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Cover of volume 1New Russian Edition of Tchaikovsky's Correspondence with Nadezhda von Meck

Tchaikovsky's correspondence with his patroness Nadezhda von Meck forms a substantial portion of his surviving epistolary heritage. Many of their surviving letters were published in three volumes between 1936 and 1938 [1], while only a small number have so far been translated into English [2]. While these editions have proved invaluable for Tchaikovsky researchers over the years, they are not without their flaws (or cuts), and naturally cannot take into account new developments in scholarship, and the dozens of new letters which have since come to light.

This situation is soon to be remedied by the publication of a new collection of the Tchaikovsky-von Meck correspondence. All the surviving letters between the composer and his patroness—more than 1200 in all (including over twenty which were hitherto unknown)—are being published in full, in their original language, and fully annotated. The correspondence is being supplemented by previously unpublished sources from public repositories, and from the personal archives of the Tchaikovsky and von Meck families.

The critical commentary and notes for the edition are provided by Dr Polina Vaidman, senior curator at the Tchaikovsky House-Museum in Klin, who has also contributed an introductory article "Tchaikovsky and N. F. von Meck: The story of their extraordinary correspondence. Myths and realities over the centuries". Together with other invaluable contributions from specialists in the field (including a new genealogy of the von Meck family), the publication promises to be of great interest to professional muscians and general readers alike. We can only hope that an English language edition will follow in the near future..

Volume 1 of П. И. Чайковский–Н.Ф. фон Мекк: Переписка, covering the years 1876 and 1877 is published in Cheliabinsk by Musik Produktion International, 704 pages, ISBN 5–9628–0142–3.


  1. П. И. Чайковский: Переписка с Н. Ф. вон-Мекк. Ред. и примечания В. А. Жданова и Н. Т. Жегина (Moscow/Leningrad, 1934–36), 3 vols. [back]
  2. “To my best friend” : correspondence between Tchaikovsky and Nadezhda von Meck, 1876–1878. Translated from the Russian by Galina von Meck ; edited. by Edward Garden and Nigel Gotteri, with an introduction by Edward Garden (Oxford/New York, 1993). [back]

This page was last updated on 08 June 2013