Mozart & Strauss

Experience a humorous conversation between the two world-famous composers - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - the prodigy from Salzburg and Johann Strauss Son, the real Viennese among the great composers, also known as the "King of Waltz". Look forward to a witty dialogue between the two composers Mozart & Strauss, accompanied by their best musical delicacies. Mozart is known for his works - "The Little Night Music"or "The Magic Flute". Johann Strauss Son has made history as the composer of the wellknown "Danube Waltz".

Skyline Wien

Background information Mozart

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born on January 27, 1756 in the famous Getreidegasse in Salzburg. He was the youngest child of Leopold Mozart and Anna Maria (née Pertl). As a child he was often called Wolferl, as an adult he liked to call himself "Amadé" in the French-Viennese way.

His ambitious Father taught him together with his older sister Maria Anna, called Nannerl. At a young age, he appeared as a "child prodigy" on concert tours throughout Europe. His first concert in Vienna was in 1762 when, at the age of six, he appeared in the Hall of Mirrors in Schönbrunn, together with his sister, for the Habsburg ruler Maria-Theresia. Then he jumped on her lap and kissed her "righteously" on the cheek.

Numerous trips throughout Europe were to follow. The first stations were Germany, France, Great Britain. Later, there were longer trips to Italy and again and again he returned to Salzburg, where he was the concertmaster of the court orchestra in the service of Prince Archbishop Hieronymus Count Colloredo.

Over the years, more and more tensions arose in the archiepiscopal service. The break finally came through the famous "kick", which was missed by Count Arco, in the Vienna Deutschordenshaus. So Mozart was promoted into self-employment with a kick you could say.

He began his career as a freelance artist in Vienna in 1781. He gave piano lessons,played in concerts and composed for a variety of clients. Together with Haydn and Beethoven he founded the Wiener Klassik (Vienna Classicism).

The musical competition between Mozart and court composer Antonio Salieri has also made history. Emperor Joseph II asked both of them to write a short opera and perform on two opposite stages in the Orangerie in Schönbrunn. The difference in rank was noticeable - Mozart's opera was performed as a prelude and Salieri's play lasted twice as long and was a huge success. This was also reflected in the payment, as Salieri received the double salary.

In St. Stephen's Cathedral in Vienna, Mozart married Constanze Weber and spent happy years with her at the Mozarthaus in Domgasse, which is still preserved today. They had six children, of which only two sons survived. Here were his most famous works, such as "Le nozze di Figaro", "Don Giovanni", "A little night music".

Around 1790 Mozart was at the peak of his career. This was followed by the works "Cosi fan tutte", "La Clemenza di Tito" and finally his most famous and probably most famous work, the Singspiel "The Magic Flute".

The last three years of his life (1789-91) were artistically and financially successful for Mozart. The "Magic Flute" was a great success, yet he got into debt again and again. Together with Emanuel Schikaneder, the theater director of Freihaustheater auf der Wieden, he was a free mason in the Masonic lodge "Zur Wohltätigkeit".

The Requiem in D minor was his last composition and meanwhile he became seriously ill. At the age of only 35, he died on 5 December 1791 of a rheumatic fever, called "Frieselfieber".

He was buried in a shaft grave at the St. Marx cemetery. Later it was not possible to locate the exact place of the burial site. Today we can visit another grave of honour at the Central Cemetery and admire the Mozart statue in the Burggarten.

Background information Johann Strauss Son

Johann Strauss Son, the "King of Waltz", was born on October 25, 1825 in Vienna and died in 1899 also in Vienna. He was a composer, bandmaster, son of Johann Strauss father and brother of Josef and Eduard.

Even as a child, he harbored the desire to become a musician, which his father rather displeased. The father was also musician and court master of the Emperor, but left the family because of another woman. His mother Anna now supported her son even more to become a successful composer.

At the age of nineteen, Johann Strauss Son made his debut with his band at Dommayer's Casino in Hietzing and became his father's biggest competitor. He became even more successful than his father. His concert tours through Europe and the USA led to a veritable "Strauss-Mania".

His first years were marked by the competition with his father. Since his Father recruited his audience from the bourgeois and highest population circles, his son initially turned to the students, ethnic minorities and marginalized groups. In addition, he sought engagements outside Vienna, which led to numerous concert tours throughout Europe.

 

 

 

After the father suddenly died of scarlet fever in 1849 at the age of only 45, the son was able to take over his father's orchestra. Only in 1852 Johann Strauss son was entitled to take care of the music at imperial court. Later followed by the title of k.k.Hofballmusik-Director.

The operettas "Batman" and the "Gypsy Baron" caused another hype. He become known as a waltz king followed by invitations and honors.

During the day he composed countless waltzes and operettas and in the evenings he played until late night. He became world famous for the Danube Waltz, which is considered a secret hymn of Austria.

Strauss' tremendous workload took its toll: Physical collapse necessitated a series of spa stays in the years 1853-55. He was inspired in Badgastein and then spent several seasons in Pawlosk near St. Petersburg, where he also won over the Russian tsar's family. It was the performances in Pavlovsk that finally released Strauss' son from the shadow of his father in Vienna.

In 1862 he married, the seven years older former singer Henriette, called Jetty, who also became his manager. After she died in 1878, he married the 25 years younger actress and singer Ernestine Dittrich, called Lili. However, it soon came to a divorce because of another man.

He consoled himself with the 31 years younger Adele Strauss. In order to marry these, he converted from Catholicism to Protestantism and even stepped out of the Austrian state and would citizens of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.

In 1872 he began his longest concert tour, which led him across the Atlantic to the "World Peace Festival" in Boston and on to New York. But he suffered quickly from homesickness and was glad to be able to return to Vienna again.

On June 3, 1899, he died at the age of 74 years of pneumonia. He was married three times and left no children.

His monument in the city park is one of the most photographed in Vienna and we can visit his grave ofhonor at the central cemetery.

Furthermore, his former home on the Prater Street, where he composed the famous Danube Waltz, was turned into a museum can can be visited nowadays. In addition, there is an interesting museum about the Strauss dynasty in the 9th district.

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