Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky

Biography

Born: May 7, 1840; Russia   Died: Nov 6, 1893; Russia   Period: Romantic
Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky was the author of some of the most popular themes in all of classical music. He founded no school, struck out no new paths or compositional methods, and sought few innovations in his works. Yet the power and communicative sweep of his best music elevates it to classic status, even if it lacks the formal boldness and harmonic sophistication heard in the compositions of his contemporaries, Wagner and Bruckner. It was Read more Tchaikovsky's unique melodic charm that could, whether in his Piano Concerto No. 1 or in his ballet The Nutcracker or in his tragic last symphony, make the music sound familiar on first hearing.
Tchaikovsky was born into a family of five brothers and one sister. He began taking piano lessons at age four and showed remarkable talent, eventually surpassing his own teacher's abilities. By age nine, he exhibited severe nervous problems, not least because of his overly sensitive nature. The following year, he was sent to St. Petersburg to study at the School of Jurisprudence. The loss of his mother in 1854 dealt a crushing blow to the young Tchaikovsky. In 1859, he took a position in the Ministry of Justice, but longed for a career in music, attending concerts and operas at every opportunity. He finally began study in harmony with Zaremba in 1861, and enrolled at the St. Petersburg Conservatory the following year, eventually studying composition with Anton Rubinstein.
In 1866, the composer relocated to Moscow, accepting a professorship of harmony at the new conservatory, and shortly afterward turned out his First Symphony, suffering, however, a nervous breakdown during its composition. His opera The Voyevoda came in 1867-1868 and he began another, The Oprichnik, in 1870, completing it two years later. Other works were appearing during this time, as well, including the First String Quartet (1871), the Second Symphony (1873), and the ballet Swan Lake (1875).
In 1876, Tchaikovsky traveled to Paris with his brother, Modest, and then visited Bayreuth, where he met Liszt, but was snubbed by Wagner. By 1877, Tchaikovsky was an established composer. This was the year of Swan Lake's premiere and the time he began work on the Fourth Symphony (1877-1878). It was also a time of woe: in July, Tchaikovsky, despite his homosexuality, foolishly married Antonina Ivanovna Milyukova, an obsessed admirer, their disastrous union lasting just months. The composer attempted suicide in the midst of this episode. Near the end of that year, Nadezhda von Meck, a woman he would never meet, became his patron and frequent correspondent.
Further excursions abroad came in the 1880s, along with a spate of successful compositions, including the Serenade for Strings (1881), 1812 Overture (1882), and the Fifth Symphony (1888). In both 1888 and 1889, Tchaikovsky went on successful European tours as a conductor, meeting Brahms, Grieg, Dvorák, Gounod, and other notable musical figures. Sleeping Beauty was premiered in 1890, and The Nutcracker in 1892, both with success.
Throughout Tchaikovsky's last years, he was continually plagued by anxiety and depression. A trip to Paris and the United States followed one dark nervous episode in 1891. Tchaikovsky wrote his Sixth Symphony, "Pathétique," in 1893, and it was successfully premiered in October, that year. The composer died ten days later of cholera, or -- as some now contend -- from drinking poison in accordance with a death sentence conferred on him by his classmates from the School of Jurisprudence, who were fearful of shame on the institution owing to an alleged homosexual episode involving Tchaikovsky. Read less
Tchaikovsky: Complete Symphonies / Jurowski, London Philharmonic Orchestra
Release Date: 09/15/2017   Label: Lpo  
Catalog: 101   Number of Discs: 7
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Tchaikovsky: Pique Dame / Ochman, Tchakarov
Release Date: 10/06/2017   Label: Sony  
Catalog: 88985470382   Number of Discs: 3
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Tchaikovsky: Secular Choruses
Release Date: 06/28/2011   Label: Brilliant Classics  
Catalog: 94210   Number of Discs: 1
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Tchaikovsky: Pique Dame / Gergiev, Kirov Opera
Release Date: 11/16/1993   Label: Philips  
Catalog: 438141   Number of Discs: 3
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Tchaikovsky: Maid Of Orleans / Rautio, Kulko, Bolshoi Theatre Orchestra
Release Date: 11/22/2005   Label: Kultur Video  
Catalog: 2284   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Marche slave, Op. 31

Browse 51-75 of 113 Available Recordings
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  • 51.
    Tchaikovsky: 1812 Overture, Moscow Cantata, Marche Slave / Valery Gergiev, Mariinsky Orchestra
    Label: Mariinsky   Catalog: 503 Release Date: 10/13/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Valery Gergiev
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Petersburg Mariinsky Theater Orchestra
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  • 52.
    Bernstein Favorites - Tchaikovsky: Capriccio Italian, Marche Slav, 1812 Overture, Romeo & Juliet
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 46711 Release Date: 09/03/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Leonard Bernstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic
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  • 53.
    Ultimate Russian Classics [5-CD Set]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001313502 Release Date: 08/25/2009   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Alexander Borodin,  Modest Mussorgsky  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit,  Ernest Ansermet,  Riccardo Muti,  Sir Neville Marriner  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra,  Suisse Romande Orchestra,  Philadelphia Orchestra  ... 
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  • 54.
    Rimsky-Korsakov, Mussorgsky, Tchaikovsky, Dukas / Barenboim
    Label: Dg Galleria   Catalog: 453291 Release Date: 04/23/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Modest Mussorgsky,  Paul Dukas
    Conductor:  Daniel Barenboim
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra,  Paris Orchestra
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  • 55.
    Tchaikovsky: Symphony No 5, Marche Slav / Ormandy
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 38052 Release Date: 04/22/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Mason Jones
    Conductor:  Eugene Ormandy
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra
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  • 56.
    Sinfonietta
    Label: Intent   Catalog: 5637349293 Release Date: 03/17/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Tomaso Albinoni,  Dennis Bathory-Kitsz,  John Williams,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
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  • 57.
    Tchaikovsky Fantasy / Katia & Marielle Labèque
    Label: Philips   Catalog: 442778 Release Date: 02/18/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Alexander Scriabin
    Performer:  Marielle Labèque,  Katia Labèque
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  • 58.
    Tchaikovsky: 1812 Overture, Etc / Maazel, Vienna Po
    Label: Cbs Masterworks   Catalog: 37252 Release Date: 12/29/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna State Opera Chorus
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  • 59.
    Karajan - Symphony Edition
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 001211702 Release Date: 11/18/2008   Number of Discs: 38
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Robert Schumann,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart  ... 
    Performer:  Agnes Baltsa,  Peter Schreier,  Anna Tomowa-Sintow,  José van Dam
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna Singverein,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 60.
    We Love A Parade / Mccann, Sellers Engineering Band
    Label: Chandos   Catalog: 4527 Release Date: 10/29/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alan Fernie,  Johann Strauss Sr.,  Joseph John Richards,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Sellers Engineering Band
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  • 61.
    Tchaikovsky: 1812, Marche Slave, Romeo & Juliet / Mehta
    Label: London/Decca Weekend Classics   Catalog: 417683 Release Date: 07/23/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Zubin Mehta
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 62.
    International Salute / Erich Kunzel, Cincinnati Pops
    Label: Vox Box   Catalog: 5132 Release Date: 04/08/2008   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Emmanuel Chabrier,  Giuseppe Verdi,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Giacomo Meyerbeer  ... 
    Performer:  Jack Wellbaum
    Conductor:  Erich Kunzel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cincinnati Pops,  May Festival Chorus
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  • 63.
    Orchestral Showpieces - Bernstein, Strauss, Dukas, Et Al
    Label: Emi Seraphim   Catalog: 69104 Release Date: 02/21/2008   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Engelbert Humperdinck,  Modest Mussorgsky,  Richard Wagner,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Conductor:  André Previn,  Gennadi Rozhdestvensky,  Klaus Tennstedt,  Seiji Ozawa  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  Paris Orchestra,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 64.
    Concert Russe - Tchaikovsky, Etc / Steinberg, Pittsburgh So
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 67249 Release Date: 12/10/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Modest Mussorgsky,  Alexander Borodin,  Sergei Prokofiev  ... 
    Conductor:  William Steinberg
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra
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  • 65.
    Russian Favorites - Liadov, Tchaikovsky, Rimsky-korsakov / Barbirolli
    Label: Guild   Catalog: 2325 Release Date: 11/06/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Anatole Liadov
    Conductor:  Sir John Barbirolli
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hallé Orchestra
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  • 66.
    Tchaikovsky: Suite No 3, Capriccio Italien, Etc / Boult, Lpo
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 63095 Release Date: 10/12/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Sir Adrian Boult
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 67.
    Tchaikovsky: Symphonies No 4-6, Etc / Bernstein
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000958502 Release Date: 09/11/2007   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Leonard Bernstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Israel Philharmonic Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic
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  • 68.
    Tchaikovsky: Romeo & Juliet; Francesca Da Rimini; Capricio Italien; Overture 1812
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 4643862 Release Date: 05/14/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Yevgeny Svetlanov
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Russian Federation State Symphony Orchestra
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  • 69.
    Willem Mengelberg - Beethoven, Schubert, Weber, Et Al
    Label: Symposium   Catalog: 1078 Release Date: 10/24/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Gustav Mahler,  Richard Wagner  ... 
    Conductor:  Willem Mengelberg
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic,  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
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  • 70.
    Label: Ovidiu Marinescu   Catalog: 5637423653 Release Date: 08/29/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
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  • 71.
    Tchaikovsky: The Symphonies, Etc / Mehta, Lapo
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000623502 Release Date: 04/11/2006   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Zubin Mehta
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra,  Israel Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 72.
    Thomas Jensen Conducts The Aarhus Civic Orchestra
    Label: Danacord   Catalog: 497 Release Date: 02/01/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  C. C. Moller,  Svend Erik Tarp,  Johann Strauss Sr.,  Johann Strauss Jr.  ... 
    Conductor:  Thomas Jensen
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Aarhus Civic Orchestra
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  • 73.
    Enfants Classiques - Le Meilleur De Tchaikovsky
    Label: Children's Group   Catalog: 84399 Release Date: 10/18/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Philippe Entremont,  Theodore Kuchar,  Michael Halász
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Chamber Orchestra,  Ukranian State Symphony Orchestra,  Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 74.
    Ninos Clasicos - Lo Mejor De Tchaikovsky
    Label: Children's Group   Catalog: 84405 Release Date: 10/18/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Andrew Mogrelia,  Theodore Kuchar,  Michael Halász,  Ondrej Lenárd  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Slovak State Philharmonic Orchestra,  Ukrainian National Symphony Orchestra,  Slovak Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 75.
    Classical Kids - The Best Of Tchaikovsky
    Label: Children's Group   Catalog: 84384 Release Date: 10/19/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Andrew Mogrelia,  Ondrej Lenárd,  Theodore Kuchar,  Adrian Leaper  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Slovak State Philharmonic Orchestra,  Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Ukrainian National Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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