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"Mozart" redirects here. For other uses, see Mozart (disambiguation).

Mozart circa 1780, by Johann Nepomuk della Croce

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (German: [ˈvɔlfɡaŋ amaˈdeus ˈmoːtsaʁt], English see fn.),[1] baptismal name Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart[2] (27 January 1756 – 5 December 1791), was a prolific and influential composer of the Classical era. He composed over600 works, many acknowledged as pinnacles of symphonic, concertante, chamber, piano, operatic, and choral music. He is among the most enduringly popular of classical composers.

Mozart showed prodigious ability from his earliest childhood in Salzburg. Already competent on keyboard and violin, he composed from the age of five and performed before European royalty. At 17, he was engaged as acourt musician in Salzburg, but grew restless and travelled in search of a better position, always composing abundantly. While visiting Vienna in 1781, he was dismissed from his Salzburg position. He chose to stay in the capital, where he achieved fame but little financial security. During his final years in Vienna, he composed many of his best-known symphonies, concertos, and operas, and portions ofthe Requiem, which was largely unfinished at the time of Mozart's death. The circumstances of his early death have been much mythologized. He was survived by his wife Constanze and two sons.

Mozart learned voraciously from others, and developed a brilliance and maturity of style that encompassed the light and graceful along with the dark and passionate. His influence on subsequent Western artmusic is profound. Beethoven wrote his own early compositions in the shadow of Mozart, and Joseph Haydn wrote that "posterity will not see such a talent again in 100 years."[3]

[hide] 1 Biography 1.1 Family and early years
1.2 1762–1773: Years of travel
1.3 1773–1777: The Salzburg court
1.4 1777–1778: The Paris journey
1.5 1781: Departure to Vienna
1.6 Early Viennayears
1.7 1786–1787: Return to opera
1.8 1788–1790
1.9 1791
1.10 Final illness and death
1.11 Appearance and character

2 Works, musical style, and innovations 2.1 Style
2.2 Influence
2.3 Köchel catalogue

3 See also
4 Notes
5 References
6 External links 6.1 Digitized, scanned material (books, sheet music) 6.1.1 Sheet music


Mozart's birthplace atGetreidegasse 9, Salzburg, Austria
Family and early years

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born to Leopold and Anna Maria Pertl Mozart at 9 Getreidegasse in Salzburg, capital of the sovereign Archbishopric of Salzburg, in what is now Austria but, at the time, was part of the Holy Roman Empire. His only sibling to survive infancy was his elder sister Maria Anna (1751–1829), nicknamed "Nannerl". Mozartwas baptized the day after his birth at St. Rupert's Cathedral. The baptismal record gives his name in Latinized form as Joannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart. He generally called himself "Wolfgang Amadè Mozart"[4] as an adult, but there were many variants.

His father (1719–1787) was from Augsburg. He was deputy Kapellmeister to the court orchestra of the Archbishop of Salzburg, aminor composer, and an experienced teacher. In the year of Mozart's birth, his father published a violin textbook, Versuch einer gründlichen Violinschule, which achieved success.

Anonymous portrait of the child Mozart, possibly by Pietro Antonio Lorenzoni; painted in 1763 on commission from Leopold Mozart
When Nannerl was seven, she began keyboard lessons with her father while herthree-year-old brother would look on. Years later, after her brother's death, she reminisced:

He often spent much time at the clavier, picking out thirds, which he was ever striking, and his pleasure showed that it sounded good. [...] In the fourth year of his age his father, for a game as it were, began to teach him a few minuets and pieces at the clavier. [...] He could play it faultlessly and...
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