Tchaikovsky's Theme and Variations
- Filmed Performance
- NYC Ballet Website
An intensive display of the classical ballet lexicon, Theme and Variations was intended, as Balanchine wrote, “to evoke that great period in classical dancing when Russian ballet flourished with the aid of Tschaikovsky’s music.” Set to the final movement of Tschaikovsky’s third orchestral suite, the score consists of a theme and 12 variations, culminating in a polonaise in the Imperial style. Arguably the most substantial part of the suite, Tschaikovsky himself began the concert tradition of playing this final movement as a separate piece.