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Keyboard Capriccios

  • Michael Tsalka, piano

One of the leading composers of the Classical and early Romantic eras, Vanhal played a vital role in the development of Viennese music between 1750 and 1780. He composed prolifically in many genres, including a large number of quartets, symphonies, sacred works, vocal and instrumental works. Vanhal was at his most inspirational and improvisational in his keyboard Capriccios composed in the 1780s, which are some of the most creative examples of the Viennese Classical style, not least in their almost symphonic force.

This recording was made on a modern instrument: Yamaha Grand Piano.


3 Neue Caprice-Sonaten, Op. 31: No. 1 in F Major, "Clementis and Silentis" () (00:09:59 )
I. Adagio - Allegro (00:05:28)
II. Andante (00:01:47)
III. Allegro molto (00:02:46)
3 Neue Caprice-Sonaten, Op. 31: No. 2 in G Minor, "Amoroso" () (00:15:16 )
I. Adagio - Allegro moderato (00:07:45)
II. Andante (00:04:01)
III. Allegretto (00:03:30)
3 Neue Caprice-Sonaten, Op. 31: No. 3 in F Minor, "Dolente" () (00:12:07 )
I. Adagio - Allegro (00:04:50)
II. Adagio (00:03:09)
III. Allegro (00:04:05)
3 Caprices, Op. 36: No. 1 in G Major () (00:14:32 )
I. Adagio - Allegro moderato (00:08:05)
II. Andantino (00:04:21)
III. Allegretto (00:02:09)
3 Caprices, Op. 36: No. 2 in E-Flat Major () (00:13:51 )
I. Adagio - Allegro moderato (00:08:44)
II. Rondo: Allegro (00:05:07)
3 Caprices, Op. 36: No. 3 in G Minor () (00:14:07 )
I. Adagio - Allegro moderato (00:06:27)
II. Rondo: Allegro (00:07:45)
World Première Recording
Total Time: 01:19:59

The Artist(s)

Michael Tsalka Pianist and Early Keyboard performer Michael Tsalka has won numerous prizes in Europe, the United States, the Middle East, Asia and Latin America. A versatile musician, he performs repertoire from the early Baroque to the present day with equal virtuosity.

The Composer(s)

Wanhals life may be divided into five periods. The first lasted from his birth as a bonded servant on 12 May 1739 in the Bohemian village of Nechanicz until he moved to Vienna to begin his career in 1760 or 1761. During these twenty years he received excellent training from fine teachers in several Bohemian towns and villages so that he became an accomplished violinist and organist, and a composer of both instrumental and church music. At the same time he prepared himself for a move to Vienna by learning to speak German. His attractive personal characteristics (happy, modest, honest, personal warmth, good looks, personal deportment, deeply religious, etc.) together with his pragmatic and independent spirit foretold his later success.


“Michael Tsalka clearly understands Vanhal’s music. He effectively communicates the humor of the faster movements and plays the more lyrical passages with a singing tone and subtle flexibility of tempo and phrasing.” – Fanfare

American Record Guide

“Accolades are due pianist Michael Tsalka, who writes his own excellent notes and plays with feeling, expressivity, and pixieish good humor.” – American Record Guide