Trying to Grow Up Throughout history, child prodigies have been celebrated as objects of envy and adulation. Rarely, however, have they been understood. Often taunted by peers, hounded by the press, prodded by demanding parents and haunted by outsize expectations of greatness, they are treated as wondrous curiosities. But their stories are often a sad and captivating one, marked by early achievement and the promise of something greater.
The letters exchanged between Mozart and his family reflect a wider story of how complications arise during a prodigy’s transition into adulthood tit evidence of immense pressure from his father, immaturity, and the eventual need to lead a normal life. The result of Mozart discovered genius was not only the praise of hundreds across Europe during his childhood tour, but also the ever- watchful eye of Leopold Mozart, his ambitious and needy father. Because of Loophole’s need to protect and constantly supervise his prized instrument, Mozart, Leopold grew dependent on his son and never ceased to remind Mozart of it.
Eventually, like most child prodigies, the greater the parent’s anxiety and the greater the pressure he puts n the child, the more internally resentful and conflicted the child becomes, stunting his transition into a grown man. In Loophole’s letter to his wife and Mozart on September 25, 1777 from Salisbury, Leopold reminds Mozart to “ask for letters of recommendation and especially for a letter from the Bishop of Schlemiel,” Leopold knows exactly how to reap profits and network through Mozart and doesn’t fail to capitalize on that fact, even when Leopold is in Salisbury while Mozart is miles away on tour in Europe.
After the tragic death of Maria Anna, Leopold Mozart letter to his on on August 3, 1778 In Salisbury puts a large weight on Mozart, and even goes as far as to blame his son for Marl Anna’s death. Realizing Mozart Is no longer under strict scrutiny of a family member in close proximity, Leopold goes on to say, “rest assured, my dearest son, that if you stay away, I shall die much sooner. ” The situation Leopold presents his son is a complex one. Mozart is a young man seeking Independence and fame now that his family Is not following his every footstep, but his father has grown more dependent on Mozart than ever.
Mozart is more internally inflicted between his ambitions and family obligations as ever, as he writes to his friend Babe Bulling on August 7, 1778: “You say that I should now think only of my father and that I should disclose all my thoughts to him with entire frankness and put my trust in him. How unhappy should I be if needed the reminder! ” Mozart father, while cultivating his mind and creativity, continuously bars Mozart efforts to step of his reigns over him.
At any sign of resistance from Mozart to his father’s drawn boundaries and pressures, Leopold Immediately reminds Mozart that his whole intention seems to be to ruin me, simply in order to go on building castles in the air,” (19 November 1778) in addition to calculating debts Mozart had apparently acquired. Leopold was not so much his child prodigy’s teacher as he was his dictator. It is no wonder that Mozart translator into adulthood was a difficult one, for with his Incredible genius discovered at such a young age came the sacrifice of a normal upbringing.
A child is often sheltered and cared for by his parents during his or her 1 OFF Independently and become a part of society. A gifted child, however, is often haltered their entire lives by overbearing parents, and the child becomes socially awkward. In Mozart case, he had traveled all around Europe and was extremely Intelligent, but ultimately fell victim to the same results. His unbelievably mature talent as a musician and composer tried to make up for his difficulty in adjusting to become a mature adult, but it proved difficult, for the man Mozart had grown into Nas child-like at heart.
Only after breaking free of his father’s authority did Mozart truly develop beyond his past as a child prodigy. In Mozart letter on November 5, 777 to his cousin, Maria Anna Tackle, he often refers to his “ears burning like fire” Nile making clever puns about “shot. ” This child image is persistent throughout his letters to her, and Mozart seems to be very pleased with his obscenity and wit. Mozart was also very impulsive and hot-tempered, as he displays in his letter to Leopold on November 13, 1777. When describing Beck, a man he meets in Anaheim, Mozart calls him a “shallow pate” for not appreciating beautiful music.
After several run- ins with nobility and other musicians in Paris, Mozart grows impatient and declares that he is “surrounded by mere brute beasts” (1 May 1778). He man who knew the extent of Mozart immaturity well was Leopold Mozart himself, and with good reason, considering his desire to keep Mozart naive. In his letter to the Baroness von Halogenated, Leopold describes his son as “far too patient or rather easy-going, too indolent, perhaps even too proud, in short, that [Mozart] has the sum total of all those traits which render a man inactive” (23 August 1782).
Nether it was a part Mozart played or the only means for a powerful mind to grow under such circumstances is not clear, but Mozart childish ways were clearly another obstacle for him to fulfill his need to grow up and gain autonomy. With constant demands to live up to his past, constant demands from his family, and constant demands from his patrons, Mozart life was all but his own. After severing his complex bond with his father, Mozart priorities quickly changed to fulfilling the demands of what he felt should be his life.
Once again, Mozart will to grow up was an uphill battle. At the age of 25, when most men were self-reliant with a family of their own, Mozart found himself separated from those he relied on and without future prospects of a family. Mozart takes his first step towards his true ambitions by singing from his service in Salisbury under the Archbishop. He can hardly contain his excitement in his letter to his father on May 9, 1781 from Vienna when he states, ‘Indeed the Archbishop cannot pay me enough for that slavery in Salisbury! Mozart has taken his fate into his own hands, and resists anymore intervention from his father. He then remains in Vienna, and while Leopold claims praise in Salisbury is ‘always enough for [Mozart],” Mozart declares, “At Salisbury I never know how I stands. L mean to be something” (1 5 October 1778)! Finally, much to the dismay of his father, Mozart decides that he is in need of a wife. Mozart doesn’t speak of romantic courting or dreams of a loving family.
Rather, his reasons for his proposal to Constant Weber are “a well-ordered existence” and hopes that he would “manage better” with someone looking after him (1 5 December 1781). The honor, free-will, and companionship Mozart sought for had come together. From this newfound Independence in Vienna, Mozart would bring forth his best works received with February 1785). Mozart evolution from an emotionally isolated but phenomenal Child to an able and accomplished adult was slow and arduous, but his will to follow through was never deterred.
Mozart transition into a free-willed, mature man from “homo brilliant music flowed was nearly thwarted by the pressures of family obligations, childish tendencies, and obstacles towards his longing for a normal life. As Leopold plainly put it: “Nothing must stand in his way; yet it is unfortunately the most capable people and those who possess outstanding genius who have the greatest obstacles to face” (23 August 1782). Mozart found the strength to overcome the sad story that often follows a child prodigy, and as a result, we are blessed with the unforgettable story of a beloved musician.