Check the Peter Tchaikovsky biography out below for many interesting facts that you may not know. "Swan Lake" (1875), "Romeo and Juliet" Final Revision (1880), and "The Nutcracker" (1892) are just a few of Tchaikovsky's memorable compositions. When listening to Peter Tchaikovsky's music, you can only say he was born to create beautiful harmony.
Peter Tchaikovsky's birth and early years. Born Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky on May 7, 1840 in Kamsko-Votkinsk Russia, he was the second of six siblings. Tchaikovsky's highly respected piano teacher, Rudolph Kundinger actually tried to convince him not to be a musician. Peter could read French and German by the age of six and at seven began piano lesson and writing verses in French. In 1850 Tchaikovsky began attendance at St. Petersburg School of Jurisprudence and in 1859 he became a clerk in the Ministry of Justice. Peter transferred to the new St. Petersburg when it opened in 1862 to continue his studies, where he met Anton Rubenstein the director of the conservatory. Rubenstein took an interest in Tchaikovsky, who had a fear of facing an orchestra and would conduct with his left hand under his chin for fear of his head falling off.
The middle years of Peter Tchaikovsky. Tchaikovsky taught at Moscow's Conservatory for twelve years, it was the place where he began composing music, namely his first symphony and the opera "Voyevoda." Peter wrote three more operas between 1869 and 1875 and became a music critic for Russkiye Vedomosti in 1872. He married one of his pupils in 1877 but they separated after just nine months. Soon after, Tchaikovsky attempted suicide by drowning only to be saved by his brother Modeste. Soon after that, Peter had a nervous breakdown.
Peter Tchaikovsky's final years and death. Tchaikovsky moved to Switzerland and then Italy after his failed marriage, attempted suicide, and nervous breakdown. While in Italy, Peter came under the patronage of Madame Nadezhda Von Meck who he never met. Von Meck paid Tchaikovsky a yearly allowance to stop teaching and devote his full attention to composing music. His fourth symphony was dedicated to Von Meck. Now well known in Russia, Great Britain and The United States, in 1885 Tchaikovsky moved to a home in Klin where he lived in isolation while he wrote "Manfred." After the production of "The Sleeping Beauty" in 1890, Peter went to Florence to work on his opera, "The Queen of Spades." By 1891 Tchaikovsky was on a very successful tour in The United States, appearing at the opening of "The Music Hall" (later named Carnegie Hall). The next year was the premiere of "The Nutcracker." In 1893 Peter Tchaikovsky received an honorary doctorate of music from Cambridge University. Tchaikovsky's sixth symphony was also completed in 1893 and a few days later on November 6, 1893 Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky died of cholera, most likely brought on by drinking unboiled water. Tchaikovsky was 53 years old.
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