Unknown Mozart scores discovered in France

19th September 2008, Comments 0 comments

According to the Mozart expert, the compositions are musical sketches.

Paris/Salzburg -- German researchers have found hitherto unknown draft compositions written by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in the French town of Nantes.

Ulrich Leisinger, head of research at the International Mozart Foundation in Salzburg, told DPA Thursday that the sheets were "without a doubt" handwritten by Mozart in 1787.

"The scores came to Nantes in the 19th century and were forgotten," Leisinger said. At that time, there was a big demand among collectors for original handwritten material, he said.

According to the Mozart expert, the compositions are musical sketches. The first piece, for one voice, was clearly a draft for a Kyrie, a part of a mass. The second piece was a Credo, also a religious composition.

Both the handwriting and the paper clearly indicated that it was a genuine composition by Mozart, he said.

According to the French newspaper La Presse Oceane, one of the yellowed, notebook-size papers carries the artist's signature. "The pieces look like they were scrawled on a tablecloth," the newspaper cited a musician who had seen them.

The rediscovered pieces were important, Leisinger said, as they would allow scientists "to draw conclusions about Mozart's development as a composer."

Mozart was born in 1756 in Salzburg, and worked mostly in Vienna, where he died in 1791. The Koechel catalogue of his work lists 626 compositions.


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