Imagine an eleven-year-old girl, performing the most difficult sonatas and concertos of the greatest composers, on the harpsichord or fortepiano, with precision, with incredible lightness, with impeccable taste. It was a source of wonder to many.” Augsburger Intelligenz, May 19, 1763.
Nannerl Mozart, the sister of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, was a prodigy, keyboard virtuoso and composer in her own right, who performed throughout Europe with her brother to equal acclaim, but her work and her story faded away, lost to history.
Now her true but untold tale is brought to the St. James Studio in Little Matchstick Factory’s The Other Mozart, running from 8th to 19th September 2015, with a press night on 9th September. Created and performed by Sylvia Milo and directed by Isaac Byrne, this unique piece of theatre is based on facts, stories and lines pulled directly from the Mozart family’s humorous and heart-breaking letters.
Described by the New York Times as “strikingly beautiful”, the one woman drama is set in and on a magnificent five and a half meter dress, created to fill and spill over the entire stage, designed by Magdalena Dąbrowska from the National Theatre of Poland.
Together with music composed by her famous brother and Marianna Martines (a female composer who inspired Nannerl), the play features original music by Nathan Davis and Phyllis Chen (featured composers of the Mostly Mozart Festival at Lincoln Center, BAM and the International Contemporary Ensemble) using instruments that Nannerl knew intimately such as clavichords, music boxes and bells, as well as teacups, fans, and other ordinary objects that might have captured her imagination.
The Other Mozart was nominated for the 2015 Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Design in a Play and the 2015 Off Broadway Alliance Award for Best Solo Performance. The play has been nominated for eight Innovative Theatre Awards: Outstanding Solo Performance – Sylvia Milo, Outstanding Director – Issac Byrne, Outstanding Costume Design – Magdalena Dabrowska & Miodrag Guberinic, Outstanding Set Design – Anna Sroka, Outstanding Sound Design – Nathan Davis, Outstanding Original Music – Phyllis Chen & Nathan Davis, Outstanding Original Full-length script – Sylvia Milo and Outstanding Premiere Production of a Play.
With the opulent beauty of the dress and hair design, the sweet smell of perfume and the clouds of dusting powder rising from the stage, The Other Mozart is a multi-sensual experience that transports the audience into a world of outsized beauty and delight – but also of overwhelming restrictions and prejudice where, finally, this other Mozart tells her story.
THE OTHER MOZART
8th to 19th September 2015
St. James Studio
12 Palace Street, London SW1E 5JA
Box Office: 0844 264 2140
Wednesday 22nd July 2015