Vivaldi, Antonio (Lucio)
- Michael Talbot
- , revised by Nicholas Lockey
(b Venice, 4 March 1678; d Vienna, 27/8 July 1741). Italian composer. The most original and influential Italian composer of his generation, he laid the foundations for the mature Baroque concerto. His contributions to musical style, violin technique, and the practice of orchestration were substantial, and he was a pioneer of orchestral programme music.
Vivaldi’s father Giovanni Battista (1655–1736), a tailor’s son, was born in Brescia. He moved with his widowed mother in 1666 to Venice, where he practised as a barber before becoming a professional violinist in early adulthood. Ten children, of whom Antonio was the second-eldest (a recently uncovered elder sister having died at less than two years of age), are known to have been born to his union with Camilla Calicchio (1653–1728), a tailor’s daughter, whom he married in June 1676. None of Antonio’s brothers and sisters became musicians, although Francesco (...