Haydn and Mozart


              HAYDN AND MOZART: TWO MUSICAL MASONS

                      By Linda J. Griffiths

            This article taken from the "MAINE MASON"
                         Spring 89 Issue

     
     In the late eighteenth century the city of Vienna in Austria
was home to two of the greatest composers of all time, both of
whom were Freemasons.
     Franz Joseph Haydn and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart were also
close friends, in spite of a difference of 24 years in their
ages.  Their friendship might perhaps be compared to that between
two other famous Masons, half a world away, who were their
contemporaries: George Washington, who was born the same year as
Haydn, and the Marquis de Lafayette, who was born the year after
Mozart.

                           The Pioneer

     Franz Joseph Haydn was born in 1732 to a poor family in
eastern Austria.  Blessed with a good singing voice, he was hired
as a boy singer in the cathedral at Vienna.  Here he earned a
small salary, lived at the choir school, and received some
education, learning to read music and to play the organ and
violin.  However, his voice changed, and unable to sing a pure
soprano any more, he was of no further use to the choir and had
to leave the school.
     Undaunted, the young man became a street musician with a
small band, playing popular music for evening serenades.  In
those pre-radio days, one might spend many a pleasant evening
sitting and chatting with friends, listening to the music of the
serenaders.  Haydn had to think on his feet: if players were
missing, he had to re-write the music for whoever was available,
or even compose something entirely new virtually on the spot.  It
was a precarious existence and he lived on the edge of poverty,
but it sharpened his wits and provided him with a vast treasure
of musical experience.
     In 1761 Haydn obtained a secure position as a composer and
violinist in the service of the Esterhazy family.  Prince
Mikolaus Esterhazy, a skilled musician, had mastered a
complicated stringed instrument called a baryton.  He wasted good
music to play on his baryton, and Haydn obligingly supplied him
with many trios and quartets.  The prince also required new music
for concerts and court occasions.  It had to be good music, as
the prince was a connoisseur, and Haydn rose to the challenge,
turning out dozens of symphonies, concertos, operas, and chamber
works.
     The prince spent his winters in the city of Eisenstadt and
his summers at his country estate, called Esterhaz.  This estate
was isolated, and once there, you were there for the season.  In
this isolation Haydn had to look inside himself for musical
inspiration; as he remarked, he was "forced to become original."
     Again he had to write for the players he had available. 
Resourceful as always, Haydn took the solemn church music and the
tuneful street music he had grown up with, and singlehandedly
reshaped them.  He invented the modern string quartet, in which
two violins, a viola and violoncello converse with equal voices. 
He also departed from the Baroque style of massive grandeur, and
perfected the Classical style, lighter, more rational, and often
playful.
     His new style was a reflection fo the man himself.  Haydn
loved a good joke, and he loved to write jokes into his music.   
  His "Farewell" symphony of 1772, for example, was meant to give
Prince Nikolaus a gentle hint.  The prince had grown
comfortable at Esterhaz that year and showed no sign of returning
to Eisenstadt in the fall.  The musicians, thinking of their
wives and girlfriends in Eisenstadt, were growing restless.  So
Haydn wrote a symphony for the occasion, with a rather unusual
last movement.
     The movement starts with twelve musicians playing together. 
Halfway through, an oboist and horn player finish, pick up their
instruments, and leave.  Then the bassoon player stops, takes his
instrument, and leaves.  One by one, each of the other parts
comes to an end, and each player leaves, until there are only two
violinists sitting among the empty chairs, playing together very
quietly.  The prince took the hint, and happy musicians were
reunited with their loved ones.
     When Prince Nikolaus died in 1790, his son Anton became
prince.  Anton Esterhazy was not a music lover, but he continued
to be a patron of Haydn, and allowed him to live in Vienna and
compose whatever he chose.
     Now 58, Haydn moved to Vienna to stay, and found to his
surprise that he had become famous.  A humble, practical man, he
had never realized that people all over Europe were coming to
love his music, and that other composers were writing in his
style.  He had always produced his music out of necessity, and
worked hard at it; every morning he would sit down at the
keyboard and pray for inspiration.
     Many honors came his way.  Aspiring composers and pianists
begged to study with him.  Tours were arranged to France and to
England, where Haydn was deeply impressed on hearing Handel's
Messiah for the first time.  He received an honorary doctorate
from Oxford University.
     He kept right on composing.  His masses and oratorios, and
his more than 100 symphonies, were acclaimed as masterpieces. 
The one-time street musician was universally beloved, and he
would live comfortably until 1809, when he died at the age of
seventy-seven.

                           The Genius

     Among the many fans of Haydn was Mozart, only 34 when Haydn
moved to Vienna to stay, but famous in his own right.  When the
two composers first met, they were already warm admirers of each
other's work.
     Johann Chrysostom Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was born in 1756
at Salzburg, a city at the other end of Austria from Vienna.     
His father Leopold was a composer employed by the Archbishop of
Salzburg.  Leopold realized right away tha this son was a musical
genius, and took him in had to give him a thorough
musical training.
     Wolfgang Mozart was seven years old when he first toured
Europe as a child prodigy under the guidance of his father; and
by the age of nine, he had written several symphonies.
     The young Mozart was full of zest and soaked up music like a
sponge.  His memory was phenomenal.  Upon hearing a peice of
music sung one in Rome, he was able to write it down correctly
note for note.  He quickly mastered the Classical style of mucic,
and could compose convincingly in th older Baroque style also. 
However, at an early age his gifts developed beyond merely
writing music without mistakes.  Mozart possessed a rare sense of
timing, and a sure instinct for the dramatic; combining these
talents with his thorough training, he was able to make his music
express perfectly whatever he chose.
     Music poured out of him.  He wrote down the notes quickly
and confidently, rarely making corrections, almost as if he were
taking dictation.  It seems that he could not have stopped
composing music, any more than he could have stopped breathing. 
In his short life he completed over 600 seperate works.
     Accustomed to success as a child prodigy, Mozart began to
encounter obstacles and hardships in his adult life.  He wanted
to be independent of his father's employer, the Archbishop, but
he was unable to find another musical patron, as Haydn had found
in Prince Esterhazy.  In Vienna Mozart attempted to support his
family as a freelance composer, performer and music teacher.  He
was not successful; the public liked his music but was often
unwilling to pay for it.  Mozart's health declined along with his
fortunes.  He was to die in 1791 at the age of thirty-five,
leaving several exquisite compositions unfinished.

                           Both Masons

     Besides being mutual admirers, Haydn and Mozart were
brethren in Freemasonry, which flourished in Austria at the time
but was later suppressed.
Haydn took his membership rather casually; records show only that
he became an Entered Apprentice in the lodge Zur Wahren Eintracht
(To True Harmony) in 1785, and he does not seem to have written
any distinctly Masonic music.
     Mozart, however, threw himself into Masonry with his
characteristic zeal.  In 1784 he was initiated in the lodge Zur
Wohltaetigkeit (To Charity), which merged with two other lodges
the following year.  The merged lodge, called Zur Neugekronten
Hoffnung (To New-Crowned Hope), had an illustrious membership by
1788, including one prince, 36 counts, one marquis and 14 barons. 
A number of lodge brethren had the habit of quietly helping out
when Mozart was in particularly difficult financial straits.     
The list of Masonic compositions by Mozart is impressive,
including songs for opening and closing the lodge, hymns,
cantatas, funeral music, and the opera THE MAGIC FLUTE, which is
full of Masonic symbolism.
     Most American Masons are aware of the heritage of liberty
left to us by Bros. Washington and Lafayette.  Not as many are
familiar with the heritage of great music lift by Bros. Haydn and
Mozart.  Between them, they shaped and perfected a musical
language that still speaks directly to us today, after a lapse of
two centuries.  The music of Haydn and Mozart has never gone out
of style.
     Linda J. Griffiths, daughter of Associate Editor of 'The
Maine Mason', holds degrees in music from Bates College, the
University of California, and Oxford University.a patron of Haydn, and allowed him to live in Vienna and
compose whatever he chose.
     Now 58, Haydn moved to Vienna to stay, and found to his
surprise that he had become famous.  A humble, practical man, he
had never realized that people all over Europe were coming to
love his music, and that other composers were writing in his
style.  He had always produced his music out of necessity, and
worked hard at it; every morning he would sit down at the
keyboard and pray for inspiration.
     Many honors came his way.  Aspiring composers and pianists
begged to study with him.  Tours were arranged to France and to
England, where Haydn was deeply impressed on hearing Handel's
Messiah for the first time.  He received a