Yury Messer

Tchaikovsky Research
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Composer and music teacher, known in Russia as Yury Frantsevich Messer (Юрий Францевич Мессер), possibly born as Emile Messer.

He worked as a proofreader at Jurgenson's music publishing firm in Moscow, and he also taught at the Conservatory and at the Nikolayevsky Women's Institute for Orphans. From time to time he helped Tchaikovsky to prepare his operas for publication — for example, in the summer of 1879 he arranged, together with Iosif Kotek, the vocal-piano reduction of The Maid of Orleans. Messer was also the author of a number of piano pieces and made piano transcriptions of Lensky's arioso and aria from Yevgeny Onegin. Tchaikovsky at first had a very high opinion of Messer's musical and proofreading skills, but eventually he would begin finding lots of faults with his work.

Correspondence with Tchaikovsky

Two letters from Tchaikovsky to Yury Messer have survived, dating from 1879, both of which have been translated into English on this website: