Album 3: Vivaldi (1678 - 1741)
Antonio Vivaldi (1678-1741) is no greater than Palestrina or Purcell, but is definitely more well known nowadays - not least for his famous set of violin concerti "Four Seasons" (RV269, RV315, RV293, RV297). Vivaldi was himself a violinist, and his "Four Seasons" are rightfully popular, being a pioneering work in both programme-music and concerto in general.
Apart from his "Four Seasons", another favourite of mine is his Gloria (RV589), which is bright and most glorious. Church music is not the most popular genre since the time of Vivaldi, and the hymns and doxology the average churchgoer sings/listens to week in week out might be plain and dull, but this is a example how inspiring it can be.
What I actually chose for my list is his Cello Concertos. I personally never heard of them before I bought the CD here where Han-Na Chang played them, but I think they are just as delightful as the "Four Seasons", and it is refreshing to hear something new. These cello concertos are not based on any poems, and does not include representations of birds or thunders, but they do show off the beauty of Italian baroque music.
Album 03: Antonio Vivaldi - Cello Concertos (Han-Na Chang + London Chamber Orchestra + Christopher Warren-Green)(RV420, RV400, RV401, RV408, RV424, RV403, RV418)