B0799. Opus Clavicembalisticum. KAIKHOSRU SORABJI. This work is composed in twelve parts: I Introito, II Preludio-Corale, III Fuga I, IV Fantasia, V Fuga a due soggetti, VI Interludium Primum (Thema cum SLIX Variationibus, VII Cadenza I, VIII Fuga a tre soggetti, IX Interludium Alterum (Toccata: Adagio: Passacaglia), X Cadenza II, XI Fuga a quattro soggetti, XII Coda Stretta. Played by JOHN OGDON. U.K. 4-Altarus 219554 (076958707520), Four CDs in an oversized boxed set, accompanied by elaborate 62-page softbound 6½” x 10” book.
“Many details of his life were for a long time hard to come by, as Sorabji was extraordinarily private. He almost always refused requests for interviews or information, often with rude messages and warnings not to approach him again. He refused permission for his works to be publicly performed. Since he had independent financial means, he felt no need to be tactful in his dealings with the public, critics, and musicians interested in performing his works. Nevertheless, he had numerous friends, including the Scottish composer Alistair Hinton, who is the founder and director of the Sorabji Archive. As a music critic, Sorabji was loosely connected to the New Age Magazine group surrounding A. R. Orage. He was friends with Philip Heseltine, who wrote music under the pseudonym Peter Warlock, and became a music critic in part because of their friendship. His critical publications were of concentrated bitterness, weight, and sharpness, but they were also highly sarcastic and displayed an extreme mistrust of the English public taste. Several of his works are of extraordinary difficulty, making them inaccessible to most musicians. In a letter to his good friend Peter Warlock, Sorabji writes, ‘if you make your work of such monstrous difficulty, no one can play it but the finest pianists.’ His piano work OPUS CLAVICEMBALISTICUM takes about 4 hours to play and was described by the Guinness Book of Records as the longest non-repetitive piano piece ever written.”
- Loyal Bluto