Mozart matures. And with him his music

Life Goes on… and Finally Success Follows

City centre of Vienna with St. Stephen's Cathedral (detail)

Watercolour drawing by Carl Schütz (1745–1800) 1779 (Albertina, Vienna) Source: Wikimedia
1779-1781
Salzburg
Emanuel Schikaneder playing the title role in the comedy

Emanuel Schikaneder playing the title role in the comedy "The Stranger" by Johann Friedel

Etching by Hieronymus Löschenkohl (1753–1807) c. 1784 Source: Wikimedia

In a bid to lure Wolfgang from Paris to Salzburg, Leopold Mozart obtained a position as concertmaster and court organist with the prince-archbishop. Unfortunately Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart had great difficulties following orders. Additionally, he was suffering from lovesickness because of Aloysia Weber, who had become a celebrated soprano and had rebuffed the seemingly unimpressive Wolfgang.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart returned to Salzburg only in 1779. Unrequited love and grief for his late mother enabled him and his music to mature. At the age of twenty-two he had perfectly mastered his field of work. Now he strived to develop a new form of opera. In 1780 he made the acquaintance of Emanuel Schikaneder, who gave guest performances with his theatre troupe in Salzburg. His musical comedies in German delighted Mozart and both spent much time talking shop. In 1780 a commission for an opera arrived from Munich: Mozart’s Idomeneo, King of Crete. He composed one of his best operas and experienced the happiest moments of his life in Munich.

Ordered to Vienna… Finally a New Perspective

The order from the prince-archbishop of Salzburg left little room for interpretation: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was needed in Vienna. Mozart hated the tone of the order, but he saw the chance to gain a foothold as a musician for the first time in his life - to finally free himself of the Salzburgian yoke, to become independent. The reception by the Viennese demonstrated their interest – he gave concerts, got commissions and finally started making money.

Where did he live? With the Weber family, who made their livelihood by renting out rooms. Father Leopold was less than thrilled. But what could he do? Wolfgang enjoyed the all-inclusive service at the Weber House and promptly fell in love with Constanze, Aloysia’s sister…