The Requiem is the most performed and studied pieces of music history and the story of the mysterious commission of Mozart Requiem is a well known. The Requiem Mass reveals not only a mastery of musical imagery, but also the composer’s own view about life and death. Content
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born January 27, 1756 in Salisbury to Leopold and Maria Anna Mozart. He was the seventh and last child to be born and only the second to survive, along With his older sister Manner. At an early age, Mozart had a gift with music. He began to compose at age five and in 1761 made his first public appearance with his father. Leopold was proud of his son’s many gifts and paraded Mozart around Europe to perform at concert halls and courts. Even though throughout his childhood Mozart was often bed ridden with illness, he would compose and return to touring once his illnesses let up.
In fact, Mozart was always composing, no matter where he went. One account from Mozart hairdresser states that Mozart carried a small notebook with him to jot down ideas and notes as they came and went. To better understand the events of 1791 it is important to understand other critical events in Mozart life. On August 4, 1782, at the age of 26, Mozart married Constance Weber at SST. Stephens Cathedral in Vienna. Nine years later, Mozart died in 1791 at the age of 35. Before his death, Constance gave birth to their sixth child Franz Xavier Wolfgang.
Franz, however, was only the second hill, along with Karl, to survive; four died in infancy. After Mozart death, Constance married George Nisei. Constance died in 1842. Unfortunately, Karl and Franz both died before having legitimate children to carry on the Mozart family name. Various sources recall the events in 1791 leading up to Mozart death. The Story begins With Count Franz von Wallets, Who commissioned a requiem mass for his wife Anna who died at age 20 at Chutzpah’s Castle in Austria on February 14, 1791.
Wallets often composed his own work, and he and his wife performed concerts for the people of his manor. Wallets was known for using “ghost rites. ” He would commission works from famous composers and pay a good sum for them. He would take the complete work back to Chutzpah, recopy all the parts by hand and pass them off as his own compositions. In various accounts the people Of Walleyes house claimed that they were always aware that Wallets was deceiving them, but played along for enjoyment. Anna’s death would require a large scale, glorious requiem mass.
Naturally, Mozart help would be needed; he would be the ghostwriter. In the early summer of 1791 a “gray messenger” appeared at the Mozart apartment in Vienna With an unsigned letter. The author of the letter stated that a requiem mass was to be composed for a man who would remain anonymous, but who would like a loved one to be remembered. The letter asked Mozart to respond and state a desired sum in writing; the messenger would respond shortly. After discussing the matter with his wife Constance, he decided to accept the offer.
The messenger returned with the amount Mozart requested, a sum to around 30 ducats, and promised more money when the requiem was completed, The commissioner did not request any specific tort the mass should take, and this became Mozart decision while composing. He chose the traditional form with the Dies Eire (Latin hymn sung in s Mass for the dead) as the Sequence. The writing of the Requiem was interrupted when Mozart traveled to Prague after the birth of his second son Franz Xavier Wolfgang Mozart.
In Prague he performed his latest Opera La Clemency did Toto (written for the coronation of Emperor Leopold II), After returning in late September, Mozart continued writing. He had laid out ideas in a form called “participle;’ which are his brief sketches of music (referred to by Constance as ‘Title scraps of paper’). In late September Mozart famous opera Die Kafuffle¶tee was completed and a success. Its completion gave Mozart the opportunity to work solely on the Requiem. Mozart worked night and day, focusing all Of his energy on the Requiem. As the composing continued, Mozart grew more and more emotionally attached to the piece.
Soon he became delusional and started to believe that he was writing this death mass for himself. In 1829, Constance recalled her husband’s words. M[Mozart said] ‘l know must die,’ he exclaimed six months before he actually did. Toothsome has given me aqua tiffany [poison] and has calculated the precise time of my death, for which they have ordered a Requiem, it is for myself am rating this,” On January 7, 1792 the Sulzberger Intelligently first mentioned the requiem and Mozart mental state: “Now Mozart had to write, which he did, often with tears in his eyes, always saying ‘l am writing a Requiem for myself. Other accounts based on Constancy’s statements trot Cholesterol’s biography in 1793 state that “the requiem was getting on his over-sensitive nerves” On November 20, Mozart was forced to retire to his bed following the early symptoms of his fatal illness. Though he decreased physically, Mozart favor ethic did not, there was still an incomplete requiem to be finished. Mozart irked on the piece until his final hours. At pm on December 4 surrounded by Constance, her sister, and two friends (singers from his opera), Mozart sang the alto parts of the requiem with his friends and family singing the other voice parts.
They sang through to the Lachrymose, where Mozart had stopped composing. “The last thing [Mozart] did was to imitate the kettledrums in his Requiem. ” Due to illness, Mozart body had become completely swollen. After the doctor performed a regular bleeding in hopes of lessening the swelling. He provided a cold compress for Mozart. At the time of his death, Mozart was not living in penury. He had had serious financial difficulties from 1788 to 1790, but the last year of his life was exceptionally remunerative. He lived well, but not extravagantly, and despite some debts, his prospects for increasing wealth were excellent.
Shortly after, Mozart lost consciousness and died at one in the morning December 5, 1791 at the young age of 35. Mozart was buried at SST. Marx Cemetery in Vienna and placed in an unmarked grave. Constance never attended the funeral nor visited the gravesite. Shortly after Mozart death, the people of Vienna began circulating rumors that Wallets was the mysterious person who commissioned the piece. After studying letters and records from 1 Musicologists believe that Mozart and Constance ever aware who their commissioner was and “played along” for the money _ Mozart was in debt and tried to accept as many offers as he could.
In fact, evidence indicates that Michael Bugbear (Mozart dear friend) might have helped Mozart get the job. Bugbear lived in one of Walleyes buildings and worked in the building where Franz Anton Letting (the gray messenger and another friend Of Mozart) worked as administrator and marketing manager Of Walleyes factory. Mozart Notes Mozart is the primary composer of his Requiem. Of the finished score, Mozart completed the Introit and Keri as well as the Offertory.
The two fugues Mozart developed in the Keri are original and Mozart expressed his intentions to S;smear to repeat this section at the close of the mass. Mozart also composed a majority of the first five movements of the sequence up to the eighth measure to the Lachrymose. In the Connotations, the majority to the vocal parts are pure Mozart, as is the orchestration at the beginning of the piece. At measure 26 the top notes of each chord in the orchestra are his, and the rest have been added. In the Lachrymose the orchestration in the first measures are his and the top toe in the chord from measures 3 through Bare his.
The voice parts are also authentic through to measure eight, where Mozart stopped abruptly and moved into the Offertory. Mozart also composed most of the Domino Jesus and Hosting, After his death, Mozart left notes and sketches with his ideas for other parts of the Requiem. He also left directions for exactly Vichy instruments were to be included, but did not explain the notes each instrument would play, with the exception Of the strings Which were somewhat developed. Musicologists have studied the differences between Mozart and S;smarter techniques.
Maunder explains that one can tell exactly Which notes and phrases are Mozart and which are S;smarter by examining the grammatical mistakes S;smear constantly makes. Nevertheless, Mozart is the primary composer; therefore a conductor should express the emotion Mozart was feeling while composing this piece. This feeling is gathered by examining what notes Mozart actually composed himself. While conducting this piece I will emphasize the vocal parts of the Confutation and the delicateness of the Lachrymose following Mozart directions, and taking into account S;smarter completion.