I sympathize with Mr. Wolfgang Mozart who was a victim of narrow standards.
This is in response to your suggestion that we appoint Mr. Wolfgang Mozart to our music faculty. The music department appreciates your interest, but the faculty is sensitive about its prerogatives in the selection of new colleagues.
While the list of works and performances the candidate has submitted is very full, it reflects too much activity outside academia. Mr. Mozart does not have an earned doctorate and has very little formal education and teaching experience. There is also significant evidence of personal instability evidenced in his resume. Would
he really settle down in a large state university like ours? Would he really be a team player?
I must voice a concern over the incidents with his former superior, the Archbishop of Salzburg. They hardly confirm his abilities to be a good team man and show a disturbing lack of respect for authority.
Franz Haydn's letter of recommendation is noted, but Mr. Haydn is writing from a very special situation. Esterhazy is a well-funded private institution quite dissimilar from us and abler than we to accommodate non-academics, like Mr. Haydn himself. Here we are concerned about everybody, not just the most gifted. Furthermore, we suspect cronyism on the part of Mr. Haydn.
After Mr. Mozart's interview with the musicology faculty, they found him sadly lacking in any real knowledge of music before Bach and Handel. If he were to teach only composition, this might not be a serious impediment. But would he be an effective teacher of music history?
The applied faculty were impressed with his pianism, although they thought it was somewhat old-fashioned. That he also performed on violin and viola seemed to us to be stretching versatility dangerously thin. We suspect a large degree of dilletantism on his part.
The composition faculty was skeptical about his vast output. They correctly warn us from their own experience that to receive many commissions and performances is no guarantee of quality. The senior professor pointed out that Mr. Mozart promotes many of these performances himself. He has never won the support of a major foundation.
One of our faculty members was present a year ago at the premiere of, I believe, a violin sonata. He discovered afterwards that Mr. Mozart had not written out all the parts for the piano before he played it. This may be very well in that world, but it sets a poor example for our students. We expect deadlines to be met on time, and this includes all necessary paperwork.
It must be admitted that Mr. Mozart is an entertaining man at dinner. He spoke enthusiastically about his travels. It was perhaps significant, though, that he and the music faculty seem to have few acquaintances in common.
One of our female faculty members was deeply offended by his bluntness. She even had to leave the room after one of his endless parade of anecdotes. This propensity of his to excite the enmity of some is hardly conducive to the establishment of the comity to which we aspire to maintain on our faculty, let alone the image that
we wish to project to the community at large.
We are glad as a faculty to have had the chance to meet this visitor, but we cannot recommend his appointment. Even if he were appointed, this is almost no hope of his being granted tenure. The man simply showed no interest in going to school to collect his doctorate. This is egotism at its zenith.
Please give our regards to Mr. Mozart when you write him. We wish him our very best for a successful career. All are agreed, though, that he cannot fulfill the needs of this department. We wish to recommend the appointment of Antonio Salieri, a musician of the highest ideals and probity that accurately reflect the aims and values that we espouse. We would be eager to welcome such a musician and person to our faculty.
The Chair and Faculty of the Department of Music
P.S. Some good news. Our senior professor of composition tells me there is now a very good chance that a movement of his concerto will have its premiere within two years. You will remember that his work was commissioned by a foundation and won first prize nine years ago.