Today I wanted to share with you the “Swan Lake Suite” (an excerpt from the ballet of the same name). Swan Lake is Tchaikovsky’s version of Romeo and Juliet. Though today the ballet is considered to be the pinnacle of Tchaikovsky’s genius, its premier in 1877 was not well-received. The story line of the ballet you see in your local theater is different from what Tchaikovsky had in mind – the main characters died at the end in the original version.
After Tchaikovsky’s death, his brother Modest was asked to rewrite the story, and he did. In the version we see today, the tragic ending turns into a triumphant finale that celebrates love. Swan Lake changed ballet forever. Before Tchaikovsky, the ballet was about dancing and dancers, and the music was just there as a background. Swan Lake turned that tradition upside down and brought the music to the forefront.
Here is the “Swan Lake Suite” performed by the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra
I’ve written about Tchaikovsky in the past