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If you’re not familiar with Tchaikovsky’s 6th symphony, I’m afraid you’re not really familiar with Tchaikovsky, regardless of how many times you’ve watched the Nutcracker or attended Swan Lake.
Tchaikovsky’s 6th was not only his final one, but it was his magnum opus. He admitted himself, that it was “the best thing he composed” and the work into which he “poured all his soul”.
Joining me for this episode is the famous Semyon Bychkov, who is a Soviet-born maestro and conductor. I consider Maestro Bychkov’s interpretation of Tchaikovsky to be one of the best. He not only preserves all of the passion of Tchaikovsky’s aesthetic but mort importantly, he doesn’t overdo it.
Born in St. Petersburg, Bychkov began his formal conducting lessons at 13 and won the Rachmaninov Conducting Competition when he was only 20. He fled the soviet union as a refugee, and perhaps it’s his Russian heritage that gives him access to the melancholy heart of Tchaikovsky. Now living in Paris, Maestro is a globe-trotting guest conductor who is regularly praised for the beauty and integrity of his interpretations.