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Kaikhosru Sorabji

100 Transcendental Studies For Piano 1-25

Label: BIS

Format: CD

Genre: Compositional

In stock

Sorabji's style was deeply indebted to the music of the Middle East, some forms of which, during performance, last for hours or days at a time: his piano writing is typically elaborate from the torrential upward sweep in Mouvementé (I) via the wild and spiky V to the grotesque hammering angularity of XXV - a fantastic Medtnerian march. The dramatic and passionate writing in between can be found in the Tasso gallop and rush of VII, the aristocratic swell and crash of combers (X), the hard martellato writing of XV and the icy hammering of XIX. IX takes urgency to the edge of manic. XVII passingly recalls the writing of Warlock in his zany Codpieces. Did Sorabji have the maelstrom in mind in the patterned rushing and cross-currenting of XI. Continuing the theme we seem to hear in the Dolcemente scorrevole (XXIII) the intricate whorls and swirls of chiming tidal races and currents. There is grotesquerie too, both in an essay (XXII) involving glissandi on chords and in the Vivace e leggiero (II) - Rachmaninov in spate. Contrast is found in IV in which it is as if we hear the music through reflections in fractured mirrors moving from shard to shard in liquid ebb and flow. Speaking of which, a more elaborate and romanticised take on the subject matter of Griffes’ Acqua Paola can be heard in III alongside a sumptuous Rachmaninov-style melody. XIII is an extremely impressionistic piece: the suggestion of a silky gauze held up to a wintry sun while XVIII is in similar vein, yet more majestic. XIV comprises a drift of melodic lines shifting in voiles, overlapping clarifying and blending. XX picks up on his Perfumed Garden style in a sensual ecstatic fusion of Chopin and William Baines
Cat. number: BIS-CD-1373
Year: 2009

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