Antonio Salieri's Revenge
As someone that enjoyed the film Amadeus, I found this New Yorker article on Mozarts film nemesis rather enlightening.
Antonio Salieris Revenge
Excerpt: Two centuries of calumny have created sympathy for the musical devil: I found Salieris grave festooned with bouquets. These were evidence that the man and his music are enjoying a modest comeback. Of his forty-odd operas, more than a dozen have been revived, and artists such as Riccardo Muti, Cecilia Bartoli, and Christophe Rousset have pleaded his case. I was in Vienna to attend Roussets performance of Salieris French opera Tarare at the Theater an der Wien. A German-language biography of Salieri, by the composer and musicologist Timo Jouko Herrmann, was published earlier this year. In 2015, Herrmann discovered the score of a cantata, Per la ricuperata salute di Ofelia, with one section composed by Salieri and another by Mozart. The find made clear what scholars have long known: that the two were more colleagues than rivals, and that their relationship was complicated mainly by Mozarts tendency to see plots arrayed against him.
I knew Salieri didn't kill Mozart and that they weren't even enemies, but I loved Amadeus anyhow. This is a really interesting article about a composer who should be given more credit.
He wrote themes that both Mozart and Beethoven were not shy about borrowing and adapting into their own works. He was a pretty good composer.
I once asked former Seattle Opera General Director Speight Jenkins if he thought there would ever be a revival of Salieri's numerous operas. Jenkins said no.
"Why?" I asked.
"Because they're boring!"
I guess Jenkins was wrong about the revival.
I've been getting it since high school. And I'm in my early 60s now. The finest magazine in the English speaking world.