A city built on an archipelago of 117 islets, Venice is remarkable in many ways. Unsullied by modern traffic, its buildings retain much of their historic character and something of the magic of the place is reflected in our tour which visits a number of the principal sites and reflects the changing light, which casts a spell of its own. Violinist, priest and most prolific composer, Antonio Vivaldi was born in Venice in 1678 and spent most of his life there, associated for much of the time with the Ospedale della Pietà, a charitable institution for girls, with a strong musical tradition. The music for the tour is taken from his collection of twelve concertos, Il Cimento dell'Armonia e dell'Inventione (The Contest of Harmony and Invention), published in Paris in 1725.Venice is one of the most famous of all cities, its buildings reflecting its former commercial importance and wealth. Its canals and its position at the head of the Adriatic have given it a unique character that has continued to attract visitors. The music included here is either associated directly with Venice or familiar there in the heyday of the Serenissima. It includes music by the Venetian composers Vivaldi and Marcello, and by Domenico Scarlatti, Neapolitan by birth, who was sent to study there by his father.
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