All tagged Tchaikovsky

From tchaikovsky-research.orgSome comments concerning my rereading of Richard Taruskin’s chapter “Tchaikovsky and the Human” from his book Defining Russia Musically. Taruskin’s contention is that Tchaikovsky’s explicit advocacy of autocratic rule and its social structure, coupled with his determination to provide musical entertainment rather than dragoon a listener into the creator’s private egotistical orbit makes Tchaikovsky’s agenda an 18th century one.

Taruskin’s claim that Tchaikovsky is essentially an 18th century composer needs to be taken seriously; not because of his (neoclassic) pastisches, not because of his adoration of Mozart, and certainly not because of some similarity of technical means or stylistic profile — but because Tchaikovsky’s explicit aims and vision of the prupose of art is so consonent with Mozart and his colleagues’ musical aims. But what a composer wants to accomplish isn’t necessarily what he does accomplish.