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A Private Life in Turmoil

Donald Macleod explains how, as Tchaikovsky's reputation was growing, his personal life was becoming intolerable.

Whilst Tchaikovsky's reputation was growing, his personal life was becoming intolerable.

Tchaikovsky was stuck in a marriage that was founded on a huge misunderstanding. He was gay and had thought that the union was a mutually agreeable arrangement. However, his wife did not understand at all, and remained under the delusion that Tchaikovsky loved her. His struggles with their hopeless relationship drove both to unbearable mental anquish.
Whilst all this was going on Tchaikovsky was fêted in Russia, composing his 1812 overture and his ballet Swan Lake. He was now in a position to stop teaching at the conservatoire and make his living composing full-time.

1 hour

Music Played

  • Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

    1812 Overture Op.49

    Orchestra: Ukraine National S O. Conductor: Theodore Kuchar.
    • NAXOS:8.555923.
    • NAXOS.
    • 4.
  • Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

    Swan Lake - Ballet Op.20 - Act 1, no.2; Waltz [A major]

    Orchestra: Mariinsky Orchestra. Conductor: Valery Gergiev.
    • DECCA : 475-7669.
    • DECCA.
    • 3.
  • Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

    Eugene Onegin - Lyric Scenes In 3 Acts Op.24 - Act 2 sc.2; Kuda, kuda vi udalilis[Lensky's aria (farewell)]

    Choir: Leipzig Radio Chorus. Conductor: James Levine. Singer: Neil Shicoff. Orchestra: Staatskapelle Dresden.
    • Tchaikovsky Eugene Onegin.
    • DEUTCHE GRAMMOPHON.
    • 5.
  • Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

    Concerto In D Major Op.35 For Violin And Orchestra - 2nd movement; Canzonetta (Andante)

    Performer: Hilary Hahn. Orchestra: Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Vasily Petrenko.
    • DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON : 477-8777 8.
    • DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON.
    • 5.

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