Letter 4318a

Date 31 January/12 February 1891
Addressed to Félix Mackar
Where written Saint Petersburg
Language French
Autograph Location Klin (Russia): Tchaikovsky State Memorial Musical Museum-Reserve (a3, No. 3366) [1]
Publication Tschaikowsky-Gesellschaft Mitteilungen, Heft 6 (1999), p. 12 (abridged)

Text and Translation

French text
(original)
English translation
By Brett Langston
31 Janvier/12 Fevrier 1891
S[ain]t Petersbourg

Mon cher ami !

Je ne puis remplir ton désir quant au Rescké. Ces messieurs sont obligés par leur contract de refuser de chanter dans des salles de concerts ; je sais d'avance qu'ils refuseront et ne veux pas souffrir de l'humiliation d'un refus. Sache, mon cher ami que je ne prends pas sur moi d'inviter qui que ce soit. Ce n'est pas mon affaire. La mienne c'est de prendre en main le baton et de conduire l'orchestre. Je promets aussi de subvenir au frais de l'arrangement du concert dans la mesure de mes moyens, c'est à dire : je donnera 1000 roubles. Tout le reste des soucis, — il faut que tu en portes le poid! Pardon, mais je ne pui faire autrement. Invite qui tu veux; tâche d'obtenir des artistes capables d'attirer le public.

Je pourrai venir à Paris à la fin de Mars.

Je t'embrasse. Pardon d'écrire peu et mal, mais je suis très pressé.

P. Tchaïkovsky

31 January/12 February 1891
Saint Petersburg

My dear friend!

I cannot fulfil you wish regarding Rescké. These gentlemen are obliged by their contract to refuse to sing in concert halls; I know in advance that they will refuse, and do not want to suffer the humiliation of a refusal. Be aware, my dear friend, that I have not taken it upon myself to invite anyone. This is none of my business. Mine is to take my baton in hand and to conduct the orchestra. I also undertake to subsidise the costs of the concert to the extent of my means, that is to say: I am giving 1000 rubles. As for all other concerns — you have to bear the brunt! Forgive me for not doing anything else. Invite whoever you wish; the trick is to obtain artists capable of attracting the public.

I could come to Paris at the end of March.

I embrace you. Excuse me for writing so little, but I'm very rushed.

P. Tchaikovsky

Notes and References

  1. This letter was acquired in 1998 by Elisabeth Bender of the Tschaikowsky-Gesellschaft who enabled it to be published for the first time the following year. It was held in her private collection in Würzburg (Germany) for a number of years. The autograph was subsequently been acquired by the Tchaikovsky House-Museum in Klin [1]