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Profile of Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky


Profile of Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

Public Domain Image from Wikimedia Commons


May 7, 1840; his parents were Ilya Tchaikovsky and Alexandra Assier. He was the second child in a brood of six.


Votkinsk, Russia


November 6, 1893 in St. Petersburg due to cholera.

Also Known As:

He is also known by the names Chaikovsky, Chaikovskii, or Tschaikowsky. Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky is considered the greatest Russian composer of his time.

Type of Compositions:

He wrote ballets, operas, symphonies, concertos, suites, overtures, string quartet and sextet, cantatas, choral works, songs and pieces for the piano.


Tchaikovsky showed interest in music early in his life. He used to play on a small keyboard, called an orchestrina in his home. Later on he began piano lessons with a local tutor. During his teenage years he was taught by Rudolph Kündinger, a professional teacher. He was also influenced by a singing teacher named Luigi Piccioli, an Italian. He was also a student at the Russian Musical Society and St. Petersburg Conservatory. Among his teachers there were Nikolay Zaremba and Anton Rubinstein.

Notable Works:

Among his most famous works are his musical scores for ballet - Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, and Sleeping Beauty; his fantasy overture "Romeo and Juliet," "Piano Concerto No. 1 in B Flat Minor, Opus 23" and "Symphony No. 6 in B Minor."

Interesting Facts:

Before he became a full-fledged composer, he was a clerk at the Ministry of Justice. His engagement with Désirée Artôt was a failure and his marriage to Antonina Milyukova was short-lived. A widow named Nadezhda von Meck became his patroness but they only corresponded through letters.

Music Sheet:

Music sheet of Tchaikovsky's Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy."

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