Book Trailer The Noble Train

Monday, November 29, 2010

Mozart was broke...another struggling artist

Mozart was deeply in debt at the time of his death and spent the last years of his life trying to make ends meet and pleading with aristocrats for money, so what else is new? Another struggling artist. Seems we can't get away from that starving artist thing when it comes to even our great artists. But he was an artist. He wasn't a celebrity dipping into the well of immortality at the end of his career with a book or a painting or a rock band to finish off megalomania fame to satisfy the craving that we will be remembered beyond our time. Mozart had no such worries, but he did worry about being broke.

Apparently scholars have connected the dots and found Mozart took a big loan and the payments were coming due and his music was in a slump. Sounds familiar to our 2010 ears. Slump. Loans. Payments due. Even musical geniuses get caught up in the boom and bust of capitalism. But artists seem perpetually in the economic dumps. We hear this frequently with big name stars and of course all the starving artists who never hit the radar scream and die in obscurity. It is just the nature of art that it does not produce a lot of money. From A Confederacy of Dunces to Van Gogh it just seems sometimes the public is not ready for what artists have to offer.

Of course Mozart was one of the few who was appreciated during his lifetime and celebrated. Of course he was brilliant and his music stands. But we strip away the gloss from Amadeus which does a good job of showing the squalor in which the last years of his life was lived and we see the artist lot in all it's glory. Maybe stability is just not in the cards. We know of all the musicians who produced great music right up to the moment they became successful. It seems struggle is wrapped up with being an artist, maybe it is the fuel that pushes on all great art. Certainly Mozart proved that magnificently.
Rocket Man will be out in January

Books by William Hazelgrove