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The early life and works of peter tchaikovsky

Tchaikovsky Biography Part 1: There was no history of musicians in his family, except for a handful of amateur players. The young Tchaikovsky was bright - he could read and write French and German fluently by the time he was six years old! He formed a very close bond with his French governess, Fanny Durbach. Those early years with his family in a small rural town were some of the happiest in his life. Even at a young age, he was extremely sensitive to criticism. He also suffered from all kinds of illnesses.

Once he had to take six months off school because of a sickness. His illnesses, anxiety, and sensitivity were problems which would the early life and works of peter tchaikovsky affect him on and off for the rest of his life. His father, noticing his son's enthusiasm for music, got him good teachers, and an orchestrion a kind of music box that imitates elaborate orchestral sounds.

Tchaikovsky fell in love with Mozart click for biography 's music by listening to the orchestrion. The fascinating music box was probably Tchaikovky's first musical mentor! His father didn't want his son having a career as a musician, however, since it wasn't quite proper.

So he sent Peter Ilich to train as a civil servant in the School of Jurisprudence. On his first day of school, his mother dropped the terrified young Tchaikovsky off. He screamed and ran after her carriage as it drove away, but he couldn't catch it. He didn't see her again for two years.

The event deeply marked the young boy, and altered his character towards the melancholy man he was in later life. His mother died of cholera in Tchaikovsky was wretched and devastated.

He was moved to write down one of his pieces for the first time before, he just improvised as a touching eulogy for his dead mother. He graduated school, and entered the Ministry of Justice in But he resigned from the drudgery four years later, to start a musical career.

It was just as well: Later, when someone asked him what he had actually done there, Tchaikovsky said he couldn't even remember!

Pyotr Ilyich started studying at the St Petersburg conservatory, where he had two main teachers: Nikolai Zarembaand Anton Rubinstein. Rubinstein was quite conservative, and got really angry at one of Tchaikovsky's homework exercises the symphonic poem The Storm.

It had a relatively modern sound and structure, which the grumbling teacher didn't like the look of. Tchaikovsky successfully graduated from St Petersburg, and moved to Moscow in January He began teaching music theory at the brand new Moscow Conservatory, which needed fresh talent.

His classes went well, and he made good friends around Moscow. One of his pieces Overture in F was even very warmly received at conservatory concert - he got a standing ovation! Over the years he gradually settled into a comfortable life in Moscow, and his fame and popularity grew steadily. This leads me on to the next part of this Tchaikovsky biography InTchaikovsky's Romeo and Juliet was premiered.

This was the beginning of Tchaikovksy's wider fame. The piece was characteristically "Tchaikovsky", and got the composer's name known in in places as far away as New York and London. He stayed at the Moscow Conservatory for 12 years in total, composing a good number of pieces.

Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky Biography

Click to listen to and explore the Romeo and Juliet Overture, which has probably the most famous "love" melody in music!

He also became a music critic to earn more money. Some of his reviews have quite creatively scathing remarks! Prince Odoevsky, a generous patron, once gave Tchaikovsky a pair of fine cymbals, since he thought that the composer was "good at introducing them at the right moment" in a piece. What an interesting gift! He married one of his former students at one point, out of a feeling of obligation.

But Tchaikovsky, famously, was actually homosexual. The marriage completely failed after a few months, with Tchaikovsky unable to return his wife's affection. He was severely distraught, and tried to drown himself in an icy river. Inhe began a strange relationship with Nadezhda von Meckthe widow of a rich railway magnate. She was a big fan of his, and supported him financially.

They communicated entirely through sending letters to each other though, and only met once where they were too embarrassed to say anything to each other. Von Meck was a dear friend, and Tchaikovsky was extremely upset when she suddenly stopped sending letters and money in So, with his new freedom, Tchaikovsky finally resigned from the Moscow Conservatory in and traveled around Europe and Russia. He lived alone, in rural areas, and moved frequently.

He was almost like a social exile. His isolated lifestyle suited him very well. He could think and compose in tranquility, and didn't have to be around irritating distractions like traffic and other people. Vladimir, and personally requested a performance of the composer's opera Eugene Onegin.

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

At this point, Tchaikovsky became extremely popular with the public. He now started to feel more comfortable in society. In he stopped traveling and went back to live in Russia, in a manor house between Moscow and St Petersburg.

He became a celebrity in Russia, and promoted Russian music. All his life he was enthusiastically proud of being Russian. He hated it when anyone suggested that he might have Polish ancestors.

Once, as a boy, he was looking at a map of Europe. Suddenly, he covered Russia with kisses, and then spat on all the other countries! He also received some influential musical positions at this late stage of life, such as director of the Moscow branch of the Russian Musical Society. Once, when he held this position, a percussionist wasn't playing very well during a rehearsal of Rimsky-Korsakov's Capriccio Espagnol conducted by the composer.

  1. On October 28 he conducted its first performance in St.
  2. His father, noticing his son's enthusiasm for music, got him good teachers, and an orchestrion a kind of music box that imitates elaborate orchestral sounds. He overcame an aversion to conducting and in undertook an important and well received foreign tour, directing his own works in Leipzig where he met the composers Johannes Brahms and Edvard Grieg , Hamburg, Berlin, Prague, Paris, and London.
  3. His childhood piano teacher was Maria Palchikova, a freed serf, and within a year he was able to play better than she could. So Tchaikovsky himself offered to play the castanets!
  4. He also never stopped composing. Even his brother Modeste expressed surprise at his anger.
  5. Tom Muldoon Feb 3, In his correspondence of this period—indeed through a large part of his career—he was often morbid gloomy about his wife, money, his friends, even his music and himself.

So Tchaikovsky himself offered to play the castanets! Click to listen to and explore the dazzling Capriccio Espagnol, a musical picture of Spain I would have liked to have seen that performance.

It wasn't to be, however, as the orchestra was suddenly shocked into obedience by Tchaikovsky's suggestion.

  1. Tchaikovsky's intrinsic charm is nowhere more apparent than in the nationalist comic opera Valkula the Smith ; first performed , which in its revised form, Cherevicki The Little Shoes , is of similar merit to another opera, Sorochintsy Fair also based on one of Nikolay Gogol's Ukrainian tales , by the most original composer in the Petersburg group, Modest Mussorgsky. Premiere of First Piano Concerto 1876.
  2. Oxford University Press,
  3. Nikolai Zaremba , and Anton Rubinstein.
  4. So, with his new freedom, Tchaikovsky finally resigned from the Moscow Conservatory in and traveled around Europe and Russia. This was the beginning of Tchaikovksy's wider fame.
  5. He also suffered from all kinds of illnesses.

Inhe toured around Germany and Switzerland as a conductor. On this trip he met the composers Johannes Brahms and Edvard Grieg. He didn't like Brahms's music, but thought that Grieg's was superb.

Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky died of cholera on November 6,a few days after drinking unboiled water. His powerful 6th Symphony had its premiere only 10 days earlier. The Tsar paid for his funeral personally. Tchaikovsky biography timeline Family moves to St Petersburg Enters into the School of Jurisprudence Becomes first-class clerk in the Ministry of Justice Resigns from the ministry of justice, starts at St Petersburg conservatory Graduates from the conservatory with a silver medal, moves to Moscow and becomes music professor Two movements from First Symphony premiered in February Premiere of Romeo and Juliet Premiere of Second Symphony, with great success an ovation after every movement, and a laurel wreath at the end Premiere of the opera The Oprichnik, a massive success Tchaikovsky hated the piece though Premiere of First Piano Concerto Premiere of Swan Lake Begins correspondence relationship with Nadezhda von Meck Quits teaching and begins travelling Awarded Order of St Vladimir by the Tsar Resettles in Russia Manfred symphony premiered successfully Tours Switzerland and Germany conducting Premiere of the Nutcracker ballet Awarded an honorary Doctor of Music degree from Cambridge University