Janáček philharmonic OstravaB/Symphony seriesB3 Tchaikovsky’s “Pathetic” Symphony

09. 02. 2023
19:00 p.m.
Kino Vesmír
from 300 CZK

B3 Tchaikovsky’s “Pathetic” Symphony

Richard Strauss
The Burlesque in d minor TrV 145

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Symphony No. 6 h minor op. 74 „Pathetic“

 

Tamara Stefanovich – piano
Janáček Philharmonic Ostrava
Vassily Sinaisky – JPO’s chief conductor

 

Strauss’s Burlesque is not often heard in concert halls. The German composer and conductor composed it between 1885 and 1886, so in his early days. He dedicated the work to the conductor Hans von Bülow in gratitude for securing him a position as assistant conductor in the Meininger Hofkapelle, one of the oldest orchestras in Europe. However, Bülow found the work “complicated and full of nonsense” and refused to learn it. It was only when Strauss met the pianist Eugene d’Albert who liked the work, and together they slightly modified it that the Burlesque received its premiere. Even Bülow took the revised version in his stride, although he constantly repeated in letters to another composer, Brahms, how undeveloped the work was. From today’s perspective, we can already say that the Burlesque marked a turning point in Strauss’s style and is all the more valuable for it.

Even Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky did not escape criticism from his contemporaries during his lifetime, and he was not always sure of his work. This is also true of Symphony No. 6. During rehearsals, the composer was unnerved by the orchestra musicians who took a cold view of the work. But the reception of the audience was very warm. Tchaikovsky himself conducted the work at its premiere in St Petersburg, just nine days before his death. After the premiere he still managed to make corrections and the symphony is still performed in this arrangement today.

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