Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

1840-1893 By Dylan Ettinger

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Early Life

Tchaikovsky was born on May 7, 1840 in Votkinsk, Russia. He is one of six, and has a half sister named Zinaida. He adored his mother Alexandra, but she was a cold and distant women.She was very self-absorbed and only cared about her reputation in their society. She was also the second wife of his father Ilya. Ilya was an influential citizen in their town and he was a magistrate. He lived on a large estate and had many serfs working for him. Also his nanny Fanny had a great influence on him. He was a soft hearted boy and loved his country
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St. Petersburg

This is a map Of St. Petersburg Russia in 1899, 6 years after Tchaikovsky died. The Tchaikovsky family moved to St. Petersburg Russia in November of 1848. He was enrolled in the Schmelling School, which he hated. It was very hard, and Pytor and his brother were out 9 hours a day for school. Then finally when they got home they worked on homework till after midnight. At this school both boys got bullied. Pytor left this school to go to a prepatory school called School of Jurisprudence.
P. I. Tchaikovsky - Ballet "Swan Lake" (excerpts), Op. 20 (Fedoseyev)

Swan Lake

Swan Lake first premiered in 1877 but not many people liked it. The dancers that danced to it complained that the music was undanceable. Also people said that the overall quality was poor. After Tchaikovsky died people started appreciating the ballet. He never saw a good production of the ballet.

Other Known Music

Some of Tchaikovskys famous pieces are:

  • 1812 Overture (for orchestra, choir—and real canons!).
  • Marche Slave (Slavonic March)—for orchestra.
  • Many short dances from ‘The Nutcracker’, such as the ‘Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy’
Although the 1812 Overture is very popular, Tchaikovsky didn’t really like it!
His ballets are some world’s most popular ballets. And The Nutcracker is performed all over the world around Christmas time. The ‘Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy’ from The Nutcracker is famous for using an instrument that was very new at the time—the celesta.

Tchaikovsky's Legacy

As little as three years old Tchaikovsky showed a great interest in music. He developed to be a great composer even though when he was a kid his piano teacher thought he wasn't very talented. He wrote a wide variety of music from ballets, operas, piano concertos, violin concertos, symphonies, and many more. Tchaikovsky's music will always be remembered.


Works Cited

Fedoseyev, Vladimir. “P. I. Tchaikovsky - Ballet ‘Swan Lake’ (excerpts), Op. 20 (Fedoseyev).” Youtube. Vladimir Fedoseyev, 27 Jan. 2012. Web. 31 May 2016. <>.

Map Of St. Petersburg, Russia, 1899. Photo. Encyclopædia Britannica ImageQuest. Web. 31 May 2016.


Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1840–1893). Kids Music Corner. Web. 22 Sep. 2015.

Snow Queen’s debut. . Photograph. Encyclopædia Britannica ImageQuest. Web. 1 Jun 2016.


Tchaikovsky / Portrait Photo / c.1890. Photograph. Encyclopædia Britannica ImageQuest. Web. 31 May 2016.