Antonio Caldara (c.1670-1736)
Antonio Caldara was a highly prolific and well-esteemed composer best known for his vocal works, which comprise numerous operas, oratorios and cantatas, as well as church music. He was born in Venice c.1670 and died in Vienna in 1736. Although no records have been found of his birth, the year can be surmised from his death certificate, which states his age as 66. His early musical training was at St. Mark's, where in addition to singing, he also excelled on the cello, viola and keyboard. He later held positions as maestro di cappella da chiesa e dal teatro to the Duke of Mantua (1699-1707); maestro di cappella to Prince Ruspoli in Rome (1709-1715), where he became acquainted with Cardinal Ottoboni's famous Accademia Arcadia; and finally in 1715 as Vice Kapellmeister to Emperor Charles VI in Vienna, a position Caldara held until his death. Here, he was so highly valued that by 1729 his salary was even greater than that of Kapellmeister Fux. Due to political turmoil, little remains of his output during the Mantua years, but hundreds of compositions survive from his time in Rome and Venice, nearly all in manuscript. Among these works are around 300 solo cantatas.
Clori, mia bella Clori