Thursday, January 31, 2008

Mozart's Sister by Rita Charbonnier

Who could forget Tom Hulse's hooting laugh and antics when he played Mozart in the film Amadeus? Who could forget the vision of his tiny hands producing melody after melody on the harsichord at the age of four? Mozart and his musical genius have fascinated us for over two hundred years. But Mozart was not the only prodigy in his famous family--Nannerl Mozart performed for all the crowned heads of Europe along with her younger brother Wolfgang until she became a teenager.
Rita Charbonnier's novel Mozart's Sister tells another tale--of a musical genius forced because of her sex to always be in the background of his fame. In this book Nannerl comes alive with a wicked temper, amazing imagination, and always a passion for music. Nannerl is forced by her tyrant father Leopold to stop performing and begin teaching piano to a succession of untalented students while her parents and brother travel through Europe on an endless concert tour. She is so furious with them that she destroys all her precious compositions and retreats into an angry silence. Only the right man can free this enchanted "princess" of music, and he does but at the cost of the delicate balance of the Mozart family.