Antonio Vivaldi

Biography

Born: Mar 4, 1678; Italy   Died: Jul 28, 1741; Austria   Period: Baroque
The creator of hundreds of spirited, extroverted instrumental works, Italian composer Antonio Vivaldi is widely recognized as the master of the Baroque instrumental concerto, which he perfected and popularized more than any of his contemporaries. Vivaldi's kinetic rhythms, fluid melodies, bright instrumental effects, and extensions of instrumental technique make his some of the most enjoyable of Baroque music. He was highly influential among his Read more contemporaries and successors: even as esteemed a figure as Johann Sebastian Bach adapted some of Vivaldi's music. Vivaldi's variable textures and dramatic effects initiated the shift toward what became the Classical style; a deeper understanding of his music begins with the realization that, compared with Bach and even Handel, he was Baroque music's arch progressive. Though not as familiar as his concerti, Vivaldi's stage and choral music is still of value; his sometimes bouncy, sometimes lyrical Gloria in D major (1708) has remained a perennial favorite. His operas were widely performed in his own time.

Details regarding Vivaldi's early life are few. His father was a violinist in the Catherdral of Venice's orchestra and probably Antonio's first teacher. There is much speculation about other teachers, such as Corelli, but no evidence to support this. Vivaldi studied for the priesthood as a young man and was ordained in 1703. He was known for much of his career as "il prete rosso" (the red-haired priest), but soon after his ordination he declined to take on his ecclesiastical duties. Later in life he cited ill health as the reason, but other motivations have been proposed; perhaps Vivaldi simply wanted to explore new opportunties as a composer. It didn't take him long. Landing a job as a violin teacher at a girls' orphanage in Venice (where he would work in one capacity or another during several stretches of his life), he published a set of trio sonatas and another of violin sonatas. Word of his abilities spread around Europe, and in 1711 an Amsterdam publisher brought out, under the title L'estro armonico (Harmonic Inspiration), a set of Vivaldi's concertos for one or more violins with orchestra. These were best sellers (it was this group of concertos that spurred Bach's transcriptions), and Vivaldi followed them up with several more equally successful concerto sets. Perhaps the most prolific of all the great European composers, he once boasted that he could compose a concerto faster than a copyist could ready the individual parts for the players in the orchestra. He began to compose operas, worked from 1718 to 1720 in the court of the German principality of Hessen-Darmstadt, and traveled in Austria and perhaps Bohemia. Throughout his career, he had his choice of commissions from nobility and the highest members of society, the ability to use the best performers, and enough business savvy to try to control the publication of his works, although due to his popularity, many were published without his consent. Later in life Vivaldi was plagued by rumors of a sexual liaison with one of his vocal students, and he was censured by ecclesiastical authorities. His Italian career on the rocks, he headed for Vienna. He died there and was buried as a pauper in 1741, although at the height of his career his publications had earned a comfortable living. Read less

Vivaldi: Dixit Dominus / Mingardo, Agnew, Kopp
Release Date: 06/13/2006   Label: Archiv Produktion (Dg)  
Catalog: 000649402   Number of Discs: 1
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Vivaldi: Cello Sonatas / Ceccato, Accademia Ottoboni
Release Date: 06/24/2014   Label: Zig Zag  
Catalog: 338   Number of Discs: 1
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Vivaldi: The Four Seasons / Anne Akiko Meyers
Release Date: 02/04/2014   Label: eOne  
Catalog: 7790   Number of Discs: 1
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Bach, Vivaldi, Mozart, Leclair, Kodaly, Meyer: Violin Concertos / David Oistrakh
Release Date: 10/14/2008   Label: Berlin Classics  
Catalog: 184612   Number of Discs: 2
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Vivaldi: The Four Seasons / Janine Jansen [blu-ray audio]
Release Date: 02/11/2014   Label: Decca  
Catalog: 001993546   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Concerto for Strings in G major, RV 151 "Alla rustica"

Browse 26-49 of 49 Available Recordings
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  • 26.
    Die Rohre - The Tube / Stuttgarter Kammerorchester
    Label: Tacet   Catalog: 74 Release Date: 05/01/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  George Frideric Handel,  Charles Avison,  Giovanni Battista Sammartini  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra
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  • 27.
    Vivaldi: String Concertos Vol 3 / Simon Standage, Et Al
    Label: Chandos   Catalog: 687 Release Date: 03/25/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Conductor:  Simon Standage
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Collegium Musicum 90
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  • 28.
    The Baroque Experience / Hogwood, Academy Of Ancient Music
    Label: L'oiseau Lyre   Catalog: 33523 Release Date: 10/29/2002   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Giuseppe Torelli,  Arcangelo Corelli  ... 
    Conductor:  Christopher Hogwood
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of Ancient Music
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  • 29.
    Essential Vivaldi - 20 of His Greatest Hits
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 472358 Release Date: 06/11/2002   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Performer:  Lisa Beznosiuk,  Franco Gulli,  Heinz Holliger,  Simon Standage  ... 
    Conductor:  Trevor Pinnock,  Riccardo Chailly,  Vittorio Negri,  Sir Neville Marriner  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Concert,  Bologna Teatro Comunale Orchestra,  Dresden Staatskapelle  ... 
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  • 30.
    Classics For Cats
    Label: Gift Of Music   Catalog: 1038 Release Date: 03/01/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  Franz Joseph Haydn,  George Frideric Handel,  Gioachino Rossini  ... 
    Performer:  Martin Souter,  Martin Spring,  Sara Stowe,  Penelope Martin-Smith  ... 
    Conductor:  Martin Sieghart,  Alexander Titov,  Roy Goodman,  Andreas Sporri  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bamberg Piano Quintet
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  • 31.
    Vivaldi: Concertos / Trevor Pinnock, English Concert
    Label: Archiv Produktion (Dg)   Catalog: 471317 Release Date: 10/09/2001   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Performer:  Jane Coe,  Lisa Beznosiuk,  Simon Standage,  Micaela Comberti  ... 
    Conductor:  Trevor Pinnock
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Concert
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  • 32.
    Commuter Classics - Drive Time A.M.
    Label: Sono Luminus   Catalog: 90018 Release Date: 03/06/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel,  Kit Higginson,  Traditional,  Gaspar Sanz  ... 
    Performer:  Danny Mallon,  Becky Baxter,  Rachel Barton Pine,  Samuel Sanders  ... 
    Conductor:  John Hsu,  Bernard Labadie,  Jörg-Michael Schwarz
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Kammermusiker,  Alcatraz Ensemble,  KITKA  ... 
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  • 33.
    Vivaldi: Famous Concerti
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8554040 Release Date: 10/06/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Performer:  Zoltán Tokos,  Béla Sztankovics,  Raphael Wallfisch,  Stefan Schilli  ... 
    Conductor:  Alberto Martini,  Jaroslav Krcek,  Nicholas Kraemer,  Piergiorgio Morandi
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Budapest Strings,  Accademia I Filarmonici,  Capella Istropolitana  ... 
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  • 34.
    Vivaldi: Four Seasons, Etc / Pinnock, Standage, Et Al
    Label: Dg Panorama   Catalog: 469220 Release Date: 09/26/2000   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Performer:  Jakob Lindberg,  Nigel North,  James Tyler,  Philip Pickett  ... 
    Conductor:  Trevor Pinnock
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Concert
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  • 35.
    Vivaldi: Concerti Della Natura / Sonatori De La Gioiosa Marca
    Label: Erato   Catalog: 80225 Release Date: 06/06/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Performer:  Giancarlo Rado,  Roberto Falcone,  Giorgio Fava,  Giuliano Carmignola  ... 
    Conductor:  Giuliano Carmignola
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Sonatori de la Gioiosa Marca
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  • 36.
    Vivaldi, Wolf, Puccini, Paganini, Et Al / Sejong Soloists
    Label: Samsung Classics   Catalog: 81 Release Date: 05/30/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Niccolò Paganini,  Giacomo Puccini  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  International Sejong Soloists
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  • 37.
    Die Rohre - The Tube / Stuttgarter Kammerorchester
    Label: Tacet   Catalog: 74 Release Date: 10/15/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel,  Charles Avison,  Giovanni Battista Sammartini,  Luigi Boccherini  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra
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  • 38.
    The Perfect Vivaldi
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 67219 Release Date: 10/05/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Performer:  William Bennett,  Niall Brown,  André Saint-Clivier,  Aimee Auriacombe  ... 
    Conductor:  George Malcolm,  Jonathan Rees,  Louis Auriacombe,  Sir Neville Marriner  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra,  Scottish Ensemble,  Toulouse Chamber Orchestra  ... 
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  • 39.
    Vivaldi: 9 String Concertos / I Musici
    Label: Philips   Catalog: 411035 Release Date: 08/30/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  I Musici
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  • 40.
    Vivaldi: Concertos For Strings / Dubeau, La Pieta
    Label: Analekta   Catalog: 23128 Release Date: 08/25/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Performer:  Angèle Dubeau
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  La Pieta
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  • 41.
    Vivaldi: Concerto For 2 Mandolins, Etc / Pickett, Hogwood
    Label: L'oiseau Lyre   Catalog: 455703 Release Date: 10/14/1997   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Performer:  Monica Huggett,  Susan Sheppard,  Elizabeth Wilcock,  Catherine Mackintosh  ... 
    Conductor:  Christopher Hogwood,  Joshua Rifkin,  Philip Pickett
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of Ancient Music,  Bach Ensemble,  New London Consort
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  • 42.
    Vivaldi: Cantatas, Concertos / Mingardo, Alessandrini
    Label: Naive   Catalog: 30181 Release Date: 09/09/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Conductor:  Rinaldo Alessandrini
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Concerto Italiano
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  • 43.
    Vivaldi: Concerti For Strings / Alberto Martini
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8553742 Release Date: 05/13/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Conductor:  Alberto Martini
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Accademia I Filarmonici
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  • 44.
    Vivaldi: Eleven Concertos / Bylsma, Lamon, Tafelmusik
    Label: Sony Classical Vivarte Series   Catalog: 62719 Release Date: 04/01/1997   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Performer:  Jeanne Lamon,  Washington McClain,  John Abberger,  David Greenberg  ... 
    Conductor:  Jeanne Lamon
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Tafelmusik
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  • 45.
    Vivaldi: Concertos 'con Molti Istromenti'
    Label: Archiv Produktion (Dg)   Catalog: 447301 Release Date: 02/01/1996   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Performer:  Milan Turkovic,  Jaap ter Linden,  Miles Golding,  Elizabeth Wilcock  ... 
    Conductor:  Trevor Pinnock
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Concert
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  • 46.
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 946075 Release Date: 04/19/1994   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Performer:  Michel Schwalbé,  Thomas Brandis
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
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  • 47.
    Strings - The Definitive Collection / Guildhall Ensemble
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 61275 Release Date: 07/13/1993   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Pachelbel,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Antonio Vivaldi,  Roman Hoffstetter  ... 
    Performer:  Paul Nicholson
    Conductor:  Paul Nicholson
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Guildhall String Ensemble
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  • 48.
    Vivaldi: Four Seasons, Etc / Nishizaki, Gunzenhauser
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8550056 Release Date: 06/30/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi
    Performer:  Takako Nishizaki
    Conductor:  Stephen Gunzenhauser
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Capella Istropolitana
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  • 49.
    Albinoni: Adagio;  Pachelbel: Kanon Und Gigue; Etc / Karajan
    Label: Dg Galleria   Catalog: 419046 Release Date: 10/25/1990   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Francesco Manfredini,  Johann Pachelbel,  Antonio Vivaldi,  Arcangelo Corelli  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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