The Symphony No. 6 in B minor, Op. 74, Pathétique is Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky's final completed symphony, written between February and the end of August 1893. The composer led the first performance in Saint Petersburg on October 28 of that year, nine days before his death. The second performance, under Eduard Nápravník, took place 21 days later, at a memorial concert on November 18. It included some minor corrections that Tchaikovsky had made after the premiere, and was thus the first performance of the work in the form in which it is known today. The first performance in Moscow was on 4/16 December, under Vasily Safonov.
The first drafts were completed in the spring of 1891. However, some or all of the symphony was not pleasing to Tchaikovsky, who tore up the manuscript "in one of his frequent moods of depression and doubt over his alleged inability to create." In 1892, Tchaikovsky wrote the following to his nephew:
The symphony is only a work written by dint of sheer will on the part of the composer; it contains nothing that is interesting or sympathetic. It should be cast aside and forgotten. This determination on my part is admirable and irrevocable.
In 1893, Tchaikovsky again...