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Paganiniana is

1. A violin piece composed of variations by Nathan Milstein.[1]

2. A divertimento for orchestra composed in 1942 by Alfredo Casella and based on themes of Niccolò Paganini. The piece was composed to honor the centennial of the Vienna Philharmonic, which gave its premiere in March, 1942, under the direction of Karl Böhm. It is in four movements:

The first movement is meant to portray the "satanic spirit of the great violinist", and uses four main themes, taken from Paganini's Caprices Nos. 8, 12, 16, and 19. The second, more melancholy, movement is derived from Paganini's Quartet No. 4 for violin, viola, cello, and guitar. The third movement takes its subject from an unpublished work, appearing first as a duet for solo violin and clarinet. The finale is taken once again from the quarted, borrowing also from an unpublished dance for violin and small orchestra.

References

  • David Ewen, Encyclopedia of Concert Music. New York; Hill and Wang, 1959.

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