Mozart Minute: Mozart and the Baroness
So, if you heard Mozart Minute episode one, in which Mozart write the Baroness von WaldstÃ¤tten asking about the price of a fancy coat, you might have been left with some burning questions: Did Mozart get the coat?
If so, how much did it set him back? And who was the Baroness von WaldstÃ¤tten anyway?
The baroness was a staunch friend to both Mozart and his fiancÃ©e-in-progress, Constanze Weber, in the turbulent run-up to their marriage. In a letter four days after the previous one to her and only two months after his sudden marriage to Constanze, Mozart wrote to thank the baroness, as he put it, â€œfor having at once taken so much trouble about the beautiful coat, and for your goodness in promising to give me one like it.â€
Emily Andersonâ€™s English translation of the great opera composerâ€™s letter continues more like a soap opera: â€œI can say with truth that I am a very happy and a very unhappy man,â€ Mozart wrote, â€œunhappy since the night when I saw your Ladyship at the ball with your hair so beautifully dressed â€“ for â€“ gone is my peace of mind!Â Nothing but sighs and groans! [â€¦] But alas! Who taps me on the shoulder? Who peeps into my letter? Alas, alas, alas! My wife!Â Well, well, in the name of heaven, I have taken her and must keep her!â€
Jane Glover Mozart’s Women: His Family, His Friends, His MusicÂ (MacMillan)