The idea of a ‘Hamlet overture’ had first occurred to Tschaikowsky in 1876. However, by 1888 he had altered these plans when he was asked to write incidental music for a production of Shakespeare’s play. The planned performance was cancelled, but Tschaikowsky decided to finish what he had started, in the form of a concert overture.
The work adopts the same scheme he used in his other Shakespeare pieces, the fantasy-overture ‘Romeo and Juliet’ (1869) and the symphonic fantasy ‘The Tempest’ (1873), in using certain characteristics or emotional situations within the play.
Publisher: → Baton Music
text: © Baton Music