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Bassoon Concerto in C Major RV 472

Antonio Vivaldi (b. 1678 - d. 1741)

Peter Whelan

Peter Whelan

Composer
Antonio Vivaldi (b. 1678 - d. 1741)
Composition Year
1730
Work Movements
1. Allegro non molto
2. Andante molto
3. Allegro
Artists
Arcangelo (Sophie Gent, James Toll [violins], Rebecca Jones [viola], Sarah McMahon [cello], Tim Amherst [bass], David Miller [lute], Jonathan Cohen [harpsichord,director]), Peter Whelan [bassoon]

Programme Note Writer:
© Norah O' Leary

In the 1920s, a remarkable collection of Vivaldi manuscripts, officially entitled the Foà-Giordano Collection but known generally as the Turin Manuscripts, was discovered in Italy containing several hundred works. Most of the works represented in the collection are in the composer’s own hand and were previously unknown to both scholars and performers. Among the most astonishing discoveries was a set of thirty-nine concerti for solo bassoon, strings, and continuo – thirty-seven complete works and two fragments. These works represent more than ten percent of all of Vivaldi’s solo concerti and rank second only to his violin concerti in number. Considering the small number of solo concertos for the bassoon from the baroque or any other period the sheer quantity of Vivaldi's compositions for this instrument is remarkable.

Vivaldi wrote thirteen bassoon concerti in C major. The quicker outer movements are in ritornello form, reappearances of the opening tutti material is separated by episodes in which the soloist is featured. The opening tutti of RV 472 is unusual in that it presents two different motives and in the following tutti a third motive is introduced. The interrupting tutti are usually incomplete and in other closely related keys while solo part is mostly completely unrelated. The slow movement is reminiscent of an aria with a scene-setting opening, a theme that will later return as a coda. The final movement contains only three episodes displaying the prowess of the soloist accompanied by the continuo instruments. Fragments of the tutti material is heard in this accompaniment but elsewhere the relationship between the tutti and episodes is no more than vestigial. Except for some mischief, the technical demands of RV 472 are much more humane than the composers other concerti and overall it is extremely melodic. 

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Bassoon Concerto in C Major RV 472

Composer: Antonio Vivaldi (b. 1678 - d. 1741)
Performance date: Monday 29th June 2015
Venue: St. Brendan's Church, Bantry, Co Cork, Ireland

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Composer Antonio Vivaldi (b. 1678 - d. 1741)
Work Title Bassoon Concerto in C Major RV 472
Composition Year 1730
Work Movements 1. Allegro non molto
2. Andante molto
3. Allegro
Artist(s) Arcangelo (Sophie Gent, James Toll [violins], Rebecca Jones [viola], Sarah McMahon [cello], Tim Amherst [bass], David Miller [lute], Jonathan Cohen [harpsichord,director]), Peter Whelan [bassoon]
Performance Date Monday 29th June 2015
Performance Venue St. Brendan's Church, Bantry, Co Cork, Ireland
Event Coffee Concert
Duration 00:10:40
Recording Engineer Richard McCullough, RTÉ lyric fm
Instrumentation Category Small Mixed Ensemble
Instrumentation bsn (2vn,va,vc, db, lute, hpd)
Programme Note Writer © Norah O' Leary

In the 1920s, a remarkable collection of Vivaldi manuscripts, officially entitled the Foà-Giordano Collection but known generally as the Turin Manuscripts, was discovered in Italy containing several hundred works. Most of the works represented in the collection are in the composer’s own hand and were previously unknown to both scholars and performers. Among the most astonishing discoveries was a set of thirty-nine concerti for solo bassoon, strings, and continuo – thirty-seven complete works and two fragments. These works represent more than ten percent of all of Vivaldi’s solo concerti and rank second only to his violin concerti in number. Considering the small number of solo concertos for the bassoon from the baroque or any other period the sheer quantity of Vivaldi's compositions for this instrument is remarkable.

Vivaldi wrote thirteen bassoon concerti in C major. The quicker outer movements are in ritornello form, reappearances of the opening tutti material is separated by episodes in which the soloist is featured. The opening tutti of RV 472 is unusual in that it presents two different motives and in the following tutti a third motive is introduced. The interrupting tutti are usually incomplete and in other closely related keys while solo part is mostly completely unrelated. The slow movement is reminiscent of an aria with a scene-setting opening, a theme that will later return as a coda. The final movement contains only three episodes displaying the prowess of the soloist accompanied by the continuo instruments. Fragments of the tutti material is heard in this accompaniment but elsewhere the relationship between the tutti and episodes is no more than vestigial. Except for some mischief, the technical demands of RV 472 are much more humane than the composers other concerti and overall it is extremely melodic.