Pamela McElwain-Brown writes:
>This essay is refreshing. It makes one think. I now feel less guilty
>about not wanting to listen to Mozart after 9/11. In fact, it was only
>after months of Wagner and Mahler that I could.
Nobody should feel guilty about her choice of music. However,this whole
business of Mozart needs some thought, as Pamela suggests. Mozart is
subject to various degrees of myth making. At one extreme there is the
Mozart whose music is played in heaven. (Some theologian, otherwise
sensible said such a thing.) On the other there is Mozart of the eighteenth
drawing room. And in addition, there is the scatological airhead who
writes sublime music- the Mozart of "Amadeus".
None of this should be of the slightest interest- only the music counts,
and we can pick and choose over an enormous range of genres.For me the
essential Mozart is found in the piano concerti, the viola quintets, the
symphonies, Don Giovanni, and- above all- the Divertimento for Strings,
K. 563. Others might wish to explore the other operas the piano music,
the violin concerti, the string quartets, the choral music,etc.
Lebrecht's comments are particularly hard to take seriously given Mozart's
almost symbiotic relationship with Haydn, and his strong influence on