This magnificent showpiece, with its scintillating workout for the right hand, incorporates at least one melody with which modern audiences will be familiar—that used by Ernesto Lecuona in his Malagueña
. The music uses three traditional dance patterns: the fandango, cano, and jaleo de Jerez. The Caprice
was the result of an improvisation by Gottschalk at one of his concerts in Madrid in December 1851, subsequently refined into its printed form the following August. The score is still readily available. Why do so few pianist play it?
from notes by Jeremy Nicholas © 1994