On today’s date in 2001, the release of a CD of Vivaldi’s oratorio Juditha Triumphans launched an ambitious project to record nearly 450 works of the famous Italian Baroque composer that exist as manuscript scores in the Biblioteca Nazionale in Turin, Italy.
It’s the largest collection of manuscript scores by any 18th-century composer in existence and includes many Vivaldi works unperformed since his lifetime.
Susan Orlando, the director of the recording project, explained how that came to be: “When Vivaldi died in Vienna in 1741, he had debts, so the authorities immediately sealed off his home. We have the inventory that they made. It included no musical manuscripts, but there was a big, empty chest. It seems Vivaldi’s brother had got hold of the music and sold it off.”
Back then, Vivaldi’s scores ended up with various wealthy collectors, but in 1930 the scattered music was consolidated and bequeathed to the library in Turin.
The French label Naïve has released over 60 Vivaldi Edition CDs so far, including 17 Vivaldi operas. More than a dozen additional titles are planned for release by 2028, the year that will mark the 350th anniversary of Vivaldi’s birth.
Music Played in Today's Program
Antonio Vivaldi (1678 – 1741) Sinfonia, fr Juditha Triumphans Academia Montis Regalis; Magdalena Kozena, m.s.; Juditha Maria José Trullu, m.s.; Holofernes Marina Comparato, m.s.; Vagaus Anke Herrmann, s.; Abra Tiziana Carraro, s.; Alessandro De Marchi, cond. Naïve Vivaldi Edition OP-30314
On This Day
1585 - Baptismal date of German composer Heinrich Schütz, in Bad Löstritz;
1835 - French composer, conductor and pianist Camille Saint-Saëns, in Paris;
1914 - American composer Roger Goeb, in Cherokee, Iowa;
1938 - Finnish composer Einojuhani Rautavaara, in Helsinki;
1940 - John Lennon (of the Beatles), in Liverpool, England;
1999 - Jazz vibraphone virtuoso Milt Jackson, 76, in New York City; he was a member of the famous Modern Jazz Quartet;
1826 - Rossini: opera, "The Siege of Corinth," at the Paris Opéra;
1891 - Dvorák: "Requiem," Op. 89, in Birmingham, England;
1896 - Dvorák: String Quartet No. 13 in G, Op. 106, in Prague, by the Bohemian Quartet;
1921 - Janácek: "Taras Bulba" (after Gogol), in Brno;
1955 - Shostakovich: Violin Concerto No. 1, by the Leningrad Philharmonic conducted by Yevgeny Mravinsky, with David Oistrakh the soloist;
1963 - Henze: Symphony No. 4 in Berlin, with the composer conducting;
1980 - Jon Deak: Concerto for Oboe d'amore and Orchestra, by the New York Philharmonic conducted by Zubin Mehta with Thomas Stacy as soloist;
1985 - Anthony Davis: opera "X: The Life and Times of Malcolm X," in Philadelphia; The opera's New York City Opera premiere occurred the following year on September 28, 1986;
1986 - Andrew Lloyd-Webber: musical "Phantom of the Opera," at Her Majesty's Theatre in London; The musical opened on Broadway at the Majestic Theater on January 26, 1988;
1987 - Corigliano: "Campane di Ravello" (Bells of Ravello) for orchestra (a birthday tribute to Sir Georg Solti), in Chicago, with Kenneth Jean conducting;
1992 - David Ott: Symphony No. 3, by the Grand Rapids (Michigan) Symphony, Catherine Comet conducting;
1997 - Robert X. Rodriguez: "Il Lamento di Tristano," by flutist Susan Morris De Jong and guitarist Jeffrey Van, at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis;
1999 - Bolcom: opera "A View From the Bridge," by the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Dennis Russell Davies, cond.
1999 - Michael Torke: symphonic oratorio "Four Seasons," at Avery Fisher Hall in New York, by soloists, chorus, and the New York Philharmonic, Kurt Masur conducting;
1973 - Leonard Bernstein gives the first of six lectures titled "The Unanswered Question," as the Charles Eliot Norton Professor of Poetry at Harvard University.
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About Composers Datebook®
Host John Birge presents a daily snapshot of composers past and present, with timely information, intriguing musical events and appropriate, accessible music related to each.
He has been hosting, producing and performing classical music for more than 25 years. Since 1997, he has been hosting on Minnesota Public Radio's Classical Music Service. He played French horn for the Cincinnati Symphony and Pops Orchestra and performed with them on their centennial tour of Europe in 1995. He was trained at the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, Eastman School of Music and Interlochen Arts Academy.