Numbered RV623 in the standard modern Vivaldi catalogue by Peter Ryom, Canta in prato, ride in monte is another of the ‘Roman’ motets. The singer for whom Vivaldi wrote Canta in prato (not to be confused with an introductory motet, RV636, set to a bastardized version of the same text) may well also have been one of the principal singers in his operas, for the best voices migrated freely between choir-loft and stage. This joyful motet is suited to any festival of a saint (who is invoked simply as ‘Pater beate’ in the recitative). The reference in the first aria to the nightingale, described in classical fashion as ‘Philomela’, calls forth some bird-like warbles, familiar from such Vivaldi concertos as ‘Il gardellino’. The second aria stays close to this style with its evocation of the tootling of rustic flutes. This is Vivaldi at his most beguiling and uncomplicated.
from notes by Michael Talbot © 1996