Symphony in B-flat major

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The only references to a projected Symphony in B-flat major (TH 210 ; ČW 467) are found in the composer’s diary for 1873.

In the entry for 11/23 June that year, he wrote: "Yesterday I travelled from Vorozhba to Kiev, after a lengthy period of coolness towards music, for unknown reasons everything began playing and singing within me. An embryo [of a theme] in B-flat major became established in my head, and suddenly I had the idea for a whole symphony. All at once I decided to tear myself away from Stasov's Tempest, and to spend all summer on the symphony, which shall eclipse everything that's gone before" [1]; this is followed by a note of a theme in B-flat major (8 bars):

TH210a.jpg

On 1/13 July 1873, the composer made another note in the key of E major the "theme for the 1st Allegro. The Introduction is similar, but in 4/4" [2].

No further references to this projected symphony have been found, but a few months later Tchaikovsky used a variant of the B-flat major theme in the piano piece Capriccioso — No. 5 of the Six Pieces, Op. 19.

Notes and References