Manuscript is dated 1740. The Sinfonia in G major, RV 149, is one of the few manuscript works that can be tied to a time and place. On March 21, 1740, the Ospedale della Pietà put on a lavish entertainment in honor of prince-elector Frederick Christian, whose father was Elector of Saxony and King of Poland. Such tributes in honor of important foreigners were not uncommon in Venice; there were three of them for Frederick Christian that spring, each presenter trying to outdo the others. The city’s days as a great maritime power were long past, and tourism was a big part of its economy, so it was good business and good politics to be on good terms with everyone. It was particularly good business for the Ospedale, a school and home for orphaned and illegitimate girls that Vivaldi served, on and off, for most of his life as teacher or music director. High-profile concerts for foreign princes increased the fame of the Ospedale’s music, which boosted its finances.
VIDEO: UNC Lab Orchestra Concert: 11/10/13, Hill Hall, UNC Vincent Povázsay, Conductor