Amalie, Princess of Saxony [Marie Auguste Friederike Amalie]
- Eva Rieger
[Marie Auguste Friederike Amalie]
(b Dresden, Aug 10, 1794; d Dresden, Sept 18, 1870). German writer and composer. The sister of King Johann of Saxony, she was taught the piano by Joseph Schuster, singing by Vincenzo Rastrelli and Johann Miksch, and music theory by F.A. Schubert and Weber. Weber found her ‘highly talented’. She spent her whole life in Schloss Pillnitz, Dresden. Princess Amalie was stimulated by the cultivation of Italian opera in Dresden and composed a number of operas (under the name Amalie Serena), which were performed during family celebrations and within the court circle; some were performed in the Pillnitz theatre. Her operas are modelled on opéra comique and opera buffa. Her strength lies in her comic operas; she illustrates the characters with originality and humour. The instrumentation is simple, but the instrumental colouring is related to the characters and the various situations. After 1835 she stopped composing and wrote comedies, using the pseudonym Amalie Heiter....