Vivaldi – Sinfonia for strings and continuo from L’Olimpiade RV 725
L´Olimpiade. Dramma per Musica, is an opera in three acts based on a libretto by Pietro Metastasio composed by Vivaldi and premiered at the Teatro Sant’Angelo on February 17, 1734, during the carnival. There is an earlier version based on the same libretto but written by Antonio Caldara in 1733. There are more than 50 later versions written by various authors, including Pergolesi (1735).
Vivaldi’s opera begins with a Sinfonia for strings (Allegro) followed by two instrumental movements: Andante in cut time, and Allegro in 3/8 time. This edition includes just the first Allegro.
There is an autograph copy in score format contained in the manuscript I-Tn, Foà 39, Bl. 1-140. The present edition is based on this manuscript.
It is very interesting to mention that there is a violin concerto based on this same symphony (or perhaps the thematic transfer was from the concerto to the symphony). It is the violin concerto in C major rv 177.
There are several sources for this concerto: Vivaldi’s autograph contained in the manuscript I-Tn, Foà 31, Bl. 14-25, in score format, and two sources in Dresden, the manuscript D-Dl, Mus. 2389-O-83 (score) and D-Dl, Mus. 2389-O-83a.
The concerto includes some changes from the Sinfonia. Although these are different works, the connection between the two pieces seems obvious and the annotations that we find in the violin concerto could complement the information that appears in the Sinfonia. For this reason, it is interesting to mention these changes in this edition.