Mozart’s son, Franz Xaver Wolfgang Mozart, became a composer, pianist, and conductor, but he did not achieve the same level of fame as his father. He struggled with living in the shadow of his father’s legacy throughout his life.
Franz Xaver Wolfgang Mozart, born on July 26, 1791, was the youngest child of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and his wife Constanze. He was only four months old when his father died. Franz Xaver was musically talented and received excellent training, including lessons from Antonio Salieri, his father’s colleague and friend, and possibly his rival, according to some stories.
Despite his efforts, Franz Xaver’s career was modest compared to his father’s. He worked in various positions, including a court musician in Lemberg (now Lviv, Ukraine), and he toured Europe as a pianist and teacher. His compositions include piano pieces, songs, and a few orchestral and chamber works. While his music was well-received, it did not have the innovative impact or enduring popularity of his father’s compositions.
Franz Xaver spent much of his life trying to escape the shadow of his father’s genius. He even used the name “Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Son” in his professional life, which may have been both a blessing and a curse, as it likely opened doors for him but also set expectations he could not fulfill.
He never married and had no children, and when he died on July 29, 1844, in Karlsbad (now Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic), the last direct male descendant of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart passed away. Franz Xaver’s legacy, while not as prominent as his father’s, remains a subject of interest for music historians and Mozart enthusiasts.