ON AIR: The New Classical FM

Tchaikovsky’s Voice Captured on an Edison Cylinder (1890)

Station Blog2016-10-4By: Classical Staff

Take a quick trip back in time, to 1890. Here you can listen to Pyotr Tchaikovsky and other eminent musicians having some fun, recording their voices on a then new-fangled technology, the phonograph cylinder, invented by Thomas Edison in 1877.


Here’s what the audio transcribes to:

A. Rubinstein: What a wonderful thing [the phonograph].
J. Block: Finally.
E. Lawrowskaja: A disgusting…how he dares slyly to name me.
W. Safonov : (Sings a scale incorrectly).
P. Tchaikovsky: This trill could be better.
E. Lawrowskaja: (sings).
P. Tchaikovsky: Block is good, but Edison is even better.
E. Lawrowskaja: (sings) A-o, a-o.
W. Safonow: (In German) Peter Jurgenson in Moskau.
P. Tchaikovsky: Who just spoke?


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