Narrator: Evie Viennese Aristocrat #1: Abigail Viennese Aristocrat #2: Maryn Viennese Aristocrat (Courtier) #3: Pender Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Julia Muzio Clementi: Kate Emperor Joseph I of Austria: Perry Franz Joseph Haydn: Kate Johann Baptist Vanhal (cello): Pender Baron von Dittersdorf (violin): Emory Haydn's Piano Student: Abigail Steibelt: Julia Audience Member #1: Julia Audience Member #2: Maryn Beethoven: Emory Prince Lobkowitz: Pender Prince Lichnowsky: Perry
Viennese Aristocrat #1 :
Viennese Aristocrat #2 :
Viennese Aristocrat (Courtier): #3:
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Julia (in this photo below, Wolfgang is seated at the piano with his sister, Nannerl, and his father, Leopold Mozart is standing, and mother in the painting.)
Emperor Joseph II of Austria:
Franz Joseph Haydn: Kate
Johann Baptist Vanhal (cello):
Baron von Dittersdorf (violin):
Haydn’s Piano Student: Abigail Taylor
Audience Member 1: Audience Member 2:
Scene 1 - Salieri Versus Mozart
Narrator: Long before the latest American Idol, there have been competitions and rivalries in the music world throughout history. Today, we'll explore a few of these rivalries from the Classical era which lasted from 1750, the year the great Baroque composer, Johann Sebastian Bach died, to around 1825 or 1830, depending upon the historian you consult.
Perhaps one of the most famous rivalries was between Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Antonio Salieri, who was the court composer in the Vienna of Mozart's day. Salieri was an Italian and an internationally famous, prominent teacher who was universally respected as a man. And yet there was the rumor that Salieri had poisoned Mozart to get rid of him.
Mozart, on the other hand, who had been a child prodigy, had a reputation for living in a grand style, beyond his means, a perpetual adolescent. Perhaps the most prodigious musical mind ever to walk the earth, Mozart was also a genius for making enemies, despite turning out masterpiece after masterpiece.
Salieri was 6 years older than Mozart and had studied with well-known teachers in Italy before he moved to Vienna in 1766 where he remained for the rest of his life as a respected musician, composer, and teacher. He was quite popular in his day, yet Mozart is the legend who lives on throughout history. In this scene, we find Salieri as an old man, reflecting back upon the first time he met Mozart in court.
Scene 2, 1781 - Mozart Writes a Letter
Narrator: The date is December 22, 1781, and we find Mozart once again sitting at his desk in his home in Vienna, writing another letter to his father.
Mozart: [Sits at desk pretending to write letter.Read the following aloud as you pretend to write the letter):
“Every morning at 6 o’clock comes my hair dresser and wakes me. I have finished dressing by 7, when I write till 10; I then give a lesson to Frau von Trattner. At eleven I go to Countess Rumbeck; each of these pupils gives me 6 ducats for 12 lessons, and I go there every day, unless they send to put me off, which always annoys me.
[In response to your last letter] I must frankly say, that I do not feel it worth while to answer all the trash repeated by such a miserable blockhead and gossip. If you can believe that I am hated at court and by all the nobility, or any part of them, you have only to write Herr von Strack, Countess Thun, Countess Rumbeck, Baroness Waldstadten, Frau von Trattner – in short, to whom you choose. For the present I shall only say that recently during dinner the Emporer praised me to the highest degree, adding these words “c’est un talent décidé”, and the day before yesterday, the 14th, I played at court.
Another pianist has arrived here, an Italian, named Clementi, and he was also engaged to play. I received 50 ducats for this which I at present stand greatly in need of.” Narrator: Little did Mozart know that the 50 ducats he was to receive would be for a competition between himself and the Italian pianist/composer, Muzio Clementi. This infamous competition actually started a rivalry between the two composers that lasted for many years. Shortly after the contest, Clementi wrote about Mozart in the most generous terms. However, Mozart’s opinion of Clementi is clearly revealed in letters he wrote to his father and sister after the event, as we shall see in a future scene.
Scene 3, 1781 – The Piano Competition between Mozart and Clementi
INTRODUCTION: DVD excerpts from Piano Grand (Haydn Trio) and Golden Age of Piano (David Dubal – on beginning of development of piano, Mozart/Clementi) When cued by Mrs. McLelland (during shot of “Scene 1 Title” (Music = Excerpt from WA Mozart’s Sonata in A Major, KV 331 (III Alla Turca) followed by shots of Emperor Josef and Viennese citizens/costumes etc.) Narrator begins by reading the following:
Narrator: Scene 3, “1781- The Piano Competition Between Mozart and Clementi”. It is Christmas Eve, in the year 1781 and Emperor Josef II of Vienna, Austria is entertaining his guests, the Grand Duke and Duchess of Russia, by staging a contest between the 2 great pianists Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Muzio Clementi.
Neither Mozart nor Clementi actually knew that they were slated to compete against each other. Joseph II, however, had informed his guests, who were eagerly placing bets on the outcome. Clementi was called upon to start the festivities, and he responded with his showpiece, the recently composed B-flat major Sonata Op. 24, No. 2, expanding the structure by adding an improvised cadenza.
Start music: (Clementi Sonata Op. 24, No. 2 – Clementi pretends to perform, along with this recording).
Clementi:Clementi pretends to perform, along with the recording).
Narrator: Clementi continued with the highly virtuoso Toccata Op. 11, which must surely have brought thunderous applause from the audience. Mozart was now faced with the unenviable task of responding to Clementi’s pyrotechnical display. He did so with an Andante improvisation and a set of variations on “Ah, vous dirai-je, Maman — better known today as the “Twinkle Variations”.
Start music: (Mozart Twinkle Variations – Mozart pretends to perform, along with this recording).
Mozart:(Mozart pretends to play along with the recording).
Narrator: Meanwhile, while the competition is in progress, 2 Viennese Musicians are outside gossiping about the event.
Viennese Aristocrat #1 (Abigail): Did you hear the news?
Viennese Aristocrat #2 (Maryn): What news?!
Viennese Aristocrat #1: Mozart and Clementi are competing in a contest!
Viennese Aristocrat #2: I wonder who will win?!
Viennese Aristocrat #1: I don’t know! Clementi is an Italian, you know, but they really seem to love him in London, England, where he has been performing lately. Some say that he is a greater composer than Mozart.
Viennese Aristocrat #2: Really?
Viennese Aristocrat #1: Yes, and I know for a fact that Mozart is quite jealous of Clementi. Did you know that Clementi is 4 years younger than Mozart?
Viennese Aristocrat #2: No.
Viennese Aristocrat #1: They say that Mozart’s father, Leopold, is also a fine composer, and his sister, Nannerl, is an excellent musician.
Viennese Aristocrat #2: Nannerl is an unusual name.
Viennese Aristocrat #1: Well, that’s her nickname. Her real name is Maria Anna Mozart. She and her brother, Amadeus, often perform together.
Viennese Aristocrat #2: Oh.
Narrator: One of the members of the Emperor’s court, who had actually been watching the competition, joins her friends outside the palace.
Viennese Aristocrat #2: Please, tell us what they played in the contest!
Viennese Aristocrat #3 (Pender) : They were each asked to improvise, sight-read, and perform selections from their own compositions.
Viennese Aristocrat #1: Did they choose a winner?
Viennese Aristocrat #3: Well, it’s not over yet! When I left, the Grand Duchess produced some Sonatas by some composer named Paisiello.
Viennese Aristocrat #1: Who is he?
Viennese Aristocrat #2: He is the maestro di cappella in Russia.
Narrator: The courtier returned inside the Palace to continue watching the competition and finds Mozart playing the Allegros of these Paisiello compositions, while Clementi plays the Andantes and Rondos. Then, the 2 performers selected a Paisiello theme and developed it on 2 pianofortes.
Narrator:Finally, the emperor announced his decision, which his usual sense of tact and diplomacy.
Emperor (Perry): Ladies and gentlemen, I must announce that I have declared the competition a tie. Narrator: The outcome was decidedly mixed. According to some reports, Mozart was clearly the more tasteful player, but Clementi used his impressive virtuosity and legato touch to great effect. The courtier rushed back outside to report the final news to her friends outside the palace.
Viennese Aristocrat #2: So, who won?!!
Viennese Aristocrat #3: In the end, the Emperor couldn’t decide, so he declared a tie! Personally, I think they both deserved to win. They both played so beautifully, but Clementi’s playing was so exciting. I can still hear the music now. It was divine!
Scene 4, 1782 – Reflections of Mozart and Clementi after the Competition
Narrator: While the Emperor had declared a tie, somewhat ambiguously, both Mozart and Clementi — who enjoyed a thoroughly outward cordial relationship — agreed afterwards, that Mozart had won. Clementi wrote, Clementi: “Until then I had never heard anyone play with such spirit and grace”. Narrator: Mozart, on the other hand, was clearly surprised by Clementi’s technical facility — he certainly had thought himself unequalled in terms of pianistic skills — as he wrote to his father, a year after the competition, on June 7, 1783: Mozart: “Clementi plays well, as far as execution with the right hand goes. His greatest strength lies in his passages in thirds. Apart from that, he doesn’t have a Kreuzer’s worth of taste or feeling. In short, he is a mere robot. Clementi is a charlatan, like all Italians. He marks a piece presto but plays only allegro." Narrator: Yet, apparently Mozart did remember the opening theme of Clementi’s Op. 24, No. 2, as he “borrowed” it ten years later for his overture to his opera, The Magic Flute.
Perhaps Mozart was more impressed with Clementi and influenced by him than he let on to be.
(pause and view video):
Narrator: It is interesting to note that Clementi carefully noted in subsequent publications that his sonata had been written ten years before Mozart’s opera, but he nevertheless retained his admiration for Mozart. He even fashioned a piano solo version of the “Zauberflöte” overture. Clementi left Vienna in May 1782, and Mozart stayed put; as far as we know, they never met again.
However, Mozart DID have great respect for Franz Joseph Haydn, as we see in this next scene.
Scene 5, 1784 – Mozart meets Haydn
Mozart (viola)/Haydn (1st violin)/Vanhal (cello)/Baron Dittersdorf (2nd violin) START VIDEO (While narrator reads the following, the sound of string quartet tuning will be in the background as Johann Baptist Vanhal pretends to tune the cello; Mozart the viola; Haydn and Baron von Dittersdorf the violin.)
Narrator: Scene 5: “Mozart meets Haydn” We now fast forward a year to 1784, when Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart meets one of the most celebrated composers in Europe, the great Franz Joseph Haydn. The scene opens with a small group of the most promising young musicians in Vienna, all members of the “composers quartet”. On the 1st violin, we find Franz Joseph Haydn, about age 52. On the 2nd violin is Baron von Dittersdorf. The 28 year old Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is playing the viola, and Johann Baptist Vanhal, is playing the cello. It seems the musicians have finished tuning, so let us enjoy their performance of the Andante cantabile Serenade from Haydn’s String Quartet in F Major, Op. 3, No. 5.
(start next video - performers "pantomime" and pretend to play violin, viola, cello along with the music)
Haydn (kate): [when the music stops, then read the following.] You know, Amadeus, you are indeed a wonderful musician. I praise you often to others.
Mozart: I have great respect for you as well, Papa Haydn.
Haydn: It was very thoughtful of you, Mozart, to dedicate your last set of string quartets to me. It is such an honor.
Mozart: It was my pleasure.
Haydn: I have heard, Mozart, that you are an admirable dancer and are passionately devoted to the sport.
Mozart: I do love to dance. The minuet is my favorite dance.
Narrator: The Minuet was indeed one of Mozart’s favorite dances, which he danced often. It was the dance of nobility and dated back to the French Courts in Versailles with the Sun King, Louis XIV. START VIDEO
Mozart: It is important to warm-up with the basic steps before dancing. Viennese Aristocrat (Courtier): #3: I agree. Let us all join in with the warmup. Viennese Aristocrat (Courtier): #2: It is very important how you hold your arms.
Haydn: One of my own piano students was just learning the basic steps. I think we should join her and her teacher. Everyone follow along at home!
Narrator: ,Our dance instructor, Madame Brown, will now guide us through the steps and some warmups as we listen to the music of Beethoven's Minuet in G.
Dance instructor:(Lead everyone in: turnout .. minimal, not full … 1st and 2nd position, on lower level, plie, releve, plie equilibrium. Breakdown steps, and then try together. Demonstrate to music front/side/back.)
Narrator: Let’s all sit back down now and rejoin Haydn in his conversation with Mozart.
Haydn (Kate): Ah, that was marvelous. I wonder!? Do you have a few minutes to spare? I would love for you to hear one of my students perform one of my recent sonatas.
Mozart: I would love that indeed!
Haydn: Excellent! Allow me to introduce, the very talented Abigail Taylor, performing the 1st movement from Sonata No. 11 in G Major.
Haydn’s Piano Student: (Play Haydn Sonata No. 11 in G Major, I)
Mozart: Thank you all for playing. Miss Taylor. It was an honor to hear you play.
Haydn: Yes, that was wonderful playing, indeed!
Scene 6, 1786 – Mozart Meets Beethoven
Narrator: Scene 6: “Mozart Meets Beethoven” Fast forward 2 years to 1786, when Mozart first meets Ludwig van Beethoven. From his earliest days as a prodigy in Germany, Ludwig van Beethoven's great ambition had been to travel to Vienna to meet - and take lessons with - the man he knew was the greatest living composer, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
And, it happened when Beethoven was just 16 years of age. On March 20, 1786 Beethoven left Germany on six months' leave of absence from the court orchestra and arrived in Vienna one month later on April 20th.
Narrator: Armed with a letter of introduction, he gained entry into Mozart's home and was ushered into the music room to meet his great idol. Beethoven: [Enters the room, holding out letter of introduction, then sits in chair to “watch rehearsal” in progress.]
Narrator: When Beethoven arrived, he sat in a chair to watch Mozart and several musicians rehearsing a recent composition, the III Mvt. from Mozart’s Piano Concerto in B-flat Major, K. 456.
Narrator: When they stopped rehearsing, Beethoven walked up to Mozart, handed him his letter of recommendation, then bowed respectfully to his idol.
Beethoven:(Walk up to Beethoven, hand letter, and bow).
Narrator: Mozart was really in no mood to receive him. His health was plaguing him - his untimely death at the age of 35 was less than five years away - and he did not relish having to stop work to listen to a child prodigy from somewhere hundreds of miles away.
Mozart:(Speaking a bit impatiently) Play something for me on the pianoforte, young Beethoven.
Narrator: Beethoven walked to the piano.
Beethoven: I shall perform Mozart’s C Minor Piano Concerto.
Narrator: Mozart interrupted.
Mozart: No, not that. Anybody can play that. Play something of your own.
Beethoven: Very well, I shall play this set of variations I composed 4 years ago, when I was 12 years old. They are based upon a March by Ernst Christoph Dressler.
Narrator: When Beethoven had finished playing, Mozart walked into the adjoining room where his wife Constanze was entertaining friends and said….
Mozart: [pointing back into the music room] “Stanzi, Stanzi, watch out for that boy. One day he will give the world something to talk about."
Narrator: Mozart agreed to take Beethoven on as a pupil, but when Beethoven returned to his lodgings there was an urgent telegram from his father telling him to return to Germany by the next stage - his mother was seriously ill with consumption and doctors feared for her life.
Beethoven had no choice but to leave. Less than two weeks after arriving in Vienna for what promised to be a trip that would change his life, he left for Germany - without ever achieving his ambition of taking lessons with Mozart By the time he returned to Vienna in our next scene, in November of 1792, Mozart was dead.
Scene 7 - 1792: Beethoven Meets Haydn
Haydn/Beethoven: [Both Haydn and Beethoven sit at a desk, working on composition together. They each have a feathered quill pen and a sheet of manuscript paper.] Narrator: Scene 7 “1792 – Beethoven Meets Haydn” In this scene, we find Beethoven returning to Vienna, Austria Franz Joseph Haydn has invited Beethoven to become his student. The scene opens with Beethoven and Haydn at their first lesson together.
Haydn: I’m very glad you are here, Beethoven, and I would like to discuss your recent composition – this piano sonata.
[Open up music score to study]
I must say, young Beethoven, your ideas are quite unorthodox. You are indeed talented, but you have much to learn. Therefore, I believe we should begin with a review of the standard sonata form.
Can you tell me the name of main sections of the sonata form?
Beethoven: [bored] The Exposition, of course, where you present the main themes. Then the Development, then the Recapitulation. You can also add an Introduction at the beginning and a Coda at the end.
Haydn: Yes, but I must say that your Coda AND your Development sections are MUCH too elaborate and long. Also, there is so much rhythmic confusion throughout … Where’s the beat? It’s much too difficult to determine your meter at times. Also, your cadences need to be clearer --- Just give us a simple V-I, Dominant to Tonic!
Beethoven: [frustrated] That is YOUR opinion, Maestro Haydn, but I disagree. Haydn: Well, my dear Beethoven, you MUST learn to follow the rules or you will NEVER become a GREAT composer.
Beethoven: [Beethoven sighs, and lifts his hands up in air showing his frustration.] START VIDEO (Shot of Beethoven and Haydn)
During shot of Beethoven Lives Upstairs … no audio…. READ THE FOLLOWING:
cessons continued for about a year. While their relationship started out as affectionate, the lack of time and Haydn’s age combined with Beethoven's temper diminished the quality of their lessons. Eventually, Beethoven's unorthodox musical ideas offended the old master, and the lessons were terminated.
Financially, the first two years in Vienna were very difficult for Beethoven. His first home was in a basement. Members of the aristocracy would often give him gifts and he also raised extra money from public concerts and tours. But, Beethoven’s fame was growing by the day.
Beethoven's music was revolutionary and he is, today, considered to be a "bridge" composer between the Classical and Romantic eras. He challenged music and created new genius ideas never thought of before.
(pause - watch video clip - stop before hearing Ode to Joy)
Narrator: He began touring all over Europe and eventually became so famous that other pianists would often “challenge” him, which brings us to our final scene 7.
Scene 8, 1800 – The Piano Competition Between Steibelt and Beethoven
(The 2 “Audience Members” and Prince Lobkowitz sit in chairs, facing the real audience.) Beethoven sits in a chair off to the side, and Steibelt waits outside to enter the room).
Narrator: Scene 8: “1800 – The Piano Competition Between Steibelt and Beethoven”
It is now about 18 years after Beethoven’s first lesson with Haydn. The year is 1800, and one of Europe’s most renowned piano virtuosos, Daniel Steibelt, is performing in Vienna. Why, here he is now, strutting into the room in his usual, proud fashion.
Steibelt: [Enters the room, smiling and proudly waving to the audience.]
Narrator: An audience has gathered at Prince Lobkowitz's palace in anticipation of a special music concert. The scene opens with two audience members discussing the upcoming event as they wait for the contest to begin.
Audience Member #1: I heard that there is to be a competition today between Steibelt and Beethoven. [Pronunciation guide: Steibelt = Stye like Sky; Beethoven = BAY-toe-vun]
Audience Member #2: Oh I can’t WAIT to hear these virtuosos! [Pronunciation guide: Virtue .. OH – so’s]
Audience Member #1: What’s a virtuoso?
Audience Member #2: It’s someone who can play an instrument or do something really, really well.
Audience Member #1: Oh.
Audience Member #2: I heard that it’s going to be an improvisation contest – you know, where they have to make-up music on the spot. Steibelt will go first, since he challenged Beethoven.
Prince Lichnowsky (Perry): I dare say I truly enjoy these improvisation contests that are so popular among the musicians.
Prince Lobkowitz (Pender): It was truly a stroke of genius for you to bring Beethoven and Steibelt together. This should be the competition of the century!
Narrator: Indeed, Improvisation contests were a popular form of entertainment among Vienna's aristocracy during these years between 1750 and the early 1800’s, (or what has become known in later years as the Classical Period of Music History.)
One nobleman would support one virtuoso pianist, another would support the other. In the salon of one of the noblemen, the two pianists would compete with each other, each setting the other a tune to improvise upon.
The playing would go back and forth, increasing in intensity, until a winner was declared. In his early years in Vienna, Beethoven was made to take on the city's best talent and he quickly saw them off.
When Steibelt came to Vienna, he challenged Beethoven to a contest.
Prince Lichnowsky: I shall sponsor the young Steibelt.
Prince Lobkowitz: Very well, then I shall sponsor Beethoven. Since Steibelt has proposed the challenge, then he shall play first.
The competition begins, and everyone claps as Steibelt walks to the piano.
Narrator: Steibelt tosses aside the piece of music, then sits at the piano and performs. [Steibelt piece … live student or recording]
Narrator: The audience applauded loudly after Beethoven finished.
Beethoven: [stand and bow while audience claps]
Narrator: Steibelt, realizing he had been both outplayed and humiliated, stormed out of the room.
Steibelt: [Storms out of the room angrily]
Prince Lobkowitz: [Follows after Steibelt and storms out of the room angrily]
Narrator: Prince Lobkowitz hurried after him, returning a few moments later to say Steibelt had said he would never again set foot in Vienna as long as Beethoven lived there. Beethoven lived in Vienna for the rest of his life, and Steibelt kept his promise - he never returned. Beethoven was never again asked to take on any piano competitor - his position as Vienna's supreme piano virtuoso was established.
And those four notes - the first bar of Steibelt's music? Well, they eventually became the impetus that drives Beethoven’s famous Eroica Symphony. We’ll close our performance with the final scene from the movie, Beethoven Lives Upstairs. We find the older Beethoven, at this point completely deaf, conducting the final movement from his 9th Choral Symphony which we will close our program with. This symphony includes a full choir as part of the orchestra, singing the famous melody "Ode to Joy" which Kate will now demonstrate.