The public should know that the genius Mozart liked to imitate domestic cats when he was bored. And it appears that he was bored quite a lot because he was so intelligent. I think intelligence begets boredom. That fact that he expressed his boredom by imitating cats indicates that he was very aware of domestic cats. Did he live with domestic cats? No idea. Apparently he liked to mimic other animals too. This tells me he did not have a cat companion.
Speculatively, he may have suffered from Tourette’s syndrome, a cluster of behavioural abnormalities such as ticks, physical twitches, vocal twitches, obsessive-compulsive disorder and attention deficit hyperactive disorder. If he did have Tourettes it may help explain his moments of madness when imitating a cat.
When rehearsing he might become bored and engage in extravagent behaviour described as leaping “over tables and chairs, meowing and turning somersaults”. And he liked crude, potty jokes and behaving badly. A journalist, Helena Hon, in her The Nuttiest Composers of All Time, referred to Mozart’s ‘low boredom threshold’.
I am told that Mozart wrote a comic song in which a woman responds to her husband’s questions with nothing but meows, until the man had no choice but to meow too. The song is known as ‘The Cat Duet’. In its original German it is called: Nun liebes Weibchen. It has been attributed to Mozart by classical record labels.
It seems to me that he had child-like behavioural traits. This may partly account for his potty jokes and silly behaviour. Perhaps he never grew up because he was a child progigy. Perhaps he felt that he did not have a childhood and became childlike when adult to capture what he’d lost.