Tchaikovsky's 6th and final symphony was, for me, a random choice when picking out a piece of music to study. The criteria for a piece I wanted to analyze and look into were based it being a popular piece, a symphony, and composed by someone fairly modern so I was sure to acquire enough background. After that, it was a random choice after searching through prominent symphonies. I had heard of Tchaikovsky in my earlier years due to the fact that he had written the "The Nutcracker Suite," which is an extremely popular ballet and adored by millions (1 Dick). .
I knew nothing of Tchaikovsky other than that, so it was sure to be something new to me. In having the option to choose a very recent or modern artist versus an artist/composer from years ago, I wanted to go with the music that I am not accustomed too. I felt anything in the past 50 or so years was to me, boring. I wanted to research a symphony because it is these long, moving and dynamic pieces that appealed most to me throughout this past semester. Although not of the Classical Era, this 6th Symphony was of the classical form (4 Wiki). Popularity was important to me because I wanted a piece that, if popular today, means it has withstood the test of time and many different ears. This told me the piece set itself apart in some ways. It is these very ways that has allowed a piece to set itself apart, I wish to uncover. Tchaikovsky's 6th Symphony is a piece that not only has retained every bit of its popularity, but is arguably one of the best known symphonies of all time (3 Peter).
Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky was a Russian composer born in 1840 and died in 1893 (5 Wiki). He was born into a well off family and he had a brother, Modest, whom he was very close with throughout his life. He was a smart child having had learned German and French at the age of 6. While a young Peter was taking piano lessons, at night when he'd go to sleep, and wake up complaining to his parents that the music in his head made it hard to sleep (5 Wiki).