bigger than life – the piano concerto no. 1

When I was going in Sunday school … I dreamed about be able to play piano – and there was quite a few girls in my age that the school held practice for every Wednesday, but there was only so many pianos available.

So when I showed my interest they said that I could be playing on the Harmonium if I wanted – my grandma said yes and so my the musical artist in me was born.Harmonium - sv.wikipedia org

On a Harmonium – was it very hard to play for a 10 year old girl – could hardly reach the pedals, but I played and played  … not at all good at it – I manage to play  the beginning of Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata” in the end – so my adventure as a pianist wasn’t very long lived, about a year.  

Haven’t sat by a piano since than or neither Harmonium for that matter.  But every time I listen to this classical masterpiece I wish that I had insisted on a piano and carried on. I don’t think I would ever have a career as a concert pianist (what a lost of the restaurant world *laughing) – and will never been playing with a full symphonic orchestra … but I would love to be able to play this fantastic piece of music, even if it were going to be me as an audience. I’m not really that fussed about other beautiful classical piano pieces, but I suppose if I had managed to play this .. I would had played the others too. *smile Tchaikovsky - axess se

Because for me this is the ultimate piano concert; The Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat minor, Op. 23 was composed by Tchaikovsky between 1874 and 1875. It was revised in the summer of 1879 and again in December 1888. The first version received heavy criticism from his desired pianist. Which later repudiated his previous accusations and became a fervent champion of the work. It is one of the most popular of Tchaikovsky’s compositions and among the best known of all piano concerts.

Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (Russian: Пётр Ильич Чайковский), 1840 – 1893, born in in Votkinsk 100 mil east of Moscow.

Tchaikovsky’s life and work was strongly influenced by his homosexuality, which he for the longest time did not want to admit. He attempted a brief, unhappy relationship with Désirée Artôt, the star of a visiting Italian opera company.

He has written seven symphonies , eleven operas symphonic poems, three string quartets, songs, piano pieces and three story ballets (Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty and The Nutcracker). He also wrote three piano concertos, of which the Piano Concerto No. 1 is the most famous, and a violin concerto.

Tchaikovsky had a couple of mental breakdowns during his life, because he worked hard and put himself under severe pressure all the time. He undertook several tours, including in the USA, was awarded an honorary doctorate in 1893 in Cambridge and achieved several major successes with new compositions.

In October 1893, he conducted the first performance of his Symphony No. 6, known as the “Pathétique” in St. Petersburg. Despite the fact that a cholera epidemic was going on in the city, he drank a glass of unboiled water and died of the disease on November 6. Some have described his death as suicide.

Tchaikovsky’s music can be summed be personalized, elegant and substantial melodic. Three factors that made ​​him one of the greatest in classical music.

(All facts collected from

This music is bigger than life to me!!!!!

Piano concerto 1 - sheetmusicplus com

“Inspiration is a guest that does not willingly visit the lazy.”
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

Photos provided by and thanks to;

19 thoughts on “bigger than life – the piano concerto no. 1

  1. Days late and actually on a blog break till March I have your beautiful music wafting across my library . . . thank you . . .the notes so bring peace . . . You know Viveka, I never knew of his sexuality, somehow however close to Russia I myself grew up, it has never come up. How very difficult it must have been at the time!! My darling Dad early on said: look some feel this way and some that and some move back and forth: never ever judge . . . private life belongs in the private sphere – leave it there! So many even in 2014 do not!!! Look at what is happening in Sochi!!

    • Eha, it’s so chocking that in the 21th century we still can’t accept that each other for what we are.
      It’s like we should make a religion illegal. What difference does it to our lives if two people of the same sex love each other and what to get married – but it makes such huge difference to their lives – why can’t we let them have that right, the human right?
      Yes, it must have been extremely difficult in Tchaikovsky’s situation.
      Your father was a wise man – hopefully still are.
      It’s the first time I have put a music cloud that is a full concert piece, but this is worth it, nearly 20 min long.

      • Is it really ~ I mean twenty minutes long? 🙂 !!! ‘Cause I have been walking around my workroom in utter peace not even noticing – aye, but there is the ‘rub’ is it not – you have given me a beautiful ‘away’ time without my having to ‘select’ it. . . . religion . . . well, I was born Lutheran . . . like many in our part of the world . . . I did need faith – but have quietly turned to the Buddhist mode . . . no big deal, like hetero- or homosexuality in most, this agrees with me . . .

      • Buddhist is the only religon that makes sense to me … if any religon does. Don’t know much about it – but I have heard and read .. that is was faith should be about. The rescept and love for nature, the planet and other people.
        I like that “away” time …. I listen to piece now while answering you. Beautiful music takes me away too.

    • Tchaikovsky was a master on creating that elegance, romance; playfulness and power to his music … look at his 3 ballets – all my favorite. There is so much beautiful music out there – but when it’s about piano concerts this is the ULTIMATE one.
      Then the most beautiful piano piece is without a doubt Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata”.

  2. Inspired for sure, but not a happy life, Vivi. Do inspiration and happiness go hand in hand? Not often, it seems. I would love to be able to play “Moonlight Sonata”, or to hear you play it! Either/or would make me happy. 🙂

    • Me playing “Moonlight Sonata” – you don’t know what you’re asking for .. it was over 60 years since I played a small part of it.
      I was thinking about this when I did this post – all our big artist … painters and composers – none of them had a happy life and they were struggling with bad health … I suppose that may be way they became such great artists, because they lived with problems and pain.

  3. Sheer brilliance isn’t it? One of my favourites too. Sadly I have never even attempted playing any instrument. I have no doubt you would have been pretty skilled if you had pursued it Viveka 🙂

    • Thanks for your faith in me *smile – but I would be so pleased if I could only manage to play it for my own ears. I don’t think I would be very skilled – but it’s not always about it. This piece is so powerful, so I suppose to be able to play it there has to be some proper skills involved.

  4. One of my absolute favourites as well! I could listen forever to this…Once played the piano myself – but not more than average skills. I still play the guitar though. I like to be able to sing to it. But this piece – fantastic.

    • A-C, fantastic piece of music …. I couldn’t call my piano skill even average … and so many years ago, but I can still dream of being able to play this. *smile

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.