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librettists in St. Petersburg, he set his sights on collaborating with Dmitry Lensky (pseudonym of Vorobyov) or Countess Rostopchina in Moscow.

In the end,
nothing came of the idea.
That winter Rubinstein was busily preoccupied with preparations for his
forthcoming trip abroad: renewing his passport, completing the works he wished
to take with him, and copying the orchestral parts of the compositions that he
wanted to perform. Nevertheless, he still found time to attend the Italian opera
and found it disappointing, with the exception of the troupes prima donna,
Madame de Lagrange. He also saw the tragic actress lisa Rachel and declared:
she is making good and bad weather here this year, but she is truly inexpressibly
great. 65 He also found, to his delight, that he was on the best of terms with these
artists since he was visiting them at the behest of the grand duchess Yelena, and
therefore they receive me wonderfully.66 In November he also renewed an old
acquaintance, for the family of the priest who had given him Russian lessons in
Berlin during the 1840s had arrived in St. Petersburg. Old Father Sokolov had
died, but his eldest daughter, Aleksandra Dormidontovna, Anton confessed to
Kaleriya Khristoforovna, is very beautiful and sings superbly.67 In view of the
dire nancial position of her family, Aleksandra needed to give lessons to support her family. To do so, she needed to pay for lessons herself and Rubinstein
planned to speak to the grand duchess about assisting her. In later life she became the famous soprano and teacher Aleksandra Aleksandrova-Kochetova.
During the fall and winter of 1853 Rubinstein completed a Symphony in B.
It was performed in St. Petersburg the following March and then in Berlin a year
later, but the composer evidently became disillusioned with it. The score was
eventually discarded, and the material was reused in other works. The rst
movement was subsequently published as the Concert Overture in B (1861),
and the second and third movements were added to the Ocean Symphony (in the
six-movement revision of 1863). He also continued work on the cycle Kamenny
Ostrov, but his most signicant work at this time was the Piano Concerto No. 3,
completed early in 1854. Many years latter, in Gedankenkorb, Rubinstein wrote
of this concerto:
I once had a strange dream. I saw a temple in which the various instruments of
the orchestra had come together. A piano approaches this temple with a deant air
and demands to be accepted as one of the devotees. The orchestral instruments
subject him to an examination and suggest that he should reproduce their various
timbres and melodies; in the end, however, they nd this insufcient. As a result
the piano is overcome with despair and grief, but then rousing itself, declares itself
in a haughty manner to be an independent orchestra and makes fun of the other
instruments. They resentfully show it the ways in which it cannot imitate their
playing, and they throw it out of the temple. I tried to convey this dream in sounds
(Piano Concerto No. 3); I even wanted to append a program to it but abandoned
the idea, convinced that in a prescribed program one person will hear one thing
and another something quite different.68

In his rsum of 1853 Rubinstein declared that year to have been a mixture
of good and bad, of the pleasant and the unpleasant.69 True success seemed to
44 Anton Rubinstein