Mozart: The Man Behind the Music

Book Author & Illustrator Donovan Bixley
Rights Available World excl. NZ and Chinese

Child prodigy, genius, freak, a man who lived frivolously and died a pauper… The myths surrounding Mozart, composer of some of the world’s most sublime music, have long overtaken the known facts of his life.

Now, in this charming and very personal tribute, artist Donovan Bixley offers a portrait of the composer that will forever change the way he is viewed. In nearly 100 original drawings and paintings, accompanied by text based on the many letters that he wrote during his life, beginning with the delightful, if misspelt, letters he wrote as a thirteen-year-old boy travelling in Italy with his father.

Like his successful Much Ado About Shakespeare, Bixley brings Mozart to life with humour but also reflects the turmoil of the times in which he lived.

About the Author
Donovan Bixley
is an illustrator and writer for over 120 books, published in 31 countries, and translated into 19 languages. This includes his illustration work for the international series Dinosaur Rescue. He has had two books chosen for the White Raven selection, and numerous other awards. Bestsellers include the recent Maui series, and Much Ado About Shakespeare. He wrote and illustrated the Flying Furballs series, winner of the 2018 Tatoulu children’s choice award in France.


Author Video

Upstart Press





Non Fiction

Age range
5+ years

Publication Date

Rights Available:
World excl. NZ and Chinese

Rights Sold:
Complex and Simplified Chinese

Rights Agents:


Kevin Chapman, Upstart Press

Contact Upstart Press about this book

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The drawings are the star of this beautiful book, but Donovan also brings Mozart to life with gentle humour in his engaging text.

NZ Book Lovers

Donovan’s distinctive illustrations show the fun, boredom and horror of Mozart’s life so expressively that they tell the story in equal part with the text. The bright caricatures are interspersed with pencil drawings which perfectly balance the humour and the seriousness of the story.

Read NZ