Vivaldi: Red Priest of Venice
An exploration of the life and works of one of the world's most celebrated but long-neglected baroque composers—Antonio Vivaldi
Born in 1678 in the Republic of Venice, Vivaldi had a protégé's childhood, learning the violin from his father—a barber turned violinist—and touring Venice from an early age. At 15 he began to study for the priesthood, and 10 years later he was ordained, becoming il prete rosso—or the red priest, so called for his red hair. Vivaldi's life was full of color: from teaching orphans music lessons to taking part in the vivacious Venetian carnivals. It was also, of course, full of music. He boasted that he could compose a concerto faster than a scribe could copy one, but despite his prolific output the majority of his work had fallen into obscurity by the time of his impoverished death in 1741, only to be rediscovered in the 20th century.
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