Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

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Born: 7 May 1840 — Wotkinsk — Russia
Died: 6 November 1893 — St. Petersburg — Russia
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Portrait of Tchaikovsky by Paul Helm
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Pronunciation

This web page helps: http://inogolo.com/pronunciation/d1576/Pyotr_Ilyich_Tchaikovsky.

[by “admin” on 2011-02-22 01:34:46]
how do you pronounce his name???

right now i have to research him at school in my GT class and would like to know more!... i think that it is gross how he died though..... i am kinda at a disadvantage though because i dont listen to this kind of music and will need lots of research!!! :/// please, i need a pronunciation key!(for my presentation)

[by “Anonymous” on 2011-02-21 09:28:04]
the reader

I iuv the nutcracker. Fave piece ever. Best composer ever. Doing project 4 school. had to research him. he roxs at composing music. people need 2 c swan lake and the nutcracker. those stories get me every time.

[by “Anonymous” on 2011-01-09 09:41:20]
His death?

The cause of his death seems to depend upon which source you consult. In recent years, since the publication of several new biographies, one in Russia by a Russian scholar, and the New Grove Dictionary and I forget the English one, by someone named Brown? the death by Cholera during an epidemic; the composer drinking unboiled water in a restaurant weeks before his death, etc have been challenged and questioned. Eye witness accounts and previously unpublished accounts from Russians including Rimsky-Korsakov, have pointed out the problems with the Cholera story. The funeral included full honors and an open casket, forbidden during an epidemic. Many mourners kissed the body, embraced it, wept openly and rites and other practices performed which one would omit for a victim. One I find credible and probable is death from suicide, PI T took poison after receiving a death sentence from a private tribunal, in which he was tried and convicted for a sexual liaison with a member of the Royal family or russian court? The symptoms, dehydration, diarrhea, vomiting, liver failure, kidney failure, and an overall collapse of the major organs and other bodily functions are similar. Best Russian biography by a Vladimir Volkhoff was long out of print, originally printed in the mid 1970's. I also love Swan Lake, Symphony V, his many brilliant pot boilers for piano solo and Sleeping Beauty. Oh, the PIano Trio, Op 50 also seems to come and go in and out of favor. Best wishes.

[by “Anonymous” on 2010-02-10 01:31:33]
Nutcracker

I love The Nutcracker song. It is so beautiful. This is probally the best song that Tchaikovsky ever composed. ( in my opinon).

[by “Anonymous” on 2009-10-14 13:00:06]
Tchaikovsky one of the greatest

Tchaikovsky was with out any question the most prolific composer, he wrote piano concertos, violin concerto, operas, symphonies and ballets,also many other incidental music that have given the world tremendous pleasure

[by “Anonymous” on 2009-07-13 06:41:10]
Swan Lake Great Piece

Swan lake is an awesome piece! Has anyone else listened to his Piano Concerto No.2?

[by “Anonymous” on 2009-07-09 16:36:51]

He is my favorite composer. I love his works. But you really are missing out if all you listen to is Swan Lake.

[by “Anonymous” on 2009-07-09 16:24:12]
Tchaikovsky died of. . .

Would it be possible to dig up his remains and forensic experts canl let us know once and for all.

[by “Anonymous” on 2009-06-08 20:52:17]

He died proably of cholera..... people don't really know.

[by “Anonymous” on 2009-05-28 10:19:57]
research

right now i have to research about him at school he is very intresting its really cool that he made nutcracker, swan lake and sleeping beauty he is an awesome composer.but i still need to know how he died.

[by “Anonymous” on 2009-05-13 18:19:36]
The Mouse

No, especially, if U only listening "Swan Lake", it's terrible, it's same melody tons during all ballet.

[by “Anonymous” on 2009-03-08 21:06:19]
...

He looks REALLY angry in this picture, but I really like his music. Especially the Swan lake....anyone else like it?

[by “Anonymous” on 2009-01-20 18:48:25]

News for Tchaikovsky

Music

(contributed by David Perkins <dmperkins1(at)earthlink.net>)

Symphonies

  • Symphony No. 1, Opus 13 ("Winter Reveries" or "Winter Dreams") — in G minor. Composed, 1866 — First performed, 1868
  • Symphony No. 2, Opus 17 (The "Little Russian") — in C minor. Composed, 1872; revised, 1879. Original unrevised performance, 1873; First performance of the revised edition, 1881
  • Symphony No. 3, Opus 29 — in D major. Composed, 1875 — First performed, 1875
  • Symphony No. 4, Opus 36 — in F Minor (Dedicated "To my best [*or* beloved] friend" His patroness, Nadezhda von Meck). Composed, 1877-78 — First performed, 1878
  • Symphony (unnumbered), Opus 58 "Manfred" inspired by Lord Byron — in B minor. Composed, 1885 — First performed, 1886
  • Symphony No. 5, Opus 64 — in E minor. Composed, 1888 — First performed, 1888
  • Symphony No. 6, Opus 74 (The "Pathetique" [from the Russian "patetichesky" meaning "emotionally charged" or "full of passion"] — in B minor. Composed, 1893 — First performed, 1893 (Tchaikovsky died on November 6, 1893, ten days after the premiere performance)
  • Symphony No. 7 (Reconstructed by Soviet Composer, Semyon Bogatyryev, from Tchaikovsky’s sketches) — in E flat major (The first movement was converted by Tchaikovsky into his one movement Piano Concerto #3). Reconstructed, 1956 — First performed, 1957

Other orchestral works

Tchaikovsky composed about a half-dozen student works during 1863-64, about which there are no performance records.

  • "The Storm": overture to a drama by Ostrovsky, Opus 76 — in E minor Composed, 1864; First performed, 1896
  • Overture for small orchestra — in F major Composed, 1865; First performed, 1865 (Revised for full orchestra 1866; First performed, 1866)
  • Characteristic Dances — Composed, 1865; First performed, 1865 (Johann Strauss, Jr. conducted). (Dances later revised to be used in his opera, "The Voyevoda" First performed 1869, as "Dances of the Serving Maids")
  • Concert Overture — in C minor. Composed, 1865-66; First Performed, 1931
  • Ceremonial Overture on the Danish National Anthem — in D major — Opus 15. Composed, 1866; No record of its first performance.
  • Symphonic Poem "Fate", Opus 77 — in C minor. Composed, 1868; First performed, 1869
  • Overture "Romeo and Juliet" — in B major (Underwent two revisions, changed to "Fantasy-Overture" in 1880) Originally composed in 1869; First performed, 1870. Second revision, 1870.
  • Serenade for small orchestra, composed for Nikolai Rubinstein’s Name Day Composed and performed 1872
  • "The Tempest" Symphonic Fantasy, Opus 18 — in F minor. Composed and performed in 1873
  • "Marche Slav", Opus 31 — in B flat minor. Composed and performed in 1876
  • "Francesca da Rimini" Symphonic Fantasy — in E minor. Composed, 1876; First performed, 1877
  • Suite No. 1, Opus 43 — in D minor. Composed, 1878; First performed, 1879 (Revised in D major, 1879)
  • "Cappriccio Italienne", Opus 45 — in A major. Composed and performed in 1880
  • Serenade for Strings, Opus 48 — in C major. Composed, 1880; First performed, 1881
  • 1812 Overture, Opus 49 — in E Flat major. Composed, 1880; First performed, 1882
  • Coronation March — in D major. Composed and performed in 1883
  • Suite No. 2 — in C major. Composed, 1883; First performed, 1884
  • Suite No. 3 — in G major. Composed, 1884; First performed, 1885
  • Elegy for Samarin, composed for string orchestra — in G major. Composed and performed in 1884
  • Jurists March — in D major. Composed, 1885 (no record of its first performance)
  • Suite No. 4, "Mozartiana" — Composed and first performed in 1887
  • "Hamlet" Fantasy Overture, Opus 67 — in F minor. Composed and performed in 1888
  • "The Voyevoda", Opus 78 — in A minor. Composed and performed in 1891
  • The Nutcracker Ballet Suite — in B minor. Composed and performed in 1892

Concertos and pieces for solo instrument and orchestra

  • Piano Concerto #1 in B flat minor — Opus 23. Composed, 1874-75; First performed 1875 (Hans von Bulow was the soloist with the Boston Symphony Orchestra)
  • Serenade Melancolique for violin and orchestra in B flat minor — Opus 26. Composed, 1875; First performed, 1876
  • Variations on a Rococo Theme for cello and orchestra in A major — Opus 33. Composed, 1876; First performed, 1877
  • Valse-Scherzo for violin and orchestra in C major — Opus 34. Composed, 1877; First performed, 1878
  • Violin Concerto in D major — Opus 35. Composed, 1878; First performed, 1881
  • Piano Concerto #2 in G major — Opus 44. Composed, 1879-80; First performed, 1882 (Was cut by Alexander Siloti in 1893, approved by Tchaikovsky — as the original was felt to be too long. However, the Piano Concerto #2 in its original version is quite magnificent and under-rated. It should be heard in its entirety.)
  • Concert Fantasy for Piano and Orchestra in G major — Opus 56. Composed, 1884; First performed, 1885
  • Pezzo Capriccioso for cello and orchestra in B minor — Opus 62. Composed, 1887; First performed, 1889
  • Piano Concerto #3 in E flat major — Opus 75. Composed 1893; First performed, 1895. (The one movement concerto grew out of the first movement of a symphony sketch [see Symphony #7] — 2 more movements were later added by Sergei Tanayev.)
  • Andante and Finale for Piano and Orchestra in B flat major, E flat major — Opus 79. Compostion started by Tchaikovsky one month before his death. It was completed and orchestrated by Tanayev in 1895, first performed in 1896

Operas

  • Chorale work from an uncompleted Opera, Mandragora — composed in 1869 — first performed on December 18, 1869
  • "The Voyevoda" — Opus 3 — Based on "A Dream on the Volga" by Alexander Ostrovsky. Libretto by Ostrovsky and Tchaikovsky. Composed 1867-68; First performed, 1869. 3 acts
  • "Undine" — Based on "Undine" by Frederich de la Motte. Libretto by Count Vladimir Sollogub. Composed 1869, no available date for the first performance. 3 acts
  • "The Oprichnik" — Based on "The Oprichniks" by Ivan Lazhechnikov. Libretto by Tchaikovsky. Composed 1870-72; First performed, 1874. 4 acts
  • "Vakula the Smith" (Revised in 1885 as "Oxana’s Caprices" or "Cherevichki") — Opus 14 — Based on "Christmas Eve" by Nikolai Gogol. Libretto by Yakov Polonsky. Composed, 1874; First performed, 1876. 3 acts
  • "Yevgeny Onegin" or "Eugene Onegin" — Opus 24 — Based on "Eugene Onegin" by Alexander Pushkin. Libretto by Konstantin Shilovsky and Tchaikovsky. Composed, 1877-78; First performed, 1879. 3 acts
  • "Orleanskaya Dieva" or "The Maid of Orleans" — Based on "Die Jungfrau von Orleans" by Friedrich Schiller. Libretto by Tchaikovsky. Composed 1878-79; First performed, 1881. 4 acts [Vastly under-rated work—Tchaikovsky’s "grand opera."]
  • "Mazeppa" — Based on Alexander Pushkin’s "Poltava." Libretto by Victor Burenin and Tchaikovsky. Composed 1881-83; First performed, 1884. 3 acts "Oxana’s Caprices" or "Chervichki" (See "Vakula the Smith" above) — Based on "Christmas Eve" by Nikolai Gogol. Libretto by Yakov Polonsky. Revised composition, 1885; First performed, 1887. 4 acts
  • "The Sorceress" — Based on "The Sorceress" by Ippolit Shpazhinsky. Libretto by Shpazhinsky. Composed, 1885-87, First performed 1887. 4 acts
  • "Pique Dame" or "The Queen of Spades" — Opus 68 — Based on "The Queen of Spades" by Alexander Pushkin. Libretto by Tchaikovsky’s brother, Modeste, and Tchaikovsky. Composed and performed in 1890. 3 acts
  • "Iolanthe" or "Yolanta" — Opus 69 — Based on "King Rene’s Daughter" by Heinrich Hertz. Libretto by Tchaikovsky’s brother, Modeste. Composed, 1891; First performed, 1892. 1 act

Ballets

  • "Swan Lake" — Opus 20 — Composed 1875-76; First performed, 1877
  • "Sleeping Beauty" — Opus 66 — Composed 1888-89; First performed, 1890
  • "The Nutcracker" — Opus 71 — Composed 1891-92; First performed, l892

Chamber music

Student works composed 1863-64 (no record for when any of these were performed):

  • Allegretto for string quartet in E major
  • Allegro vivace for string quartet in B flat major
  • Andante molto for string quartet in G major
  • Allegro for string quartet, piano, and double bass
  • Adagio molto for string quartet and harp
  • Andante ma non troppo, prelude for string quintet
  • Allegretto molto for string trio
  • Adagio for four horns
  • Adagio for wind octet
  • One movement string quartet in B flat major — composed and first performed in 1865
  • String Quartet #1 in D major — Opus 11 — Composed and first performed in 1871
  • String Quartet #2 in F major — Opus 22 — Composed and first performed in 1873
  • String Quartet #3 in E flat minor — Opus 30 — Composed and first performed in 1876
  • "Souvenir d’un lieu cher" for violin and piano in three movements — Opus 42 — Composed in 1878 — no record of its first performance
  • Piano trio in A minor — Opus 50 — Composed, 1881-82; First performed, 1882. Written following the death of and in honor of Nikolai Rubinstein, dedicated "To the memory of a great artist"
  • "Souvenir de Florence," string sextet in D minor — Opus 70 — First composed in 1887, revised twice — once in 1890 and then in 1892; first performed in its revised edition in 1892

Life

(Contributed by Wim Vijvers <wgvijvers(at)wxs.nl>.)

Death: Tchaikovsky’s death still remains a controversial issue. Is there any truth in the theory about his alleged suicide? Or did he simply die from cholera, which is also not quite credible. The discussion was rekindled after the publication of Alexandra Orlova’s paper "Tchaikovsky: The Last Chapter" in Music & Letters 62 (1981) 125-145, and flared up again when several studies were published at the occasion of the centenary of his death. Anyone interested in the present state of affairs should consult the following publications, and the literature cited therein:

  • David Brown, Tchaikovsky remembered, London, Faber and Faber Ltd., 1993, ISBN 0-571-16866-3; 0-571-16864-1 (pbk).
  • N.O. Blinov, Poslednya bolezn’ i smert’ P.I. Chaykovskogo P.I. Tchaikovsky’s last illness and death), Muzyka, Moscow, 1994, ISBN 5-7148-0564-3.
  • Richard Taruskin, Chaikovsky, Russia, sexuality and the study of music, in The New Republic, issue of 6 February 1995.
  • Alexander Poznansky, Tchaikovsky’s Last Days; A Documentary Study, Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1996, ISBN: 019816596X David Brown, How did Tchaikovsky come to die - and does it really matter? Music & Letters, Vol. 78, No. 4, 581-8 (November 1997).

Sources — links

Concerts

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Events

Submit an event (date and year) for Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
22 January 1868: Premiere of Symphony no. 1 in g minor op. 13 “Winter dreams”, in Moscow, Russia.
4 March 1870: Premiere of Phantasy Overture Romeo and Julia, in Moscow, Russia.
26 January 1873: Premiere of Symphony no. 2 in c minor op. 17 “Little Russian”, in Moscow, Russia.
25 October 1875: Premiere of piano concerto no. 1 in b flat minor, in Boston, USA.
7 November 1875: Premiere of Symphony no. 3 in D major op. 29 “Polish”, in Moscow, Russia.
30 November 1877: Premiere of the Rococo variations op. 33, in Mosow, Russia, with Tchaikovsky conducting.
10 February 1878: Premiere of Symphony no. 4 in f minor op. 36, in Moscow, Russia.
29 March 1879: Premiere of Yevgeny Onegin, in Moscow, Russia.
5 December 1880: Premiere of the Cappricio Italien, in Moscow, Russia.
25 February 1881: Premiere of The Maid of Orleans, in St. Petersburg, Russia.
3 December 1881: Premiere of the violin concerto in D major op. 36, in Vienna, Austria.
16 January 1882: Premiere of the Serenade for Strings in C major op.48, in Mosow, Russia.
23 March 1886: Premiere of the Manfred Symphony op. 58, in Moscow, Russia.
5 November 1888: Premiere of Symphony no. 5 in e minor op. 64, in St. Petersburg, with Tchaikovsky conducting.
15 January 1890: Premiere of The Sleeping Beauty, in St. Petersburg, Russia.
19 December 1890: Premiere of Pique Dame, in St. Petersburg, Russia.
18 December 1892: Premiere of The Nutcracker, in St. Petersburg, Russia.
16 October 1893: Premiere of Symphony no. 6 in b minor op. 74 “Pathétique”, in St. Petersburg, with Tchaikovsky conducting.

Contributions by: dmperkins | wgvijvers |

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(1964) Roger Huntington Sessions: Premiere of Montezuma, in Berlin, Germany.
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[details ←] Nutcracker Suite (Piano Solo), piano,
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[details ←] Selected Piano Works in 3 volumes Volume 1, piano,
[details ←] Piano Concerto No.2, piano,
[details ←] Russian Folk Songs (36)(Original), piano,
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[details ←] Album for the Young (24 Pieces), piano,
[details ←] Piano Trio, violin, piano, piano trio, cello,
[details ←] Eckstein Piano Course-Bk. 5, piano,
[details ←] My Favorite Duet Album, piano,
[details ←] Foundation to Tuba and Sousaphone Playing, tuba,
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