Lydia Kakabadse – Composer

Lydia Kakabadse

“A very gifted and accessible composer” (MusicWeb International) and “a phenomenon” (Gapplegate Classical Modern Music), British born Lydia Kakabadse composes choral, chamber and vocal music.

Her works include string quartets, string duet, mixed ensembles, songs, musical dramas, cantata, concert Requiem Mass and sacred/secular choral works for male voices, mixed choir and children’s choir. An avid Latin enthusiast and inspired by medieval music, Lydia has written her own original texts in Latin for her vocal works and also adapted sacred Latin texts.

Of Russian/Georgian and Greek/Austrian parentage, Lydia was brought up in the Greek and Russian Orthodox traditions, from where she draws inspiration - “Kakabadse’s talent at writing in the Greek Orthodox music style is supreme” (Tamvakos Archive). She has been included as a Greek heritage classical composer in the “Archive of Classical Greek Composers”.

Demonstrating “a mastery of counterpoint and a richness of ideas” (MusicWeb International), her distinctive style incorporates tonal and modal harmonies with Eastern and medieval traits, infused with rich melody.

Beginning piano lessons at the age of five and later studying the double bass under Ida Carroll OBE, Lydia went on to read music at Royal Holloway University of London.

Keen to promote the double bass in her chamber works, Lydia’s string quartets are scored for violin, viola, cello & double bass – a timbral combination which works well, with the double bass adding a great richness and abundance of colour to the quartet’s sonority.

Of her early compositions, only The Song of the Shirt (for soprano and piano) written when Lydia was 15, is performed in its original form – “a little masterpiece” (Jazz & Tzaz). All other early compositions have either been revised, adapted or disregarded.

For more information, visit

Lydia Kakabadse sheet music now available

See our collection of sheet music of compositions by Lydia Kakabadse, including her Arabian Rhapsody Suite, Russian Tableaux, The Mermaid, The Phantom Listeners and The Song of the Shirt


Album release by Naxos

Lydia Kakabadse CD

Listen to the works included in our collection on this recording by Kit Hesketh-Harvey, Emma Brain-Gabbott, Clare McCaldin, Michael Bundy and ensemble conducted by George Vass.

Listen to excerpts at the Naxos website.