cwt2rzfpf0iw2umaa4vvrryxbatxqyvk Serenade for strings by Tchaikovsky
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Tchaikovsky

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Serenade for strings

Composer
Tchaikovsky
period
Romantic
instrument
Orchestra
type
Serenade

Price $37.00
 
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (7 May [O.S. 25 April] 1840 – 6 November [O.S. 25 October] 1893), was a Russian composer of the Romantic era. Although not a member of the group of nationalistic composers usually known in English-speaking countries as 'The Five', his music has come to be known and loved for its distinctly Russian character as well as its rich harmonies and stirring melodies. His works, however, were much more western than those of his Russian contemporaries as he effectively used international elements in addition to national folk melodies.

After graduating, Tchaikovsky was approached by Rubinstein's brother Nikolai to become professor of harmony, composition, and the history of music. Tchaikovsky gladly accepted the position, as his father had retired and lost his property. The next ten years were spent teaching and composing. Teaching proved taxing, and in 1877 he suffered a breakdown. After a year off, he attempted to return to teaching, but retired his post soon after. He spent some time in Italy and Switzerland, but eventually took residence with his sister, who had an estate just outside of Kiev.

Tchaikovsky took to orchestral conducting after filling in at a performance in Moscow of his opera Tcharodyeika (Чародейка: the Enchantress/Sorceress) (1885-7). Overcoming a life-long stage fright, his confidence gradually increased to the extent that he took to regularly conducting his pieces.

Tchaikovsky visited America in 1891 in a triumphant tour to conduct performances of his works. On May 5, he conducted the New York Symphony Society's orchestra in a performance of Marche Solenelle on the opening night of New York's Carnegie Hall. That evening was followed by subsequent performances of his Third Suite on May 7, and the a cappella choruses Pater Noster and Legend on May 8.

Just nine days after the first performance of his Sixth Symphony, Pathétique, in 1893, in Saint Petersburg, Tchaikovsky died (see section below).

Some musicologists (e.g., Milton Cross, David Ewen) believe that he consciously wrote his Sixth Symphony as his own Requiem. In the development section of the first movement, the rapidly progressing evolution of the transformed first theme suddenly "shifts into neutral" in the strings, and a rather quiet, harmonized chorale emerges in the trombones. The trombone theme bears absolutely no relation to the music that preceded it, and none to the music which follows it. It appears to be musically a "non sequitur", an anomaly — but it is from the Russian Orthodox Mass for the Dead, in which it is sung to the words: "And may his soul rest with the souls of all the saints." Tchaikovsky was interred in Tikhvin Cemetery at the Alexander Nevsky Monastery in Saint Petersburg.

His music included some of the most renowned pieces of the romantic period. Many of his works were inspired by events in his life.

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