Happy 250th!

Friday, January 27, 2006

"How seemly, then, to celebrate the birth
Of one who did no harm to our poor earth,
Created masterpieces by the dozen,
Indulged in toilet humor with his cousin,
And had a pauper's funeral in the rain,
The like of whom we shall not see again."

“Mozart” - W.H. Auden


Skookumchuk said...

Not to keep hammering about the boy genius aspect . . . but.

In about an hour and a half, it will be time for a good bottle of wine and the sound of Pinchas Zukerman cranking through some violin concerti. I think Mozart was still in his teens when he wrote the last one.

Peter UK said...

One hates to make comparisons but......look what they get paid nowadays

RogerA said...

Hmmm-Great Post and and thanks for recognizing the other teutonic giant (Bach, of course)--for those who think Mozart is a bit frilly I believe it is K 576--a chromatic study, that is Mozart's GREATEST work ( I think I have the Kochel listing correct)--not much listed to but spectacular--It really presages where music was going. And I genuinely mean I believe, while a short work, it is his most complex.

Having extolled the virtues of K 576, who cannot open a good Reisling, sit back, and Listen to Il Nozze de Figaro--every part is a winner.

RogerA said...

OK--and I will leave it to the reader to correct all my really bad typing

RogerA said...

MHA--thanks for grounding us in the majesty of one of civilization's great intellects and contributors--I knew it was his 250th--even google demonstrated it--but as Skook said--it is a time to relax, listen, drink good wine, and celebrate a genuine genius.

Buddy Larsen said...

Good thing he didn't have an XBox--

chuck said...

Jazz musicians also record Mozart. For instance, here is Bobby McFerrin and Chic Corea doing the piano concertos nos. 20 & 23. I believe Keith Jarret has also made recordings. What makes this interesting to me is that these performers have brought improvisation back into the music. What would a Mozart piano performance have been without some improvisation? How *else* could one be faithful to the composers intentions?

vnjagvet said...

Proving that even an old conservative can appreciate the work of NPR, I just heard the four hour Mozart 250 concert it carried from the Grosse Festspielhaus in Salzburg with Muhti, Cecelia Bartoli, Thomas Hampson, and a host of others. First rate.

Even the flu couldn't dim the warm glow.

A helluvalot better than listening to Kerry drone on about a doomed filibuster.

chuck said...

Heh, and here is Bobby McFerrin on Mozart:

"I love Mozart so much I could devote the rest of my life to conducting his music," McFerrin says. "It's absolutely serious fun. There's something in Mozart that's very compatible with me, the way he swings and rocks. There's a lot of air, breathing room, in his music. It's lots of fun, very energetic and joyfully interesting. I love where his music goes, the moods he emotes."

Mozart swings and rocks. Now that's a description you won't find in most commentary.

Syl said...

Improvisation was the norm back then...at least for the coda in concerti.

Some deference, after all, was given to the performers too.