We’ve been to England, Australia and the US in our Advent journey. Now it’s time to stop in Austria and visit the Mozarts. Sleigh rides have been immortalized in music long before a certain Mr. L. Anderson created his peppy little evergreen in 1948.
Both Leopold and Wolfgang wrote little pieces about riding about in a sleigh and indeed even for someone such as Miss Mussel who has never taken a proper sleigh ride, there is something quite nostalgic and soothing about hearing sleigh bells – kind of like the harp. Somehow nothing bad can happen if sleigh bells are ringing.
Note: The quality level of this video is somewhere between horrific and atrocious but seeing as dear Leo was not as popular as some other members of his family, there is little else to work with. The less egregious errors in taste take place after 0:38.
Wolfgang’s contribution to the sleigh ride genre is a landler from 3 German Dances K.605 written in the first few months of 1791. One of his many jobs was the Kammermusicus for the court of Emperor Joseph II, a post he took over from Gluck in 1787. Wolfgang loved to dance, so it was not chore for him to create music for the balls and court dances that took place in the public ballrooms of Vienna.