Mozart in Vienna

During the 11 years that Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart lived in Wien, Österreich, he changed addresses 13 times; the most time he spent at one residency was two and half years in his apartment on Domgasse 5, which was previously known as Schulerstraße 8. The apartment originally belonged to court stuccoist Alberto Camesina in 1719 and remained in the possession of the Camesina family while Mozart lived there from 1784 to 1787. Located two wooden doors and a cobblestone alley to the east of St. Stephens Cathedral, it was Mozart’s most expensive home and also the only one in Vienna that remains intact.

Now a three story museum known as Mozarthaus, the building attracts hordes of international visitors who hope to get in touch with Mozart’s music. However, I soon found out that few local Viennese people know about its existence. While the museum appears in almost every museum guide or tourist map, the local people who I approached almost directly outside the building did not know where it was. While they recognize the importance of Mozart to Vienna, the most common example of a connection between Mozart and Vienna was the Mozart chocolates that appear throughout the city’s souvenir shops. It seems that the name “Mozart” has transformed from a reference to a musical figure into a cultural brand for the city of Vienna.