Mozart's Valentine

It’s Valentine’s Day this week, the day to celebrate love. Few composers have understood love as completely as Mozart. In all his works, particularly the operas, he presents love to us with all its contradictions and complexity; the intensity, the delight, the longing, the delirium, the tenderness, the serenity and the storms. And who did Mozart love? His wife, his tender, good-hearted, practical Constanze. 

 

                            Constanze Weber

 

Mozart married the honourable spinster Constanze Weber  in August 1782. It was Constanze who made the home in which Mozart would spend the most  creative and productive years of his life until his death in December 1791. 

Musicologists and historians have not been kind to Constanze, tending to dismiss her as a dull and burdensome presence in Mozart’s life.  But Viggo Sjoqvist in his book “Twice Perfectly Happy” paints an altogether different picture of their life together. He writes: 

“Through Mozart’s letters to his wife we know quite a lot of this marriage. We meet with a kind of love and devotion which invariably touches all who read these letters with an open mind. The disagreements, which in the passage of time occur in almost all marriage, appear to be few and without serious consequences. The love and care, which characterise the first year, develop even more deeply, into warmth, tenderness and devotion. Not a great deal of experience of life and knowledge of human beings is required to realise that such love cannot be roused and bloom through such a long period of time, unless it is reciprocated to the full.”  

Want to know more about Constanze? Become a member of the Sydney Mozart Society and we will present you with a free copy of  “Twice Perfectly Happy”,  Viggo Sjolqvist’s  detailed and uplifting account of Constanze’s devotion to Mozart and her steely determination to preserve his musical legacy. The books have been made available to Sydney Mozart Society members through the generosity of Peter Sjoquist AM and Tim Sjoquist.

 

                       The image above is Constanze Mozart, painted in 1802 by Hans Hansen.
                       it was obtained from Wiki Media Commons and is in the public domain.