Amadeus Summary and Analysis of Scenes 11-20


On the opening night of Mozart's German opera, The Abduction from the Seraglio, Salieri discovers that Mozart slept with Katherina when, after curtain's call, Katherina reacts with jealousy to Frau Weber's announcement that Mozart has a relationship with Constanze, the young woman who had been flirting with Mozart at the prince-archbishop's residence. Frau Weber, Constanze's mother and Mozart's landlord, interrupts a tense interaction between Mozart and the emperor to talk about the relationship between her daughter and Mozart. Prior to Frau Weber's intrusion, Mozart was challenging the emperor's comment that his opera has too many notes. Frau Weber makes her desire for a union between her daughter and Mozart known to the emperor and everyone else present at the opening night of the opera.

Salieri begs God to send Mozart back to Salzburg. He is afraid of the violent thoughts that he has begun to form towards Mozart. Salieri's prayers are not answered. Mozart stays in Vienna and creates roots there by marrying Constanze. Mozart's decision to stay in Vienna angers not just Salieri. It also angers Mozart's father, who had advised Mozart against both the decision to stay in Vienna and the decision to marry Constanze. Furthermore, Mozart's decision to stay in Vienna destroys Leopold's efforts to mend ties between Mozart and the prince-archbishop. Mozart's decision to stay in Vienna officially terminates his employment with the prince-archbishop, but another opportunity soon comes.

Princess Elizabeth, the emperor's niece, needs a tutor. The emperor immediately thinks of Mozart, but Salieri, who feels slighted that the emperor has not chosen him, tells the emperor that people might view giving Mozart the position as favoritism and recommends an application system instead. Mozart needs the position, but he feels insulted when he is informed that he must apply for the position. He complains to Count Von Strack, the emperor's chamberlain. He tells Count Von Strack that he is the best and therefore should be immediately appointed the position of being Princess Elizabeth's tutor. Count Von Strack rebukes Mozart's behavior, but Mozart's arrogance still prevails. At home, Constanze and Mozart argue over Mozart's refusal to apply for the position. She says that the esteemed position would bring Mozart more opportunities and that they need the money. Mozart disregards her pleas.

In response to her husband's stubbornness and pride, Constanze secretly meets with Salieri, who is on the committee that reviews applications for the position to teach Princess Elizabeth. Constanze brings Salieri samples of Mozart's work and tells Salieri that she and Mozart really need the money. She also tells Salieri that Mozart does not make copies of his work and that he only writes first drafts. Salieri is amazed and angry at the fact that Mozart creates flawless first drafts. In the end, Salieri tells Constanze that he will help her if she comes back in the evening and sleeps with him. Constanze comes to Salieri in the evening, but, after she gets undressed, he has his servant show her out instead of sleeping with her.

After his uneventful evening with Constanze, Salieri officially breaks his tie with God. He despises God for choosing such an unworthy instrument like Mozart and vows to hurt Mozart. Salieri costs Mozart the opportunity to teach Princess Elizabeth; he tells the emperor that Mozart molested a pupil named Maria Theresa Paradis. Mozart, unaware of Salieri's actions, seeks Salieri's help to change the emperor's mind about not giving him the position.

Mozart tells Salieri his troubles. He tells Salieri that he needs money, but that everyone treats him like a fiend, and that no one wants to hire him as a tutor. Salieri feigns ignorance of everything. Mozart goes on to ask Salieri for a loan and promises to pay him back in a few months when he is sure that a new project will make him a very wealthy man. Salieri wants information about the project, but Mozart refuses. Salieri refuses to give Mozart the loan, but tells Mozart about someone who might possibly hire him to teach his daughter.

Mozart goes to the residence of Michael Schlumberg, the gentleman that Salieri recommends. The residence is full of dogs and Mozart's pupil, a young lady, is nervous. Mozart asks for privacy with the young lady, but Schlumberg insists on him, his wife, and his dogs being present during the tutoring session. Mozart plays the piano to alleviate the young lady's nervousness, but the dogs' barking interrupts his music. When the dogs continue to bark, Mozart storms out of the residence and goes home. When Mozart reaches his residence, he sees his father at the top of the stairs. Leopold, Mozart's father, is decked out in black and has a very strong presence on the stairs.


Mozart antagonizes everyone. He sleeps with Katherina despite being in a relationship with Constanze. When Katherina discovers his relationship with Constanze, she is understandably very angry. After witnessing Katherina's anger and overhearing a few choice words from her, Salieri deduces that Mozart slept with her, and he begins to act on his desire for revenge against Mozart. Moreover, Mozart disobeys his father by marrying Constanze and staying in Vienna. Mozart's decision to stay in Vienna also severs his ties with the prince-archbishop. Michael Schlumberg is Mozart's last victim in this section. After Salieri's negative rumors about Mozart take hold in Vienna, Schlumberg is the only person in Vienna who is willing to offer Mozart a tutoring position. Despite knowing this fact, Mozart treats Schlumberg very badly. He is rude to Schlumberg the moment that he enters Schlumberg's residence.

While Mozart is a master of intentional slights, he also angers individuals through unintentional slights. As Salieri peruses the sheets of music that Constanze brings him, he becomes angry at the fact that Mozart creates flawless first drafts. Furthermore, Mozart sleeping with Salieri's object of affection seems purely coincidental. There are no signs that Mozart was aware of the fact that Salieri was lusting after Katherina. Unfortunately for Mozart, Salieri does not differentiate between the intentional and unintentional slights. Both types of slights fuel Salieri's revenge against him.

Revenge and innocence exist side by side in this section, and they compliment each other in a strange sense. Mozart's childlike nature is what leads him to continuously insult Salieri. It is also why Salieri is able to easily take advantage of him. Mozart does not see through Salieri's schemes. Like a child, he is oblivious to many aspects of his environment. He even appeals to Salieri for help.

Mozart is an individual who cannot function independently. He spends beyond his means, and he allows his pride to get in the way of applying for a position that might remedy his unstable finances. Mozart needs some type of caretaker, and Constanze who tries her hand at being his caretaker proves to be inadequate in the role. She tries to get him the position to tutor Princess Elizabeth, but instead falls into one of Salieri's schemes against Mozart. By telling Constanze that she must sleep with him in order to secure the position to tutor Princess Elizabeth for Mozart, Salieri is essentially getting back at Mozart for sleeping with Katherina. This is not the only trap that Constanze fails to evade. In a later part of the film, she disregards Leopold's warning against allowing Lorl to work in Mozart's household, and Lorl turns out to be Salieri's spy. Near the end of the film, Constanze also advises Mozart to work on a piece for a masked man. The masked man happens to be Salieri.

Mozart is not the only figure in the film with childlike characteristics. Constanze also has childlike features. She has a childlike face and physique. Constanze and Mozart often times in the film appear as if they are two children who are playing house. Although she advises Mozart against spending too much, she always eventually gives in and indulges alongside him.