Sorabji Resource Site (SRS)

Related Works by Other Composers

This page lists, in chronological order if there is more than one, works (including literary ones) that are related to those of Kaikhosru Shapurji Sorabji, either before or after his contribution. These works may be

  • earlier or later settings by other composers of texts used by Sorabji in his songs;
  • transcriptions or uses of the same works in the case of works based on pre-existing material;
  • works with similar or related titles.

Dates of birth and death are given for lesser known composers. The list is likely to be incomplete, and further titles will be added as they are found.

The works are grouped into four categories corresponding to as many important periods in Sorabji’s compositional career.

  • 1914-1918 (early works)
  • 1919-1936 (from the meeting with Busoni to the end of his public career)
  • 1937-1972 (from the beginning of his life as a recluse to the break in his compositional career)
  • 1973-1988 (from his meeting with Alistair Hinton, when he resumed composition, until his death)

See also the list of musical and literary sources for Sorabji’s works.


Transcription of “In a Summer Garden” (1914; 0 p.)

Chrysilla (1915; 4 pp.): Set as the third of a group of four Songs for Mezzo-Soprano or Baritone with Instrumental Accompaniment (1909) by Ethel Smyth (1858-1944). The accompaniment is violin and piano.

L’heure exquise (1916; 2 pp.): Set by Gabriel Fauré (1845-1924) as op. 61, no. 3, from La bonne chanson (1892-94) and about 130 other composers. For a complete list, see Anne-Marie Riessauw, Catalogue des œuvres vocales écrites par des compositeurs européens sur des poèmes de Verlaine, Publikaties van het Seminarie voor Musicologie (Gent: Rijksuniversiteit, 1980).

Apparition (1916; 5 pp.): Set by Claude Debussy (1862-1918) in 1884 (publ. 1926).

L’étang (1917; 2 pp.): Reproduced as motto by Charles Martin Loeffler (1861-1935) for no. 1 of Two Rhapsodies for oboe, viola, and piano (1905); originally conceived in 1898 for voice, clarinet, viola, and piano.


I Was Not Sorrowful—​Poem for Voice and Piano [Spleen] (between 1917 and 1919; 3 pp.): Set by John Ireland (1879-1962) in 1913 as no. 3 of three songs published as Marigold: Impression for Voice and Piano (publ. 1916).

Trois fêtes galantes de Verlaine (ca. 1919; 11 pp.)

Fantaisie espagnole (1919; 23 pp.): Lord Berners (Sir Gerald Hugh Tyrwhitt-Wilson) (1883-1950), Fantaisie espagnole (1920; for orchestra). The work consists of “Prelude”, “Fandango”, and “Paso doble”.

Trois poèmes pour chant et piano (1918, 1919; 9 pp.)

Pastiche on the “Minute Waltz” by Chopin (1922; 7 pp.): See Thirteen Transcriptions for Piano Solo of Chopin’s Waltz in D Flat, Op. 64, No. 1 (The Minute Waltz) by Rafael Joseffy, Moriz Rosenthal, Isidor Philipp, [Max Laistner], Max Reger, Giuseppe Ferrata, Michael Zadora, Moritz Moszkowski, Alexander Michałowski, Joe Furst and Published for the First Time the Pastiche of Kaikhosru Shapurji Sorabji, edited and annotated by Donald M. Garvelmann (Bronx [obliterated and replaced with “New York”], N.Y.: Music Treasure Publications, 1969). See also the list and links to scores on IMSLP.

Pastiche on the Habanera from “Carmen” by Bizet (1922; 6 pp.): Ferruccio Busoni (1866-1924), Chamber Fantasy after Bizet’s “Carmen” for piano, BV 284 (1920).

Pastiche on the Hindu Merchant’s Song from “Sadko” by Rimsky-Korsakov (1922; 4 pp.)

Le jardin parfumé: Poem for Piano Solo (1923; 16 pp.)

Cinque sonetti di Michelagniolo Buonarroti (1923; 40 pp.)

Valse-fantaisie for Piano (1925; 16 pp.)


Symphonic Variations for Piano (1935-37; 484 pp.) / Symphonic Variations for Piano and Orchestra (1935-37, 1953-56; 540 pp.) {Besides Sorabji, at least seventeen composers wrote works with the same title between 1875 and 2004 at the earliest; only the most important are mentioned here.}

Transcription in the Light of Harpsichord Technique for the Modern Piano of the Chromatic Fantasia of J. S. Bach, Followed by a Fugue (1940; 15 pp.)

“Gulistān”—​Nocturne for Piano (1940; 28 pp.)

Trois poèmes (1941; 13 pp.)

Études transcendantes (100) (1940-44; 456 pp.)

Rapsodie espagnole de Maurice Ravel—​Transcription de concert pour piano (first version, 1923; 16 pp.), Rapsodie espagnole de Maurice Ravel—​Transcription de concert pour piano (second version, 1945; 26 pp.)

Frammento cantato (1967; 1 p.): Gustav Holst, The Cloud Messenger: Ode for Chorus and Orchestra. Founded on a Sanscrit Poem of Kalidasa, op. 30 (1912). Sorabji’s work is based on the eighth of 90 items making up the section “The Cloud Messenger” in Harold Morland, My Seeking Spirit, Being Free Variations on Poems by Kalidasa [recte Kālidāsa], c. 500 A.D. (privately printed, 1966), 38 (out of 69 pp.).


Symphonia brevis for Piano (1973; 120 pp.): John J. Becker (1886-1921), Symphony no. 3, Symphonia brevis (1929).

Variazione maliziosa e perversa sopra “La morte d’Åse” da Grieg (1974; 2 pp.): Alistair Hinton, Variations and Fugue on a Theme by Grieg for piano (1970-78); recorded by Donna Amato on Altarus AIR-CD-9021.

“Il gallo d’oro” da Rimsky-Korsakov: Variazioni frivole con una fuga anarchica, eretica e perversa (1978-79; 93 pp.): Efrem Zimbalist (1889-1985), Concert Phantasy on Rimsky-Korsakow’s “Le coq d’or” for violin and piano (1921).

Last modified: 2024-03-05
© Marc-André Roberge 2024
Sorabji Resource Site (SRS)
Faculté de musique, Université Laval, Québec

The contents of this website dedicated to the English composer Kaikhosru Shapurji Sorabji may be freely used for documentary purposes in a research context, provided that due credit is given, but may not be mirrored on any other server. Links to external or third-party websites are not guaranteed to be or remain valid or persistent and their content is not guaranteed to be or remain accurate or appropriate.

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