Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Essay
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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Final presentation is like a paper. You will write 800 words of one of the composers we have studied and one of his or her works.
You must also provide a YouTube link to the performance so that your classmates can watch and listen to the performance if they wish to do so. It doesn’t matter how many sources you consult, however, please cite the material correctly.
Any quotation must not exceed 50 words and must be properly cited. The format of the final presentation will be like the discussion forums. A five to ten minute video will be sufficient.
You will turn in your original presentation by December 8, 2020. at 3PM
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born in Salzburg, 1756 (Melograni, 2007). The Austrian composer is highly regarded as one of the greatest western music composers. Together with Beethoven and Haydn, they oversaw the success of Viennese Classical School. Unlike other music composers at the time, Mozart’s brilliance saw him succeed in writing all the music genres he participated in. Mozart’s talent was remarkable at an early age. He started playing short pieces while he was four years old, and at five, he was already composing. His father, Leopold, who wrote the famous violin-playing manual, took Mozart and Nannerl to Munich just before Mozart turned six, where they played at the Bavarian court. In 1763, Mozart’s father obtained a leave of absence from his job. He set out on a family tour across Western Europe’s main musical centers, including London, Paris, Brussels and Munich, Mainz, Amsterdam, Switzerland, The Hague, and Lyon, among others, before returning to Salzburg in 1766 (Melograni, 2007). Mozart gained experience in this tour and performed in public, court, and churches with his sister, who played and improvised.
Mozart published his first music in Paris, which was a violin dedicated to a royal princess. He also composed symphonies in London with leading musical stars such as Johann Sebastian Bach and Johann Christian Bach. In March 1781, Mozart moved and settled in Vienna. He created opportunities for himself in Vienna, which involved teaching pupils, playing in concerts, and writing music for his audience. Mozart fell in love with the daughter of Fridolin Weber and later married her in 1782. His father did not support their marriage, although Mozart deeply loved Constanze, and he felt committed. The couple had six children, although only two of them survived infancy. At this time, his father had agreed to the marriage.
Mozart’s most admired works came in his mid-thirties between 1790 and1791. He composed the final piano concerto in B-flat, the clarinet Concerto in A major, and The Magic Flute during this time. Mozart was, however, having problems with his physical and mental health at this time. He was confined in bed in November 1791 when his health worsened, and although he was under the care of his sister and Constanze, he died in December the same year, aged 35 (Zegers, Weigl, & Steptoe, 2009). Mozart’s music was dissonant and complex, and it presented a bold expression, thus requiring high technical mastery from artists who wanted to perform it. Mozart influenced many composers, most notably Ludwig Van Beethoven and his friend Joseph Haydn. During his dynamic career, Mozart created more than 50 symphonies, 17 masses, and 24 operas.
Eine kleine Nachtmusik
Mozart crafted incredible symphonies such as Serenata Notturna and Haffner Serenade. These were instrumental pieces that involved several movements. However, Mozart’s best serenade was Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, written in 1787 (Mozart, 2000). The piece was crafted as Mozart was composing ‘Don Giovanni’ opera. The name originated from a personal catalog belonging to Mozart titled Eine Kleine Nacht-Musik, which means ‘a little serenade’ in German. The serenade is played using a chamber orchestra or by a string quartet. Moreover, it has four movements, which include Allegro (G major – D major – Ambiguous key – G major), Rondo: Allegro (G major – D major – Ambiguous key – G minor – G major), Romanze: Andante (C major), Menuetto: Allegretto (G major, with a trio in D major).
Sonata Allegro is the first movement of Eine Kleine Nachtmusik. It was composed of three main categories: the Coda, the Recapitulation, the Development, and the Exposition, which has two themes. This piece begins with a slightly aggressive, ascending, and cheery theme, which has repeated phrasing. The transitional phase then follows the first one, and it uses the D major and the tonic key as the dominant keys. Nonetheless, it enhances the repetition of the entire exposition since it is more graceful and less rushed. The Recapitulation begins in the first and second themes in G major, and it also provides a closing theme between a coda and the second theme.
The second movement, Romanze Andante, is shorter than pieces from the ‘Romantic’ era. The movement is slower and gentle, and it also possesses recurring A and B sections, such as in the first movement. Eine Kleine Nachtmusik’s third movement is Menuetto (Allegrtto), which is simulated with a tonic key and a trio form. This movement has two themes that recur. They include; the minuet theme, which begins with a triple meter, and the trio theme. After the themes are repeated, the music shifts to the final movement. In the final movement, Rondo (Allegro) plays two themes, alternatively using the G major. The alternate play strategy is also known as a sonata-rondo form (Mozart, 2000). Similar to the first movement, Sonata-rondo also has the Development, Coda Recapitulation, and Exposition. These pieces have grand chords that provide the music with a fast-paced cheery tone as experienced in the first movement.
Mozart, A., W. (2011). Mozart – Eine kleine Nachtmusik KV. 525 – I. Allegro [YouTube Video]. Retrieved 7th December 2020 from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FlKtTbpb-Q
Mozart, W. A. (2000). Eine kleine nachtmusik. Massachusetts, United States: Courier Corporation.
Melograni, P. (2007). Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: A Biography. Chicago, Illinois, United States: University of Chicago Press.
Zegers, R. H., Weigl, A., & Steptoe, A. (2009). The death of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: an epidemiologic perspective. Annals of internal medicine, 151(4), 274-278.
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