Orchestra pulls Tchaikovsky from program after Russian invasion of Ukraine

The Cardiff Philharmonic Orchestra announced the change, saying they "feel the previously advertised programme including the 1812 Overture to be inappropriate at this time."

Hannah Nightingale Washington DC

A Welsh orchestra recently announced that they are changing their program for an upcoming concert, which featured Tchaikovsky’s music, because of the recent Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The March 18 concert was originally going to feature multiple works of Tchaikovsky, but the Cardiff Philharmonic Orchestra announced on March 2 that the concert would be changed, saying that they "feel the previously advertised programme including the 1812 Overture to be inappropriate at this time."

According to Classical Music, the concert would have featured the Russian composer’s 1812 Overture, which was written to commemorate the Russian defense against Napoleon’s invasion.

The program also featured his 1876 Marche slave, which was written to celebrate Russia’s involvement in the Serbian-Ottoman War. The final piece in the program was supposed to he his Second Symphony.

Instead, the orchestra announced that they would be featuring works from America composer John Williams, Czech composer Antonin Dvorjak, and English composer Edward Elgar.

"In a change to the advertised programme, Cardiff Philharmonic Orchestra presents an evening including two much loved classics, Dvorjak's joyous and life-affirming Symphony No 8, and perhaps the greatest and most popular work by a British composer, Elgar’s Enigma Variations, an affectionate musical portrait of Elgar’s friends (including the deeply moving Nimrod)," the orchestra wrote.

"The concert opens with a 90th birthday tribute to the great John Williams and his overture to the film The Cowboys, starring John Wayne, a rollercoaster of an overture with its vibrant colours, so typical of John Williams," they added.

The change in program marks yet another change made due to the ongoing situation in Eastern Europe.

According to Classical Music, Russian composer Valery Gergiev was removed from the conductor’s podium and dropped by his management after he failed to denounce Russia’s actions.


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