Bel Canto Paganini

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Bel Canto Paganini



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Release date:

19th May 2017




2 hours 2 minutes


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Bel Canto Paganini

24 Caprices and other works for solo violin

Barton Pine:

Introduction, Theme and Variations on 'God Defend New Zealand'


Caprices for solo violin, Op. 1 Nos. 1-24 (complete)

Duet for One Violin in C major

Caprice d'adieu

Introduction & Variations on 'Nel cor più non mi sento' by Paisiello

CD - 2 discs


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Read our exclusive interview with Rachel Barton Pine about the recording here.

Billboard chart-topping violinist Rachel Barton Pine traverses Paganini’s ground breaking set of 24 Caprices with virtuosic flair and, in equal measure, reverence for the bel canto – or “beautiful singing” – style of the composer’s generation. Playing on the ‘ex-Bazzini, ex-Soldat’ Guarneri del Gesù violin from 1742 – made by the same Cremona-based maker in the same year as Paganini’s own violin – Rachel channels the composer’s own technical wizardry as well as his love for beautiful melodies.

Rachel was first introduced to Paganini’s Caprices at the age of six. In her early 20s she gave her first performance of all 24 Caprices in a single concert, a feat she has accomplished several times since including at the National Gallery in Washington D.C. and the Ravinia Festival.

Rachel fills out this two-album set with other pyrotechnical works by Paganini, including his “Duet for One”, Caprice d’adieu and the Introduction and Variations on ‘Nel cor più non mi sento’ from Giovanni Paisiello’s
 opera La molinara. Inspired by Paganini’s legacy of virtuosic themes and variations, Rachel concludes the set with her own Introduction, Theme and Variations on ‘God Defend New Zealand’, written in 2000 for the final concert of her first tour of that country.

Paganini dedicated his 24 Caprices “to all the artists.” Rachel in turn dedicates this recording “to all the listeners,” of which there will be legions.

Niccolò Paganini: Nel cor più non mi sento: Introduction and Variations

Nel cor più non mi sento: Introduction and Variations

Niccolò Paganini: 24 Caprices for Solo Violin, Op. 1

No. 1, Caprice in E Major "L'Arpeggio"

No. 2, Caprice in B Minor "Moderato"

No. 3, Caprice in E Minor "Sostenuto – Presto – Sostenuto"

No. 4, Caprice in C Minor "Maestoso"

No. 5, Caprice in A Minor "Agitato"

No. 6, Caprice in G Minor "The Trill" (Lento)

No. 7, Caprice in A Minor "Posato"

No. 8, Caprice in E-Flat Major "Maestoso"

No. 9, Caprice in E Major "La chasse" (Allegretto)

No. 10, Caprice in G Minor "Vivace"

No. 11, Caprice in C Major "Andante – Presto – Andante"

No. 12, Caprice in A-Flat Major "Allegro"

No. 13, Caprice in B-Flat Major "Devil's Laughter" (Allegro)

No. 14, Caprice in E-Flat Major "Moderato"

No. 15, Caprice in E Minor "Posato"

No. 16, Caprice in G Minor "Presto"

No. 17, Caprice in E-Flat Major "Sostenuto – Andante"

No. 18, Caprice in C Major "Corrente – Allegro"

No. 19, Caprice in E-Flat Major "Lento – Allegro Assai"

No. 20, Caprice in D Major "Allegretto"

No. 21, Caprice in A Major "Amoroso – Presto"

No. 22, Caprice in F Major "Marcato"

No. 23, Caprice in E-Flat Major "Posato"

No. 24, Caprice in A Minor "Tema con Variazioni" (Quasi Presto)

Niccolò Paganini: Duo merveille, Op. 6 "Duet for One"

Duo merveille, Op. 6 "Duet for One"

Niccolò Paganini: Caprice d’Adieu, Op. 68

Caprice d’Adieu, Op. 68

Rachel Barton Pine: Introduction, Theme and Variations on “God Defend New Zealand”

Introduction, Theme and Variations on “God Defend New Zealand”

BBC Music Magazine

September 2017


“No matter how fast the notes are flying or how awkward the composer’s finger-crippling combinations of sustained phrasing and fluttering accompaniment, Pine sustains an extraordinary degree of legato composure, creating singing lines out of even the most labyrinthine pyrotechnics. Still more remarkable is how she avoids the almost inevitable noises-off caused by Paganini’s unforgiving demands…Pine has no rivals”

Gramophone Magazine

June 2017

“Pine’s tone is lustrous. The dramatic timing of each gesture, the firm, burnished middle register, the gleaming, liquid evanescence of Paganini’s stratospheric flights: it’s all there…[but] Pine is principally interested in the musical qualities of these extraordinary, endlessly inventive miniatures, and there’s hardly a moment here where you get any sense of technique taking precedence over expression”

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