The Music & Art of


The tour explores the music and the art of Rome during the Baroque era 1600-1750.

To book a place contact Sandy Cornish at Tailored Travel 01227 830624

6 days from £2,879

Download booking form here


Rome reached its greatest moment of artistic expression during the Baroque era (1600-1750) when its buildings, paintings, sculpture and music were charged with an unprecedented depth of emotion and grandeur. Through private visits, recitals, lectures and a carefully prepared itinerary, our exclusive tour to Rome is a must for any connoisseur in pursuit of the golden age of the Eternal City.


Day 1

Establishing connections – Ancient Rome and the 18th century Grand Tour

After our early scheduled British Airways flight to Rome, we will be met at the airport by Peter and Tom and transferred by coach to the city centre where we will stop for coffee and a panini (included).  Refreshed, we then visit the church of St Paul-within-the-Walls where Peter and our accompanying violinist will give the first of our private violin and organ concerts.  The music performed will be of the type heard by British travellers in Rome during the 17th and 18th centuries. Continuing with the theme of Ancient Rome and the British on the Grand Tour in the 18th century, we will take an introductory guided tour of Rome by coach with a chance for a brief visit to the and the Arch of Constantine, and – should weather and time permit – a walk along the Forum to the Piazza Venezia, where our coach will meet us and transfer us to the 4* Hotel dei Mellini, for our 5 night stay. Dinner will be in a local restaurant.

Day 2

The Cult of St Cecilia – patron saint of music

Peter’s lecture this morning is on the cult of St Cecilia, the 3rd century Roman patrician who was martyred for her faith. We then visit St Cecilia’s church in the Trastevere rione, which legend claims was built over the actual house of the saint. Here we see not only the famous effigy of St Cecilia by Carlo Maderno, but also frescoes (c1300) by Pietro Cavallini. While at the church, Peter will play a range of compositions inspired by St Cecilia. Music includes works by Purcell, Blow and Handel. An included light lunch in the Auditorium Spartito Restaurant is followed by a guided tour of the musical instruments collection in the Academia of Santa Cecilia musical instrument collection. The tour is given by the director of the foundation. The focus of the collection is a group of Italian stringed instruments from the 17th to 20th centuries, and includes the famous Tuscan violin by Stradivari, built for Grand Prince Ferdinando de’Medici. We then visit Santa Maria della Vittoria to view Bernini’s Ecstasy of St Theresa and where we enjoy another recital by Peter. The evening is then free at leisure to dine out as you wish.

Day 3

The great Angelo Corelli and his music, and thoughts on the Roman Baroque

This morning’s lecture focuses on the music of Arcangelo Corelli, the famous 17th/18th century Roman composer. On leaving the hotel we visit the Spada Galleria where Tom guides us through the collection of 16th and 17th century art. After an included light lunch in the Pantheon area, we visit the Pantheon itself, a building remodelled and completed by Emperor Hadrian in 126 AD, but which has been a church since the 7th century. The building interests us particularly today, because it is the resting place of Corelli. We continue to the Palazzo Colonna, one of the oldest and largest privately owned palaces in Rome and enjoy a private guided tour of the building and its superb works of art. The evening is at leisure.

Day 4

Sistine Chapel & Oratorio Francesco Saverio di Caravita

We begin the with an early morning visit to the Sistine Chapel, a building remodelled in the late 15th century by Pope Sixtus IV and famous for its ceiling, painted by Michelangelo between 1508 and 1512. There will then be a guided visit to St Peter’s Basilica followed by a coffee break. We then visit the Oratorio Francesco Saverio di Caravita where Peter gives a short recital on the particularly famous Priori organ. It is said that Frescobaldi and Mozart played here, and so Peter will perform organ music by both these composers. After an included lunch the rest of the day is at leisure. Depending on availability, there is an optional visit to a concert or opera.

Day 5

Aspectacular day in the country & a farewell dinner

Today we make our way to the hillside town of Tivoli, which at the height of the Roman Empire was a favourite retreat for poets and wealthier citizens of Rome. The lavish villas – all scattered around sacred woods and scenic waterfalls – attracted distinguished visitors such as Horace, Catullus, Maecenas, Sallust and the Emperor Trajan. After an included coffee break on arrival, we visit Villa Adriana, the largest of the complexes and built by Hadrian between 110-30 AD as a retreat from duties in Rome. Following lunch, we make our way to the Villa d’Este, which along with its garden is one of the most remarkable statements of Renaissance culture. Time permitting, we will take a swift glance at the magnificent Cathedral of Tivoli, dating from 1634 to 1652. On our return to Rome, we enjoy a 3-course farewell dinner together at a restaurant close to our hotel.

Day 6

A musical cardinal, the Palazzo Cancelleria, Galleria Borghese, the Pyramid of Cestius & return to London

Our lecture by Peter this morning is a summing up of our week together, after which we visit the, a Renaissance Palace in Rome and famous for being a centre of musical life during the residency of Cardinal Pietro Ottoboni (1667-1740). The Cardinal was a dedicated patron of the arts and supported and cultivated the work of composers such as Corelli, Handel, Alessandro Scarlatti and Vivaldi. We then visit the Galleria Borghese, which houses a substantial part of the Borghese collection of paintings, sculpture and antiquities originally amassed by Cardinal Scipione Borghese. After the visit we have an included late light lunch followed by a visit to the Pyramid of Cestius and the Protestant Cemetery to see the graves of Keats and Shelley. In the afternoon we transfer to the airport for our scheduled British Airways flight back to London Heathrow.

End of the tour


Tour limited to 24 passengers
Lectures by Peter
Four private music recitals by Peter
Tom Abbott – professional tour manager & art historian
4* central Rome hotel
All excursions, entrance fees & guided tours
Gratuities included for all included lunches & dinners
Welcome dinner & drinks reception included
Farewell dinner included
Included light lunches on Days 1 to 6
Return scheduled British Airways flights from London Heathrow to Rome
Executive coach in Italy
Audio headsets included on Days 2 to 5


Recital by Peter
Guided coach tour of Rome
St Cecilia’s Church – recital by Peter
Academia of Santa Cecilia musical instrument collection – guided tour
Santa Maria della Vittoria – recital by Peter
Spada Galleria
The Pantheon
Palazzo Colonna – guided tour
Early morning visit to the Sistine Chapel
St Peter’s Basilica – guided tour
Oratorio Francesco Saverio di Caravita – recital by Peter
Villa Adriana
Villa d’Este
Cathedral of Tivoli
Palazzo della Cancelleria
Galleria Borghese
Pyramid of Cestius & the Protestant Cemetery

Optional opera or concert visit on day 4

End of the tour

Hotel dei Mellini, Rome ****

The Hotel Mellini is located on the right bank of the Tiber between Piazza di Spagna and the Vatican City and is therefore magnificently placed at the heart of the historic and cultural area of Rome.

The hotel is luxurious in the extreme, where every detail has been carefully put in place and where guests are surrounded by works of modern art made by artists from the Italian and Roman schools.  All the rooms are furbished to the highest quality, but you may be tempted to upgrade to a Deluxe room for the week, which for two people sharing a twin room would only come to £160 (£80 pounds per person).

Extras to the tour

  • Insurance (including Covid cover) £56
  • Double room for single occupancysupplement from £249
  • Optional opera / concert tickets
  • Local accommodation tax to be paid directly to the hotel (approximately €6 per person per night)
  • Gratuities (excluding for lunches & dinners)

To book a place contact Sandy Cornish at Tailored Travel 01227 830624

6 days from £2,879

Download booking form here

The Architecture and Art of Rome

Architecturally, Rome is famous for its Papal buildings and its huge and majestic squares, many of which were built in the 17th century. Great architects including Salvi, Maderno, Michelangelo and Bernini defined and shaped the interior and exterior spaces of Rome (right), giving it its familiar and much loved appearance.  Saint Peter’s Square particularly, has been praised as a masterstroke of Baroque theatre.

At the same time, artists such as Manfredi, Gentileschi and Caravaggio, imbued their paintings with a hitherto unimagined depth of expression. Caravaggio, particularly, combined a realistic observation of the human condition – both physical and emotional – with a dramatic use of lighting (left) that had a profound influence on painting techniques for many generations to come.  It is arguable, for example, that the art of Delacroix, Courbet and Manet, would have been quite different without the influence of Caravaggio.

Music in Rome

From a musical perspective, Rome became one of the most important hubs of composition in the Western world; first, through the masses and motets of Palestrina and his contemporaries, and later – during the 17th century – through the oratorios of Carissimi and the operas of Alessandro Scarlatti.

However, it was the work of Angelo Corelli who brought the musical language of the Baroque in Rome to a new understanding.  He is regarded as the perfector of the Trio Sonata and, to all intents and purposes, the inventor of the Concerto Grosso.  His Twelve Concertos Op 6, published in 1714, were revolutionary and no Baroque composer during or after Corelli’s time was unaffected by their force and orginality.  The English, especially, were taken by his music, causing Charles Avison to remark in 1752 The immortal works of Corelli are in the hands of everyone; and accordingly we find that from him many of our best modern composers have generally deduced their elements of harmony.