A marvel of orchestration, Tchaikovsky's Manfred Symphony
employs the composer's characteristically beautiful and emotionally charged melodies to weave the tale of a Byronic hero. The theme of the romantic outsider, as personified by Manfred, was particularly popular with nineteenth-century Russian artists. Broad orchestrations, dark lyricism, and a profound sense of tragedy have made this work a Romantic favorite of orchestras and audiences worldwide.
Written between the Fourth and the Fifth Symphony, it premiered in 1886, after which Tchaikovsky declared it "the best of my symphonic works."