Andante and Finale

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The Andante and Finale for piano and orchestra (TH 241 ; ČW 444) [1], were unfinished movements of the Piano Concerto No. 3, which after Tchaikovsky's death were completed and orchestrated by Sergey Taneyev, and published together as "Op. 79".

The question of whether the Andante and Finale should be considered part of the Third Piano Concerto is a moot one, and the concerto is often performed as a three-movement cycle. All the movements have their origins in an unfinished Symphony in E-flat major which Tchaikovsky sketched but later abandoned in November 1892.


Taneyev's reconstruction is scored for solo piano and an orchestra comprising 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets (B-flat), 2 bassoons + 4 horns (F), 2 trumpets, 3 trombones, tuba + timpani, side drum, cymbals + violins I, violins II, violas, cellos, and double basses.

Movements and Duration

There are two movements, together lasting around 20 minutes in performance:

  1. Andante (B-flat major, 215 bars)
  2. Finale. Allegro maestoso (E-flat major, 332 bars).


See: Piano Concerto No. 3


In November 1894, Sergey Taneyev (at Modest Tchaikovsky's request) began to study the unfinished sketches of these two movements: "I have copied out from Pyotr Ilyich's notebooks sketches for two movements of a future piano piece. To start with I made a clean copy, and then began to orchestrate them. The Andante is delightful, but unfortunately Pyotr Ilyich did not leave it for orchestra, but arranged it as a piano piece" [2].

Evidently, Sergey Taneyev's work on the Andante and Finale took some time. There was also the question of how the work should be published—whether to return to the author's original intention, i.e. to publish it in the form of a composition for orchestra, or to preserve its subsequent arrangement and to rework it as a piano piece [3]. In April 1895, Aleksandr Ziloti wrote to Modest Tchaikovsky: "It's a great pity that the Andante and Allegro will not be published for the piano" [4], but nevertheless, Taneyev reworked the pieces in concerto form, and on 24 August/5 September 1895 he reported to Modest that he was "finishing my task of orchestrating Pyotr Ilyich's piano compositions. On my arrival in Moscow I will add the finishing touches and hand the full score over to you" [5]. However, the reworking of the full score was delayed [6]. In a letter of 24 February/7 March 1896, Taneyev promised Modest that "it will shortly be put in order" [7].


The first performance took place on 8/20 February 1897 in Saint Petersburg at the first Russian symphony concert (the piano part performed by Sergey Taneyev), conducted by Feliks Blumenfeld.

On 17/29 October 1898, Sergey Taneyev again performed the Andante and Finale at one of Mitrofan Belyayev's Russian symphony concerts (in Moscow), conducted by Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakov. For this concert Taneyev made some changes to the piano part: "I have preserved everything that was Pyotr Ilyich's, but made it more interesting for the pianist, and it seems to me that the concerto will be more successful in this form" [8].


In letters from Mitrofan Belyayev to Sergey Taneyev the question of how to publish the Andante & Finale was raised once again: "You suggested these two movements should be published as an orchestral work", Belyayev wrote to Taneyev, "... but it seems to me that can be done later; just now I want to have all the materials so that there will be no interruption to the process of publication" [9]. But in a letter of 27 April/9 May he raised the matter again: "I have a related question: how ought I to print the two unpublished movements of Pyotr Ilyich's piano concerto, given that Jurgenson has already published the first movement? They can hardly be called two abandoned movements from the concerto! But could they be published as an independent work, i.e. as a fourth concerto in two movements, or as two concert pieces? Or would it not be better to publish them only in orchestral form as two movements from an unfinished symphony?" [10].

It appears that Sergey Taneyev and Modest Tchaikovsky both considered publishing the works in two forms—as a piano concerto (or Konzertstück) and as an orchestral composition [11]. Eventually the Andante and Finale were published in Taneyev's version for piano and orchestra in 1897, by the firm of Belyayev, who Modest Tchaikovsky had also engaged to print the overtures Fatum, The Storm and The Voyevoda.

The full score and two-piano arrangement of the Andante and Finale were published in volume 62 of Tchaikovsky's Complete Collected Works, edited by Ivan Shishov (1948). Taneyev's later amendments to the piano part were included in the two-piano arrangement in this edition.


Tchaikovsky's autograph sketches for both movements are preserved in the Klin House-Museum Archive.


See: Andante and Finale: Recordings

Related Works

See: Piano Concerto No. 3 and Symphony in E-flat major.

External Links

Notes and References

  1. Entitled Andante et Finale in ČW.
  2. Letter from Sergey Taneyev to Modest Tchaikovsky, 3/15 November 1894 — Klin House-Museum Archive.
  3. See letters from Mitrofan Belyayev to Sergey Taneyev from 1896, and from Aleksandr Ziloti to Modest TchaikovskyKlin House-Museum Archive.
  4. Letter from Aleksandr Ziloti to Modest Tchaikovsky, 9/21 April 1895 — Klin House-Museum Archive.
  5. Letter from Sergey Taneyev to Modest Tchaikovsky, 24 August/5 September 1895 — Klin House-Museum Archive.
  6. See letter from Sergey Taneyev to Modest Tchaikovsky, 18/30 November 1895 — Klin House-Museum Archive.
  7. Letter from Sergey Taneyev to Modest Tchaikovsky, 24 February/7 March 1896 — Klin House-Museum Archive.
  8. Letter from Sergey Taneyev to Modest Tchaikovsky, 3/15 October 1898 — Klin House-Museum Archive. The changes involved more complex variants of the piano part in bars 37-118 of the Andante, and bars 47–63 of the Finale).
  9. Letter from Mitrofan Belyayev to Sergey Taneyev, 10/22 April 1896 — Klin House-Museum Archive.
  10. Letter from Mitrofan Belyayev to Sergey Taneyev, 27 April/9 May 1896 — Klin House-Museum Archive.
  11. See letters from Aleksandr Ziloti to Modest Tchaikovsky, 9/21 April 1895, and from Mitrofan Belyayev to Sergey Taneyev, 10/22 April 1896 — Klin House-Museum Archive.