Niccolò (or Nicolò) Paganini (1782 – 1840) was an
Italian violinist, violist, guitarist, and composer. He
was the most celebrated violin virtuoso of his time,
and left his mark as one of the pillars of modern
violin technique. His 24 Caprices for Solo Violin Op. 1
are among the best known of his compositions, and have
served as an inspiration for many prominent
Paganini was in possession of a number of fine string
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. On a later occasion in Parma, he won
another valuable violin (also by Guarneri) after a
difficult sight-reading challenge from a man named
Duo merveille, Op. 6 “Duet for One Violin”, in which a
single, well-coordinated violinist plays the melody
with the bow and accompaniment with pizzicato.
I created this Transcription of the Duo merveille, Op.
6 “Duet for One Violin” for Solo Viola.