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[Constantia](Caecilia Josepha Johanna Aloisia)

Member of Mozart family

(b Zell, Wiesental, Jan 5, 1762; d Salzburg, March 6, 1842). Soprano, wife of (3) Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and later of his biographer Georg Nikolaus Nissen. She was the third of four daughters of the bass, prompter and copyist Fridolin Weber, and thereby related to the composer Carl Maria von Weber (see Weber family). She first met Mozart in 1777–8 in Mannheim; he fell in love with her elder sister Aloisia, who rejected him. Constanze moved with her family to Vienna in September 1779; from 2 May 1781 Mozart lodged with her mother, and on 4 August 1782 married Constanze in the Stephansdom. There were six children, of whom two, (5) Carl Thomas and (6) Franz Xaver Wolfgang, survived to maturity. During a visit to Salzburg, she sang one of the soprano parts in a performance at the abbey of St Peter of the Kyrie and Gloria of her husband’s Mass in C minor ...

Article

Elizabeth Forbes

Member of Wagner family

(b Seelze, nr Hanover, Oct 13, 1826; dWürzburg, Oct 16, 1894). Soprano, adopted daughter of (1) Richard Wagner’s elder brother, Albert. Through the influence of her uncle, she made her début at Dresden in 1844 as Agathe. She created the role of Elisabeth in Tannhäuser (19 October 1845) and also sang in Auber’s Le maçon. After studying in Paris with the younger Manuel García (1846–8), she sang in Hamburg (1849) and was then engaged at the Hofoper, Berlin (1850–61), where she took over the part of Fidès in Le prophète from Pauline Viardot. In 1852 she was announced to sing at Covent Garden, but a lawsuit brought by Benjamin Lumley, manager of the rival opera company at Her Majesty’s Theatre, prevented her from appearing. She eventually made her London début in 1856 at Her Majesty’s as Rossini’s Tancred, Donizetti’s Lucretia Borgia and as Romeo in Bellini’s ...