A Dictionary of Music and Musicians/Caldara, Antonio
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CALDARA, Antonio, was born at Venice in 1678, where he studied music under Legrenzi. He remained for many years a simple singer in the Ducal Chapel of S. Marco, but was in 1714 appointed Maestro di Cappella at Mantua. Thence in 1718 he went to Vienna, where the emperor Charles VI made him one of his vice-chapel-masters. In 1738 he returned to Venice, where he lived in retirement until his death in 1768 [App. p.575 "Aug. 28, 1763, on the authority of Paloschi and Riemann"]. These are the dates in his career which are given by Fétis, and which he defends against Gerber and Antoine Schmidt, who say that he died at Vienna in 1736. He was a laborious composer both for the church and the stage. But his worth is hardly equal to his fecundity. A certain solemnity of manner in some measure redeems his church music; but his operas are essentially of that order which when once laid aside are laid aside for ever. He wrote no less than 69 operas and oratorios, and dramatic compositions in the nature of one or the other. The catalogue of his church music is equally lengthy, and includes a number of cantate on sacred subjects for one, two, and three voices, with elaborate orchestral accompaniments.
[ E. H. P. ]