All Things Considered
January 8, 2012
Mozart, Beethoven and others wrote bold, uncharacteristic pieces during their last days on Earth.
When it comes to last words, there’s a kind of poetry in even the oddest ones. Oscar Wilde hated the wallpaper in the room where he died: “One of us has to go,” he muttered. Salvador Dali: “Where is my clock?” Steve Jobs: “Oh wow, oh wow, oh wow,” according to his sister, who was in the room.
Writer and composer Jan Swafford was thinking about these and other last words recently. In a piece for Slate, he takes a look at another kind of swan song: the late or final works of famous classical composers.
Read the full article and listen to program audio (10:56) at NPR