Compiled by Joe Sugarman


Is Justin Bieber taking a page out of the W.A. Mozart playbook?

At first glance, pop star Justin Bieber and composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart would appear to have absolutely nothing in common. But take a closer look. There are some remarkable similarities—and, well, a few significant differences—between the 21st- and 18th-century bad boys of the music world.

Bieber: Begins playing drums at 2, writing songs by 9, an Internet musical sensation at 12
Mozart: Begins playing clavier at 4, composing by 5, a touring musical sensation at 6

Bieber: Early success propelled by overbearing mother
Mozart: Early success propelled by overbearing father

Bieber: Reportedly dished out $75,000 in dollar bills at a Miami strip club
Mozart: “If I had to marry all those with whom I have jested, I should have two hundred wives at least!” 

Bieber: Wax statues on display at Madame Tussauds in London, Amsterdam, and former New York, where it was recently removed due to “excessive groping”
Mozart: Wax statues on display at Madame Tussauds in London, Hong Kong and Vienna

Bieber: March 2013, faints backstage at a London performance after complaining of breathing problems
Mozart: Suffers from frequent fainting spells and headaches in the year before his death

Bieber: “Whenever I’m sick, my doctor jokes that I have Bieber Fever!”
Mozart: Likely died from rheumatic fever

Bieber: Frequent target of Internet bloggers, gossip columnists, paparazzi
Mozart: Frequent target of gossipers, creditors, rival composers

Bieber: 49.6 million followers on Twitter
Mozart: 100 followers in 2012 for the first-ever live Twitter feed of a performance of “The Marriage of Figaro” by the Welsh National Opera 

Bieber: “So remember, this is Bieber’s world. You’re just living in it. Bieber or die.”
Mozart: “To talk well and eloquently is a very great art, but that an equally great one is to know the right moment to stop.” 

Bieber: Famous for mop haircut, of which he appears rather vain
Mozart: “A profusion of fine, fair hair of which he was rather vain.” (According to the tenor and friend of Mozart, Michael Kelly.) 

Bieber: Earned $58 million in 2013
Mozart: Earned about 10,000 florins a year—roughly $40,000 today

Bieber: Reportedly blows through $1 million a month
Mozart: Died penniless

Bieber: Temporarily dumped Selena Gomez for a Victoria’s Secret supermodel
Mozart: Temporarily dumped by (future wife) Constanze Weber for allowing another man to measure her calves in a parlor game

Bieber: “I don’t give a #$@& what anybody thinks about me!”
Mozart: “I pay no attention whatever to anybody's praise or blame. I simply follow my own feelings.” 

Bieber: Accused of throwing eggs at his neighbor’s house
Mozart: Two eggs over easy, with hash browns and toast, $6.45, Café Mozart, Washington, D.C.

Bieber: Seen as a genius by his generation
Mozart: Seen as a genius by his generation and for generations to come.