Brussels (Brussel, Bruxelles),
is the capital city of Belgium.
Tchaikovsky is only known to have visited Brussels twice:
- 20 July/1 August 1861 — a brief stop while travelling from Antwerp to Ostend on
his first journey outside Russia.
- 28 December 1892/9 January 1893–3/15 January 1893 — in order to rehearse
and conduct a concert of his own works (2/14 January 1893), which included
the Suite No. 3, the Piano Concerto No. 1 (soloist
Franz Rummel), the suite from The
Nutcracker, the Serenade
for String Orchestra, and the overture The Year 1812.
"The orchestra performed well, if not very well," he wrote afterwards,
"but it showed little discipline. Everyone there received me very
cordially and kindly, but this did not make it any easier for me, so that
in Brussels I suffered doubly from agitation and melancholy" .
This concert was all the more memorable for the composer because during
the interval François-Auguste Gevaert delivered a speech thanking him on
behalf of the Brussels Association of Musicians to which Tchaikovsky had
donated his conducting fee. Back in 1865, while still a student,
Tchaikovsky had translated Gevaert's famous Traité d'instrumentation,
which was published by Jurgenson
the following year as Handbook for
Instrumentation (TH 329)
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- Letter 4844 to Modest Tchaikovsky, 4/16
January 1893 [back]
This page was last updated on
11 April 2013