Back in 1781, Mozart wandered into Vienna’s Deutschordenshaus, where his boss (the Archbishop of Salzburg) was staying, argued
a little a lot, and eventually got fired.
He decided to stay in the city as a freelance composer, musician, and teacher. And so a legendary partnership began…Mozart and Vienna, which go together like Beethoven and Vienna. Or Schubert and…, well, you get the message. This truly is a city of music.
Use the below map, photos, notes, links, and more for a Mozartean meander through the streets of Vienna to the places he lived and performed in, and to the many memorials to his genius.
And a few bonus suggestions:
- Should you wish to hear Mozart’s music played live in historic surrounds, try these concert tips.
- Mozart’s birthplace (Salzburg) is a relatively simple day trip away from Vienna and has its own musical landmarks for visitors.
- The official ice cream of the year (!) in 2021 is Mozart, commemorating the 230th anniversary of his death and consisting of nougat and pistachio.
All the locations shown on the map are described below.
Places I’ve found where Mozart lived or performed only appear on the map if the original building still exists or if there is a plaque or similar there to see.
Unfortunately, many original sites with a Mozart connection were torn down or rebuilt as Vienna moved through various construction eras. Time (and architecture) do not stand still.
Top Mozart landmarks
Should you only have limited time, then the following sites are the must-see items on your Vienna to-do list.
(The famous Mozart monument in the Burggarten Park)
The Mozart monument (Burggarten, Burgring): A large statue erected in 1896 and moved to the Burggarten park in 1953. It’s one of Vienna’s best photo motifs, thanks to the musical symbol written out in flowers in front of the monument. More details here.
The area around the museum looks pretty much like it did in the late 1700s and I’d recommend taking a few minutes just to wander around the local backstreets for a flavour of old Vienna away from the crowds.
(Plaque outside the Mozarthaus)
Mozartwohnung (Domgasse 5): Mozart’s actual apartment between 1784 and 1787, returned to its original structural condition and open to the public.
He wrote The Marriage of Figaro in this residence, for example, and entertained the likes of Haydn. More details here.
Mozart’s grave (Leberstraße 6-8): Contrary to legend, they did not dump Mozart in some pauper’s mass grave, but it was an unmarked one. A memorial marks the grave’s most likely location in St. Marx cemetery. More details here.
(The Mozart memorial at Vienna’s main cemetery)
The Mozart memorial (Simmeringer Hauptstraße 234): The first memorial at the site of the St. Marx grave moved to the Zentralfriedhof cemetery in 1891 to join the group of famous composers buried there (Beethoven, Schubert, Brahms, Strauss, and others). More details here.
The Haus der Musik (Seilerstätte 30): This museum has a room dedicated to Mozart where you can, for example, see how he would have put your name to music.
Stephansdom (Stephansplatz): St Stephen’s cathedral really fulfilled the “births, deaths and marriages” role when it came to Mozart. Two of his children were baptised here. On his death, his body was blessed here and a requiem held. And he married Constanze Weber here on August 4th, 1782. A plaque on the wall inside the cathedral commemorates these events (on the south side, next to the Katharinenkapelle).
Michaelerkirche (Michaelerplatz): St. Michael’s church held a requiem for Mozart here on December 10th, 1791. The occasion also saw the premiere of the completed parts of his Requiem in D Minor.
Where did Mozart live?
Mozart moved around a lot. I suspect for financial reasons, but let’s prefer to think it reflects his musical philosophy, as espoused in a letter to his father in 1778:
A fellow of mediocre talent will remain a mediocrity, whether he travels or not; but one of superior talent (which without impiety I cannot deny that I possess) will go to seed if he always remains in the same place
The Mozartwohnung remains the only one of Mozart’s residences that is more or less unchanged. Many have been destroyed, others altered beyond recognition. These are the ones I think are still the same building (but no promises!).
(Hotel Kaiserin Elizabeth and former Mozart residence)
Weihburggasse 3: Mozart lived here on a visit to Vienna in the autumn of 1767. It’s now the Hotel Kaiserin Elisabeth. Other prominent musical guests to grace the corridors of the building include Franz Liszt, Richard Wagner, Anton Bruckner, and Eduard Grieg.
Tiefer Graben 18: Mozart stayed here for three months in 1773 on another visit to Vienna with his father. It was here that he wrote, for example, the incidental music to Thamos, King of Egypt. There’s a plaque outside the building, which is now the Hotel Das Tigra.
(The Deutschordenshaus, site of the argument between Mozart and the Archbishop of Salzburg)
Singerstraße 7: The Deutschordenshaus where Mozart stayed in 1781 in service to the Archbishop of Salzburg. This is where the quarrels took place that led to his eventual dismissal and decision to go solo in Vienna. (Luckily for us.)
A few years later and Mozart would be living in a rather fine apartment (the Mozartwohnung mentioned earlier) within shouting distance of these old quarters.
A famous composer might be considered a fine thing for a building’s history. Two is almost greedy; Johannes Brahms lived at this address in the early 1860s.
Milchgasse 1: Mozart’s first address after leaving the Archbishop’s service. A plaque outside the house says he lived in the building and wrote Die Entführung aus dem Serail there. However, the style of the house suggests it might be too young to be the original. I’m not sure.
(Sign outside the Milchgasse house)
Kohlmarkt 7: Mozart lived here for a few weeks in 1783. It’s a remarkably handy address for the Habsburg Palace (almost next door).
Judenplatz 3-4: Our great composer also lived at this address in 1783. The original building is no more, but a nice plaque mentions the location’s Mozartean history, put up by the innkeeper’s cooperative in 1929. The location now houses the restauranteur section of the Viennese Chamber of Commerce. The building across the square is still from Mozart’s time.
(The view from Mozart’s Judenplatz residence)
Währinger Straße 26: Not the original building, but a plaque above the entrance describes how Mozart wrote Cosi fan tutte and other pieces in the “Garden House” on this site around 1788.
Rauhensteingasse 8: Another building long gone, but this is the address he died at. The current house still has the words “Mozarthof” inscribed above the doorway, and a memorial plaque from the 1920s hangs on an outside wall. This 1898 etching purports to show Mozart’s last moments (courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art):
Where did Mozart perform?
As with the residences, most venues have not survived the ravages of time, war, and urban planners. Many of the beautiful 19th-century buildings you see in Vienna were only made possible by tearing down the beautiful 18th- and 17th-century buildings that came before them. These are the relevant locations that survive:
Schönbrunn Palace and Orangery (Schönbrunner Schloßstraße 47): The summer palace of the Habsburgs witnessed a couple of legendary Mozart moments.
On the palace tour, you see the room where a young Mozart first performed for Empress Maria Theresa. And there’s a famous royal wedding painting which features the composer as a young boy, even though he was never there.
In the Orangery (which still holds public concerts), Mozart and Salieri duelled it out musically at the behest of Emperor Joseph II. Salieri’s Italian opera went up against Mozart’s German Singspiel, both competing for the attention of the assembled guests. Salieri won.
Palais Collalto (Am Hof 13): A plaque outside reveals that Mozart gave his very first public performance in Vienna in this Palais in 1762 (he must have been about seven years old).
Waisenhauskirche (Rennweg 91): A 12-year-old Mozart wrote the Mass in C minor (the “Waisenhausmesse”) for this church’s consecration in 1768 and led the performance himself. Formerly serving an orphanage, the Waisenhauskirche has become the Parish Church “Maria Geburt”.
Augartensaal (Obere Augartenstraße 1): A regular venue for entertainments in the Augarten park in the late 18th and early 19th century. Mozart performed his Piano Concerto No. 10 in the Augartensaal in 1782.
(Palais Auersperg at night)
Palais Auersperg (Auerspergstraße 1): Mozart (probably) led a performance of his Idomeneo opera here in 1786. This Baroque palace is a popular venue for exhibitions, fairs etc. and still hosts classical music concerts.
Himmelpfortgasse 6: A plaque outside Café Frauenhuber explains that Mozart performed a piece of pastoral music by Handel in this building in 1788. You can go inside the coffee house, of course, which first opened in 1824.
Other memorials & monuments
These are only for the dedicated collector of Mozart memories…
Café Mozart (Albertinaplatz 2): The first coffee house on this spot dates back to 1794. Café Mozart received its current name in 1929, in honour of the Mozart monument then located opposite.
The Maria Theresa monument: Put up in 1888 to honour the great Empress of the 18th century. One side of the huge plinth highlights personalities from science and art – a statue of a young Mozart stands just below Haydn. More details here.
(The “Magic Flute” fountain)
The Mozart fountain (Mozartplatz): Built in 1905 and also known as the Magic Flute fountain, since it depicts a scene from the opera.
Papagenotor (Millöckergasse/Papagenogasse): Stone figures above a gateway show Papageno from The Magic Flute. The display honours Emanuel Schikaneder, who wrote the opera’s libretto and founded the concert/opera house the gateway leads into. More details here.
(Figures on the Papagenotor)
Paminagasse / Taminoweg / Sarastroweg / Papagenogasse: All streets named after characters from the opera, The Magic Flute.
Mozartgasse: Both the street and the square at its centre (Mozartplatz) were renamed in his honour.
Minoritenkirche: A memorial to the famous Italian poet, Pietro Metastasio, inside this Gothic church features Mozart on its central relief.
And that’s it. I’ll add more locations as I find and research them.