Great Masters: Tchaikovsky - His Life and Music : The Great Courses: Fine Arts & Music

  • by The Great Courses
  • Narrated by Professor Robert Greenberg
  • Series: The Great Courses: Fine Arts & Music
  • 6 hrs and 12 mins
  • Lecture

Publisher's Summary

Although we often think of an artist's work as a window into their own inner world, that is not always the case.
In the life of Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky, however, we can see perhaps the closest link to be found anywhere between a creative product and the shifting moods of a turbulent soul, which found its outlet through the glorious music created by the great Russian composer.
To know his music, you must know the man, and this fast-moving series of eight lectures from an award-winning composer and accomplished teacher offers an insightful look into both the circumstances of Tchaikovsky's life and the impact that life had on his music. You'll learn about his fear of conducting, his disastrous marriage and subsequent suicide attempt, his depression, and the constant anxiety that his closeted homosexuality would become public-a fear that proved prophetic and led to a second, and successful, attempt to take his own life.
Torn by the conflicts between his own Romantic inclination for expression and the requirements of Classical structure - he was the first full-time, formally trained, professional composer in Russian history - Tchaikovsky's music is a delicate balancing act. Heart versus head, emotion versus reason, release versus control, the expressiveness demanded of his Russian soul and the strictures of Classical technique - all of these conflicts find their way into his music, and give it its extraordinary emotional power.
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

A Curate's Egg

What did you like best about Great Masters: Tchaikovsky - His Life and Music? What did you like least?

Introductions and samples of Tchaikovsky's music were interesting, but the continued references to his sexuality, while not irrelevant, seemed to dominate the narrative.


What three words best describe Professor Robert Greenberg’s performance?

Over the top.


Did Great Masters: Tchaikovsky - His Life and Music inspire you to do anything?

I went back and listened to some of my Tchaikovsky CDs and ordered some others.


Any additional comments?

I think I'd give Greenberg's other courses a miss.

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- Mike of Alsager

Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-07-2013
  • Publisher: The Great Courses