Requiem K626 (includes Lacrymosa)
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

19

Listen to this piece at composed.com now

The second highest of Mozart's 20 entries in the Ultimate Hall of Fame. This has been in the top 40 in every Hall of Fame, peaking at number 14 in 2006, the 250th anniversary of the composer's birth.

When Count Von Walsegg's wife Anna died on Valentine's day 1791, it set in motion a series of events that, one could argue, has never stopped.

Walsegg approached Mozart for a requiem, through a third party, totally spooking an already unstable Mozart in the process. Walsegg was probably intending to pass off the work as his own once Mozart had completed writing it — he had form in this area.

The work was never delivered by Mozart, who died before he had finished composing it. It was brushed into some sort of shape by Mozart's only composition pupil, Sussmayr, but to the complete lack of satisfaction of scholars down the centuries. As a result, the world and his wife have tried to complete it after him. Regardless, the Requiem still sounds wonderful to most ears.