Constance Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, one of the finest composers the world has ever known, had two great loves in his life; the first was music; and the second was Constance Weber, whom he married in Vienna on August 4, 1782. She was 20, he was 26. The time they married, Mozart life had already been a long succession of Journeys in search of a patron who would free him from financial insecurity and allow him to devote all his energy to composing music.
His concert tours began In Salisbury, where he was acclaimed as a musical prodigy at the age of five. He and his elder sister, Marl-Anna, performed In the courts and cathedrals of many of Rupee’s greatest cities: Munich, Suburb, Mains, Frankfurt, Paris, London, and Vienna. In 1 772, Mozart at 16 had already written 25 symphonies and his first string quartets. His travels brought him much honor, but not much money, and he tended to be extravagant with what little he earned.
It was in September 1777, while staying in Anaheim with his mother, that Mozart first met Constancy’s family, the Webber. He fell In love with her eldest sister, Alyssa, a singer of some promise but little experience. Mozart made grand plans to take her to Italy and start her in a career in opera, but his father Leopold, who never trusted the Weber family, persuaded him against it. A year later Loggia’s feelings for Mozart had cooled, and he wrote to his father on December 29, 1778, “l can only weep.
I have far too sensitive a heart. ” Nevertheless, Mozart stayed in close touch with the family, and on December 1 5, 1781, he wrote again to his father revealing his plans to marry: “Owing to my disposition, which is more inclined to a peaceful and domesticated existence than to revelry, l, who from my youth up have never been accustomed to look after my belongings, linen clothes and so forth, cannot think of anything more necessary to me than a wife… A bachelor In my pollen ;s only half alive. His attention had now turned to Loggia’s sister, dark-eyed Constance, with her pretty figure and, “the kindest heart In the world… L love her and she loves me with all her heart. ” Mozart brought to his marriage an engaging personality, limitless talent, and plenty of optimism, but few prospects. He promised her family that if he did not marry Constance within three years he would pay her 300 gulden every year for the rest of his life. At their wedding in SST. Stephens Cathedral in Vienna, Mozart and Constance wept, as did the congregation, and the priest.
It was a marriage of deep affection and understanding, both much needed through their years together. Children, only two of whom survived. Though Mozart probably was, as his great friend, the composer Joseph Haydn, described him, ‘the greatest composer now living in the world,” he was struggling financially. His career was at the mercy of musical fashion in ‘inane, and he was often forced to go on tour in order to pay the doctor’s bills for Constance. Constancy’s fondness for her husband and unfailing belief in him were put to the test.
Two days before the opening night of Mozart new opera, Don Giovanni, in Prague in 1787, Mozart had not yet written the overturn. The most Minored the opera’s company and producers became, the more carefree Mozart seemed to be. On the last evening, at about midnight, he began to write. Constance helped to keep him awake by telling him stories, and sustained his energy by making IM drink quantities of punch. When he got too tired to work she said he should sleep on he sofa for an hour and she would wake him.
But he slept so soundly that she let him sleep until five in the morning. The copyist was due at seven o’clock, and Mozart finished the overture Just in time. Printed here is the postscript to a letter that Mozart wrote to Constance at the spa town of Baden, where she was seeking a health cure in 1790. He was writing from Mains while on tour. The words of the letter, full of Joy and affection, seem to dance with life like the notes of his music. In fact, ewe people lived or composed with a greater emotional energy than Mozart.
Yet he longed for peace and quiet. Marriage–difficult as it was, with lack of money, Constancy’s sickness, and his own health problems–consoled him. Two weeks earlier on the same tour Mozart had written affectionately to Constance from Frankfurt, ‘I fear… ‘ am in for a restless life… Well it is probable that my concert will not be a failure. I wish it were over, if only to be nearer the time when I shall once more embrace my love. ” Never they were apart, Mozart and Constance exchanged loving letters.
He kept a portrait of her in front of him as he wrote, and delighted in the letters she would send to every town where he stayed. But the pressures on him grew. Desperate for money, he undertook engagements in Frankfurt in September 1790, but it was much against his will. Writing to Constance, he explained: ‘Perhaps if you were with me I might possibly take more pleasure in the kindness of those I meet here. But, as it is, everything seems so empty. ” Mozart health worsened. In 1791 he was working on his opera The Magic Flute Nee “a mysterious stranger”–now widely believed to be Count F. N Wallets- Chutzpah–left an anonymous letter commission him to write the score for a requiem mass. As he worked on the composition he became obsessed with the idea that he Nas writing a mass for his own funeral. Constance tried to calm him and to stop him from working so hard. She even took the unfinished score away from him. As his he died, an hour after midnight on December 5, 1791, he said to sister-in-law, Sophie Never, ‘l already have the taste of death on my tongue, and who can support my dearest Constance if you do not stay? ”