The theatrical. musical and artistic journal Artist was first published in September 1889 in Moscow. The editor of the journal wanted to gather contributions from writers, dramatists, composers and artists, and so he turned to Tchaikovsky, whose reputation at this time was held in high esteem both in Russia and abroad. Tchaikovsky promised to write a piece in time for the first edition of the journal, notwithstanding his arduous task of completing the ballet The Sleeping Beauty.
Among his surviving correspondence are two letters from the composer to the music critic Semyon Kruglikov, editor of the musical section of the journal Artist, concerning the piece Valse-scherzo.: "I shall certainly write a [piano] piece or romance, and by no later than 15 August [O.S.] it will be with the editor; but I cannot guarantee its quality, because I am terribly worn out with other pressing work (scoring a ballet). Could I press you to undertake the proof-reading yourself?" , and on 16/28 August he wrote: "I hope very much that you will like your piece!!!" . Kruglikov thanked Tchaikovsky for having sent the composition so promptly, and for supporting the journal: "It [the Valse-scherzo] will be truly enhance the book, and doubly so since it bears your name, besides which... the whole thing is charming, graceful and elegant .
The Valse-scherzo was published in the journal Artist (September 1889, No. 1). Published independently by Pyotr Jurgenson in 1894.
From: Музыкальное наследие Чайковского (1958), pp. 414–415
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