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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Born January 27, 1756, in Salzburg. His father, Leopold Mozart, a noted composer and pedagogue and the author of a famous treatise on violin playing, was then in the service of the archbishop of Salzburg. Together with his sister, Nannerl, Wolfgang received such intensive musical training that by the age of six, he was a budding composer and an accomplished keyboard performer. In 1762, Leopold presented his son as a performer at the imperial court in Vienna, and from 1763 to 1766, he escorted both children on a continuous musical tour across Europe. The tour included long stays in Paris and London as well as visits to many other cities, with appearances before the French and English royal families.

Mozart was the most celebrated child prodigy of this time as a keyboard performer and made a great impression, too, as composer and improviser. In London, he won the admiration of so eminent a musician as Johann Christian Bach (1735-1782), and he was exposed from an early age to an unusual variety of musical styles and tastes across the Continent.

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