Antonio Vivaldi

Antonio Vivaldi

Real Name:
Antonio Lucio Vivaldi
Profile:
Born March 04 1678, Sestiere di San Marco, Repùblica Vèneta, Italy
Died July 28 1741, Kärntnertor, Vienna, Austria

Vivaldi's career as a violinist and composer was almost inevitable. His father was Giovanni Battista Vivaldi, a founder of the Sovvegno dei musicisti di Santa Cecilia, an early musician's collective, who's President was the Baroque operatic composer and tutor Giovanni Legrenzi. As a youth, touring and performing around Venice in accompaniment on the violin with his father, Vivaldi is likely to have been influenced by Legrenzi, who had become maestro di cappella at St. Mark's Basilica in 1681.

A redhead, like his father, Vivaldi took up the course of attaining a priesthood in 1693 and became ordained in 1703, referred to by those around him as "Il Pretto Rossi" because of his red hair. However, by late 1703 he was unable to maintain his practice in the priesthood due to ill health and sought employment as a tutor of music, retaining his reverential title.

By 1704 Vivaldi was working as maestro of violin in Venice at the orphanage of the Devout Hospital of Mercy, an institution known as Conservatorio dell'Ospedale della Pietà, providing shelter to orphaned and abandoned children. Here the boys were taught a trade, whilst the girls were given a musical education. The talented were selected for the conservatory's orchestra & choir, which gained high regard both in Venice and abroad. Vivaldi used this period to write the majority of his concertos, cantatas and arias.

The institute provided an ideal environment for Vivaldi to explore the avenues of the ritornello form. The first of his works were published in 1705, a second Opus in 1709. His third Opus, published in Amsterdam in 1711, gained Vivaldi enthusiastic attention throughout Europe – followed by a fourth Opus in 1714. He became Musical Director of the Pietà's institute in 1716 and was contracted to provide two concerti a month for the orchestra. Papers from the Pietà's history show that Vivaldi produced 140 concerti between 1723 and 1733.

In 1714 Vivaldi took on the role of impresario of the theater Sant'Angelo in Venice, presenting "Orlando finto pazzo", "Nerone fatto Cesare" and, despite earlier censorship, "Arsilda Regina di Ponto" in which the female lead (Arsilda) falls in love with another woman (Lisea), who is disguised as a man. Vivaldi's operatic style caused both outrage and acclaim. For three years he produced operatic work for the governor of Mantua, Prince Philip of Hesse-Darmstadt. He then moved to Milan and then Rome in 1722, performing for Pope Benedict XIII. It is in this period that Vivaldi consolidated what was to become one of his most popular works "The Four Seasons", eventually published within a collection of twelve compositions "Il Cimento dell'armonia e dell'inventione" in 1725.

Vivaldi had moved in high circles at this point, writing a wedding cantata for Louis XV and "La Cetra", a dedication to Viennese Emperor Charles VI who knighted the composer and invited him to Vienna. By 1730 Vivaldi's style and popularity had waned and he sold up much of the rights to his work and relocated to Vienna, accompanied by his father. He took residence in a four-story house known as "Satlerisch Haus" [Saddle-maker's House], run by Maria Agathe Wahler the widow of the saddlemaker. The property was situated above the Kärntnertor, one of eight fortification gates surrounding Vienna, close to the Kärntnertortheater where Vivaldi began to stage operas such as "Farnace" in 1737.

It is likely that Vivaldi was to take up a position in the court of Charles VI but, when the emperor suddenly died in 1740 – reputedly of mushroom poisoning, Vivaldi was left stranded without royal support or full remuneration. His health quickly declined and his asthmatic history took its toll some nine months later. Vivaldi died of 'internal infection' at his home in Vienna. He was given a simple burial in the cemetery of Spitaller Gottesacker following a funeral at St. Stephen's Cathedral, where Joseph Haydn was then a choirboy.
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Antonio Vivaldi Discography

Albums

MMS-56 Vivaldi* Les Quatre Saisons Guilde Internationale Du Disque MMS-56 France 1950 Sell This Version
PL-7420, PL 7420, 7420 A. Vivaldi* L'Estro Armonico 12 Concerto For String Orchestra, Opus 3 (Album) Vox (6), Vox (6), Vox (6) PL-7420, PL 7420, 7420 US 1952 Sell This Version
PL 7990 Vivaldi*, Orchestra Da Camera Di Milano, Edwin Loehrer Vivaldi*, Orchestra Da Camera Di Milano, Edwin Loehrer - Serenata A Tre (La Ninfa E Il Pastore)(LP) VOX (6) PL 7990 UK 1953 Sell This Version
LX 3100, LX.3100 Vivaldi*, Marcello*, Ernest Ansermet Conducting L'Orchestre De La Suisse Romande Vivaldi*, Marcello*, Ernest Ansermet Conducting L'Orchestre De La Suisse Romande - Bassoon Concerto In D Minor / Oboe Concerto In C Minor(10", Mono) Decca, Decca LX 3100, LX.3100 UK 1953 Sell This Version
33CX1170 Vivaldi*, I Musici Vivaldi*, I Musici - Four Concertos(LP, Mono) Columbia 33CX1170 UK 1954 Sell This Version
WL 5341 Vivaldi* - Nouvel Orchestre De Chambre De Paris, André Jouve Vivaldi* - Nouvel Orchestre De Chambre De Paris, André Jouve - Concerto In A Minor For Bassoon / Concerto In F Major For Flute / Concerto In G Minor ("For The Dresden Orchestra") / Concerto In D Minor For Oboe(LP, Mono) Westminster WL 5341 US 1954 Sell This Version
36010 Bach*Vivaldi* - Nathan Milstein Bach*Vivaldi* - Nathan Milstein - Bach: Two Violin Concertos, No. 1 In A Minor, No. 2 In E Major (Bwv. 1041/2), Nathan Milstein, Vivaldi: Two Violin Concertos, In D Minor And A Major (F. I Nos. 28 & 39)(LP, Album) Angel Records 36010 US 1955 Sell This Version
STE 90 099 Antonio Vivaldi Die Vier Jahrenszeiten (I Concerti Delle Stagioni)(LP) Electrola STE 90 099 Germany 1955 Sell This Version
LHMV-26 Antonio Vivaldi, Virtuosi Di Roma "Collegium Musicum Italicum", Renato Fasano Antonio Vivaldi, Virtuosi Di Roma "Collegium Musicum Italicum", Renato Fasano - The Seasons(LP) RCA Victor LHMV-26 US 1955 Sell This Version
S 06.640 R Vivaldi* - John Corigliano (2), Orchestre Philharmonique De New-York*, Guido Cantelli Vivaldi* - John Corigliano (2), Orchestre Philharmonique De New-York*, Guido Cantelli - Las Estaciones, Op. 8 (Album) Columbia Masterworks S 06.640 R France 1956 Sell This Version
33 - QCX - 10180 I Musici, Félix Ayo, Bruno Giuranna, Enzo Altobelli, Arcangelo Corelli, Antonio Vivaldi, Giovan Battista Martini* I Musici, Félix Ayo, Bruno Giuranna, Enzo Altobelli, Arcangelo Corelli, Antonio Vivaldi, Giovan Battista Martini* - Arcangelo Corelli / Antonio Vivaldi / Padre G. B. Martini(LP, Album) Columbia 33 - QCX - 10180 Italy 1956 Sell This Version
2M 025 - 16.416 Antonio Vivaldi Les Quatre Saisons(LP) Music For Pleasure 2M 025 - 16.416 France 1956 Sell This Version
ABL 3182, ABL.3182 Vivaldi*, I Musici Vivaldi*, I Musici - From "Il Cimento Dell'Armonia E Dell'Invenzione" Op. 8 (Album) Philips, Philips ABL 3182, ABL.3182 UK 1957 Sell This Version
H-71022-B Antonio Vivaldi Concertos For Violins/ Concertos For Piccolo(LP, Album) Nonesuch Records H-71022-B US 1957 Sell This Version
KCL-9017, 9017 Purcell*, Vivaldi*, Haydn* Purcell*, Vivaldi*, Haydn* - Music For Trumpet And Orchestra (Album) Kapp Records, Kapp Records KCL-9017, 9017 US 1958 Sell This Version
835 002 AY, AA 835 002.2 Y Vivaldi*, I Musici Vivaldi*, I Musici - 4 Concerti Con Titoli - Il Sospetto / L'Inquietudine / L'Amoroso / Il Riposo (Album) Philips, Philips 835 002 AY, AA 835 002.2 Y Netherlands 1958 Sell This Version
PL 10.740 Vivaldi* 4 Bassoon Concertos(LP) VOX (6) PL 10.740 US 1958 Sell This Version
CND 42, C.N.D. S 42 Antonio Vivaldi - Orchestre De Chambre Paul Kuentz Antonio Vivaldi - Orchestre De Chambre Paul Kuentz - Les Quatres Saisons(LP) Club National Du Disque, Le Club Des Jeunesses Musicales De France CND 42, C.N.D. S 42 France 1958 Sell This Version
LPA 1007 Antonio Vivaldi - Aladar Janes, Roberto Benaglio Antonio Vivaldi - Aladar Janes, Roberto Benaglio - Stabat Mater / Kyrie(LP, Album) Angelicum LPA 1007 Italy 1958 Sell This Version
U116 Mendelssohn*, Franck*, Bach*, Vivaldi* Mendelssohn*, Franck*, Bach*, Vivaldi* - Basic Library Of The World's Greatest Music - Album No. 16(LP + Box) Standard Reference Works Publishing Company U116 US 1958 Sell This Version
LPA 1002 Antonio Vivaldi, Richard Schumacher (2) Antonio Vivaldi, Richard Schumacher (2) - Concerto F XII N. 13 / F XII N. 17 / F XII N. 4 / F XII N. 3(LP, Album) Angelicum LPA 1002 Italy 1958 Sell This Version
LPE 17 160 Joh. Seb. Bach* - Antonio Vivaldi - David* und Igor Oistrach, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Franz Konwitchny* Joh. Seb. Bach* - Antonio Vivaldi - David* und Igor Oistrach, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Franz Konwitchny* - Konzert Für Zwei Violinen Und Orchester D-Moll BWV 1043 / Concerto Grosso A-Moll Op.3 Nr.8 Für Zwei Violinen Und Streichorchester ETERNA, ETERNA LPE 17 160 Germany 1959 Sell This Version
ALP 1234 Antonio Vivaldi ; Virtuosi Di Roma*, Renato Fasano Antonio Vivaldi ; Virtuosi Di Roma*, Renato Fasano - The Four Seasons (Album) His Master's Voice ALP 1234 UK 1959 Sell This Version
A 01239 L A. Vivaldi*, David Oistrakh*, Isaac Stern, J. S. Bach*, The Philadelphia Orchestra A. Vivaldi*, David Oistrakh*, Isaac Stern, J. S. Bach*, The Philadelphia Orchestra - Concerto For Two Violins And String Orchestra In A Minor (Album) Philips A 01239 L Netherlands 1959 Sell This Version
STPL 511.480 Vivaldi*, Gli Accademici Di Milano Vivaldi*, Gli Accademici Di Milano - The Four Seasons / Les Quatre Saisons, From "Il Cimento Dell'Armonia E Dell'Invenzione", Op. 8 VOX (6) STPL 511.480 US 1959 Sell This Version