Letter 2532

Tchaikovsky Research
Date 20 August/1 September 1884
Addressed to Sergey Taneyev
Where written Skabeyevo
Language Russian
Autograph Location Moscow: Russian State Archive of Literature and Art (ф. 880)
Publication Письма П. И. Чайковского и С. И. Танеева (1874-1893) [1916], p. 118–119
П. И. Чайковский. С. И. Танеев. Письма (1951), p. 113
П. И. Чайковский. Полное собрание сочинений, том XII (1970), p. 421

Text and Translation

Russian text
English translation
By Luis Sundkvist
20 августа

Боюсь, что этот листочек не застанет Вас, и пишу лишь несколько слов; отвечаю же так поздно потому, что вследствие почтовой неурядицы письмо Ваше лишь сегодня дошло до Вас. Я пробуду здесь до самого конца месяца, а может быть, и дольше, но во всяком случае, когда Вы приедете в Москву, я тотчас же могу побывать в Москве и повидать Вас.

Симфония меня очень интересует и радует. Признаюсь, я сомневался, что Вы доведёте её в это же лето до конца.

Ваш П. Чайковский

20 August

I am worried that this little sheet of paper may not reach you, and so I am writing just a few words. The reason why I am replying so late is that as a result of postal chaos your letter only reached you today [1]. I shall stay here until the end of the month, and perhaps even longer, but in any case, after you have arrived in Moscow, I can immediately pay a visit to Moscow and meet up with you.

The symphony interests and gladdens me very much [2]. I confess that I had had doubts as to whether you would be able to complete it this summer.

Yours, P. Tchaikovsky

Notes and References

  1. In his letter of 12/24 August 1884 from Selishche (the estate in Oryol Province belonging to Fyodor Maslov and his three sisters), Taneyev asked Tchaikovsky to let him know when he was expecting to come to Moscow because he wanted to show him his new work, the Third Symphony in D minor, the sketches for which he had completed in Selishche in late March/early April. Taneyev explained in his letter that he wanted to make sure that before Tchaikovsky came to see him in Moscow he had orchestrated at least one or two movements of the symphony, a task which he intended to undertake in Moscow, where he intended to return in late August/early September, and which would be all the easier because he had in fact already made rough sketches for the full score. Taneyev's letter has been published in П. И. Чайковский. С. И. Танеев. Письма (1951), p. 112-113.
  2. Taneyev would play through his Third Symphony to Tchaikovsky in Moscow on 26 August/7 September (see Letter 2538 to Modest Tchaikovsky, 1/13 September 1884 and Taneyev's letter of 28 August/9 September 1884 to Varvara Maslova in П. И. Чайковский. С. И. Танеев. Письма (1951), p. 395), and Tchaikovsky would later provide a detailed appraisal of his former pupils work (see Letter 2560 to Taneyev, 28 September/10 October 1884). The symphony, which was dedicated to Anton Arensky but was never published, was first performed at a Russian Musical Society concert in Moscow on 26 January/7 February 1885, conducted by Taneyev himself. For more information on Taneyev's Third Symphony, see Sergey Popov, «Неизданные сочинения и работы С. И. Танеева—Археографический очерк» (Unpublished compositions and works by S. I. Taneyev. An archaeographical outline) in Сергей Иванович Танеев. Личность, творчество и документы его жизни (Moscow / Leningrad, 1925), p. 145–149.