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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: Symphony No. 6 / Currentzis, MusicAeterna
Release Date: 11/03/2017   Label: Sony  
Catalog: 88985404352   Number of Discs: 1
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Tchaikovsky: The Nutcracker / Bolshoi Ballet
Release Date: 11/30/1999   Label: Kultur Video  
Catalog: 62   Number of Discs: 1
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Elgar & Tchaikovsky: Works for Cello & Orchestra / Moser, Manze, Suisse Romande Orchestra
Release Date: 02/03/2017   Label: Pentatone  
Catalog: 5186570   Number of Discs: 1
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Tchaikovsky & Khachaturian: Piano Concertos / Wang
Release Date: 04/29/2016   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 5167   Number of Discs: 1
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Tchaikovsky: Dances And Overtures / Kuchar, Ukrainian NSO
Release Date: 03/21/2006   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8554845   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Rococo Variations

Browse 1-25 of 107 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Tchaikovsky: Violin Concerto & Rococo Variations / Radulovic
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 002725202 Release Date: 09/22/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Nemanja Radulovic
    Conductor:  Sascha Goetzel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD: $18.99
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  • 2.
    Kotova Plays Tchaikovsky
    Label: Delos   Catalog: 3531 Release Date: 09/08/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Nina Kotova
    Conductor:  Vladimir Fedoseyev
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $17.99
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  • 3.
    Dvorak: Cello Concerto - Tchaikovsky: Rococo Variations / Rostropovich, Karajan, Berlin Philharmonic [Vinyl]
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 4797726 Release Date: 09/01/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonín Dvorák,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Mstislav Rostropovich
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
    LP: $32.99
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  • 4.
    Schumann & Saint-Saens: Cello Concertos; Tchaikovsky: Rococo Variations / Meneses, Cruz, Royal Northern Sinfonia
    Label: Avie   Catalog: 2373 Release Date: 08/18/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Antonio Meneses
    Conductor:  Claudio Cruz
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Northern Sinfonia
    CD: $17.99
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  • 5.
    Eugene Ormandy Conducts Tchaikovsky
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 88883737162 Release Date: 05/12/2017   Number of Discs: 12
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Leonard Rose,  Isaac Stern,  Gary Graffman,  Tedd Joselson
    Conductor:  Eugene Ormandy
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra
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  • 6.
    Mstislav Rostropovich: Cellist of the Century
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 559857 Release Date: 03/24/2017   Number of Discs: 43
    Composer:  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Nikolay Myaskovsky,  Antonín Dvorák,  Sergei Prokofiev  ... 
    Performer:  Mstislav Rostropovich,  Alexander Dedyukhin,  Alexander Dedyuhkin,  David Oistrakh  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Malcolm Sargent,  Sir Adrian Boult,  George Szell,  Herbert von Karajan  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra,  Cleveland Orchestra  ... 
    On sale! $159.98
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  • 7.
    Tchaikovsky: Symphonies Nos. 1-6, Manfred Symphony, Overtures, Rococo Variations / Rostropovich
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 559987 Release Date: 03/24/2017   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Mstislav Rostropovich
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
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    CD: $16.99
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  • 8.
    The Sound of Mstislav Rostropovich
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 560248 Release Date: 03/24/2017   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Antonio Vivaldi,  Antonín Dvorák,  Robert Schumann  ... 
    Performer:  Mstislav Rostropovich
    CD: $16.99
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  • 9.
    Schumann & Tchaikovsky: Works for Cello & Orchestra / Timm, Masur [Vinyl]
    Label: Berlin Classics   Catalog: 0300846BC Release Date: 02/24/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Jurnjakob Timm
    Conductor:  Kurt Masur
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gewandhausorchester Leipzig
    LP: $39.99
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  • 10.
    Schumann & Tchaikovsky: Works for Cello & Orchestra / Timm, Masur, Leipzig Gewandhausorchester
    Label: Berlin Classics   Catalog: 0300842 Release Date: 02/24/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Jurnjakob Timm
    Conductor:  Kurt Masur
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gewandhausorchester Leipzig
    On sale! $18.99
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  • 11.
    Elgar & Tchaikovsky: Works for Cello & Orchestra / Moser, Manze, Suisse Romande Orchestra
    Label: Pentatone   Catalog: 5186570 Release Date: 02/03/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sir Edward Elgar,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Johannes Moser
    Conductor:  Andrew Manze
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Suisse Romande Orchestra
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  • 12.
    Slava! - The Art of Rostropovich
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 4797043 Release Date: 01/27/2017   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Antonín Dvorák,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Mstislav Rostropovich,  Martha Argerich,  Alexander Dedyukhin,  Vladimir Yampolsky  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan,  Grigori Stolyarov,  Seiji Ozawa
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  All-Union Radio Orchestra,  Boston Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $22.99
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  • 13.
    Tchaikovsky: Orchestral Works / Kondrashin, Moscow Philharmonic
    Label: Urania Records   Catalog: 312 Release Date: 01/27/2017   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Daniil Shafran,  Leonid Kogan
    Conductor:  Kiril Kondrashin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD: $29.99
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  • 14.
    The Tchaikovsky Cycle / Fedoseyev, Moscow Radio Symphony
    Label: Arthaus Musik   Catalog: 109318 Release Date: 01/20/2017   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Viktor Tretyakov,  Mikhail Pletnev,  Antonio Meneses
    Conductor:  Vladimir Fedoseyev
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Moscow Radio Symphony Orchestra
    DVD: $63.99
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  • 15.
    Mstislav Rostropovich: Complete Recordings on Deutsche Grammophon
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 002593102 Release Date: 01/06/2017   Number of Discs: 37
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Antonín Dvorák,  Alexander Glazunov  ... 
    Performer:  Mstislav Rostropovich,  Martha Argerich,  Rudolf Serkin,  Bruno Giuranna  ... 
    Conductor:  Gennadi Rozhdestvensky,  Herbert von Karajan,  Seiji Ozawa,  Paul Sacher  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Leningrad Philharmonic Orchestra,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  Boston Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $128.99
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  • 16.
    Dvorak, Saint-Saens, Tchaikovsky, Beethoven & Brahms: Works for Cello / Rose
    Label: Doremi Records   Catalog: 80389 Release Date: 07/01/2016   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Antonín Dvorák,  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Ludwig van Beethoven  ... 
    Performer:  Leonard Rose,  Eugene Istomin,  Nadia Reisenberg
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit,  Louis de Froment
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  ORTF National Orchestra,  Luxembourg Radio/Television Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $37.49
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  • 17.
    Tchaikovsky / Vogler
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 88875114292 Release Date: 04/29/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Jan Vogler
    Conductor:  Andres Orozco-Estrada
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Moritzburg Festival Ensemble
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    CD: $11.99
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  • 18.
    The Originals: 8 Legendary Albums
    Label: Dg Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 002469802 Release Date: 04/08/2016   Number of Discs: 8
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Frédéric Chopin,  Franz Liszt,  Antonín Dvorák  ... 
    Performer:  Wilhelm Kempff,  Martha Argerich,  Mstislav Rostropovich,  Anne-Sophie Mutter  ... 
    Conductor:  Carlos Kleiber,  Claudio Abbado,  Rafael Kubelik,  Herbert von Karajan  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $27.49
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  • 19.
    Transition / David Stromberg
    Label: Ars Produktion   Catalog: 38534 Release Date: 02/26/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Gabriel Fauré,  Alexander Glazunov,  Robert Schumann  ... 
    Performer:  David Stromberg
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonisches Bläserquintett Hamburg
    CD: $18.99
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  • 20.
    Philips Classics: The Stereo Years
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 002445602 Release Date: 02/19/2016   Number of Discs: 50
    Composer:  Jean Sibelius,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Robert Schumann,  Franz Schubert  ... 
    Performer:  Salvatore Accardo,  Elly Ameling,  Dalton Baldwin,  Jörg Demus  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Colin Davis,  Bernard Haitink,  Raymond Leppard,  Eduard van Beinum  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra,  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra,  English Chamber Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $129.99
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  • 21.
    111: The Collector's Editions [111 CDs]
    Label: Dg Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 002422702 Release Date: 12/11/2015   Number of Discs: 111
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Maurice Ravel,  Felix Mendelssohn  ... 
    Performer:  David Oistrakh,  Igor Oistrakh,  Sviatoslav Richter,  Martha Argerich  ... 
    Conductor:  Claudio Abbado,  Daniel Barenboim,  Lorin Maazel,  Franz Konwitschny  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Amadeus Quartet,  Paris Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $325.49
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  • 22.
    The Romantic Cello Concerto, Vol. 7: Fitzenhagen, Tchaikovsky
    Label: Hyperion   Catalog: 68063 Release Date: 10/09/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Wilhelm Karl Fitzenhagen,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Alban Gerhardt
    Conductor:  Stefan Blunier
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin
    CD: $18.99
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  • 23.
    Tschaikowsky: Complete Symphonies, Etc / Kitaenko
    Label: Oehms   Catalog: 27 Release Date: 10/09/2015   Number of Discs: 8
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Leonard Elschenbroich,  Lilya Zilberstein
    Conductor:  Dmitri Kitayenko
    CD: $54.49
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  • 24.
    Yo-Yo Ma: The Classical Cello Collection
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 513074 Release Date: 10/02/2015   Number of Discs: 15
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Luigi Boccherini,  Franz Schubert,  Ludwig van Beethoven  ... 
    Performer:  Yo-Yo Ma,  Ton Koopman,  Emanuel Ax,  Edgar Meyer  ... 
    Conductor:  Ton Koopman,  Claudio Abbado,  Kurt Masur,  Lorin Maazel  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic,  ORTF National Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $47.99
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  • 25.
    Saint-Saens, Lalo: Cello Concertos; Tchaikovsky: Rococo Variations / Yo-Yo Ma
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 88697714332 Release Date: 09/25/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Edouard Lalo,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Yo-Yo Ma
    Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  French National Orchestra,  Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $6.99
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