Tchaikovsky, Pyotr Il′yich
- Roland John Wiley
(b Kamsko-Votkinsk, Vyatka province, 25 April/May 7, 1840; d St Petersburg, 25 Oct/Nov 6, 1893). Russian composer. He was the first composer of a new Russian type, fully professional, who firmly assimilated traditions of Western European symphonic mastery; in a deeply original, personal and national style he united the symphonic thought of Beethoven and Schumann with the work of Glinka, and transformed Liszt’s and Berlioz’s achievements in depictive-programmatic music into matters of Shakespearian elevation and psychological import (Boris Asaf′yev).
Pyotr Il′yich Tchaikovsky was the second son of Il′ya Petrovich Tchaikovsky, a mining engineer, and Aleksandra Andreyevna Tchaikovskaya, born Assier. He was part of a large family, of whom his sister Aleksandra, known as ‘Sasha’ (1842–91, Davïdova by marriage), and twin brothers Anatoly (1850–1915), a jurist, and Modest (1850–1916), a writer, were important in his life. Modest wrote The Life of Pyotr Il′yich Tchaikovsky...