Giuseppe Verdi - Messa da Requiem

Although Requiem was a religious work, it was presented more in concert halls than in churches. Giuseppe Verdi wrote the famous Requiem in honour of his close friend, Alessandro Manzoni, the great Italian poet, writer, and humanist, who died in 1873. It is a powerful fusion of intense drama and passion, with moments of reverent simplicity. Verdi conducted the first performance at St. Mark's Church in Milan on May 22, 1874, the first anniversary of Manzoni's death. Revolutionary composition Verdi's Requiem has been revolutionary in two respects: First, because while the traditional requiem is a prayer of the living for the dead, Verdi's work was a function as much for the living as for the dead. As Verdi would expect, it's a dramatic, theatrical play. Written for four solo voices (soprano, mezzo-soprano, tenor and bass) with full choir and orchestra, it follows the typical Roman Catholic Latin mass for the dead. The "libretto" certainly comes from the dram

Antonio Vivaldi - Concerto No. 3 in F major, Op. 8, RV 293, "Autumn" (L'autunno)

Poussin's painting with vine harvest
"Autumn" painting by Nicolas Poussin. 

I. Allegro
Celebrates the peasant, with songs and dances, 
The pleasure of a bountiful harvest. 
And fired up by Bacchus' liquor
many end their revelry in sleep. 

II. Adagio molto
Everyone is made to forget their cares and to sing and dance 
By the air which is tempered with pleasure 
And (by) the season that invites so many, many 
Out of their sweetest slumber to fine enjoyment  

III. Allegro
The hunters emerge at the new dawn, 
And with horns and dogs and guns depart upon their hunting 
The beast flees and they follow its trail
Terrified and tired of the great noise 
Of guns and dogs, the beast, wounded, threatens 
Languidly to flee, but harried, dies.

The Four Seasons is a group of four violin concerti by Antonio Vivaldi, each of which gives musical expression to a season of the year. "Autumn" is the third concerto in F major.

In this work are described the villagers who celebrate the harvest with drink and dances. The joyful melody of the inaugural Allegro is well known. The soloist repeats the dance with a few double chords, followed by descending couplings and other musical ornaments.

A section of Larghetto submits the image of the villagers falling asleep, but the part ends with the dance.

Adagio finds everyone surrendering to a "sweet" sleep with a continuo played by the harpsichord.

In the final Allegro, the music depicts a hunter, with more double chords of the soloist. Quick phrases on the violin solo describe the panic of the frightened prey, before returning to the theme of the hunter.