Music Appreciation and History
Note to Parents: If you are using the Easter/Pentecost Curriculum, you are probably hearing Springs regularly and jumping around the house, to the beat of course, with your little ones. Your Homeschool Manual or Family Songbook explains how to use Vivaldi's Four Seasons for a discernment exercise. Here are some child-sized bites of information on Vivaldi to use with your child for further enrichment!
READ TO ME Antonio Vivaldi lived from 1678 – 1741 which is about 300 years ago. He was born in Venice, Italy. (see map below) Vivaldi is a Baroque composer, because he lived in the Italian Baroque Period. When he was a little boy, Vivaldi was sick with asthma. There was no medicine for asthma back then, and Antonio could not play outside with the other children. So, his father taught him to play the violin. Antonio was very good and performed in concerts with his father throughout Venice.
READ TO ME When, he grew up, Antonio became a priest. Everyone called him "The Red Priest". Can you guess why? It was because he had red hair! You can't tell that from his pictures, because back then, men wore white wigs for formal events. That was the style! Unfortunately, Antonio could not continue in the normal life of a priest, because his asthma was getting worse. Sometimes he couldn't breathe and it was very difficult and dangerous for him to say Mass. What could he do?
READ TO ME Antonio served God in a different way. He worked on writing beautiful music, especially music for his instrument, the violin. He became the head of the Conservatory of the Ospedale della Pieta which was an orphanage for over 6,000 girls. These girls were given a good education at the orphanage. One of the most important subjects at their school was music. Antonio Vivaldi wrote over 400 concertos for his students and people came from all around to hear them play!
LINKS FOR Antonio Vivaldi
►Classics for Kids for a radio show about Vivaldi with an online quiz.
►Dallas Symphony Orchestra for a brief bio and great audio samples on the composer.
OTHER RESOURCES PARENTS CAN USE
► I Vivaldi by Janice and Tom Shefelman is an engaging book about Antonio's Life. Read a review here. Check your library too!
► Vivaldi's Ring of Mystery is part of the Classical Kids audio story series. Read more about these products here. Often available at local libraries.
► Classical Kids Live has live performances of Vivaldi's Ring of Mystery. If you are lucky enough to have one playing in your area, don't miss it!