for solo violin (2003)


To Sophie Appleton

f.p. Sophie Appleton, Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London, May 2003

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Programme note
Capricho takes its title both from Paganini’s celebrated explorations of virtuosity and from Goya’s series of moralistic etchings, which reveal more sinister sides to human caprice. Paganini’s hyper-virtuosic violin style is stripped of its straightforward aspect of display, beginning hollowed-out and expressively detached and later becoming frenzied and out-of-control. This music is continually interrupted by a second type of material in which fragments of melody, often reduced to single notes or toneless attacks, appear briefly out of a background of silence.