PRAGUE, JAN. 4 -- A Czechoslovak museum has unearthed 10 unique manuscript scores by Italian composer and Mozart rival Antonio Salieri, the Ceteka news agency reported today.
Discovered in the archives of the Moravian Museum in Brno, central Czechoslovakia, they include a requiem, three operas, an oratorio, cantatas, choruses and a singspiel, the official agency said.
Interest in Salieri (1750-1825), a court composer in Vienna who is believed by some to have murdered Mozart, was reawakened by the 1984 film "Amadeus," which depicts Salieri's envy of Mozart.
Musicologist Milos Stedron told Ceteka that the popular view of Salieri as an enemy of true art was distorted.
"An extraordinary composition such as the requiem should tell us something about the true face of the composer," he added.
The scores were part of a collection owned by Count Heinrich Haugwitz, a close friend of Salieri.
"Many of them may have been personally presented by the composer himself, perhaps during a stay at Namest castle," Stedron said, referring to the count's south Moravia residence in Namest Nad Oslavou.
Stedron said he was not aware that any other copies of the requiem existed and that it might be performed at Namest castle as part of a 1989 international music festival in Brno.
Another of the works discovered, an 1804 chorus titled "Piccolo Requiem," may also be performed at the festival.