views updated


Weber, family of German musicians:

(1) Weber, Fridolin, German singer and violinist, uncle of Carl Maria (Friedrich Ernst) von Weber; b. Zell, Wiesental, 1733; d. Vienna, Oct. 23,1779. He served in the Mannheim electoral chapel. He had 4 daughters.

(2) (Maria) Josepha Weber, soprano; b. Zeil, c. 1759; d. Vienna, Dec. 29,1819. After appearances in provincial music centers, she settled in Vienna in 1788; that same year, she married the violinist Franz de Paula Hofer (1755-96), one of Mozart’s friends. Her second husband was the bass and actor (Friedrich) Sebastian Mayer (1773-1835), the creator of the role of Pizarro in Beethoven’s Fidelio. She was a leading singer in Vienna, being closely associated with Schikaneder’s Theater auf der Wieden from 1790; she retired from the stage in 1805. Mozart wrote the aria Schön lacht der holde Frühling, K. 580, for her, as well as the role of the Queen of the Night in his opera Die Zauberflöte; nevertheless, he disparaged her character in a letter of Dec. 15, 1781.

(3) (Maria) Aloysia (Louise Antonia) Weber, soprano; b. c. 1760; d. Salzburg, June 8, 1839. She studied voice with Mozart while he was in Mannheim (1777-78); he fell in love with her, but she left him. After singing in Munich (1778-79), she went to Vienna as a member of the German opera (1779-82) and the Italian opera (1782-92). She married the court actor and painter Joseph Lange (1751-1831) in 1780; she left him in 1795 to pursue a concert career. Mozart wrote a number of concert arias for her, as well as the role of Madame Herz in his Der Schauspieldirektor.

(4) (Maria) Constanze (Constantia) (Caecilia Josepha Johanna Aloisia) Weber, soprano; b. Zeli, Jan. 4, 1762; d. Salzburg, March 6, 1842. She was the wife of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

(5) (Maria) Sophie Weber, soprano; b. Zeli, Oct. 1763; d. Salzburg, Oct. 26, 1846. She married Jakob Haibel in 1807. She was with Mozart during the last hours of his life, and related her account of his death to her brother-in-law, Georg Nikolaus Nissen, the Danish statesman and music scholar, who wrote a biography of Mozart.

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire

About this article


Updated About encyclopedia.com content Print Article