For those of you who haven’t been keeping up with this blog from the beginning, I encourage to check out the first Mozart story that I posted awhile back.

I’ll wait here till you’re finished.

Done?

Pretty great, right? Nothing like one of music’s most brilliant geniuses meowing and hopping around in a bout of boredom.

So, to honor the master composer and his quirky ways, here’s another story I heard this past week.

Before the story begins, I’m putting up this keyboard picture (a Casio – yes!) to use as a reference for those of you who don’t spend large amounts of time in front a piano.

On with the Amadeus tale:

Mozart loved to joke around and make seemingly impossible claims.

In this instance, his claim revolves around a pianist’s ability to only play four of the same note at once. For example, if we choose the note C, we have plenty of C’s across the span of the keyboard. However, due to having two hands and the fact that each hand can only reach two C’s (one with the thumb and one with the pinky), most people can only play four C’s.

Mozart boasted he could play five at once.

Flabbergasted, people demanded to see proof.

What did the brilliant master do?

Simple: he played the standard four C’s with his hands. The fifth? He place his face down on the keys and used his nose!

Oh Wolfgang, you clever joker.

-Spurrier

Today I’d like to share a short music history anecdote.

Before I begin though, credit must be given to Dr. Linton Powell, retired UTA professor/organist/musical historian, for passing this story along in my Music History I class. He claims this story actually occurred, and that historical documents and letters exist to back it up.

The setting: late 1700’s, Europe (likely in Vienna), the home of a rich nobleman

The context: Mozart teaching piano to the daughter of one of his patrons. People don’t always realize this, but even the greatest musicians/composers often needed other forms of income (usually teaching) to augment their performance/commission revenue.

The story: During a piano lesson, the patron’s daughter begins to perform one of Mozart’s compositions. Not long into the piece, Mozart joins her on the upper register up the keyboard and begins to improvise a beautiful accompaniment that both embellishes and compliments the components already present.

Naturally.

On an important side-note, those who have ever seen the movie Amadeus will certainly understand that Mozart acted a tad eccentric and just plain strange at times. The film, of course, takes a fair bit of creative and historical license with these traits, but the point comes across loud and clear. If you have not seen it, find a three hour block and allow yourself to experience a cinematic masterpiece.

With that point addressed, back at the piano, Mozart grows tired of the duet with his student. He promptly stands up, walks over to a nearby dinner table, climbs up on the table, and begins to hop around meowing like a cat.

The End

Now every time you see this picture, you can imagine him meowing.

And being an absolutely brilliant composer.

And then some.

-Spurrier