Fourth and Sixth symphonies
Just a thought, but does anyone else feel that there could be a
thematic reference by Tchaikovsky to the main theme of the finale of the
Fourth symphony in the finale of the Sixth symphony (the theme at
rehearsal letter C in the Breikopf and Hartel edition, Andante)? They both
descend initially, and climb higher as they progress. The key signatures
are somewhat related, also. I would just like to see some further
discussion on this possibility.
The main theme of the last movement of the Fourth Symphony is based on
the lively Russian folk song....''In the Field the Birch Tree Stood"..as
Tchaikovsky himself describes this movement to Madame Von Meck in a letter
of March 1878...."if within yourself you find no reasons for joy, then
look at others. Go among the people. See how they enjoy themselves,
surrendering themselves wholeheartedly to joyful feelings. Picture the
festive merriment of ordinary people......joy is simple, but powerful.
rejoice in the rejoicing of others. To live is still possible." And so
Adam the mood of this movement and its themes are at the opposite extremes
of those expressed in the dirge like elegiac "Andante Lamentoso" of the
Pathetique...the mood there is more like despair and resignation in the
face of death....Tho Tchaikovsky provided no program for this symphony it
pretty much follows the outline set by him for a symphony on life earlier
on......as a mediation on the issues of life and death....the themes I
believe bear little connection other than coincidence...
I hope this provides some clarity .....
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05 November 2013