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Pyotr Tchaikovsky
Suggested Reading



Tchaikovsky and His World
(Leslie Kearney)
Through consideration of his music and biography, scholars from several disciplines explore the many sides of Tchaikovsky, with an emphasis on his later life and influence. The volume makes available for the first time in English some of the composer's own writings about music, as well as three influential articles, previously available only in German.

Tchaikovsky Through Others' Eyes
(Russian Music Studies; Alexander Poznansky, editor; Robert J. Bird, translator)
This compilation of reminiscences about Tchaikovsky the man is unprecedented in English. The memoirs, diary entries, and interviews written and conducted by his contemporaries show us both the public and the private figure: the law student, the professor, the philanthropist, the loving brother and uncle, the intrepid traveler, and of course the composer and conductor. In more than fifty documents--some laudatory, others not--Tchaikovsky's contemporaries speak of little-known facets of the composer's life: foibles and mannerisms, politics and tastes, prejudices and preferences (sexual and otherwise). The result is a dynamic portrayal of the composer, with all the complexities and paradoxes of a real life.

Tchaikovsky's Last Days : A Documentary Study
(Alexander Poznansky)
What or who killed the famous Russian composer Peter Ilych Tchaikovsky? Was it cholera, as his doctors recorded at his death in 1893 and most historians have since believed? Or was it self-administered poison, the enforced exit from a scandalous homosexual affair with a member of the Russian royal family? Versions of this latter account, which began as a swirl of rumors immediately after the composer's death, have had a long and curious afterlife, through the Czarist and Soviet periods into the heated sexual-political debates of our own time. In an attempt to get to the bottom of the mystery, Alexander Poznansky's Tchaikovsky's Last Days shifts carefully through a wealth of documentary evidence, including Russian archival material formerly inaccessible to scholars. His conclusion comes by way of a fascinating look at the sexual life of 19th-century Russia and a reflected glance at the sexual mythmaking impulses of the present.

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