The have been many famous Austrians over the centuries who stood out to leave their mark music, engineering, art, politics and science. In this article we draw on but four of these great personalities and musical prodigies.
Today in Vienna, Austria's capital city and centre of the arts, is characterised by baroque buildings that house some astonishing musical performances and two of the most popular you can take in when you visit the city is the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, with Austria's classical music owing much of its creative output to Mozart, Beethoven, Haydn and Straus, and the Vienna Boys Choir. The orchestra plays at the Staatsoper opera house and the Vienna Boys Choir perform there also.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born in the mid-eighteen century and started to perform publicly at the age of six. He was a child prodigy with an extraordinary ability to play the violin and clavinet and wrote his first composition at five. Over the next thirty years until his death he composed more than 600 works, which include The Marriage of Figaro, The Magic Flute, Don Giovanni and the Requiem, which he had written to the middle of the Lacrimosa at the time of his death.
Ludwig van Beethoven
Ludwig van Beethoven was a composer and pianist born towards the end of the eighteenth century. He is considered by some to be the greatest composer of all time. In his youth his father began teaching him with astonishing severity and brutality, but whether it is because of severe teaching methods or not, Beethoven soon became was a supremely talented musician. In the early years of the nineteenth century Beethoven had achieved complete mastery of the Viennese forms developed by Mozart and Haydn. He wrote many string quartets, piano trios, violin and cello sonatas and perhaps his most recognised is the Moonlight Sonata and the short piano piece, Fur Elise.
Franz Joseph Haydn
Franz Joseph Haydn was one of the creators of classical music and his most famous pupil was Beethoven and he also had a huge influence on Mozart. At age eight he was asked to the sing in the choir at St. Stephen's Cathedral and then started to learn the violin and piano. At the turn of the nineteenth century he was a public figure in Vienna and was making regular public appearances. Haydn is best remembered as the composer who invented the string quartet.
Johann Strauss was born in 1825 in Vienna. Johann wrote more than 500 musical compositions, of which 150 were waltzes. Compositions like The Blue Danube helped establish him and this is the piece that still resonates with the public to this day. His compositional styles were the Viennese waltz and operetta.
You can book tickets to these performances on the Vienna Ticket website at http://www.viennaticket.com/english/philharmonic.html for the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra and http://viennaticket.com/english/viennaboyschoir.html for the Vienna Boys Choir.