Sunday, September 16, 2007

Yet Another Side of Tchaikovsky

Now that you know the Sugar Plum fairy side, and the sad dreary side thanks to Caity, I feel obligated to share the side of Tchaikovsky that makes him one of my favorite composers.

Tchaikovsky's large symphonies and works such as the 1812 Overture demonstrate a dramatic and powerful side of his music, and are among my favorite pieces of classical music. The 1812 Overture calls for a canon in the score - what more needs to be said? After you make the French flee your country after an attempted invasion I don't think the stereotypical cold and dreary Russian piece (and certainly not a ballet) would suit the mood.

Also, I play the trombone, and over time have begun to appreciate composers of orchestral music like Tchaikovsky that create such powerful parts for the brass section of the orchestra - For trombonists, most orchestral music involves lots of waiting and counting, and not much playing.

What makes this subject even more personal to me is that I was fortunate enough to be able to see a concert entirely of Tchaikovsky music given by the Moscow Symphony Orchestra as it made a stop in Tallahassee of all places. They played his entire Symphony No. 5, and another smaller piece, and it was amazing.

Here is a clip of the triumphant finale of Symphony No. 5:
Feel free to laugh at the conductor..


Dr. Michael A. Denner said...

awesome, logan; an excellent post. i was lucky enough, way back in september 1993, to hear rostropovich conduct the National Symphony Orchestra of Washington in an amazing rendition of the 1812 overture... it was an outdoor concert, on red square, replete with BIG CANONS.

more than 100,000 people showed up for it. i've never been with so many people before -- and EVERYONE was riveted, joined together in a weird mass-mosh of classical music on a freezing day in september.

Scrufftar said...

That was a fantastic performance.

Leonard Bernstein is one of my favorite conductors, both due to his interpretation of the "bigguns" in symphonic repertoire and because of the passion he displays on stage.

You should check out his rendition of Shostakovich's 5th Symphony.