Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky

Slavonic March, for orchestra, Op. 31

    Description by James Reel

    Marche slave (1876), one of Tchaikovsky's most popular concert works, was written for a concert to benefit soldiers wounded in the war between Serbia and Turkey. The conflict eventually escalated into all-out war between Russia and Turkey; to capitalize on the prevailing spirit of Slavic solidarity, Tchaikovsky used appropriate folk songs as the main themes in his march, incorporating the Russian national anthem, "God Save the Tsar," at key points. Still, Tchaikovsky's intent seems not to have been wholly nationalistic; his orchestration of the national anthem in its various appearances is almost satirical, though this aspect of the work is often downplayed in performance. During the Soviet era, when performances of the old Tsarist hymn were forbidden, a melody by Glinka was inserted into the Marche slave at appropriate points as a substitute.

    The march opens as a darkly scored trudge to which an air of mystery and exoticism is added by a sinuous, quasi-Eastern melody, which gives way to a related surging string theme over a brass tattoo. A second theme group revolves around a brightly martial, rather whimsical fife-and-drum tune, which quickly builds into a hearty two-step in the brass. The Tsarist hymn bursts in over nattering woodwinds, after which Tchaikovsky, in characteristic fashion, fills out the march's second half by putting his thematic material through its paces in the various sections of the orchestra, exploiting variations in timbre and register to maximum effect. The work ends with a stirring, swirling, decidedly unmarchable coda.

    Appears On

    Year Title Label Catalog #
    2018 Menuetto Classics
    2018 Decca / Deutsche Grammophon 4798418
    2017 Deutsche Grammophon 4797477
    2017 ABC Classics
    2017 Leaf Music NBYO 04
    2016 Deutsche Grammophon
    2016 Pentatone / PentaTone Classics PTC 5186550
    2016 Exton 64
    2016 Deutsche Grammophon 4795553
    2016 Mark Masters / Mark Records 52357 MCD
    2015 Menuetto Classics
    2015 Orfeo C 895151A
    2015 Guild Historical GHCD 2409
    2015 Deutsche Grammophon 4794646
    2015 PentaTone Classics PTC 5186489
    2014 Da Capo / Dacapo DC 277
    2014 Deutsche Grammophon
    2014 Sony Classical 88843045052
    2013 EMI / EMI Classics / Warner Classics 5099943330
    2013 Decca 4785437
    2013 Deutsche Grammophon / Universal
    2013 Oehms Classics OC 763
    2012 Deutsche Grammophon 002894770055
    2012 K-Tel 56873
    2012 Telarc
    2012 Hi. Q HIX 7CD
    2012 Brilliant Classics 94307
    2012 Divine Art DDA 25093
    2012 Broken Audio BRAUR 0186
    2012 PentaTone Classics PTC 5186381
    2011 Glossa 922209
    2011 EMI Classics / Warner Classics 5099990714
    2011 Red Bus Classical RCLAS 040
    2011 Apex 2564675470
    2010 EMI Classics / Warner Classics 5099963201
    2010 Denon Records
    2010 Denon Records
    2010 Allegro Corporation / RPO 28570
    2010 RCA Red Seal 8869770073
    2010 Decca
    2010 Sony Classical 88697712662
    2010 Challenge Classics 72356
    2010 Deutsche Grammophon
    2010 Deutsche Grammophon 4778699
    2009 Denon Records
    2009 Delta / Zebralution
    2009 Delta / Zebralution
    2009 Sony Masterworks 47282
    2009 INTENT 3326
    2009 Denon Records
    2009 Mariinsky MAR0503
    2009 Denon Records
    2009 Denon Records
    2009 X5 Music Group 15618
    2009 Decca 4781728
    2008 Universal Classics & Jazz
    2008 Deutsche Grammophon
    2008 Deutsche Grammophon 4777645
    2008 Deutsche Grammophon 4777937
    2008 Decca 466419
    2008 EMI Classics
    2008 Landscape Classics / Zebralution
    2008 Arte Nova 592030
    2008 Sony Music Distribution 87883
    2008 Arte Nova 304920
    2008 Madacy 52955
    2008 Chandos CHAN 4527
    2007 Sony Classical Essential Classics 88697074362
    2007 Grafisound GS 176762
    2007 Deutsche Grammophon 002894776704
    2007 Urania 318
    2007 EMI Music Distribution 93233
    2007 Erato
    2006 Pulse Records (UK) / Castle Pulse PBXCD376
    2006 Universal Classics & Jazz
    2006 Regis Records 1212
    2006 Sony Music Distribution 888072
    2006 Decca 000623502
    2005 Deutsche Grammophon 4775713
    2005 Platinum Entertainment 37712
    2005 Decca 475 6090DC6
    2005 EMI Classics 86110
    2005 Gebhardt 58
    2005 RCA Victor Living Stereo 67895
    2005 Platinum Entertainment 3782
    2005 Children's Group 84405
    2005 Capriccio Records 71042
    2005 Erato
    2005 Time/Life Music 201852
    2004 Platinum Disc / Platinum Entertainment 1709
    2004 Platinum Disc / Platinum Entertainment 1712
    2004 Delta Distribution 16406
    2004 History 205651
    2004 RCA Red Seal 61394
    2004 Sony Classical 93076
    2004 Virgin Classics 62358
    2004 Deutsche Grammophon 000247602
    2004 Mercury 4756261
    2004 High Definition Classics 32
    2004 Laserlight 27777
    2003 Platinum Entertainment 2712
    2003 Platinum Disc 2760
    2003 Aura Classics 0258
    2003 Soundline 4027
    2003 Laserlight / Delta Distribution 40044
    2003 Philips 000122102
    2003 Cala Records 536
    2003 BIS 1283
    2003 Naxos 8 555923
    2003 RCA Red Seal 55781
    2003 Sony Music Distribution 087987
    2003 Delta Distribution 40093
    2003 Delta / Delta Distribution / Laserlight 40019
    2002 Decca 470463
    2002 EMI Music Distribution 575567
    2002 Deutsche Grammophon 459518
    2002 Sony Classical 89957
    2002 Deutsche Grammophon 471628-9
    2001 Legacy CJH024
    2001 Tahra 413-416
    2001 Deutsche Grammophon 463774
    2001 Classica d'Oro 1012
    2001 Telarc Distribution 60541
    2001 Telarc Distribution 80541
    2001 Vox 3603
    2001 St. Clair 7339
    2001 Virgin 59661
    2000 Bandleader 5160
    2000 Platinum Disc / Platinum Entertainment 10362
    2000 Delta Distribution 24474
    2000 Stradivari 9018
    2000 Platinum Entertainment 17362
    2000 Intersound 2540
    2000 Platinum Entertainment 1071
    2000 Laserlight 32849
    2000 Amadis 7066
    2000 Deutsche Grammophon 453496
    2000 Nouveau 4448
    2000 Virgin 61636
    2000 Telarc Distribution 80539
    2000 Laserlight 40013
    2000 EMI Music Distribution 72434
    1999 Grammofono 2000 78698
    1999 Platinum Entertainment 2009
    1999 Platinum Disc / Platinum Entertainment 1438
    1999 Platinum Entertainment 1839
    1999 Decca
    1999 Naxos 553330
    1999 D Classics 704032
    1999 Masterpiece 99011
    1999 Platinum Disc / Platinum Entertainment 1828
    1999 Deutsche Grammophon 445638
    1998 Delta Distribution 11535
    1998 Intersound 2857
    1998 Masterpiece 90030
    1998 Simply The Best 70332
    1998 Platinum Disc / Platinum Entertainment 12612
    1998 Intersound 2811
    1997 Laserlight 24435
    1997 Naxos 8 553596
    1997 Pearl GEMMCD9261
    1997 Otello 1014
    1997 Grammofono 78713
    1997 Sony Music Distribution 63281
    1997 EMI Music Distribution 569776-2
    1997 Michele Audio 1007
    1997 Arte Nova 74321 30492-2
    1997 EH EH70166-2
    1997 Regency Music 81253
    1996 Teldec 0630123442
    1996 Magic Talent 48033
    1996 Nesak International 17008
    1996 Philips 442778
    1996 London 443896
    1996 Nesak International 10004
    1995 EMI Music Distribution 68860
    1995 EMI Music Distribution 68431
    1995 Deutsche Grammophon / PolyGram 439690
    1995 Sony Music Distribution 23250
    1995 Philips
    1995 Cala Records 502
    1995 Capriccio Records 10920
    1995 Seraphim UK 69033
    1995 Philips 442775
    1995 Infinity Digital 61978
    1995 Chandos CHAN9356
    1995 Sony Music Distribution 23158
    1995 Sony Music Distribution 23243
    1995 Sony Music Distribution 23245
    1995 Laserlight 35816
    1995 Dutton Laboratories CDK1200
    1995 Intersound 3828
    1994 Madacy 2340
    1994 Madacy 0500
    1994 EMI Music Distribution 67717
    1994 Intersound 3612
    1994 RCA Victor 61958
    1994 Laserlight 14150
    1994 Laserlight 15848
    1994 Laserlight 15938
    1994 Naxos 550500
    1994 Rene Gailly 87048
    1994 London 443003
    1994 Infinity Digital 57242
    1994 Sony Music Distribution 47634
    1994 RCA 902661821
    1994 Philips 442061
    1994 Chesky Records 12
    1994 EMI Classics 568125
    1994 EMI Music Distribution 568130-2
    1994 Laserlight 15815
    1993 RCA Victor Living Stereo 61497
    1993 Deutsche Grammophon 439 154-2GMA
    1993 RCA 61553
    1993 IMP Classics 801
    1993 Teldec 90201
    1993 IMP Classics 867
    1993 Vox 8754
    1992 Vox 8733
    1992 Mercury 434305
    1991 Laserlight 15683
    1991 RCA 60492
    1991 RCA 60845
    1991 Deutsche Grammophon 429984
    1991 Sony Music Distribution 46334
    1991 Sony Music Distribution 47179
    1990 Laserlight 15510
    1990 CBS Records / Masterworks 36723
    1990 London 417742
    1990 Laserlight 55003
    1989 Telarc Distribution 80170
    1989 EMI Music Distribution 63262
    1989 EMI
    1989 Laserlight 620
    1989 Laserlight 15821
    1989 Laserlight 15820
    1987 EMI Music Distribution 62000
    1987 CBS Records 42368
    1983 Telarc Distribution CD-80072
    Mark Custom Recording 29993000
    Sony Music Distribution 46711
    Seraphim UK 569578-2
    EMI Music Distribution 67200
    Seraphim UK 569588-2
    Tiempo 8
    ABC Classics 4763772
    Stradivari 6118
    Koch 7700
    IMP Classics 1102
    Angel Records 67249
    Das Grosse Musik Fest 301015
    Laserlight 14726
    IMP Classics 21
    IMP Classics 8
    BL 022
    Classics for Pleasure 4657
    Philharmonia of the Nations 34
    Excelsior Recordings 5254
    Supraphon 110622
    Palladio 4167
    Musical Heritage Society 514632
    In Classical Mood 12028
    MMG 10017
    Vox 5132
    IMP Classics 1
    History 205654303
    Telarc Distribution 82013
    RCA Victrola 7881
    Vox 8767
    Das Grosse Musik Fest 301019
    Nesak International 17009
    Denon Records 84492
    Pearl 9922
    Seraphim UK
    No Labels
    London 411954
    RCA 61544
    Rainbow Media OMP 5669
    CBS Records 44786
    Classical Records 009
    Guild Historical 2325
    Stradivari 6122
    Arte Nova 37329
    Arte Nova 37294
    Magic Master 37031
    EMI Music Distribution 63662
    IMPX 9033
    Iron Needle 1367
    IMG 1617
    IMP BBC Radio Classics 5691652
    Le Chant du Monde 278740
    EMI Music Distribution 9000
    Carlton 569165
    Pro-Arte Records 539
    EMI Music Distribution 47375
    Canyon Classics 3661
    Deutsche Grammophon 415379
    Donau 8066
    Intersound 6210
    CBS Records 37252
    Decca 414494
    London 6038
    CBS Records 39784
    ASV 6008
    London 417683
    Philips G2-42775
    Vox 5005
    Chesky Records 9012
    Capriccio Records 10433
    Deutsche Grammophon 400035
    Erasmus 77
    Gemini Collection 612
    RPO 7017
    Ovidiu Marinescu
    Prism Leisure 1232
    Brilliant Classics 8635/85
    Empire 704062
    Royal Philharmonic Orchestra 28110
    6w 11518
    Denon Records 8085
    MCA 25171
    Pro Organo 7012
    Lydian 18066
    Excelsior Recordings 31036
    Philips 438310
    IMP Classics 1056
    Stradivari 6083
    Madacy 4558
    Virgin 094635708424
    Laserlight 35820
    Vox 402
    Madacy 52957
    Nesak International 17000
    Deutsche Grammophon 431608
    CBS Records / Discos CBS 80242