Antonio Vivaldi

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Vivaldi, Antonio

Vivaldi, Antonio (äntôˈnyō vēvälˈdē), 1678–1741, Italian composer. He was the greatest master of Italian baroque, particularly of violin music and the concerto grosso. Vivaldi received his early training from his father, a violinist at St. Mark's, Venice, and later studied with Giovanni Legrenzi. Ordained a priest in 1703, Vivaldi spent most of his life after 1709 in Venice, teaching and playing the violin and writing music for the Pietà, one of Venice's four music conservatories for orphaned girls. Although he produced quantities of vocal music (including 46 operas), he is remembered chiefly for his instrumental music—sonatas; concerti grossi, including four famous ones known as The Four Seasons; and 447 concertos for violin and other instruments. Vivaldi's style is characterized by driving rhythm, clarity, and lyrical melody. He helped standardize the three-movement concerto form later used by J. S. Bach and others. Vivaldi's brilliant allegros and impassioned slow movements were greatly admired by Bach, who arranged 10 of the solo concertos for other instruments. After Vivaldi's death his music was forgotten, but in the early 20th cent. his works were rediscovered.


See biographies by W. Kolneder (tr. 1971) and A. Kendall (exp. ed. 1989).

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Vivaldi, Antonio


Born Mar. 4, 1678, in Venice; buried July 28, 1741, in Vienna. Italian composer, violinist, and teacher.

Vivaldi studied violin with his father Giovanni Battista Vivaldi and composition with G. Legrenzi. Beginning in 1714 he was the director of the orchestra and choir of the Conservatorio della Pieta in Venice. Vivaldi was the most important representative of 18th-century Italian violin art, establishing the new (dramatized, so-called Lombardy) style of performance. He created the genre of the concerto for solo instruments and was influential in the development of virtuoso violin technique. Vivaldi was a master of the orchestral ensemble concerto—the concerto grosso. He composed operas (about 30), cantatas, symphonies, and more than 460 concertos, including the cycle of four violin concertos entitled “The Four Seasons—” an early example of symphonic program music. Vivaldi also wrote church music and other works.


Rinaldi, M. Antonio Vivaldi. Milan, 1943.
Rinaldi, M. Catalogo numerico tematico delle composizioni di A. Vivaldi. Rome, 1945.
Pincherle, M. Antonio Vivaldi et la musique instrumental, vols. 1-2. Paris, 1948.
Conde. R. de. Vivaldi. Rome. 1967.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
The introductory essay to this edition by Federico Maria Sardelli, who is responsible also for the authoritative study La musica per flauto di Antonio Vivaldi (Studi di musica veneta; Quaderni vivaldiani, 11 [Florence: Leo S.
1-4 in particular, Antonio Vivaldi has been ill-served in terms of reliable editions.
Then comes a long chapter on general matters relating directly to the composer: Vivaldi's career, the musical sources, criteria for dating, the musical forms employed, and the programmatic and descriptive concertos; this last section, exceptionally rich in scope and content, is the bcneficiary of Fertonani's earlier book on the same subject (Antonio Vivaldi: La simbologia musicale nei concerti a programma [Pordenone: Edizioni Studio Tesi, 1992]).
Wednesday features Antonio Vivaldi's "Gloria in Excelsis" cantata performed by Chancel Choir and soloists, accompanied by Bond pipe organ, with Epiphany readings and hymns.
It is indeed true, as the author states in the preface to this book, that "a new biography of Antonio Vivaldi certainly does not require an explanation or .
She's in town to play Antonio Vivaldi's "The Four Seasons" tonight at the Oregon Bach Festival.
This collection of essays represents the outcome of the international conference organized at Poitiers, France on the 250th anniversary of Antonio Vivaldi's death in 1991.
That's because - much as a jazz player might - McGegan enjoys improvising at the keyboard when playing the music of baroque composers such as Antonio Vivaldi or even Johann Sebastian Bach.