Capriccio for Violin and Orchestra (Penderecki)

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The Capriccio for Violin and Orchestra [1] is a composition by Polish composer Krzysztof Penderecki. It is one of the five caprices that he composed and one of the two that he composed for a soloist with an orchestra, together with the Capriccio for Oboe and Eleven Instruments.



This composition was finished in 1967 and was intended for performance in Donaueschingen, on October 22, 1967. On that occasion, Ernest Bour conducted the South West German Radio Orchestra, with Wanda Wilkomirska as the violin soloist. [2] [3] It was eventually dedicated to Heinrich Strobel [3] [4] and published by the Polish Music Publishing House and Moeck Musikinstrumente + Verlag [5] and, later on, by Schott Music. [1]


This unusual composition takes 10 minutes to perform. It is score for a very large and powerful set of instruments. The list of instruments used in this piece is as follows: [1] [4]

The composition has no tempo marking at the beginning, even though the last bars are marked as Tempo di Valse. It is mentioned in the score that two or three of the bells from the second bell set should be made of 24-karat gold. [3] Contrary to its concertante nature, the cadenza is fairly close to the beginning. [4]

Notable recordings

Following are some of the most well-known recordings of this piece:

ViolinOrchestraConductorRecord CompanyYear of RecordingFormat
Wanda Wilkomirska Polish Radio National Symphony Orchestra Krzysztof Penderecki EMI 1972CD [6]
Wanda Wilkomirska MDR Leipzig Radio Symphony Orchestra Herbert Kegel Berlin Classics 2003CD [7]
Patrycja Piekutowska Polish Radio National Symphony Orchestra Krzysztof Penderecki Dux Records 2007CD [8]

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  1. 1 2 3 "Capriccio composer: Krzysztof Penderecki for violin and orchestra". Schott Music. 2014. Archived from the original on 2014-02-15. Retrieved February 15, 2014.
  2. "Blue" Gene Tyranny. "Krzysztof Penderecki Capriccio for violin & orchestra". Rovi Corporation. Retrieved February 15, 2014.
  3. 1 2 3 Avis, Peter (2007). Penderecki – Orchestral Works (Liner Notes). EMI Classics.
  4. 1 2 3 Penderecki, Krzysztof (1968). Penderecki – Capriccio per violino e orchestra (1967). Moeck Verlag.
  5. Bylander, Cindy (January 2004). Krzysztof Penderecki : a bio-bibliography. Westport: Greenwood Publishing Group, Inc. ISBN   0-313-25658-6.
  6. "Penderecki: Orchestral Works". Warner Classics. Archived from the original on February 22, 2014. Retrieved February 8, 2014.
  7. "Penderecki, K.: Capriccio For Violin And Orchestra / Capriccio For Oboe And String Orchestra / The Awakening Of Jacob / Threnody (Kegel)". Retrieved February 9, 2014.
  8. "Krzysztof Penderecki Penderecki: Capriccio; De Natura Sonoris II; Piano Concerto [Special Edition]". Rovi Corporation. Retrieved February 8, 2014.