The Songs of Lalla Rookh
Songs for solo voice with pianoforte accompaniment were the dominant form of chamber music for the European domestic music market in the first half of the nineteenth century. Some 23 separate lyrics from Moore’s Lalla Rookh were set by composers based in London, Dublin, and America during Moore’s lifetime and into the later Victorian period. The majority of these songs were published between 1817 and 1826. Most were composed by active professional musicians such as George Kiallmark, Thomas Attwood, and John Clarke-Whitfield, all who included song-writing as part of a busy professional portfolio of activities. Moore’s tremendously popular poem would have been an attractive association for them. It also stimulated responses from amateur composers in high society, such as one Lady Flint as well as John Fane Lord Burghersh. Moore's regular collaborator Sir John Stevenson offered up an exquisite setting of "'Twas his own voice" from 'The Fire Worshippers'. Moore’s correspondence gives no clues as to how any of these people became involved in setting these particular pieces, but it seems likely that James Power may have commissioned some of these settings while in other cases the composer may have approached the poet or the publisher.