Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky "Mama"
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky is a brilliant Russian composer, whose contribution to the treasury of world music is impossible to estimate. His symphonic works are the most performed, and operas and ballets do not leave the stages of the world's best musical theaters. However, the merit of an outstanding maestro is not only in the composing of many admirable works of different genres for adult listeners. Peter Ilyich paid much attention to the creative development of the younger generation. The works of the composer in the pedagogical repertoire of music schools occupy an important place, but the piano cycle "Children's Album" received special recognition and love. Twenty-four charming miniatures immerse themselves in the wonderful world of childhood, in which there are exciting activities, fun games and fairy tales, but most importantly there is a mother in it. Pyotr Ilyich considered it obligatory to insert the play “Mother” into his cycle for young musicians, because mother is not only the dearest and closest person for us, but also a symbol of kindness and love.
Read about the history of the creation of the piano miniature of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky "Mama", as well as its musical content on our page.
History of creation
Piano miniature "Mom", like other works included in "Children's album“, was written by Peter Ilyich in the summer of 1878. However, it should be noted that the composer’s invaluable creation was preceded by events that occurred in the composer’s personal life a year before. In July 1877 Chaikovsky committed a rash act, which he later regretted for the rest of his life. He married Antonina Milyukova, a person in whom she soon became very disappointed.
In order to ward off the gloomy thoughts that were constantly pursuing the composer and bringing him to a nervous breakdown, Pyotr Ilyich decided to hastily leave Russia in order to relax a little while traveling through the countries of Europe. In Italy, Tchaikovsky's mental condition improved significantly, perhaps influenced by the arrival of brother Modest and his deaf-and-dumb pupil Kolya Conradi. The composer treated this boy with great warmth. Taking care of Kolya and his everyday activities with him brought many happy moments to Peter Ilyich, thereby returning him peace of mind. However, the composer, who was not indifferent to children, gave his attention not only to a student of Modest Ilyich. Walking through the streets of Italian cities, he often met there very young artists who performed in front of a randomly assembled public, in a similar way, who earned their living.
Particular enthusiasm from Tchaikovsky received Florentine boy Vittorio. His beautiful voice and inspired singing impressed the outstanding maestro so much that he told this talented performer in letters to his friends. Such an interesting contact with the world of childhood inspired Pyotr Ilyich with the idea of creating small works for the creative development of the younger generation. In fact, at that time musical literature for young performers was not very diverse. From what was, deserved special attention "Album for the Young" by Robert SchumannThe German romantic composer composed for his seven-year-old daughter Maria, as well as a small heritage from the great classics: I.S. Baha, V.A. Mozart and L.V. Beethoven. Thinking over his idea, the first thing Tchaikovsky decided was to find out how the head of the music publishing house, Peter Ivanovich Yurgenson, would react to her. In February, he sent a letter to the publisher and soon received an approving reply.
Two months later, returning home, Tchaikovsky first visited the Kamenka, the estate of the Davydov family, located near Kiev. In this estate lived the composer's sister Alexander Ilyinichna with her husband Lev Vasilyevich Davydov and their children, who by then were already seven. Peter Ilyich loved Kamenka very much, not only because the picturesque nature and cozy atmosphere inspired him to create outstanding masterpieces, but also because the composer could really relax and unwind here. Tchaikovsky received great pleasure in visiting his sister from intercourse with adored nephews and nieces. Together they took walks, played a variety of games, launched fireworks. Pyotr Ilyich enthusiastically told the children about his travels in different countries. The nieces who loved to dance asked their uncle to accompany them to the dances, and once together they even staged a ballet, which was called "Swan Lake". From such an amazing immersion in the cloudless world of childhood, the composer felt incredibly happy. With his love and attention, Tchaikovsky endowed each child of his sister, but he felt a special affection for Babe, so kindly in the family was the name of six-year-old Vladimir. The boy in everything wanted to be like his famous uncle Petya.
Having visited his beloved relatives this time, the composer especially carefully watched the children's musical activities, as he was preparing to begin composing piano works that are not difficult for students to learn, which must have attractive names for young musicians. The work on miniatures, which included the above-mentioned work “Mama”, began on April 30, Tchaikovsky, and finished in May. After editing the sketch materials, which took him about two months, Pyotr Ilyich sent the collection to the publishing house with a note about what Kolya Davydov devotes him to. "Children's album. A collection of light pieces for children. Imitation of Schumann" first appeared before young musicians on the eve of the new 1879.
In the play with the touching and gentle name of "Mom", Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky painted a portrait in which he displayed a tender woman, possessor of a soft and calm disposition. The touching and sincere music of the work is filled with a special charm, light tranquility and warmth. In it, the composer expressed the subtlest nuances of spiritual experiences: sad emotion, bright sadness, anxiety and concern. For the miniature, the composer selected the G major tonality by chance, as it is considered that it is best for her to convey tender and warm feelings. The three-part size of the piece is also for good reason: calm waltz makes music especially soft and smooth. Authors' instructions, made traditionally in Italian, also speak about the nature of the music: moderato (moderately), molto espressivo e dolce (with great feeling and tenderness). The play, from the beginning to the end, which has a single texture, is enclosed in a three-part form, with a coda.
The piece begins with a poetically expressive melody, which is sung by a duet of the upper and lower voices moving in parallel at a distance of decima. It is necessary to pay attention to the unusual phrasing in the first part: the three-vocal motifs that make up the melodic line start from the second beat and end at the first beat of the next beat. The special beauty of the music is given by the tenor voice voices.
The middle climax of the piece, starting from the ninth bar, does not contain much contrast, but the nature of the music changes slightly. The intonation of trembling and sad agitation arising from the shift of accents falling in beats to different beats appears in the melody.
Then the music gets a bright color again, as the third section begins, which exactly repeats the thematic material of the first part. In the code, the intonations become even more gentle and tender shade.
The main difficulties encountered when learning the piano miniature "Mom".
- The play is not an ordinary phrase, in which the end of the motive falls on a strong beat of tact. This presents a certain difficulty, since it requires a soft execution of the end of phrases.
- In this composition it is important to ensure that the melody, consisting of three-sounded motifs, is one, not fragmented.
- Another difficulty of this work is in the leagues. Despite the fact that the upper and lower voices move in sync, the league composer has connected the motifs in completely different ways. Because of this, voices become independent and acquire completely different melodic patterns.
- It is necessary to pay attention to the left hand part. It is difficult, because of the large stretch is not always convenient in the performance of the piano. In addition, it is important to beautifully lead the melodic line passing in the bass, and the tenor headers play much quieter.
- Great value in the play is pedalization. It enriches the sound and also has a timbre function.
Mom is a simple but wonderful word dear to every child, therefore touching and sincere music composed by the great Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky and called "Mom", so strongly touches the strings of a child's soul. The bright peace of the composition brings pleasant memories of the closest and dear person, whose love, kindness and support accompany us throughout our lives.