Brahms considered Tchaikovsky’s music shallow and self-indulgent.  Tchaikovsky wrote in his diary “I have played over the music of that scoundrel Brahms.   What a giftless bastard.”  However, when they met at a New Year’s party, they got along quite well.  But they never changed their opinions on each other’s music, and each went on composing in his own style.  The result is that today, each is considered a giant of 19th century classical music.  The reason for our juxtaposition of the emotional and sentimental Tchaikovsky and the reserved and classically-oriented Brahms is that both were born on May 7th.  On that Wednesday, we’ll offer up great works by both of these men so that you can judge their music for yourself, perhaps less harshly than they.

 

MTT- Tchaikovsky Symphony No.4, 4th mvmt 

Michael Tilson Thomas conducting the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra in a very high-powered 4th movement of Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 4 in F minor.

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Brahms: Symphony No. 1 / Rattle · Berliner Philharmoniker

Johannes Brahms: Symphony No. 1 / Sir Simon Rattle, conductor · Berliner Philharmoniker / Recorded at the Berlin Philharmonie, 1 November 2008.

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