Anne-Sophie Mutter: The Mozart Effect Is Not All In The Brain (It Is Also Soulfood)

Anne-Sophie Mutter

Considered by many to be the greatest composer of all time, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756–1791) composed hundreds of pieces of music. Among his most famous works are Eine Kleine Nachtmusik (A Little Night Music, 1787) and the operas Don Giovanni (1787) and Die Zauberflote (The Magic Flute, 1791). He died of a mysterious fever at age 35.

One of the greatest violin virtuosos of our time, German-born Anne-Sophie Mutter has performed concerts in all the major music centers of Europe, the USA and Asia. She celebrated her 30th stage anniversary in 2006 - which coincided with Mozart’s 250th anniversary—with a series of new recordings of all his major works for violin. About Mozart she said: “He has always been present in my life. I’ve never stopped thinking about him, and I’ve always been trying out new ways to get closer to him. He’s the composer I have grown up with, who was always there waiting for me at every juncture of my career.”

Q: You said that you first fell in love with Mozart at the age of six. What was it about his music that enchanted such a young child?

A: I was attracted to his life in general. I remember reading a biography of his early “wunderkind” years. We both started early to play the piano and the violin, and, of course, he then became a genius composer. But I felt a close bond just in the fact that we were both in love with these two instruments. And Mozart was the composer with whom I made my orchestra debut at the age of nine. Back then, when I played his second violin concerto, his music felt so simple, pure and straightforward. Years later, I also began to understand how complex his music is. The most difficult part of playing Mozart is keeping the complexity transparent.

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