Art and Entertainment

Antonio Vivaldi

Centuries-Old Vivaldi Opera Found in Germany

May 24, 2008 11:00 AM
by Liz Colville
A Vivaldi opera gathered dust in an archive in Germany for more than 270 years before being discovered by an orchestra director from Prague.

30-Second Summary

Vivaldi’s lost opera “Argippo” had not been performed in 278 years when it was uncovered by Ondrej Macek in 2006, writes the Prague Daily Monitor.

Before Macek’s discovery in an archive in the Bavaria region of Germany, all that was left of “Argippo” was a booklet that had accompanied the premier of the opera in Prague in 1730. It listed the opera’s performers and its libretto.

Macek, who is a harpsichordist and conducts a Baroque orchestra, Hofmusici, specializes in lesser-known Baroque composers, but is using “Argippo” to help music patrons “rediscover” Vivaldi, who is best known not for his 50 operas, but for the four violin concertos “The Four Seasons.”

Macek tracked down the troupe that originally performed “Argippo” centuries ago to Regensburg, Germany. It was in Regensburg’s local archives that Vivaldi’s sheet music turned up—but only two-thirds of it. Macek composed the rest.

Macek directed the world premiere of “Argippo” on May 3 at Prague Castle, and the opera is soon to be performed again in Venice, the birthplace of Vivaldi.

Headline Link: ‘A superstar returns’

Background: Searching for Vivaldi in the ‘Anonymous’ section

Key Players: Antonio Vivaldi, The Hofmusici Ensemble of Prague

Antonio Vivaldi

Related Topics: Vivaldi’s repertoire expands with 20th century discovery


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