The disease brought on by mercury poisoning caused Paganini to lose the ability to play violin , and he retired in He died of throat cancer in Nice May 27, The orchestral parts of Paganini's works are polite, unadventurous in scoring, and supportive. Critics of Paganini find his concerti long-winded and formulaic: one fast rondo finale could often be switched for another. During his public career, the violin parts of the concertos were kept secret. Paganini would rehearse his orchestra without ever playing the full violin solos.
At his death, only two had been published. Paganini's heirs have cannily released his concertos one at a time, each given their second debut, over many years, at well-spaced intervals. There are now six published Paganini violin concerti although the last two are missing their orchestral parts. His more intimate compositions for guitar and string instruments, particularly the violin, have yet to become part of the standard repertoire.
Arcangelo Corelli was considered the father of violin technique, transforming the role of the violin from a continuo instrument to a solo instrument.
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At around the same period, the Sonaten und Partiten for solo violin BWV of Johann Sebastian Bach firmly established the polyphonic capability of the violin. Other notable violinists included Antonio Vivaldi and Giuseppe Tartini Although the role of the violin in music has been drastically changed through this period, progress on violin technique was slow up to this point.
Niccolò Paganini. A Re-evaluation of his Legend
The first exhaustive exploration of violin technique was found in the 24 caprices of Pietro Locatelli , which at the time of writing, proved to be too difficult to play, although they are now quite playable. Rudimentary usage of harmonics and left hand pizzicato could be found in the works of August Durand, who allegedly invented these techniques. Whilst it was questionable whether Paganini pioneered many of these "violinistic" techniques that made him famous, it was certain that he was the one popularized them and brought them into regular compositions.
Paganini was capable of playing three octaves across four strings in a hand span, a seemingly impossible feat even by today's standards. His flexibility and exceptionally long fingers may have been a result of Marfan syndrome or Ehlers-Danlos syndrome. His fingering techniques included double-stops, parallel octaves and tenths , and left-hand pizzicato, which are now routine exercises for aspiring violinists.
The composition and performance of violin music was dramatically changed because of Niccolo Paganini's contributions. As a youth, he was able to imitate other sounds such as horn, flute, birds through the violin. Though highly colorful and technically imaginative, Paganini's composition was not considered truly polyphonic. Nevertheless, he expanded the timbre of the instrument to levels previously unknown.
Paganini was also the inspiration of many prominent composers. His first break came from an concert at La Scala in Milan. The concert was a great success. As a result, Paganini began to attract the attention of other prominent, though more conservative, musicians across Europe.
His concert activities, however, were still limited to Italy for the next few years. This was followed by tours in Paris and Britain. His technical ability and his willingness to display it received much critical acclaim. In addition to his own compositions, theme and variations being the most popular, Paganini also performed modified versions of works primarily concertos written by his early contemporaries, such as Rodolphe Kreutzer and Giovanni Battista Viotti.
Paganini's travels also brought him into contact with eminent guitar virtuosi of the day, including Ferdinando Carulli in Paris and Mauro Giuliani in Vienna. Throughout his life, Paganini was no stranger to chronic illnesses.
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Although no definite medical proof exists, he was reputed to have been affected by Marfan syndrome   or Ehlers—Danlos syndrome. He was diagnosed with syphilis as early as , and his remedy, which included mercury and opium , came with serious physical and psychological side effects. In , while still in Paris, he was treated for tuberculosis.
Though his recovery was reasonably quick, after the illness his career was marred by frequent cancellations due to various health problems, from the common cold to depression, which lasted from days to months. In September , Paganini put an end to his concert career and returned to Genoa. Contrary to popular beliefs involving his wishing to keep his music and techniques secret, Paganini devoted his time to the publication of his compositions and violin methods. He accepted students, of whom two enjoyed moderate success: violinist Camillo Sivori and cellist Gaetano Ciandelli. Neither, however, considered Paganini helpful or inspirational.
He was in charge of reorganizing her court orchestra. However, he eventually conflicted with the players and court, so his visions never saw completion. In Paris, he befriended the year-old Polish virtuoso Apollinaire de Kontski , giving him some lessons and a signed testimonial.
It was widely put about, falsely, that Paganini was so impressed with de Kontski's skills that he bequeathed him his violins and manuscripts. In , Paganini returned to Paris to set up a casino. Its immediate failure left him in financial ruin, and he auctioned off his personal effects, including his musical instruments, to recoup his losses.
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At Christmas of , he left Paris for Marseilles and, after a brief stay, travelled to Nice where his condition worsened. In May , the Bishop of Nice sent Paganini a local parish priest to perform the last rites. Paganini assumed the sacrament was premature, and refused. A week later, on 27 May , Paganini died from internal hemorrhaging before a priest could be summoned. Because of this, and his widely rumored association with the devil, the Church denied his body a Catholic burial in Genoa.
His body was finally buried in , in a cemetery in Parma. After this episode, Paganini's body was finally reinterred in a new cemetery in Parma in Though having no shortage of romantic conquests, Paganini was seriously involved with a singer named Antonia Bianchi from Como, whom he met in Milan in The two gave concerts together throughout Italy.
They never legalized their union and it ended around April in Vienna. Paganini brought Achille on his European tours, and Achille later accompanied his father until the latter's death. He was instrumental in dealing with his father's burial, years after his death. Throughout his career, Paganini also became close friends with composers Gioachino Rossini and Hector Berlioz.
Rossini and Paganini met in Bologna in the summer of In January , on his return from Naples, Paganini met Rossini again in Rome, just in time to become the substitute conductor for Rossini's opera Matilde di Shabran , upon the sudden death of the original conductor. Paganini's efforts earned gratitude from Rossini. Paganini met Berlioz in Paris, and was a frequent correspondent as a penfriend. He commissioned a piece from the composer, but was not satisfied with the resultant four-movement piece for orchestra and viola obbligato Harold en Italie.
He never performed it, and instead it was premiered a year later by violist Christian Urhan. He did however write his own Sonata per Gran Viola Op. Despite his alleged lack of interest in Harold , Paganini often referred to Berlioz as the resurrection of Beethoven and, towards the end of his life, he gave large sums to the composer.
They shared an active interest in the guitar, which they both played and used in compositions. Paganini gave Berlioz a guitar, which they both signed on its sound box. Paganini was in possession of a number of fine stringed instruments. More legendary than these were the circumstances under which he obtained and lost some of them. While Paganini was still a teenager in Livorno , a wealthy businessman named Livron lent him a violin, made by the master luthier Giuseppe Guarneri , for a concert. Livron was so impressed with Paganini's playing that he refused to take it back.
This particular violin came to be known as Il Cannone Guarnerius. Of his guitars, there is little evidence remaining of his various choices of instrument.
Crescendo of the Virtuoso
The aforementioned guitar that he gave to Berlioz is a French instrument made by one Grobert of Mirecourt. Of the guitars he owned through his life, there was an instrument by Gennaro Fabricatore that he had refused to sell even in his periods of financial stress, and was among the instruments in his possession at the time of his death. There is an unsubstantiated rumour that he also played Stauffer guitars; he may certainly have come across these in his meetings with Giuliani in Vienna. Bavaria Studios spruces up for a comeback: new and renovated stages, green production topline pitch to producers.
Looking back on years of Cunard history. De gira con Luzbel. The material, which is being sold by a vendor who wishes to remain anonymous, is a family tribute to their hero, Niccolo Paganini , who lived from Collecting: Memories of Italy's musical genius for sale. Tomorrow's concert will open with Rachmaninov's Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini which was largely inspired by Italian violinist and composer, Niccolo Paganini.
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They may be blessed with extraordinary technical gifts -or, as in the case of the demonic virtuoso Niccolo Paganini , possessed of skills which were said to have come direct from the Devil. Culture: No frills -just the music for violinist; Christopher Morley finds a violinist who is dedicated to making music without gimmicks. Dos de ellos, por ejemplo, son el Guarnerius del Gesu de , apodado II Cannone El canon , que Niccolo Paganini dejo en heredad al ayuntamiento de Genova; y el Stradivarius The Messiah que reposa en el museo Ashmolean de Oxford, y que se exhibe tal como salio de las manos de Antonio Stradivari en pues no ha sido tocado nunca.