Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born on January 27, 1756, in Salzburg, a part of
current-day Austria. He was baptized the following day as Joannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus
Theophilus Mozart in Rupert’s Cathedral. His family consisted of his parents, Leopold and Anna
Marie Pertl Mozart, and his older sister, Maria Anna, who was nicknamed “Nannerl.” Mozart
was the youngest of seven children, but only Nannerl and he survived. The other five siblings
died in infancy. Mozart’s father was a violinist, composer, and music instructor. Both Leopold
and Mozart’s mother stressed the importance of music and education in their children’s lives.
Mozart never received a formal education. His father was his teacher and taught him geography,
history, languages, math, financial matters, social behavior as well as music (Life and Works of
a Musical Genius 3). “Leopold was a devoted and task-oriented teacher to both his children. He
made the lessons fun, but also insisted on a strong work ethic and perfection” (Wolfgang Mozart
Leopold introduced Nannerl to the keyboard when she was 7-years-old. Mozart watched
and mimicked his sister during her lessons. His ability to excel in music became apparent to his
father at an early age. By the age of three, Mozart could play the clavinet and recognize chords.
At four, he was able to play minuets which be mastered. By five-years-old, he was composing
small pieces of music by himself. In 1762, Leopold took Nannerl and Mozart, ages 11 and 6
respectively, to Munich where they performed at the Court of Bavaria for Maximilian III and the
Imperial Court in Vienna and Prague. They also traveled to the courts of Paris, London, Zurich,
and Hague where the…
…ology through music and to this end, he developed a degree
of subtlety rarely found in any classical composer” (W.A. Mozart 6).
Although Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart only lived to the age of 35, his effect on music will
never be forgotten. His ability to recognize chords and play an instrument at 3-years-old, play
minuets at 4, compose music at 5, perform publicly at 6, write Gregorio Allegri’s Miserere from
memory with only a few errors after only hearing it once, and his ability to compose
masterpieces on scraps of paper during a train ride illustrate his musical genius. In addition,
Mozart influenced on other great musicians and composers such as Ludwig van Beethoven,
Frederic Chopin, and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovshy. There is no doubt Mozart was a musical genius.
One can only imagine what he would have accomplished, if he had lived another 10 or 15 years.