Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born on January 27th 1756 and died on December 5th 1791 (age 35) in Vienna, Austria.
He was, and continues to be one of the most influential and popular composers from the Classical period, composing over 600 works, including some of the most loved symphonic, chamber, operatic and choral music. His range of expression and ability to write in so many different genres made him so widely loved by everyone.Mozart came from a musical family, his father and sister were also talented musicians. By the age of three, Mozart could play the harpsichord, at five, he had mastered violin and started to compose his own music. When he was just six years old, his father took him and his sister to Munich to play for the Bavarian Court and later to Vienna to play for the Imperial Court and several other noble houses – word of his talent was already travelling throughout Europe. By the age of 16, Mozart had travelled all over Europe, performing for King Louis XV and King George III. In Paris, his first piece of music was published, Sonatas for Violin and Keyboard, dedicated to a Royal Princess.
In London, Mozart met Johann Christian Bach, Johann Sebastian Bach’s youngest son. It was with his guidance that Mozart’s first symphonies were published, K16, K19 and K19a. As Mozart was still young and impressionable whilst writing these pieces, the influences of the different social surroundings are easily seen. However, he noticed this and managed to harness the ability to be able to write in many different styles from different countries. Having the ability to do this before he was even 16 years old shows that Mozart was talented beyond his years, he was a musical prodigy.Throughout his life, Mozart continued to travel round Europe and compose in different countries: he wrote sonatas in Paris and London; taught and composed pieces for piano in Mannheim; wrote operas in Italy and composed two-piano concertos and his well-known Coronation Mass in Salzburg.
Mozart’s work was mostly influenced by his travels in Europe, visiting many different countries with completely different cultures allowed him to compose in so many different styles.Mozart’s approach to composition was very bold. He loved to experiment with new and existing forms, creating beautiful, but often difficult, music. Having been trained extensively in music theory from such a young age, Mozart was able to apply his skills and knowledge of music to improvise on instruments he could, and couldn’t play, to create impressive …During the later years of his life, Mozart lived with his family in Vienna, where he became close friends with Joseph Haydn.
The influence of the older composer is seen in Mozart’s later work, he even composed six pieces for string quartets dedicated to Haydn. When Haydn finally heard these after Mozart’s death, he allegedly told Mozart’s father, “your son is the greatest composer I know, either personally or by name.”