Vivaldi Flute Concerto Discovered in Scotland



Following the discovery of works by J.S. Bach, Handel, and Beethoven during the last fifteen years, a concerto by Antonio Vivaldi can now be added to the list of serendipitous finds.

Musicologist Andrew Woolley, while doing research at the National Archives of Scotland, came across a previously known but lost flute concerto by Vivaldi entitled Il Gran Mogol. The work was found incomplete—it’s missing a second violin part—and was subsequently reconstructed from another version of the concerto which survives.

Woolley found the work in the papers of the Marquesses of Lothian, which points to a theory as to how a copy of a Vivaldi concerto made it to Scotland in the first place. Apparently, “the manuscript was the property of the musical nobleman Lord Robert Kerr, son of the 3rd Marquess of Lothian. He is known to have played the flute in the period he was attending classes at the University of Edinburgh, 1729-1732, and he may have acquired the score while on a Grand Tour of Europe in the 1730s.”

The concerto will receive its modern premiere in January with the British ensemble La Serenissima doing the honors.

(The first page of the basso continuo part from Il Gran Mogol; photo: National Archives of Scotland).

Learn more: read “Vivaldi flute concerto discovered” in The Guardian or visit the National Archives of Scotland for more information.

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