The Orchestral Suite No. 4, Op. 61, more commonly known as Mozartiana, is an orchestral suite by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, written in 1887 as a tribute to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart on the 100th anniversary of that composer’s opera Don Giovanni. Because this suite consists of four orchestrations of piano pieces by (or in one case, based on) Mozart, Tchaikovsky did not number this suite with his previous three suites for orchestra. Instead, he considered it a separate work entitled Mozartiana. Nevertheless, it is usually counted as No. 4 of his orchestral suites.
Tchaikovsky conducted the premiere himself, in Moscow in November 1887. It was the only one of his suites he conducted, and only the second at whose premiere he was present.
Pyotr Iliyich Tchaikovsky (May 7, 1840 — November 6, 1893) was a Russian composer of the Romantic era. His wide-ranging output includes symphonies, operas, ballets, instrumental, chamber music and songs. He wrote some of the most popular concert and theatrical music in the classical repertoire, including the ballets Swan Lake, The Sleeping Beauty and The Nutcracker, the 1812 Overture, his First Piano Concerto, his last three numbered symphonies, and the opera Eugene Onegin.
Born into a middle-class family, Tchaikovsky was educated for a career as a civil servant, despite his obvious musical precocity. He pursued a musical career against the wishes of his family, entering the Saint Petersburg Conservatory in 1862 and graduating in 1865. This formal, Western-oriented training set him apart from the contemporary nationalistic movement embodied by the influential group of young Russian composers known as The Five, with whom Tchaikovsky’s professional relationship was mixed.
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