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Tchaikovsky : the quest for the inner man

Author: Alexander Poznansky
Publisher: New York : Schirmer Books ; Toronto : Maxwell Macmillan Canada ; New York : Maxwell Macmillan International, ©1991.
Edition/Format:   Print book : Biography : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
This monumental 656-page biography is probably the fullest, most revealing account to date of Tchaikovsky's private life. Poznansky identifies the death of the composer's mother as a shattering experience for young Pyotr Ilyich, a source of deep existential melancholy. His hypersensitivity, forged by a child's feeling of paradise lost, would manifest in neurosis, insomnia and depressive fits marked by "a sense of  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Biographies
Biography
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Poznansky, Alexander.
Tchaikovsky.
New York : Schirmer Books ; Toronto : Maxwell Macmillan Canada ; New York : Maxwell Macmillan International, ©1991
(OCoLC)643852373
Named Person: Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky; Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky; Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky; Peter Ilich Tchaĭkovsky
Material Type: Biography
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Alexander Poznansky
ISBN: 0028718852 9780028718859 0028718860 9780028718866
OCLC Number: 23286859
Description: xix, 679 pages : illustrations, map, portraits, pls., gen. table ; 25 cm
Contents: 1. Preparation (1840-1865). Early anguish --
In the school of jurisprudence --
Special friendships --
Man about town --
His brothers' keeper. 2. Creation (1866-1876). The lovable misanthrope --
Desires and flames --
The Petrolina letters --
Becoming the composer --
Tensions, temptations, melancholy. 3. Encounter with fate (1877-1878). Two women --
Marriage --
Escape abroad --
Consequences. 4. Double fugitive (1878-1879). Elective affinities --
Freedom to create --
Invisibility presumed --
Fireworks at Simaki. 5. Transient lodgings (1879-1888). Patrons, friends, and proteges --
Domestic upheaval --
Tanya --
X and Z at Kamenka --
Drama in Tiflis --
Gentlemanly games. 6. Fame (1888-1893). A second wind --
Mrs. von Meck's last letter --
The "Fourth suite" --
"Let them guess" --
The fortuitous tragedy --
Death in St. Petersburg.
Responsibility: Alexander Poznansky.

Abstract:

This monumental 656-page biography is probably the fullest, most revealing account to date of Tchaikovsky's private life. Poznansky identifies the death of the composer's mother as a shattering experience for young Pyotr Ilyich, a source of deep existential melancholy. His hypersensitivity, forged by a child's feeling of paradise lost, would manifest in neurosis, insomnia and depressive fits marked by "a sense of insurmountable terror." A Yale University librarian, Poznansky explores the composer's obsessive fear of death, his idealized relationship with eccentric, free-thinking patron Nadezhda von Meck, the fiasco of his brief, unconsummated marriage, and his involvement in a homosexual subculture that simultaneously fascinated and repelled him. Drawing on Russian sources, the author refutes the theory that Tchaikovsky's death in 1893 at age 53 was a suicide forced upon him by a conspiracy of former classmates. "The story of a soul finding itself," this remarkable book casts only an indirect light on the relationship between Tchaikovsky's life and art, as the author omits extended discussion of the music. Photos.

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