It’s always the ‘little horn’…or what actually happened to Wolf and why…

If you are reading my posts and find yourself tempted to ask, ‘who does this person think she is?’ I would ask you to just bear with me for a moment.  And, if you are interested, ask why, when so many people have heard die zauberflote, you have yet to hear of me from them…

It is a fairly accepted concept that when someone is doing something really different they are likely to attract a lot of flak.  In fact, it may seem that all sorts of odd people even crawl out of the woodwork to try to stop the change.  This is what happened with Mozart.  Due to an ineffable quality of his personality, that we also hear in his music, and which has been labeled “the Mozart effect”, he created controversy wherever he went.  It didn’t matter what he did or what he said.  His mere presence in a room was sufficient to create a vortex of energies. He had a tendency to polarize people — a few ‘got’ him and were astounded by his gifts; the rest despised him and slandered him at virtually every opportunity.  Since much of this antipathy occurred behind Wolf’s back, he was unable to assess the potential for damage to his good name and credibility and takes steps to protect himself.  In addition, he had an annoying habit of being ‘right’ about everything connected to music.  He was on a mission where he did seem to sense he had to move as quickly as possible, and naively believed others would understand that and have some empathy, not to mention respect, for his advice.  

It is my thinking that it was not until toward the end of his life that Mozart began to understand what he was up against.  In fact, there was virtually no one whom he could trust to look out for him.  Certainly not the sweet little wife, Constanze, always so helpful, such a saint, so patient with him.  I doubt that there was a more dedicated antagonist in Wolf’s life than his wife.  They were separated during those last months, due to her needing more treatment at a spa for health issues.  But was she sympathetic to him, or watching and waiting for the poison she doled out daily in tiny doses when they were together to take hold? 

In the Bible, it is the ‘little horn’ who becomes the most wicked Anti-Christ.  It is someone who stays in the background, appears to follow all the rules, appears to be a team member, but who has a hidden agenda, that can create the most confusion in the end.  And so I think it was with Mozart…

The Exquisite Mendelssohn….

A recent performance of this piece in the Twin Cities recalled to me the first time I heard it long ago.  I saved my allowance and whatever other money I had as a child for recordings from the Columbia Record Club. The first two 33 1/3 records I bought were performances of John Wummer playing the Mozart Flute Concertos.  The third was the Mendelssohn.  I don’t recall the artist. Right from the start, I knew this was something extraordinary.  Its lines were simple yet profound.  The composition seemed almost classical.  The high E in the climax of the third movement seemed almost unbearably lovely.  I did not realize at that time that I had memorized much of it.  That came later, when it played through my head over and over. There was simply nothing like it then or now…:-)

#Minnegeddon — Piper to the Alternative Scoring…

At this point it seems almost inevitable that the soundtracks for the earlier episodes of P2A will consist of new music, perhaps in the style of those who end up with Wolf in the room on Rauhensteingasse in “Vienna Mystery”.  However, it is my thinking at this time that there is only one piece of music that would be appropriate for the epilogue, currently called “Revenge of the Mozarts” — and that is the Requium that he was forced, by need of money, to write under another’s name.  Although Wolf was not allowed to live long enough to complete it — he was, in fact, digging his own grave in composing it, and was aware of that — there are many ideas and motifs that accurately represent not only his sublime musicianship, but his character and attitude at what seemed inevitably to be the approach of an untimely death.  

If you think you understand Mozart you may, (as my Mother would say), have ‘another think coming’…

Let’s start with a question — one that is almost rhetorical in nature — namely, if anyone were to deliberately lock-out Mozart from jobs or opportunities, must not questions be asked about their credibility as a musician?  Or can we just make excuses for them, on the basis of Wolf’s being obnoxious?

In short, is there any ethical responsibility to others regarding genius or not?  Oh, I suppose we have to add into this question the axiom that everyone, even his worst detractors, consider Mozart to have been a genius. And yet, after Wolf died, didn’t the very people who agreed to his murder in the first place (perhaps through what is called an ‘evil-eye’) became the ones parading his music like a banner, pretending to be as good as Mozart — even pretending that they were him?

Wolfgang Mozart and Salzburg, Austria…

We all know that Wolf was born in Salzburg, and grew to hate it.  He left for Vienna when he was able, and never returned. However, the story of why Wolf lived such a short life may have a connection to his relationship to Salzburg.  How?  Let me explain.

When Leopold realized that he had not one (Nannerl) but two child prodigies in his family, he looked around and despaired at what he saw.  Salzburg was out-of-the-way, provincial, dull.  It grew very cold in the winter.  How could a loving Gd possibly give him such amazing children and expect them to grow up and flourish in such a place?  He was deeply offended by the shortcomings that Salzburg presented.  

Leopold knew that his children represented the royalty of music.  Why not then present them to royalty of this world?  They were the best, so only the best for them would do.  With all the earnest zeal of the children’s greatest mentor, he pushed them onto the world scene.  He demanded that the world pay attention to them.  He refused to allow them to be ignored and die forgotten in Salzburg.  He was adamant that this is what Gd would want.  

Unfortunately, as history shows, Leopold’s vision was false.  His family became divided, turning on one another.  His daughter’s gifts became forgotten as excitement over Wolf’s increased.  In a last desperate trip to find Wolf a permanent spot at court, Maria Anna died in Paris.  Leopold held Wolf responsible.  It was easier to do that than look inward and acknowledge that it was his plan that had brought on destruction of his family.  Arrogance and pride held sway, and he never managed to apologize for Wolf for his mistaken vision.

In fact, the truth was right under their noses.  Being Catholic, they didn’t spend much time with the Bible.  In fact, the probably expected the priests to tell them everything they needed to know about it.  Had they looked within, they might have noticed a statement about ‘the salt of the earth’.  Salzburg was just that.  A town with a great salt mine that produced salt for the entire region.  It seems to go down for miles.  At the bottom is a lake.  A symbol of the depths of human character.

What if Gd wanted the Mozarts to be what they were — common people, ‘salt-of-the-earth’?  What if Nannerl and Wolf’s gifts had been allowed to mature in a small-town environment, away from the ridicule and gossip of the courts?  What if Wolf had been able to mature emotionally instead of being stuck in the role of an immature and conditioned puppet? Might Leopold have been able not only to assess the height of Wolf’s gifts, but also their depth?  

 

 

The “Locked-Out” Other Mozart … update…

Everyone involved with what I call “Monostatos” has all the information they need to do the right thing — to provide an apology to my three children and provide a proper introduction for me and die zauberflote, but that has not yet happened.  Why is that? Apparently, by having my credentials denied, I am supposed to become discouraged and give up. As you can see, that is not happening.  🙂

 

Comparison of a the Queen of the Night in Mozart’s last major opera, The Magic Flute and Mildred Payne in Piper to the Alternative…

Perhaps the most extraordinary role in Mozart’s beloved singspiel The Magic Flute is the star-flaming Queen of the Night.  Her arias soar with the most exquisite tenderness or viciousness.  It almost seems at times that there are two very different Queen of the Nights — the tenderhearted Queen terrified of the fate of her abducted daughter Pamina or the vengeful Queen, ordering Pamina to kill her stepfather Sarastro or be damned to hell.  Mozart, in fact, received some criticism that the character of the QOTN was not clearly defined.  Nonetheless, one way or another, everything comes to a stop when she appears on the stage. She is simply unforgettable.

Mildred Payne is the character who represents the QOTN in Piper to the Alternative.  She is not a queen by birth, but has great aspirations.  She charms everyone she meets and then manipulates them to her own ends.  She is not a great beauty, but manages to convince everyone that she is.

In TMF, the QOTN has three handmaidens.  In P2A, she has a couple of wannabees…:-0