October 1777 - Wolfgang

For October 1777 important family visit had been announced. Aunt Anna and my dear Cousin Wolfgang wanted to come - as carefully planned - from Munich straight to Augsburg. Unfortunately, Uncle Leopold - being indispensable - had to stay in Salzburg, and Nannerl couldn't join in either.

Augsburg's old monastery of St.Ulrich and the city gate Rotes Tor Everyone who wanted to come into Augsburg from Munich, always entered through the Rotes Tor (see photo), as did my relatives. On its left side, there's the gorgeous old Abbey under Imperial Protection, St.Ulrich and Afra, in the prelacy of which Wolfgang and I were to make fun of a Father soon.

Immediately after their arrival at the inn " Weißes Lamm" just around the corner, on October 11 - and I think it was Saturday evening - they popped round to our house. It was actually love at first sight, and as if we had met only the year before, laughter and teasing started right away. Wolfgang looked at me with different eyes now and so did I, which made the thrill even more tingling. We flirted passionately with each other, and not only that, but please excuse me, if I much rather remain discreet concerning this private matter. Yes, it is true, I loved Wolfgang with all my heart; I would have gone through fire and water for him as well as to the ends of the earth. In view of our love and harmony, our families began even discussing marriage. However, there still was absent Uncle Leopold. At any rate, the following two weeks belonged to the happiest of my long life.

During the first days of his stay my cousin was terribly busy doing visits at Mayor Herr von Langenmantel, a former fellow student of Uncle Leopold and now a big shot in the city council, then at the famous organ and pianoforte builder, Johann Andreas Stein, with whom he spent much time trying/testing his various instruments. My Papa often accompanied his nephew, while Aunt Anna came daily over to spend many hours with Mama. The row with the young Jakob von Langenmantel, who had made fun of my cousin's papal order, made my knees turn heavily to jelly, since Wolfgang was so furious about it, that he wanted to leave at once. Fortunately Herr Stein supported strongly his staying, and together with music director Herr Graf and the honourable Herr Gignoux, he organized the concert which had been cancelled by the patricians due to "lack of money".

The lovely house of Herr Stein On Friday I accompanied mon cousin and ma chère tante to Herr Valentin Gasser, a young and only recently widowed merchant, who charmingly invited us for lunch, together with the Prince-Bishop's Cathedral Director of Music, Dr. Gerbl. Topic number one was of course the concert set for next Wednesday. After the meal, we all went to Herr Stein on the Maximilianstrasse (photo), where Herr Schmidbauer, organist at the St.Ulrich Church, was already waiting in order to immediately begin playing music. Ach, my dearest Cousin touched my heart very deeply with his incredibly lovely music.

Immediately the next morning we went to the monastery of Heilig Kreuz, situated right between the "Weißes Lamm" and our home, since I absolutely wanted to introduce Father Fortunat Schödl to Wolferl, a really funny man and only a little older than he. We had lunch at the Steins again, Aunt Anna was there, too, and afterwards we went opposite the street to St.Ulrich, where Cousin Composer had the organ played, because in his opinion the acoustics from the organ gallery wasn't very good. Following that a snack was served in a lounge, including spirituous beverages, which resulted in Father Aemilian Angermayr giving me rather lascivious looks which Wolfgang did not like one little bit. For me, however, it was pure fun. Naturally Wolferl joined in right away, and while singing a canon he typically spontaneously changed the words and sang in a low voice into my ear, "Oh you prick you, come on lick my ass", and we split our sides laughing. Only poor Father Aemilian didn't get that we were laughing at him.

The next day right after the High Mass, celebrated with fully cast orchestra and choir as every Sunday, plus another rehearsal at Herr Stein - Wolfgang was appalled at the lousy orchestra - my Cousin spent the rest of the day with the music-loving Augustinian Canons at the Heilig Kreuz monastery, who really took him to their heart. Until late at night musical instruments were played. As his way of saying thank you to his new friends, Wolfgang left some of his works at the monastery for copies to be made of, among others the wonderful Misericordias Domini, a Missa Brevis in C Sparrow-Mass, and another Mass in F. Mister Cousin assigned to his Bäsle the noble task of seeing to the autographs' safe return.

The richly painted and luxurious Fugger Palace Wednesday, October 22nd, at 6 p.m. At last! After two more days of intense rehearsals plus advertising by Herr von Zabuesnig in Augsburg's newspaper, the hall at the Fugger Palace (photo) began to fill up with about 200 guests, and my Papa was cashier! Simply everybody came, all friends and acquaintances, naturally the Shortcoats, and numerous other city dignitaries. I was bursting with pride! The concert turned out to be a superb success. Oh, never again in my life did I hear Wolfgang's music performed as captivatingly, tenderly and softly, as passionately as by its composer himself. My God, how did I love him at these moments! He etched his music so deeply on my heart, I never again recovered from that, and until the end of my days I particularly loved his piano concertos. His sacred music however as well. The impression of the Concerto for Three Pianoforte, which has the number K.242 today, was unforgettable. Herr Demler, my Cousin, and Herr Stein played simply perfectly. Yes, Wolfgang was a genius, and I deeply regretted my inability to follow him to his realm of tones, even though I loved his music like no other.

The concert event got praised to the skies in the newspaper, so that Uncle Leopold would certainly be satisfied. Due to the cold Aunt Anna had caught in that icy weather, she could not accept the invitation to lunch by the canons of Heilig Kreuz. Thursday and Friday I had Wolfgang all for myself for the most part; to please him on the last but one day, packing day, I dressed in the French style, well, you know, with a deep décolleté, and this he liked only too well. But with my heart being sore, I was anxiously awaiting his forthcoming departure for Mannheim.

Our sad farewell as a shooting target Yes, he had to travel on in order to find a permanent position, therefore our secret plan had to wait. Sunday morning at 7:30 a.m. the time had come. Herr Stein was there, too. Giving my beloved Wolferl a Reisebuschen to take with him on his journey, I was trying to be brave, being however weak at the knees, and the two of us were blubbering, swearing each other eternal love and promised to send our portraits to one another. When were we going to meet again? The Canons of Heilig Kreuz had already invited him for his returning home from Paris, the possible end of this journey. What if he would stay there for ever? In any case, I should learn the French language in the meantime. However, for the time being, while the carriage disappeared through the Wertachbrucker Tor, I was convinced that the sun would not shine for me any more.

Regrettably my Uncle Leopold derived pleasure from making fun of our feelings by having the moving farewell scene soon painted as a target for the popular private air gun shooting in Salzburg.



© copyright 2001-2017 Susanne M. Scholze. All rights reserved.

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