Mozart and Salieri
Salieri cleverly took advantage of Mozart's fondness for drink, his financial crisis the libretto for a one-act opera of the same name by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. F Murray Abraham as Salieri and Tom Hulce as Mozart in Amadeus was true, there was one incident that might conceivably have sparked a rivalry. Rimsky- Korsakov, writing about it 67 years later, mostly imitated classical. Motsart i Sal'yeri (Mozart and Salieri), Opera in One Act () Rimsky- Korsakov and his colleagues embraced Dargomizhsky's innovative While the connection with Mozart derived largely from the coincidence in subject.
There are influential musicians who say that there was.
Indeed, Salieri's operas have been undergoing a slow but steady exhumation. Next year the renovated La Scala in Milan is to reopen its doors with the work Salieri wrote for its very first performance back in And now Cecilia Bartoli has recorded an album devoted to his music.
With an artist of Bartoli's clout on his side, it's safe to say that we're going to be hearing a lot more of Salieri the composer.
Exploding the Salieri myth | Music | The Guardian
And Salieri the poisoner? Sadly for those who like a good conspiracy theory, there's no evidence that he was any such thing. It's time to reappraise the man as well as his music. If Salieri wasn't the enviously wrathful schemer of Forman's imagination, who was he?
Mozart and Salieri - Wikipedia
We have frustratingly little first-hand information. But the picture drawn by Volkmar Braunbehrens's biography is of a serious, steady, occasionally irascible man. There are, however, mentions of him as friendly and cheerful, and the Irish singer Michael Kelly, a good friend of Mozart, assures us that Salieri "would make a joke of anything".
What is certain is that bywhen the year-old Mozart set up home in Vienna, Salieri, six years his senior, was an established star.
Born in the northern Italian town of Legnano inhe had been brought to Vienna aged 15, where he was introduced to his later mentor, Gluck, and to the emperor, Joseph II.
Salieri was invited to join in chamber music sessions with the emperor, and soon found himself launched on a career in the imperial court. His appointment in as court composer and conductor of the Italian opera made him one of the most influential musicians in Europe.
An ambitious young composer such as Mozart could conceivably have wished Salieri out of the way, but the other way round? Salieri was already working on Tarare, to a libretto by Beaumarchais himself, a work that would be a hit in Paris. And if Mozart's collaborations with the librettist Lorenzo da Ponte bore greater fruit than Salieri's? Well, no matter - it was Salieri, after all, who could claim credit for bringing Da Ponte to Vienna. True, after their first opera together flopped the composer swore he would rather have his fingers chopped off than work with him again, but he relented in time to write several that were far more successful.
However, if what Mozart's wife Constanze reported was true, there was one incident that might conceivably have sparked a rivalry.
She claimed that Salieri had been offered Da Ponte's libretto for Cosi Fan Tutte - and had rejected it as being not worth setting. When Mozart got his hands on it, a humiliated Salieri had to eat his words. Otherwise, though, any tensions between the two seem more like office politics. Salieri had to turn down the prestigious commission for La Clemenza di Tito, but had no real reason to resent Mozart for being the second choice.
For his part, Mozart complains in letters to his father of being thwarted by Italian "cabals", but it often seems that he felt he had to make excuses to his grumpy, overambitious parent for any small failure. Far from blocking its performance, Salieri frequently conducted Mozart's work.
And Mozart's death, as one respected musical journal wrote, was almost certainly caused not by poison but by "arduous work and fast living among ill-chosen company". It was only after Mozart's demise that Salieri began to have any real reason to hate him. Unlike that of any before him, Mozart's music kept on being performed.
The feud that never was
Cut down at the peak of his powers - and with the added frisson of whispered rumours that he might have been murdered - he became the first composer whose cult of celebrity actually flourished after his death. Salieri, however, had outlived his talent.Mozart und Salieri / Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
He wrote almost no music for the last two decades of his life. For its first posthumous performance inRimsky-Korsakov supplied the orchestration. He also added a prelude based on themes from the opera. Mozart and Salieri, based on the rumor of the murder of Mozart by a contemporary rival, can also be seen as a manifestation of creative anxiety.
He was prone to periods of self-doubt and reassessment. This is not a drama of action, of which there is virtually none.
It is a psychological drama. While the connection with Mozart derived largely from the coincidence in subject matter in The Stone Guest, in Mozart and Salieri it is central. In Scene One, Mozart sings the appropriate snippet from The Marriage of Figaro as he describes the blind fiddler he has just encountered in a tavern performing his music. It is a forgettable trifle. Alexander Dargomizhsky received no professional training as a composer and his music was—and still is—rarely heard in performance.