Vivaldi and Venice

Antonio Vivaldi

The baroque revolution

Today we’re going to talk about one of the most important composers from Italian Baroque: Antonio Vivaldi. And so we’ll travel to marvelous Venice, his hometown and one of the most important cities in the history of opera.

We’ll start today’s show explaining the three reasons why opera came to Venice in the middle of the 17th century and became a true phenomenon for the masses. To do so, we’ll take a gondola to visit some of the most important spots in what was the arrival of opera to this city. We’ll also perform musical experiments and talk to expert musicologist Pier Giuseppe Gillio.

Then we’ll head to the wonderful Teatro Olimpico di Vicenza, the first enclosed theatre in the world, to understand what theatres were like before opera exploded on the scene as a fashionable spectacle and to see how theatres alla italiana were born and proliferated in Venice.

With the great French countertenor Philippe Jaroussky, one of the big stars of baroque music, we’ll chat about the DNA of Vivaldi’s music while we sing some of his most famous melodies, leading us to discover that all of the opera that he produced is extraordinary. While at the piano, we’ll also analyze the typical structure in all of Vivaldi’s operas.

With Venice as an unbeatable backdrop, we will discover that Vivaldi was not just an excellent musician, but also a theatre impresario who revolutionized operatic spectacles. And of course, whenever revolutions and changes come about, there are always detractors there to criticize because, as the wise Jorge Wagensberg explains to us, man has always been afraid of changes and revolutions and Vivaldi signified, with a doubt, a decisive step forward in the history of opera.

Concert: "Jaroussky vs. Vivaldi" L'Auditori de Barcelona, 2014

Pier Giuseppe Gillio
Philippe Jaroussky
Jorge Wagensberg