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Pyotr Ilich Tchaikovsky
(1840-93)


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I sit down to the piano regularly at nine-o'clock in the morning and Mesdames les Muses have learned to be on time for that rendezvous.
-- Pyotr Tchaikovsky, quoted in Schafer, British Composers in Interview (1963)

Tchaikovsky thought of committing suicide for fear of being discovered as a homosexual, but today, if you are a composer and not homosexual, you might as well put a bullet through your head.
-- Sergei Diaghilev; quoted in Vernon Duke, Listen Here! (1963)

I like listening to it just as I like looking at a fuschia drenched with rain.
-- James Agate (speaking of Tchaikovsky's Fifth Symphony), Ego 8 (1947)

I am not a fascist. I hate Tchaikovsky and I will not conduct him. But if the audience wants him, it can have him.
-- Pierre Boulez quoted in Joan Peyser, Boulez (1976)

Slavic March: One feels that the composer must have made a bet, for all his professional reputation was worth, that he would write the most hideous thing that had ever been put on paper, and he won it, too.
-- Boston Evening Transcript, 1883, about Tchaikovsky


It gives us for the first time, the hideous notion that there can be music which stinks to the ear.
-- Eduard Hanslick
(1825-1904), German Bohemian music critic, writing of Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto





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