The Four Seasons – Winter by Antonio Vivaldi

Title: the Four Seasons – Winter
Date: 1723

Le quattro Stagioni (the Four Seasons) is four violin concerti composed by Antonio Vivaldi. Each concerto gives a musical impression to a season of the year and were written around 1716-17. They were a revolution in musical conception as Vivaldi represented flowing creeks, singing birds buzzing flies, storms, frozen landscapes and warm winter fires. Unusually for the time, Vivaldi published the concerti with accompanying sonnets, possibly by the composer himself, that eluded what is in the spirit of each season that his music intended to evoke. Vivaldi divided each concerto into three movements (fast-slow-fast) and similarly with each linked sonnet.

Winter Sonnet

To tremble from cold in the icy snow,
In the harsh breath of a horrid wind;
To run, stamping one’s feet every moment,
Our teeth chattering in the extreme cold

Largo
Before the fire to pass peaceful,
Contented days while the rain outside pours down.

Allegro
We tread the icy path slowly and cautiously,
for fear of tripping and falling.
Then turn abruptly, slip, crash on the ground and,
rising, hasten on across the ice lest it cracks up.
We feel the chill north winds course through the home
despite the locked and bolted doors…
this is winter, which nonetheless
brings its own delights.

Composer: Antonio Lucio Vivaldi
Movement: Baroque
Born: 4 March 1678, Venice, Italy
Italian
Died: 28 July 1741, Vienna, Austria

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