Vivaldi's Four Seasons is among the most widely known work of classical music out there. It has been used in numerous television spots, films, and as background music at a local mall. Researchers from the University of Northumbria have decided to put Vivaldi's masterpiece to the test. They selected a group of 14 college-age adults, making them perform a challenging concentration test in silence, while listening to "Spring" or to "Autumn". The task; hitting the spacebar on a computer keyboard whenever a green square flashed on the screen. Other colored shapes occansionally popped up as well. How did Four Seasons hold up? As a baseline, the average response time was 408.1 milliseconds. The Vivaldi "Spring" concerto brought this average down to 393.8 milliseconds while the "Autumn" concerto rose the average to 413.3 milliseconds. Participants reported feeling more alert during the "Spring" concerto suggesting that the music may have impact their cognitive processes. What do you think?
In 2012, famous movie composer Max Richter recomposed Vivaldi's Four Seasons, revitalizing the piece and sending it straight to the top of the classical charts wordwide. On Sunday June 23, 2013 come see the Chicago Philharmonic Orchestra led by Tito Muñoz perform the full recomposition in the Pavilion. Tickets available April 25.