- The Economic Context of Mozart’s Troubled Career
- 1791 lawsuit that signaled the composer’s financial collapse.
- The Emergence of Individuality during the Period of the American Revolution In the years following 1776
- Did Debt Kill Mozart? – Composer faced Garnishment of Half of his Income regarding May 2, 1789 loan & judgment – Owed Two Years’ Salary
Dr. Peter A. Hoyt, specialist in Mozart’s financial collapse. An expert in the life and works of Mozart, and I have a particular expertise in the mysterious 1791 lawsuit that signaled the composer’s financial collapse.
Dr Hoyt’s research on this subject has been reported in a feature story in the New York Times that was subsequently carried in the International Herald Tribune, Italy’s La Repubblica, and media outlets across Europe and the Far East.
This story was also linked to numerous (perhaps surprisingly) of bankruptcy lawyers and economists.
The world-wide interest in this story indicates the extent to which Mozart’s financial problems are seen to be relevant to the current economic crises.
Invited to speak at numerous universities around the world, including Columbia, Princeton, Yale, and (in Europe) Oxford and the University of London.
For the past decade he has appeared over ten times (making me one of their most frequent guest speakers at the Lincoln Center. His numerous appearances there reflect, his success in presenting historical subjects in a manner that is accessible, thought-provoking, and entertaining.
Targeting professional groups concerned primarily with finance, law, and the relationship between economics and culture.
The widespread interest in Mozart’s financial difficulties, particularly among lawyers, accountants, and actuaries, reflects not only the almost-universal fascination with Mozart–one of the greatest geniuses who ever lived–but also the consoling thought that even a genius might suffer economic distress.
Mozart’s struggles also touch upon the problematic relationship between society and its innovators.
This is a subject I also propose to explore in the third of the following three offerings, all of which are designed to be informative and enjoyable for non-specialists:
1) Mozart’s Financial Meltdown (How Even a Genius Can Go Broke) Addresses the specific career choices that led Mozart to be sued for debt a month before his death in 1791. This presentation provides explains Mozart’s difficulties and draws lessons for audiences of the twenty-first century.
2) The Economic Context of Mozart’s Troubled Career Discusses the broader economic conditions that affected Mozart throughout his life, beginning with his early experiences as a child prodigy playing before the monarchs of Europe, and ending with an exploration of the historical events that led to the financial setbacks that overshadowed his final years.
3) The Emergence of Individuality during the Period of the American Revolution In the years following 1776, Western society witnessed enormous changes in what it meant to be an individual.
With these changes came new attitudes towards innovation, originality, and the role of the creative personality in history. Understanding these changes not only helps us appreciate the challenges that not only confronted by history’s great innovators, but also by creative individuals in modern society.