A composition by Vivaldi is identified by RV number, which refers to its place in the “Ryom-Verzeichnis” or “Répertoire des oeuvres d’Antonio Vivaldi,” a catalog created in the twentieth century by the musicologist Peter Ryom.
Le quattro stagioni (The Four Seasons) of 1723 is his most famous work. Part of Il cimento dell’armonia e dell’inventione (“The Contest between Harmony and Invention”), it depicts moods and scenes from each of the four seasons. This work has been described as an outstanding instance of pre-nineteenth-century program music.
Vivaldi wrote more than 500 other concertos. About 350 of these are for solo instrument and strings, of which 230 are for violin, the others being for bassoon, cello, oboe, flute, viola d’amore, recorder, lute, or mandolin. About forty concertos are for two instruments and strings and about thirty are for three or more instruments and strings.
As well as about forty-six operas, Vivaldi composed a large body of sacred choral music. Other works include sinfonias, about ninety sonatas and chamber music.
Some sonatas for flute, published as Il Pastor Fido, have been erroneously attributed to Vivaldi, but were composed by Nicolas Chédeville.
List of Important Works
- More than 40 operas, more than 20 survived, including: Ottoneub Villa (1713); L’Olimpiade (1734); Catone in Utica (1737); etc.
- Instrumental Concertos
- More than 500 concertos, including 49 Concerti Grossi, 228 for Violin; The Four Seasons (1725); etc.
- Sacred Music
- Oratorio Juditha Triumphans (1716); 3 Glorias, Stabat Mater, Nisi Dominus, Beatus Vir, Magnificat, Dixit Dominus, etc.
- Orchestra: Sinfonias
- Chamber Music: 73 sonatas for different instruments
- Secular Cantatas, Serenades