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Dumka 'Russian Rustic Scene', Op 59


This piece was written to a commission from the Parisian music publisher Félix Mackar, who evidently sought a substantial virtuosic piece. The title 'Dumka' (meaning 'thought' or 'rumination') points to an Eastern-European genre of improvised song with instrumental accompaniment, which Tchaikovsky had most likely encountered in Ukraine. Switching between slow and fast folk-inspired music, the Dumka is a cousin of Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsodies, and Tchaikovsky originally gave the piece the working title of 'rhapsody'. But there is more to the design: it is a rustic scene with a hint of dramatic action, possibly even with a tragic outcome, as in many a Romantic ballade. The doleful improvisatory beginning is like a preamble to the telling of a legend. The fast section suggests a folk dance, which quickly turns raucous. The merriment is interrupted by a lyrical variation on the same material—as if the spotlight falls on a new character. The dance then resumes, but only to be swept away by a dramatic wave that leads to the climax. The return of the doleful theme brings the narrative frame to a close.

from notes by Marina Frolova-Walker © 2019

La Dumka de Tchaïkovski, qui compte parmi les plus substantielles œuvres pour piano du compositeur, s’achève sur une élégiaque réminiscence de son éclat et de son intensité passés.

extrait des notes rédigées par Bryce Morrison © 1999
Français: Hypérion

Tschaikowskis Dumka ist eines seiner gehaltvollsten Klavierwerke und endet mit einer elegischen Erinnerung an ihre einstige Glut und Eindringlichkeit.

aus dem Begleittext von Bryce Morrison © 1999
Deutsch: Anne Steeb/Bernd Müller


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