Caprice No.24 (Arr. John Williams) by Niccolo Paganini (1782-1840)
Niccolò Paganini was an Italian violinist, violist, guitarist, and composer. He was one of the most celebrated violin virtuosi of his time, and left his mark as one of the pillars of modern violin technique. Caprice No. 24 in A minor is the final caprice of Niccolò Paganini’s 24 Caprices, and a famous work for solo violin. The caprice, in the key of A minor, consists of a theme, 11 variations, and a finale. His 24 Caprices were probably composed in 1807, while he was in the service of the Baciocchi court.
Classical era. 185 measures. Theme + 12 variations + finale. Written for the solo violin. Arranged by John Williams for the guitar. Key of Am/A. 2/4 Time Signature. If this piece is too daunting, check out the Easier version with theme + 2 variations.
For this piece, I had to use Su Meng’s version for tab reference (since the original John Williams arrangement sheet music has very limited fingering and string number indications). Su Meng made several changes to the John Williams’ arrangement like playing variation IX as pizzicato and 4 bars were altered.
Guitar Demo (Lianto Tjahjoputro)
Guitar Demo 2 (Su Meng)
Caprice No. 24 is widely considered one of the most difficult pieces ever written for the solo violin. It requires many highly advanced techniques such as parallel octaves and rapid shifting covering many intervals, extremely fast scales and arpeggios including minor scales, left hand pizzicato, high positions, and quick string crossings. Also, there are many double stops, including thirds and tenths.
Guitar Pro Playthrough