 (20 years since the official opening of the rebuilt Mozart Residence).  

In the spacious rooms visitors can see portraits and original documents, manuscripts of Mozart’s works from the Salzburg years, Wolfgang’s original fortepiano, as well as the famous Family Portrait in the Master’s Dance Hall (Tanzmeistersaal)

It is said that Mozart once played the organ of Trinity Church on Makartplatz Square. In a new concert series known as “Musica Sacra Trinitatis”, every Saturday works by important composers are performed on the organ with instrumental or vocal accompaniment.

The programme of the Mozart Week 2018 is beautiful, with concerts taking place in the Grosser Saal Mozarteum, Grosses Festspielhaus, Wiener Saal Mozarteum, Universitaet Mozarteum, Mozart-Wohnung. Mozart’s Birthday is celebrated, on January 27, in the Grosser Saal Mozarteum, in the morning (Mozart’s Piano Concerto in C minor K.491, Sir Andras Schiff with Cappella Andrea Barca performing), in the Tanzmeistersaal in Mozart’s Residence, at noon: concert on Mozart’s instruments (Fritz Kircher and Werner Neugebauer on Mozart’s violin, Herbert Lindsberger on Mozart’s viola, Josetxu Obregon on Violoncello), in the Grosses Festspeilhaus, in the evening (Mozart’s Symphony in C major K.551, the Wiener Philharmoniker with Robin Ticciati conducting). Among other wonderful concerts in the Mozart Week: on January 28, in the Grosses Festspielhaus, an evening of Mozart symphonies, Sir John Eliot Gardiner with the English Baroque Soloists performing; on January 29 in the Grosser Saal Mozarteum Daniel Barenboim playing Debussy; on January 29 in the Tanzmeistersaal in Mozart’s Residence a “Fugue workshop”: Florian birsak on Mozart’s fortepiano playing fantasies and fugues by Mozart, J.S. Bach, J.C. Bach, W.F. Bach, G.F. Handel, J.E. Eberlin, G. Muffat and J.J. Froberger, with a presentation by musicologist Ulrich Leisinger, addressing the question of the circumstances surrounding Mozart’s fugues; on the 1st of February in the Wiener Saal Mozarteum Robert Levin playing Mozart piano sonatas; on the 2nd of February in the Grosser Saal Mozarteum David Fray playing Mozart and Bach… and many others!

Salzburg is a city of Music: during the year extraordinary performances take place in churches, in palaces, in concert halls… Salzburger Schlosskonzerte is one of the biggest musical events in the world: the concerts take place in the marble hall of the Mirabell Palace, there where, in another time, young Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart played himself ! 

On Mozart Week, or whenever you are in Salzburg, give yourself the joy of discovering the beauties of a city whose cultural, historical and memorial values have always been respected by its rulers and inhabitants!  

Images: credits specified there where available,

or images from the internet assumed to be in the public domain.

DISCLAIMER – I don’t claim credit or ownership on the images taken from the internet, assumed to be in the public domain, used here. The owners retain their copyrights to their works. I am sharing the images exclusively for educational and artistic purposes – this blog is not monetized, and has no commercial profit whatsoever. Whenever I find the credits to internet images I am happy to add them. If you are the artist or the owner of original photos/images presented on this blog and you wish your works to be removed from here, or edited to include the proper credits, please send me a message and they will either be removed or edited. Thank you!

 

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Christmas in Spring: W.A. Mozart ‘The New Complete Edition’

This is the Christmas present which came together with the first snowdrops! ❤

I am happy, and grateful! For the joy, for the love! ❤  

W.A. Mozart ‘The New Complete Edition’: 240 hours of Mozart’s music on 200 cd’s (including for the first time the Handel and Bach arrangements, and performances recorded on Mozart’s own instruments), symphonies and concertos on period instruments, two fully-illustrated hardback books, prints of the last authenticated portrait, two score manuscripts and a letter to his father (courtesy of Salzburg Mozarteum Foundation), a new Kochel Catalogue. 

Could one have wished for more? Well, maybe: to have that “In celebration of Mozart’s 225th anniversary” title on the box changed to “In celebration of Mozart”! In 2016 we celebrated 260 years from Mozart’s birth, and commemorated 225 years from his death, and since we cannot celebrate commemorations, “In celebration of Mozart” would have been ideal! Just like it would have been to see works of all the great Mozart scholars in the books! But apart from these, I don’t know if there is anything I could have wished for more! 

The W.A. Mozart ‘New Complete Edition’ is such a beautiful accomplishment that words are not enough to describe the joy of seeing it find its place in my Mozart shelf!

And Music made my heart sing when I opened my Christmas present, on a beautiful Spring day! ❤ ❤ 

Cafe Frauenhuber

In May 1775 Emperor Joseph II had opened Vienna’s Augarten to the public. He dedicated this beautiful place “to all people”, for their amusement, so dance halls, dining and billiard rooms, refreshment places were established, and restaurateur Ignaz Jahn was put in charge as traiteur. Ignaz Jahn had been appointed Imperial Caterer for Schonbrunn Palace in 1772. In 1775 he started running a restaurant in the Augarten (it was said that nowhere in the world you could drink any better coffee than at Jahn’s, in the Augarten), and later opened a Concert Hall adjacent to his other restaurant, in the main part of the city (now Himmelpfortgasse 6), a Concert Hall which would turn into a performance venue for famous musicians and composers in the years to come: among them, Wolfgang Amadé Mozart and Ludwig van Beethoven. 

Mozart’s arrangement of Handel’s “Acis and Galatea” was performed at Jahn’s Hall in November 1788. His last appearance in public is said to have been the one of 4 March 1791. The first public performance of his “Requiem” would take place at Jahn’s Hall on 2 January 1793 – a benefit concert on behalf of his widow, Constanze, organized by Gottfried van Swieten in support of Mozart’s wife and sons. 

If we look for Jahns Traiteurie today, on Himmelpfortgasse, we will find Café Frauenhuber – presumably Vienna’s oldest coffee house! 

The coffeehouse changed names for a few times since 1824, then settled for Café Frauenhuber in 1891. In this building, two centuries ago guests were treated with musical entertainment by Mozart and Beethoven! Could any name have been more suitable for this street than “Heaven’s Gate” (Himmelpfort)? 

And yes, the waiter did address me with “gnädige Frau“, like I had read on the Welcome page of Café Frauenhuber

I recall the quiet time spent at this coffeehouse, savoring a hot chocolate in its intimate, refined, charming atmosphere, then outside, on the street, letting my eyes explore all the details of the building and its surroundings… It was late in the evening, and few people were passing by, and there was so much peace, like time had stood still, and you felt you could just close your eyes and start walking in Mozart’s footsteps… on the same street… on a 4th of March 1791… 

Et animae ejus bene precare!

MOZARDI 

TUMULO INSCRIBENDUM 

Qui jacet hic, 

Chordis Infans Miracula Mundi Auxit; 

et Orpheum Vir superavit.

Abi!

Et animae ejus bene precare! 

K. 

TO MOZART 

AN INSCRIPTION FOR HIS GRAVE 

(Mozart), Who rests here, 

As a child swelled the world’s wonders with the strings of his lyre; 

As a man, he surpassed Orpheus himself. 

Go hence! 

And pray earnestly for his soul! 

K. 

This epitaph was published in two newspapers in December 1791 and January 1792: The Wiener Zeitung of 31 December 1791 and the Grazer Burgerzeitung of 3 January 1792. 

Had this been inscribed on a commemorative plaque at that time, the place where he was buried might have not been lost. 

No commemorative plaque for Mozart was ever found. 

The Mozart Memorial in the St Marx Cemetery was erected where his grave is supposed to have been. Somewhere in that holy ground his mortal remains have found eternal rest. 

Go hence!

And pray earnestly for his soul! 

Mozart Week 2017

mozart-week-2017

“Each year around the time of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart‘s birth in January, the Mozarteum Foundation Salzburg hosts the Mozart Week with opera performances and orchestral, chamber, and soloist concerts. World-renowned Mozart interpreters, orchestras, and ensembles are responsible for the unparalleled reputation of this unique event. This week of concerts, which was first held in 1956, invites visitors from around the world to rediscover Mozart’s works from ever-changing perspectives and to hear them afresh.”  

Mozarts Geburtshaus on Getreidegasse in Salzburg - Mozart was born here on 27 January 1756

Mozarts Geburtshaus 3

Mozarts Geburtshaus, the house in which Mozart was born on 27 January 1756, on Getreidegasse, is now one of the most frequently visited museums in the world. The exhibition, which spreads over three floors, carries the visitors into Wolfgang’s world, telling when he began to make music, who his friends and patrons were, how the relationship with his family looked like, how strong was his passion for the opera… Here can be seen portraits, original manuscripts and documents, as well as personal objects and musical instruments on which he has played: his childhood violin and the clavichord on which he composed a few of his wonderful works.  

Mozarts Wohnhaus

Entrance in Mozart's House 2

Mozart statue

In Makartplatz there is Mozart-Wohnhaus, the residence where Mozart lived between 1773 and 1781 (the year when he left for Vienna). The building was severely damaged in the Second World War’s bombings, but it was faithfully reconstructed and today hosts the second important Mozart museum in Salzburg. 

The fascinating history of how Mozart Residence was saved and reconstructed can be read on the page of The Mozarteum Foundation from the anniversary year 2016 (20 years since the official opening of the rebuilt Mozart Residence).  

Mozartswohnhaus Salzburg - Tanzmeistersaal

In the spacious rooms visitors can see portraits and original documents, manuscripts of Mozart’s works from the Salzburg years, Wolfgang’s original fortepiano, as well as the famous Family Portrait in the Master’s Dance Hall (Tanzmeistersaal)

The programme of the Mozart Week 2017 is beautiful, with concerts taking place in the Grosser Saal Mozarteum, Grosses Festspielhaus, Wiener Saal Mozarteum, Universitaet Mozarteum, Mozart-Wohnung. Among them Mozart’s D minor Piano Concerto no 20, K.466 (on 28 January in the Grosses Festspielhaus, with the Wiener Philharmonic conducted by Thomas Lengelbrock and Leif Ove Andsnes playing the piano) and the B-flat Major Piano Concerto no 27, K.595 (on 31 January in the Grosser Saal Mozarteum, with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra conducted by Robin Ticciati and Maria Joao Pires playing the piano). K.595 has only recently appeared in the online program of the Mozart Week, having replaced the C Major Piano Concerto no 21, K.467, which is in both the printed and pdf form of the 2017 Program – a replacement that is not good news for those who bought a ticket especially for the C Major Piano Concerto no 21…  

Mozart Family Portrait

Salzburg is a city of Music: during the year extraordinary performances take place in churches, in palaces, in concert halls… Salzburger Schlosskonzerte is one of the biggest musical events in the world: the concerts take place in the marble hall of the Mirabell Palace, there where, in another time, young Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart played himself ❤   

Salzburg Mirabell Schlosskonzerte

On Mozart Week, or whenever you are in Salzburg, give yourself the joy of discovering the beauties of a city whose cultural, historical and memorial values have always been respected by its rulers and inhabitants!  

Salzburg - Altstadt 2

Salzburg - Altstadt

Salzburg - Historical City - Altstadt

beautiful-salzburg

Images: credits specified there where available,

or images from the internet assumed to be in the public domain.

DISCLAIMER – I don’t claim credit or ownership on the images taken from the internet, assumed to be in the public domain, used here. The owners retain their copyrights to their works. I am sharing the images exclusively for educational and artistic purposes – this blog is not monetized, and has no commercial profit whatsoever. Whenever I find the credits to internet images I am happy to add them. If you are the artist or the owner of original photos/images presented on this blog and you wish your works to be removed from here, or edited to include the proper credits, please send me a message and they will either be removed or edited. Thank you! 

‘Was soll ich die Musen…’

The first performance in Prague of “Le Nozze di Figaro” in Mozart’s presence took place on 17 January 1787, followed by a second performance on 22 January with the composer conducting. On their superb scholarly site “Mozart: New Documents”, Dexter Edge and David Black present a document dated 18 January 1787: a notice from The Oberdeutsche Staatszeitung (edited by Lorenz Hübner), stating that through a poem and two letters (one signed by the entire Prague Orchestra) Mozart was invited to come to Prague to see the “Figaro” which had already been acclaimed there a number of times in the end of 1786. Visit the site to read the excellent research in its entirety, and see the document : 

https://sites.google.com/site/mozartdocuments/documents/1787-01-18

Dexter Edge & David Black – 18 January 1787, Mozart’s invitation to Prague

“The first performances of Le nozze di Figaro in Prague took place in late autumn 1786. The precise date of the Prague premiere is unknown, but the first report on the opera in the Prager Oberpostamtzeitung on 12 Dec 1786 states that it had already been given a number of times (“einigemal”) by that point.

That same report cites a rumor that Mozart himself might come to Prague to see the production.

The new document transcribed here, from the Salzburg newspaper Oberdeutsche Staatszeitung, states that Mozart had been sent a poem and two letters, one signed by the entire Prague orchestra, inviting him to come to Prague to see the production. The content of the report closely mirrors Leopold Mozart’s letter to his daughter of 12 Jan 1787, six days earlier:

“Your brother will now be in Prague with his wife, for he wrote me that he would depart for there this past Monday [8 Jan]. His opera Le nozze di Figaro has been performed with such acclaim there, that the orchestra and a group of great connoisseurs and amateurs wrote him a letter of invitation, and sent a poem that had been written about him. I have it from your brother, and Count Starhemberg has received it from Prague. I will send it to you on the next post day. Mme. Duschek is going to Berlin, and the story that your brother will travel to England is repeatedly confirmed from Vienna, from Prague, and from Munich.”

The poem that accompanied the invitation to Prague was written by doctor and amateur actor Anton Daniel Breicha: “An Mozart bey Gelegenheit der Vorstellung der Oper le nozze di Figaro” (Dokumente, 248–49), first published as an individual sheet (a copy of which had been sent to Mozart and evidently also to Starhemberg), and subsequently printed in the anthology Blumen, Blümchen und Blätter edited by Johann Dionys John  (John 1787, 15–17).” 

Dexter Edge & David Black, eds., Mozart: New Documents, “18 January 1787 – Mozart’s invitation to Prague,” first published 13 May 2015, updated 2 Nov 2016. http://dx.doi.org/10.7302/Z20P0WXJ

And here is the poem…

the-poem-that-accompanied-mozarts-invitation-to-prague-jan-1787-written-by-doctor-and-amateur-actor-anton-daniel-breicha

“Was soll ich die Musen, begeistert von Dir,  

Um Beystand beschwören? Sey Muse du mir!  

Sey Du mir des Pindus beauschende Quelle!  

Ich hört’ Dich, melodischer Denker, und priess      

Dein Schopfertalent, und in’s Wonnermeer riss

Mich bald der empfindungen mächtigste Welle.

Zwar rollen bey Deinem Getöne nicht Wald,

Nicht Felsen herbey; nicht fabelhaft hallt

Dein sprechendes Spiel dem gefrässigen Tiger.

Doch bist Du der Fühlenden Orpheus mehr,

Bist Herrscher der Seelen, Dir fröhnt das Gehör

Der Kinder, der Mädchen, der Männer, der Krieger. 

Wenn Liebe Dein schmelzendes Saitenspiel tönt,

Sucht trunken der Jüngling sein Liebchen, und stöhnt,

Und heftiger hämmert der Busen dem Liebchen.

Sie winkt den Geliebten zum Göttergenuss,

Und mit in Dein Saitenspiel lispelt ein Kuss

Von Lippen des Jünglings, von Lippen des Liebchen…” 

Anton Daniel BreichaAN MOZART, Bey Vostellung seiner Oper: Figaro. 1785.  

(Transcription from Georg Nissen’s “Biografie Wolfgang Amadeus Mozarts”

 

a-d-breicha-an-mozart-blumen-blumchen-und-blatter-stat-eines-prager-musenalmanachs-prag-und-wien-1787 blumen-blumchen-und-blatter-stat-eines-prager-musenalmanachs-prag-und-wien-1787

 

blumen-blumchen-und-blutter-stat-eines-prager-musenalmanachs-prag-und-wien-1787

Blumen, Blümchen und Blätter

Stat eines Prager Musenalmanachs 

Prag und Wien, 1787 

The Requiem Revealed

In the evening of 10 December 1791 the Requiem was most likely played for the first time! Gathered in St Michael’s Church in Vienna to attend the memorial for Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, the audience listened to the heavenly music that Mozart only ever heard within himself. As the Requiem unfolded to the world, Mozart was offering humanity his last, most precious gift, and the proof that he will go on living forever, through his divine Music. 

johann-david-siebers-1714-gilded-organ-in-st-michaels-church-vienna

Four days after the burial, so the Auszug aller europäischen Zeitungen (European Press Digest) of 13 December reported, the Viennese “celebrated solemn obsequies for the great composer Mozart” in St. Michael’s Church. On the sixteenth, the Viennese journal Der heimliche Botschafter (The Secret Messenger), which circulated in scribes’ copies, identified the music at this service as “the requiem he composed during his final illness…” “In view of the manuscript’s unfinished condition, only the first movement, and perhaps the second with some instrumental touches added, could have been performed with orchestra; the other sections very likely took the form of Mozart’s choruses sung by a quartet and supported by organ continuo; plainchant might have filled the missing sections.” 

Maybe this is how Mozart’s Requiem sounded on that day of 10 December 1791… 

Prague marked Mozart’s death four days later with a requiem (a setting by Franz Anton Rossler, also known as Antonio Rosetti) in St. Nicholas’s, packed by a throng of more than four thousand overflowing into the surrounding streets.  

It has taken perhaps two hundred years for the world to realize fully and in all its aspects what this loss has meant to music – and to humanity. Haydn said: “Posterity will not see such a talent again in 100 years!” Posterity has not seen it in two hundred.

fall-of-the-angels-monumental-alabaster-rococo-sculpture-1782-by-lorenzo-mattieli-michaelerkirche-wien

Dr Michael Lorenz: “This is the standard work about the Requiem at St. Michael’s: ‘Mozart and the Practice of Sacred Music, 1781-1791‘ by David Ian Black”  

michaelerkirche-wien-fassade-vor-1723