The 'BARKING OWL' always has something to say, and like the feathered version, can be either WISE...............or ANNOYING!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Why Does God Love...........Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky?

And (bonus question),.can God say his name three times fast? Bonus answer: YES!

[To see what I'm up to here, read this introduction]

Born in Votinsk Russia in 1840, Tchaikovsky was raised in a well-to-do home where he and his siblings were educated by their French governess. It seems music caught his attention very early. He could not sleep one night after a concert because “of the music stuck in his head”. While music had a place, it was not central. Peter studied law and government in college, and only took some music lessons on the side. But while despising his first job as a bureau clerk he began to give himself over to the music: He was the first composition student at Russia's first conservatory.

Under the teaching of Anton and Nikolai Rubinstein, Tchaikovsky was just beginning to produce good works. His unique style was first apparent with Fatum, and Romeo and Juliet from 1869. Through the 1870s Peter was busy teaching, composing, writing critical essays and conducting, having been hired as a conservatory professor. His most famous piece, the Piano Concerto No. 1, was completed in 1875, and Swan Lake the following year.

With music now the central focus of his life, Tchaikovsky (I love auto fill!), struggled with basic life issues. His marriage to Antonina failed from the start. He immediately abandoned her and fled Moscow alone. Perhaps suffering an undiagnosed depression, Peter complained regularly throughout this later period of his otherwise successful life about every aspect of his life, including his music.

A Madame von Meck became Tchaikovsky's benefactor through the 1880s. He was able to commit entirely to his composing and public appearances without working at the conservatory, and became famous as far away as The United States where he toured in 1891. Despite great successes, Peter was constantly complaining about something. His Sixth Symphony was poorly received in 1893, perhaps, they say, because Tchaikovsky conducted the performance himself with his less than stellar skills in that department. It wasn't until after the great composer died in 1893 of cholera, that the symphony reached its height of public appreciation.
What QUALITIES OF GOD are evident in Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky?

As with a few of the other subjects in this series, Peter received a large dose of God's MUSICAL nature. How else can we explain the ethereal attraction we have to the CREATIVE BLENDING of melody, harmony and rhythm, other than by attributing God with its inception? (Natural selection? I don't think so, but I digress.) I believe God loves to see His gifts exhibited, much like I enjoy seeing my son-in-law's handsome features reflected in my new grandson's visage. In the case of Tchaikovsky, from this small biography I get the impression that he let his MUSICAL ABILITY overcome, even erase, any other gifts he may have had.


  1. a great introduction to tchaikovsky! thanks for sharing.
    Great meeting you through the A-Z!


  2. I often can't sleep because of words stuck in my head. Poor T. To relieve myself of the agony of it all spinning around, I get flashlight, paper and pen and get them out so I can rest. Poor T. No flashlights in his day.



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