Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

Donald Macleod explores the conflicted relationships and mysteries in the life of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. Donald begins this week’s episode by looking at Tchaikovsky’s early years as a civil servant, wrestling with the tension between his desire to compose music and his responsibilities as a bureaucrat in St Petersburg. We hear about some of the composer’s tricky relationships - with the ascendant Nationalist school of Russian composers, and also with money. His need to earn a living and support himself by the music he composed led to an unconventional connection with one wealthy woman in particular. Donald traces Tchaikovsky’s long period of wandering, in which he spent years away from Russia, seemingly compelled by a disordered, un-reconciled personal life. Tchaikovsky was a mystery to the end, and there are many questions surrounding the puzzle of his death, which happened just days after the premiere of his sixth symphony, considered by many to be his finest work. Music featured: Swan Lake (Act 2) Eugene Onegin (Act 3, Scene 1) Song for the Golden Jubilee of the Imperial School of Jurisprudence Piano Concerto No. 1 (1st movement) Romeo and Juliet Chant sans paroles (Souvenir de Hapsal) None but the Lonely Heart String Quartet no.1 The Snow Maiden, First Song of Lel Finale: Moderato assai - allegro vivo – presto (Symphony No. 2) 1812 Overture March: The Song of the Lark (The Seasons) The Tempest Piano Trio, 1st movement Finale (Symphony No 4) Pimpinella (Romances, Op 38, No 6) Valse Sentimentale Violin Concerto Danse des polichinelles et des histrions (Maid of Orleans) Souvenir de Florence (1st and 2nd movements) We Sat Together Act 1, March (The Nutcracker) Piano Concerto No 3 Adagio & Waltz (The Sleeping Beauty - Suite) Symphony No 6 Presenter: Donald Macleod Producer: Martin Williams for BBC Wales For full tracklistings, including artist and recording details, and to listen to the pieces featured in full (for 30 days after broadcast) head to the series page for Tchaikovsky: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0000bbv And you can delve into the A-Z of all the composers we’ve featured on Composer of the Week here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/3cjHdZlXwL7W41XGB77X3S0/composers-a-to-z

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