Viviani worked as a violinist in the court chapel in Innsbruck, later becoming court conductor; he was ennobled by the Emperor in c.1678, and thereafter lived and worked in various Italian cities including Venice, Rome, Florence and Naples, where his operas enjoyed great success. In 1673 his Opus 1 appeared in Venice, each of the twelve sonatas dedicated to a noble Venetian family. The original voice books contain no ornaments and decorations, so it is up to the user to choose from the plentiful supply of "manners".
The upper parts of these sonatas are primarily intended for the violin. Due to their small tonal range, they can also be played on alternative melody instruments, especially the recorder (soprano and tenor recorders in c and d). In addition to the organo, the harpsichord or the lute (theorbo) are also possible as a continuo instrument.