Press:Univ of California Pr University of California Press; First Edition edition (April 1, 2006)
Author Name:Cairns, D.
David Cairnswinner of the Whitbread Biography Award and the Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fictionhas spent his life immersed in Mozart’s music, both as a performer and as a listener.
This intimate biography sheds new and important light on the composer by placing his operas in the context of his life and his complete musical output.
Mozart's unusual childhood as a musical prodigy touring Europe as a performer from an early age is well known.
But even more remarkable is that the genius grew up to produce works of increasing maturity and originality.
Cairns unravels the many myths surrounding Mozart to reveal the opinionated, passionate, and exceptionally intelligent man behind the legend.Cairns shows that familiarity with the operas can transform our perception of Mozart's art.
He demonstrates that the composer’s approach to composition was that of a consummate dramatist.
Using the operas as his guide, he traces the steady deepening of Mozart's musical style from his beginnings as a child prodigy, through his coming of age with, in Cairns’s opinion, the most Romantic and forward-looking of all Mozart's operas, Idomeneo.
He discusses Mozart’s later genius as displayed in the three comic operas The Marriage of Figaro, Don Giovanni, and Così fan tutte, and in The Magic Flute, the final and greatest triumph of his career.
From the Back Cover
Acclaim for "Berlioz: The Making of an Artist 'Berlioz stands as one of the great biographies of our day, and also one o f the great feats of literary sympathy with an artistic genius, filled with a love, knowledge and understanding of is subject that flame up on every page' Max Loppert, "Financial Times'In David Cairns, Berlioz has found a biographer who shares his sense of scale.
There is not a dull or redundant page in the whole book' Noel Malcolm, "Sunday Telegraph'David Cairns has a wonderful story to tell and he tells it superbly well .
rich in detail and imbued with imaginative insights that stem from love.
It is also written with an enviable blend of grace and energy' Peter Heyworth, "Observer "Berlioz: Servitude and Greatness'Epic .
will stand as a major monument of the history of classical music and will surely, on its subject, never be surpassed' Alexander Waugh, "Literary Review'One of the masterpieces of modern biography .
a magnificent piece of synthesizing scholarship, fluently readable yet maturely balanced' Rupert Christiansen, "Daily Telegraph'How fortunate Berlioz has been in his latest, perhaps definitive biographer' George Steiner," Observer'A life brilliantly described as an extended adolescence of unceasing emotional turbulence and creative struggle.
a generous view of a man who was always exceptionally generous to others' Robin Blake, "The Independent on Sunday
About the Author
David Cairns has been chief music critic of the Sunday Times and music critic and arts editor of the Spectator.
He has been Distinguished Visiting Professor at the University of California, Davis, and a visiting scholar at the Getty Center in Santa Monica.
His two-volume biography of Berlioz, published by UC Press, is the definitive work on the subject.
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