|Polish Music Newsletter
February 2006, Vol. 12, No. 2. ISSN 1098-9188. Published monthly.
Los Angeles: Polish Music Center, University of Southern California
Polish Music Center USC
840 W. 34th St.
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0851
Categories of membership:
Symphonet is an international project of four symphony orchestras, and this year NOSPR (Polish Radio National Symphony Orchestra in Katowice) is joining it as the fifth member. The project is meant to help the orchestras with the exchange of experiences, ideas, and soloists and creation and production of joint artistic events. Carsten Dufner from the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra visited Katowice and presented the concept of Symphonet and NOSPR's role in it. Besides the Frankfurt Radio Symphony the other members are: Orchestre National de Lyon, City of Birmingham National Orchestra, and the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra from Helsinki.
NOSPR is already involved in one of the Symphonet's projects. Within a year, a newly commissioned piece by Mikołaj Górecki (son of Maestro Henryk Mikołaj Górecki) will be completed and incorporated into the repertoire of all the six orchestras. NOSPR will also present works commissioned by the other members of the network. The networking of multiple orchestras allows the institutions to cut cost on larger events and also gather grant money from the European Union.
These concerts are presented free of charge. All of the concerts will take place in the Maison de Radio France, with the exception of the concert featuring The Seven Gates of Jerusalem, performed on February 10th in the Église de la Madeleine. For more information visit the Radio France web site at: www.radio-france.fr.
Before he became an internationally renowned musician, Mr. Kaczmarek toured with his own orchestra and recorded albums in Europe and the US, composed for theatres in Chicago and New York, and worked on music scores for films. He achieved recognition as a film composer with scores for Total Eclipse, Bliss, Washington Square, Unfaithful, and—most importantly—for Finding Neverland, which earned him his first Oscar in 2005. He was also nominated for the Golden Globe and BAFTA's award for Achievement in Film Music, and won the National Review Board's award for Best Score of the Year.
Inspired by the Sundance Institute, Mr. Kaczmarek is setting up Instytut Rozbitek in Poland to serve as a European center for the development of new productions in film, theatre, music and new media (www.rozbitek.org).
The University of Washington Polish Studies Endowment Committee lectures series is part of a larger effort to create a Polish Studies Center, which would serve students as well as the whole community, increasing knowledge and understanding of historical and contemporary Poland.
Mr. Kaczmarek's lecture is free and open to the public.
The Paderewski Trio is made up of Krzysztof Kuznik, violin (right); Rafal Jezierski, cello (left); and Juny Jung, piano (center)—winners of the 32nd Artists International Annual Debut Prize in 2003. Born in Pozńan, Poland, Rafal Jezierski first studied with his father, a professional cellist and singer. A graduate of the Manhattan School of Music, he is currently completing his Master's Degree at The Juilliard School, where he is studying with Bonnie Hampton. Krzysztof Kuznik graduated from both the Chopin Academy of Music in Warsaw and the Manhattan School of Music. A founding member of the Elsner String Quartet, he is currently on the violin faculty of the Manhattan School of Music and frequently performs with the New York Philharmonic. Korean-born pianist Juny Jung is the music director and founder of the Simons' Pond Music Festival in Pennsylvania. He graduated from both the Manhattan School of Music and the Mannes College of Music.
The Verdehr Trio returns to the Kosciuszko Foundation on Sunday, February 12, at 3 PM with the World Premiere of a new Polish work commissioned especially for this concert. The Kurpia Triptych is based on folk music from the Mazowsze region in central Poland, and was composed by Grzegorz Duchnowski. The program also includes music of Mozart, Bright Sheng, and Grieg.
An acknowledged leader in the field of new music, the Verdehr Trio has concentrated on works for their unusual violin-clarinet-piano ensemble for over thirty years. During this time, the Trio has created a large repertoire by commissioning over 160 new works from some of the world's most prominent and exciting composers, known and unknown, young and old, from this country and abroad. To round out its repertoire with Classical and Romantic works, the Trio has rediscovered as well as transcribed 18th and 19th century pieces for inclusion in its concert programs.
Members of the Verdehr Trio are Walter Verdehr, violin, Elsa Ludewig-Verdehr, clarinet, and Silvia Roederer, piano. The group is in residence at Michigan State University. Their website is www.verdehr.com.
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Tickets are $20 for the Paderewski Trio concert and $25 for the Verdehr Trio, including a reception and discussion with the artists after the concert. You can reserve your place by calling (212) 734-2130.
Born to Polish parents in Czechoslovakia and raised in Poland from the age of six, Adam was being trained to fulfill his parents' wish that he become a classical pianist when, at 16, he discovered jazz on Willis Conover's "Music USA Jazz Hour" on the Voice of America—at a time in early fifties' Stalinist Poland when jazz was officially regarded as decadent and subversive.
Thrilled by the freedom of improvisation in the work of jazz piano greats like Art Tatum, Erroll Garner, and Earl Fatha Hines, Adam realized that jazz was his calling. But he faced obstacles of a kind that his counterparts in Western Europe, for example, did not. When he was forbidden to play jazz not only by his parents but also by his music school, Adam ran away from home and went to Krakow. For a couple of years he lived mostly on the streets, usually hungry, sleeping at the railroad station in winter and on park benches in the summer. Occasionally a friend would hear of an empty dormitory bed, or spare him a couple of food vouchers. But his main goal was to find any and every available moment at some unused piano. There were no jazz teachers, no tape recorders, and no recordings except those smuggled in from the West. So Adam and his friends had to learn jazz by remembering what they heard on the radio. As restrictions were loosened following the death of Stalin, Adam could sometimes earn pocket money doing gigs in bars.
Eventually, Adam found a semi-clandestine cellar jazz club where, in return for doing chores, he was allowed to practice on the piano and sleep underneath it. His long hours spent at the keyboard soon paid off and he formed a group that performed nightly at the club. Adam dates his professional career from 1964, when a quartet he had helped form, "The Jazz Darings," won first prize at a jazz group competition in Poland. Soon thereafter he launched the Adam Makowicz Trio, performing in Poland, India, Australia, New Zealand, and Cuba. His first solo album was Live Embers in 1975.
Adam Makowicz could already be heard on 26 albums, had performed on three continents, and been voted Number One Jazz Pianist of Europe six years in a row by the readers of Jazz Forum, when legendary record producer John Hammond invited him to New York in 1977 for a 10-week engagement at "The Cookery" and a solo album, Adam, for CBS Columbia Records. Makowicz went on to perform at Carnegie Hall with Earl Hines, George Shearing, and Teddy Wilson. In 1978 he settled in New York City and was banned from Poland until it regained its freedom in 1989. The Toronto Star called Makowicz "a rare artist who grips and holds attention.... A gifted improviser with splendid technical prowess, the pianist can also offer warmth and affection in melodic lines, the balance of fine taste, pungent swing and a jubilant approach inevitably generating audience cheer."
A major attraction at jazz festivals worldwide, and a popular soloist with many of the world's leading philharmonic orchestras, especially in his native Poland, Adam Makowicz has expanded his discography to 53 albums, with 37 of them under his own name. In addition to his brilliant improvisations on Berlin, Gershwin, Ellington, Bernstein and other composers, he brings his extraordinary technical virtuosity to bear upon his own musical roots, building bridges between classical music and jazz, as in the CD, Reflections on Chopin, and his original compositions in both Songs for Manhattan, released on his own label (AM Records) in October, 2003, and his latest release, From My Field (2005).
For more on Adam's career, concerts abroad, and discography, visit his website at www.west.net/~jazz/.
This article was reprinted from www.polishculture-nyc.org.
The Constitutional Congress of the IJF held in March 1969 in Venice, Italy elected Vienna, Austria as its seat and the English edition of JAZZ FORUM magazine (published in Warsaw, Poland) as the official mouthpiece of the organization.
As Secretary General and head of the organization I had the privilege of running the IJF office in Vienna from January 1972 to May 1979. In May, 1977 I went to New York City to establish the IJF's Branch Office in America. Located at the Ed Sullivan Theater Building on Broadway and 53rd St., IJF was incorporated with John Lewis as president, and Willis Conover and John Hammond as vice-presidents of the Board.
Its membership list swelled to include dozens of prominent musicians, such as Dave Brubeck, Benny Carter, Reggie Workman, Dave Liebman, Paul Blay, Howard McGhee, Andrew White, Dorothy Donegan, Andrew Cyrille, Harold Ousley, Illinois Jacquet, Helen Merrill, Maurice Waller, Lou Donaldson, Leon Thomas, Lucky Thompson, Gene Perla, and Ted Cursonto name just a few.
After a successful and promising start though, disaster came from an unexpected, but not altogether uncommon place—The Communist Authorities in Warsaw, Poland. They refused to renew my passport in New York, making it impossible for me to travel to Europe to attend IJF Board Meetings and later, the General Assembly in Yugoslavia in 1999. Absent, I could not be re-elected as Secretary General. Soon after, without so much as a reason or explanation I lost my post as Editor-in-Chief of Jazz Forum, which I founded in Warsaw in 1966.
The IJF with a new Board became a different organization. The headquarters moved from Vienna to Denmark, to London. Activity diminished, coming finally to a standstill.
Now, in 2006 everything has changed. What was difficult and impossible then is now alive and possible. There is the European Union, the Internet and Open Market. Yet for the jazz artists, problems remain much the same as thirty years ago. They need a large AUDIENCE and direct access to the jazz industry.
Taking into consideration new realities, the following question is alive and open to all interested in the international jazz scene:
I believe it is and would be a complement to the common policies across the EU.
I invite all to share their comments on the project. The results will be distributed in the next IJF Newsletter.
I wish you every success in 2006.
The 8th season of this festival will start on the 9th of February. This festival was created and is produced by the Arte dei Suonatori orchestra. The year's festival features Handel's Concerti Grossi, Op. 6, and includes almost thirty concerts. The Arte dei Suonatori orchestra will be led by conductor Martin Gester in the four planned performances in Kliczków, Poznań, Toruń and Wrocław.
"Musica Polonica Nova" Festival
The 100 young musicians are selected based on their applications and teacher recommendations, and will study with Maestro Piotr Gajewski, National Philharmonic musicians, and other distinguished faculty. Each week concludes with performances by the student orchestra and student chamber ensembles.
Institute activities include:
The two weeks of Institutes are followed by the National Philharmonic Summer Chamber Music Festival, which features performances by the Institutes' faculty members, other National Philharmonic musicians, and guest artists. Attendance at these concerts is free for Institute participants through the ALL KIDS, ALL FREE, ALL THE TIME program.To learn more or request an application, contact National Philharmonic Education Director Filbert Hong at firstname.lastname@example.org. In 2005, applications were available in January and the deadline was March 31. A limited number of merit-based scholarships are available.
Deutsche Grammophon picked-up the "Best Concertos" category award with The Complete Concertos by Bartók interpreted by Krystian Zimerman (pictured at right), Leif Ove Andsnes, Hélčne Grimaud and conducted by Pierre Boulez. For more winners go to: www.midem.com.
Penderecki's Credo credits:
Górecki's "3rd Symphony" credits:
Kilar's "Missa pro pace" credits:
NEW RECORDINGS ON ACTE PRÉALABLE
AP0137: Polish Flute Music
Performers: Antoni Wierzbiński, flute; Elżbieta Tyszecka, piano
Program: Ignacy Feliks Dobrzyński - Andante e Rondo alla Polacca, Op. 42; Tadeusz Szeligowski - Sonata for flute and piano; Aleksander Tansman - Sonatine à Lois Fleury pour flűte et piano; Bolesław Woytowicz - Sonata for flute and piano; Ignacy Jan Paderewski - Krakowiak - Danse Polonaise Op. 9 No. 5; Fryderyk Chopin - Variations in E major on "Non piú mesta" from Rossini La Cenerentola .
LUTOSŁAWSKI ON ARTE NOVA
Arte Nova Records # 983430
Program: Witold Lutosławski (Concerto for Cello, Sacher Variations, Grave); Claude Debussy (Sonata for Cello and Piano, Nocturne and Scherzo for Cello and Piano); Anton von Webern (Little Pieces (3) for Cello and Piano, Op. 11, Sonata for Cello and Piano, M 202, Pieces (2) for Cello and Piano, M 1 - M 2)
Revolutions of the Past is a program of seminal modern cello music, featuring the young Salzburg-born cellist Bruno Weinmeister. A student of Heinrich Schiff and protégé of Friedrich Gulda, Mr. Weinmeister is much in demand as a performer today, especially in the music of modern composers. This is not his first collaboration with Swedish pianist Stefan Veselka; they have also made numerous recordings including the complete piano music of Dvorák.
KARŁOWICZ ON CHANDOSChandos Records # 10298
Program: Mieczysław Karłowicz (1876-1909)—Returning Waves, Op. 9; A Sorrowful Tale, Op. 13; and Episode at a Masquerade, Op. 14 Performers: BBC Philharmonic, Gianandrea Noseda, cond.
NEW ALBUM FOR PAWLIKThere is a new album by Włodek Pawlik, the "Horowitz of Jazz". The album, entitled Anhelli, will be released in Poland on the 9th of February, 2006 on ARMS Records. On the same day Pawlik and his band will perform at the National Philharmonic. For detailed information and a chance to hear music from the album, visit www.anhelli.pl/.
CONCERTS AND PERFORMANCES
Born in Poznań, Poland, Liliana Osses Adams is a classically trained musician, concert harpist and music teacher (pedal harp, lever harp, piano). At age seven she began her music education at Poznań Conservatory (piano and music theory). At age fourteen, although she continued to study piano, harp became her principal instrument and she went on to study with J. Rogozinska, then with M. Prokopowicz, K. Zemancova, T. Splawinski. She received her Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees from the Music College and Music Academy of Poznań. Master's thesis: A Historic Essay on the Harp as a Solo and Ensemble Instrument (1971). She has received harp instruction and participated in master classes in Europe and in USA with Nicanor Zabaleta, Lily Laskine, Maria Korchinska, and Mildred Dilling, and was awarded a scholarship to study harp with Prof. Karel Patras in Prague.
Ms. Piekutowska is the winner of numerous prizes and distinctions at the International T. Wroński Solo Violin Competition, Warsaw, 1997; International K. Lipiński and H. Wieniawski Young Violinists' Competition, Lublin, 1997; and the V International Krzysztof Penderecki Chamber Music Competition, Krakow, 2001; among others. In 1993 Patrycja Piekutowska was granted a scholarship to attend the International Music Camp at Interlochen, USA, where she won the Best Recital Competition. She has also been awarded Poland's Minister of Culture and Art Scholarship. Most recently, she was the winner of Europe's 2005 Supersonic Award for her recording of works by Penderecki.
In the middle of the last century, Bargemusic was a hard-working vessel in New York Harbor delivering hand-loaded sacks of coffee to the Erie Lackawanna Railroad. Now moored at Fulton Ferry Landing, its present cargo is the sound of music.
By Gary Fitelberg"Warshau-Berlin-Paris-New York: Stationen der Biographie Jerzy Fitelbergs (1903-1951)" was a special tribute and symposium with concert performance and commentary with respect to two Polish composers, father and son, GRZEGORZ FITELBERG (1879-1953) and JERZY FITELBERG (1903-1951). The event was sponsored by the musica reinamata society based in Berlin, Germany and was held at the Berlin Konzerthause on March 10, 2005. The lecture presentation was moderated by Professor Dr. Ranier Cadenbach and pianist Gottfried Eberle. This was the sixty-sixth event in a series of such symposiums to recall forgotten or lost composers due to suppression as a result of the Nazi regime.
The concert program included Romance D-Dur, Op. 11.1 (1892), Intermezzo from Violin Sonata nr. 2, Op. 12 (1901), and Romance A-Dur, Op. 11.2 by father Grzegorz Fitelberg. Also Der schlect gesselfte Promtheus (1929), Serenade for Violin and Piano (1943) and String Quartet No. 2 (1928), which was recipient of the Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge Library of Congress award. These works were brought back to life by violinists Filip Marek Lipski and Izabella Powichrowska, violist James Eccles, violincellist Martin Smith and pianist Gottfried Eberle.The audience was delighted and enthusiastic to hear a rare concert performance of these compositions by Grzegorz Fitelberg and Jerzy Fitelberg. Peter Sarkar, cellist, musicologist and secretary of the musica reinamata society commented, "Among the many composers whose music I made an acquaintance with, Fitelberg stood out as probably the greatest, at least among the still completely unknown."
Polish composer Jerzy Fitelberg, born in Warsaw in 1903, son of composer Grzegorz Fitelberg, learned the rudiments of music from his father, at the Moscow and Warsaw Conservatories, and later in the Master Class as a student of Franz Schreker and Walter Gmeindl.
Fitelberg lived in Warsaw until 1922, made his move and musical career debut in Berlin until 1933, when he moved once more to Paris and resided there until 1940 when forced to flee due to WWII. Fitelberg's final years were spent composing in New York where he lived from 1940 until his early, premature, sudden death in 1951.
Copyright 2006 by the Polish Music