Published on Jul 20, 2014
Concerto No. 5 in E-flat major, “La tempesta di mare” (The Sea Storm), RV 253
Il cimento dell’armonia e dell’inventione (The Contest Between Harmony and Invention) is a set of twelve concertos written by Antonio Vivaldi between 1723 and 1725 and published in 1725 as Op. 8. All are for violin solo, strings, and basso continuo. The first four concertos are usually known as The Four Seasons (Le quattro stagioni).
Antonio Lucio Vivaldi (4 March 1678 — 28 July 1741) was an Italian Baroque composer, virtuoso violinist, teacher and cleric. Born in Venice, he was recognized as one of the greatest Baroque composers, and his influence during his lifetime was widespread across Europe. He is known mainly for composing many instrumental concertos, for the violin and a variety of other instruments, as well as sacred choral works and over forty operas. His best-known work is a series of violin concertos known as The Four Seasons.
Ospedale della Pietà in Venice
Many of his compositions were written for the female music ensemble of the Ospedale della Pietà, a home for abandoned children where Vivaldi (who had been ordained as a Catholic priest) was employed from 1703 to 1715 and from 1723 to 1740. Vivaldi also had some success with expensive stagings of his operas in Venice, Mantua and Vienna. After meeting the Emperor Charles VI, Vivaldi moved to Vienna, hoping for preferment. However, the Emperor died soon after Vivaldi’s arrival, and Vivaldi himself died less than a year later in poverty.
After his death, Vivaldi’s music slid into obscurity until a vigorous revival in the 20th century. Today, he ranks among the most popular and widely recorded of Baroque composers, second perhaps only to Johann Sebastian Bach, who himself was deeply influenced by Vivaldi’s work.
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