ALEXANDER TCHAIKOVSKY (b.1946): Orchestral Music, Vol. 1 - Symphonies No. 3, Op. 75 and No. 7, Op. 139 “Quarantine Symphony”.
Catalogue Number: 02W010
Label: Toccata Classics
Reference: TOCC 0587
Description: The Muscovite Alexander Tchaikovsky – nephew of Boris Tchaikovsky but no relative to Pyotr Ilich – is one of the most highly respected composers at work in contemporary Russia, and yet his music has had little exposure to western audiences. His symphonic style owes something to that of his uncle: it likewise patiently develops enormous power over large expanses of sound, although there is also room for gently ironic touches of nostalgia. Much of the Third Symphony (1995–2002), scored for a huge orchestra, is infused with waltz rhythms: it uses material from sketches for an abandoned ballet based on Dostoyevsky’s The Devils. The Seventh Symphony is very much a work of today: Tchaikovsky composed it during the Covid-19 pandemic, scored it for a socially distanced orchestra of strings, percussion and piano – at which point, as he writes, ‘the virus then took revenge’, and he fell ill himself. The message of the work is clear, as the turmoil of the first movement gives way to a message of hope in the second. Siberian Symphony Orchestra; Dmitry Vasiliev.