Knowing that Mozart and Schubert were born in January always warms up this cold, sunless, and messy Chicago month for me. Mozart’s birthday on January 27th and Schubert’s on January 31st are cause for hot chocolate and “Sacher Torte” (that wonderful Viennese chocolate cake) in my book! And, of course, the opportunity to play and listen to their music in a concentrated fashion helps “warm up” the frigid temperatures.Julius Meinl on Lincoln (4363 N. Lincoln Ave.) will be celebrating Mozart’s birth on January 27 at 8 p.m. with young opera ensemble Opera Moda. Reservations are recommended: call 773-868-1876.

My colleague Thomas Zoells of PianoForte Chicago has just the right idea here as well: his Schubertiade, a day-long celebration of Schubert’s music takes place on January 29, from 2 – 9 p.m., downtown in the beautiful salon of PianoForte Chicago in the Fine Arts Building (410 S. Michigan, 8th floor).

He has put out a call to area musicians to fill the day with Schubert’s wonderful creations in the spirit of Schubert’s own tradition in his lifetime of gathering friends together around a piano and other instruments, passing evenings listening to his newly composed works, and playing others.

If you can spare the time on January 29, I highly recommend a jaunt down to PianoForte… you will not be disappointed. Admission is free. You can find more information at

And then you can raise a glass to Schubert – AND Mozart while you are at it – for all the joy and marvel they have given the world in the many years since their births!

As the Viennese would say, “Alles gute zum Geburtstag, Wolfi und Franzl!!”

– Deborah Sobol
Artistic Director

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