Circa late 1880s sepia 4.25 x 6.5 cabinet portrait of Tchaikovsky in a noble head-and-shoulders pose, boldly signed and inscribed in Cyrillic black ink by the Russian composer. Published by a St. Petersburg photography studio. In very good to fine condition, with light toning and soiling to the front, and dampstaining and a bit of surface loss to the reverse.
The patronage of Nadezhda von Meck enabled Tchaikovksy to refocus on music following his failed marriage to former student Antonina Miliukova in 1877. Constant travel bolstered his presence in both the West and in Russia, and the success of the 1812 Overture and Piano Trio in A Minor helped assuage Tchaikovsky’s social anxieties. In 1884, Tsar Alexander III conferred upon Tchaikovsky the Order of Saint Vladimir, a validation of status that allowed him to move confidently throughout the prime of his career. By decade’s end, Tchaikovsky served as director of the Moscow branch of the Russian Musical Society and became the target of immense international demand; in April 1891, he led the New York Music Society's orchestra in his Festival Coronation March at the inaugural concert of Carnegie Hall. A brilliant signed image of the revered Russian composer.
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