The Amadeus Deli

Weekdays noon-1pm

Want some Mozart for lunch? Join Jennifer Hambrick weekdays at noon for music by Mozart and his friends in the Amadeus Deli.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

After Mozart left - or, rather, was sacked from - his Salzburg court job, he had to make it as a freelance musician in Vienna. To stay in the game and keep the wolf at bay, Mozart organized and performed concert series of his own music, including one in 1784 that gave him much to brag about.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

For all the partying Mozart seems to have done, he definitely had his prudish side when it came to the company he kept. Just ask Mozart's colleague Antonio Brunetti.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

It’s a pairing that could only have formed in the mind of Mozart – the genius composer’s elegant, even dainty flute quartets and flute concertos juxtaposed with some of his raunchiest writing.

image of a color portrait of Mozart wearing a bright red coat
Wikipedia

In Mozart's day, as today, it felt good to get compliments on a job well done. One episode in Mozart's life shows that getting props is enough to make even a genius right chuffed.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

As a freelance composer, Mozart was all for having his music performed. But before it could be performed, the music had to be copied from Mozart’s originals. And Mozart didn’t trust the copyists any farther than he could throw them.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

Almost any thumbnail sketch of Mozart shows a genius composer who never missed a good party. One particular Carnival season had Mozart all keyed up.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

As Christmas nears, you might be finding yourself wrapped up in the spirit of the season, searching for that perfect gift for each and every one of your special people. You might also find yourself at once enjoying quality time with family, and quietly grateful that the holidays roll around only once a year.

It didn’t take Christmas to cause Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart to do some good, old-fashioned re-gifting, or to bring occasion for some family politicking. On March 23, 1782, Mozart wrote from Vienna to his father that he enclosed with his letter some gifts for him and for Nannerl, Mozart’s older sister. One of those gifts was a rondo Mozart composed for his Piano Concerto K. 175.

image of a color portrait of Mozart wearing a bright red coat
Wikipedia

This episode of The Mozart Minute was first published on Oct. 23, 2015 at wosu.org/classical101.

Mozart's 1778 stay in Paris was pretty much a total washout. Instead of making his name there as a composer, he was rebuffed and ignored. His mother died. He was cold and starving. And people kept stiffing him for his work.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a birght red oat
Wikipedia

It is quite possibly the most recognizable movement from Mozart's piano concertos. With its rolling triplet feel over the spring of gentle pizzicatos, the second movement of Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 21, K. 467 wafts along like a cloud drifting in a summer sky. Musicologist David Grayson calls the movement "a sonic dream world" and writes that "it offers moments of sublime beauty and ends in a state of bliss, but its surface serenity cannot conceal the turmoil that lies beneath."

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

This episode of The Mozart Minute was previously published on May 29, 2015 at www.wosu.org/classical101.

More than 200 years after its premiere, Mozart's opera The Marriage of Figaro remains one of the best-loved comic operas in the repertoire. And if you think people like Figaro today, you should have seen - and heard - the audiences in Mozart's day.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
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It's an interesting irony – Mozart composed his Symphony No. 33 (K. 319), with its vivacious opening and beginning-to-end loveliness, before a backdrop of impending financial disaster and professional dissatisfaction.

color image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

Mozart wrote the opening chords of his so-called "Paris" Symphony (Symphony No. 31) specifically to pander to French expectations, which is not to say to pander to French taste. Mozart didn't think the French had any taste. He also thought they were ridiculous for thinking that symphonies that begin this way were especially French.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

Mozart's elegant “Haffner” Serenade was first performed at a grand and resplendent celebration. But one later performance ended in nothing short of debauchery.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

Mozart's 1778 stay in Paris was pretty much a total washout. Instead of making his name there as a composer, he was rebuffed and ignored. His mother died. He was cold and starving. And people kept stiffing him for his work.

While in France, Mozart had to take on private students to pay the bills. One of those students was the daughter of Adrien-Louis de Bonnières, the Duc de Guînes. The duke was nonchalant about compensating the struggling Mozart for his work. On July 31, 1778, Mozart wrote his father of one such unsavory episode.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

Mozart's first son, Raimund Leopold Mozart, wasn't born alone. Instead, you might say he was one of a set of triplets.

color image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red suit
Wikipedia

Mozart's Prague Symphony is one of his most popular symphonies. And we might have the city of Prague itself to thank for it.

color image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

Like many young adults seeking independence, the twenty-something Mozart searched high and low for a plum gig. His journey for a job took him all around Europe, and he effectively took a portfolio of his work with him, performing (from memory) a piano sonata here, a violin concerto there to get his work "out there."

Among the works Mozart took with him on the road were his first six piano sonatas (K. 279-284), which racked up as many miles and almost as much air time as their creator did.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

As the saying goes, it takes one to know one. Mozart knew all kinds of characters, on and off the opera stage. He also knew good drama when he saw it, which, given the drama that is life, was pretty much every day.

So it's not surprising that, when a little scene transpired while Mozart was strolling about one day in 1783 with his wife, Constanze, and a friend, Mozart would rip the action from the pages of reality, pluck the people involved out of real life and transport all of it to the page and to the stage.

image of a portrait in which Mozart wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

It's a scene fit for the opera stage: The curtain rises. The emperor sits on his throne while three young composers clutching scrolls of parchment inked with music notes take turns singing arias extolling the beauty, the drama – in short, the virtue of their new operas. The men volley recitatives. The emperor declares a victor. A chorus of his courtiers sings a final hymn to art. The curtain falls.

When this scene (or something like it) went down in Mozart's day, the powers-that-be were the Holy Roman Emperor. And the composers included two court favorites and a relative outsider who happened to be one of the greatest musical geniuses the world has ever known.

photo of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

In the final scenes of Amadeus, Mozart dictates his Requiem Mass from his deathbed to Antonio Salieri. But Mozart’s sister-in-law Sophie Heibel, tells a different story of the composer’s death in a letter she wrote to her brother in 1825, excerpted by Peter Washington and Michael Rose in their edition of Mozart’s letters.  

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

In February 1783, Mozart was a happy newlywed, an expectant father and a brilliant composer in the dawn of what he knew could be an illustrious career. In short, everything was going perfectly well for Mozart.

Well, almost everything. 

image of a color portrait of Mozart wearing a bright red coat
Wikipedia

I'm guessing it's rare these days that, on quitting their jobs, people receive a swift kick in the rump. But that was, in fact, how Mozart's employment at the court of the Archbishop of Salzburg came (no pun intended) to an end.

color image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

In a previous episode of The Mozart Minute, Mozart had to defend himself when the legal guardian of his love interest, Constanze Weber, accused him of having dishonorable intentions toward Constanze.

That episode resulted in Mozart’s having to sign a written agreement that he intended to marry Constanze within three years’ time, or else would pay Constanze three hundred gulden per year.

Mozart in a red coat
Wikimedia Commons

A previous episode of The Mozart Minute might have given you the impression that, among citizens of the animal kingdom, Mozart had enjoyed the company only of dogs. Not so. 

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

The angel of death visited Mozart in December 1791. Then the angel of debt besieged Mozart's widow for years to come.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

How tall was Mozart? What color were his eyes? Did he ever pretend to be a cat?

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a birght red oat
Wikipedia

In the final year of his life, Mozart composed his piano variations on the aria Ein Weib ist das herrlichste Ding – “A Wife Is the Most Glorious Thing” – from a Singspiel by his friend the singer and composer Benedikt Schack.

Judging solely from Mozart’s correspondence, Schack’s aria could easily have served as Mozart’s personal theme song.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

"Neither a borrower nor a lender be," said Polonius to his young adult son, Laertes, in Shakespeare's Hamlet.

Personalities being what they are, Mozart was evidently a borrower.

image of a portrait of Mozart in which he wears a bright red coat
Wikipedia

His genius secured his immortality despite his untimely death. His Requiem - ironically unfinished at his death - he believed he was composing for his own funeral.

Mozart may have been pursued by intimations of his own mortality, but he wasn't haunted by the idea of death. However, the death of his father, Leopold Mozart, may well have been a different story.

color photograph of a man dressed like Mozart and wearing modern-day sunglasses while outside in a crowded street
Paul Stocker/Creative Commons/Flickr

Mozart on a marble pedestal? 

Sure, happens all the time.

Mozart at a street festival?

Well, that's different.

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