Plural Sax

Sax Sextets

Caprice No. 24

Niccolò Paganini, arr. Robert Schumann, Ben Tordoff


The opening theme of Paganini’s 24th Caprice has inspired numerous settings and arrangements by composers across the years including two by Brahms and Rachmaninov’s well loved “Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini”. UK folks above a certain age might also remember Andrew Lloyd Weber’s pop band version that introduced “The South Bank Show”. However even the original includes both the theme and twelve variations and has its own charm.

Written to showcase various virtuosic violin techniques this caprice would not work well on the saxophone. Here we combine the original solo part with Schumann’s piano accompaniment written some years later. Spread across six saxes this gives a very different take on Paganini’s masterpiece. The original score included minimal dynamics, expressive marks, or tempo indications so you should feel free to ignore the suggestions we have added and make the piece your own.

 Score Parts Part index Backing track
© 2021 Ben Tordoff

If you enjoyed this piece, have comments or corrections, we'd love to hear from you.

This music is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution Licence.