Betulia liberata (The liberated Bethulia) seems to be the least known among Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s larger stage works, be it secular or sacred, composed during his youth. Written documentation on the subject is also scarce. Among these we find a letter by Leopold Mozart written to his wife in Salzburg during the first concert journey of Italy with his son:
Vicenza 14 March 1771
In Padua we saw as much as can be seen in a day, for here too we were not left in peace, Wolfg. having to play in 2 different places. But he also got some work and has to write an oratorio for Padua which he can do as and when the opportunity arises. 1
Taking into account the consequent turn of events the commissioned oratorio for Padua „when the opportunity arises“ was obviously expressed prematurely. The person involved might have thought nothing of it when addressing a young lad of fifteen. Leopold reveals the identity of this person and the seriousness with which the Mozart family dealt with this commissioned oratorio for Padua in another letter after their return to Salzburg. The letter is addressed to his friend, Count Giovanni Luca Pallavicini in Bologna:
Salzburg 19 July 1771
Meanwhile my son is writing an oratorio by Metastasio for Padua that has been commissioned by Sgr Don Giuseppe Ximenes de Ppi d’Aragona. When I pass through Verona, I`ll send this oratorio to Padua to be copied, and on our return from Milan we`ll go to Padua to hear it rehearsed. 2
Total time: 02:02:41
Vocal alto, Vocal tenor, Vocal baritone, Orchestra, Vocal soprano, Vocal
|Original Recording Format|
Dietmar Wolf, hans Jochen Brauns
Stiftskirche Waldhausen Austria
|Recording Type & Bit Rate||
|Release Date||October 4, 2014|
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