Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was a petite 5' 4", but his shadow looms large over his city of birth, Salzburg, Austria. Tourism is Salzburg's biggest industry today, and Mozart is at the center of that multi-billion-dollar industry.
Stand in just the right place in Salzburg's Mozartplaz, and you literally will stand in the great composer's shadow. Mozart is memorialized with a statue in the middle of the square that was built 50 years after the composer's death. The place for the statue was chosen, in part, because Mozart's widow, Constanze, lived in an apartment overlooking the square. She was elderly at the time and followed the construction from her window. She would have lived to see the statue's dedication had a Roman mosaic not been found when workers were preparing the foundation for the structure. Work was halted while the mosaic was recovered. Constanze died just a few months before the statue was finished. The mosaic read in Latin, "Here lies happiness. Let no evil in."
Constanze must have been happy with the statue, because she is the person Sazlburg has to thank for it's multi-billion-dollar Mozart tourism industry today. Constanze worked tirelessly after her husband's death to establish his legacy. More on her in next week's episode of Mozart Snapshots, but this week join pianist Katie Mahan as she takes us to the most important statue of Mozart in Salzburg's Mozartplatz.
Pianist Katie Mahan was born in the Denver area, but now lives in Salzburg for her busy piano career. She has been following in Mozart's footsteps and taking us with her on her journeys in a series of video essays called Mozart' Snapshots. See all of the episodes here, and check back each Wednesday for the newest installment.
Midday Mozart at noon on CPR Classical
Listen to CPR Classical by clicking “Listen Live” at the top on this website, or download the Colorado Public Radio app. Listen on your radio to CPR Classical at 88.1 FM in Denver, or on radio signals around Colorado. You can also tell your smart speaker to “Play CPR Classical."
You've read another CPR classical story to the end. We have got just the thing for classical music lovers like you: a weekly email newsletter! Sign up here to stay up-to-date on CPR Classical programming, events and stories from the world of classical music.