The competition, scheduled every three years, was held at the
Marriott Marquis in New York from May 25-28th of this year.
The "battle" between the choirs took place on Saturday. In
the Sunday afternoon GALA Concert, honorary guest, composer
Henryk Gorecki, played the role of accompanist for Poland's
famed baritone, Andrzej Bachleda, in two of his songs
composed during the time of martial law in Poland in 1983.
["We lzach, Panie, rece podnosimy do Ciebie" (Tearfully,
Lord, we raise our hands to Thee.)]" and ["Panie, o ktorym na
niebiosach slysze" ("Lord, about Whom I hear in the heavens.")]. Of forty-four active choirs in the U.S. and Canada,
fourteen competed in the event . At the Awards Banquet, at
which last year's winning choirs performed, the Quo Vadis
choir from Buffalo sang two of Gorecki's choral works. It
came as a surprise to the composer, who also received
honorary membership in the association, which was organized
over a century ago in Chicago. More than three hundred choirs
had been registered in the society since its inception in
Seating for the 13th INTERNATIONAL F. CHOPIN PIANO
COMPETITION is almost sold out! Only tickets left are for
the second Gala Concert of Finalists on October 22nd.
Tickets ($70 and $50) may be ordered from Orbis Travel,
Warsaw Office. FAX from the U.S.: 011-48-22-27-11-23. They
can also make arrangements for hotel accomodations, sight
seeing and guide-interpreters.
A "PADEREWSKI IN MEMORIAM" concert is being held from May 26
to June 10, 1995 in Warsaw sponsored by the local Paderewski
Society and Museum. President of the group is pianist Karol
Radziwonowicz, who has recorded almost all of the composer's
works recently on compact discs Chant du Monde LDC
Artists performing include: pianists Janusz OLEJNICZAK, Karol
RADZIWONOWICZ, Mikhail RUDY, Jan HOBSON, Ewa POBLOCKA and
Adam MAKOWICZ; violinist Robert KABARA, singer Francisco
ARAIZA, Stefania TOCZYSKA, mezzo soprano, Jadwiga KOTNOWSKA,
flute, SINFONIA VARSOVIA under the direction of Jerzy
MAKSYMIUK and the SINFONIETTA CRACOVIA . For further details
see section on Programs of Polish Music Around the World.
A Jazz Series at the Kosciuszko Foundation in New York City
(April 20 - June 15) featured Polish artists, pianist Adam
MAKOWICZ (Apr 20) and star vocalist Ursula DUDZIAK (JunE 1).
For other artists see section on Programs of Polish Music
Around the World.
Boosey & Hawkes announced the publication of two new Gorecki
scores: "For you, Anne-Lill" for flute and piano and "Good
Night" for sop., alto flute, piano and three tam-tams.
Chopin's two Piano Concertos, arranged for two pianos, are
available from Dover Music Scores: 27498-5 Pa. $10.95 only.
Also: The Complete Works of Chopin in five separate volumes:
Nocturnes and Polonaises (24564-0 Pa. $10.95; Waltzes and
Scherzos (224316-8 Pa. $9.95); Complete Ballades, Impromptus
& Sonatas (24164-5 Pa. $9.95); Fantasy in F minor,
Barcarolle, Berceuse and other works for solo piano (25950-1
Pa. $7.95); Mazurkas (25548-4 Pa. $8.95) and Complete
Preludes & Etudes (24052-5 Pa. $8.95). The scores have been
reprinted, in inexpensive volumes, from the most complete,
authoritative Paderewski edition (published in 20 volumes by
the Chopin Institute, Warsaw, 1949-61).
Newest book on LUTOSLAWSKI by Tadeusz Kaczynski, is the ninth
volume of the Polish Music History Series edited by Stefan
Sutkowski in Warsaw.
Still on the "Best Seller Chart" at Tower Records: Gorecki's
Symphony no. 3 (Nonesuch 9282-2, Upshaw, Zinman) and now
joined by another Gorecki composition: Concerto for Piano and
Strings performed by his daughter and the Amadeus Chamber
Orchestra (Conifer BMG). I don't know why the original
version of this concerto, Concerto for Harpsichord and
Chamber Orchestra performed at the Warsaw Autumn
International Contemporary Music Festival in 1981 with
Elzbieta Chojnacka at the harpsichord and J. Maksymiuk
conducting the Polish Chamber Orchestra hasn't been issued as
a CD as yet!?! This particular version has been my favorite
ever since I heard it in 1981 and I predict that this version
with the harpsichord sound would make even a greater killing
than the Symphony!!!
In the June '95 issue of Gramophone, Robert Cowan
categorically states that Gorecki's Symphony no. 3 (Nonesuch
7559-79282-2 of April '93) "triumph was not orchestrated by
marketing moguls. The Third Symphony's success was due
principally to four vital qualities: emotional directness,
instant melodic appeal, the strategic employment of a
beautiful voice and the documentary power of the work's
subject-matter. Add the hypnotic course of a simple canon
and the warmth of overlapping string textures and you have a
formula capable of communicating on many different levels."
"HIGHLY RECOMMENDED" by John C. Tibbetts in Classical Pulse,
April, 1995 is Vol. Five of Garrick OHLSSON's Chopin cycle
(Arabesque Z6642 2 CDs). It contains Polonaises and
Impromptus. Just as the composer, the pianist "has a sense
of texture and balance and phrase and form that is really
unparalleled.....he continues to balance his awesome
technical mastery with absolute control and subtle nuance.
A new recording of Lutoslawski's Quartet for Strings can be
heard on MDG 3507 by the New Leipzig Quartet.
Here is something new: A recording that features two Polish
composers. One living in France (Piotr Moss 1949-) Valses
for orchestra and one in the U.S. (Barbara Jazwinska 1950-).
Sequenze Concertanti for violin and orchestra. Vienna Modern
Masters VMM3024. Szymon Kawalla conducting the Koszalin
State Philharmonic Orchestra.
Songs by Irene (Wieniawska) Poldowski (1879-1932) has been
released on Albany TROY 109 label. Lauralyn Kolb, soprano
and Don Mc Mahon, piano.
Good chance to compare three generations of Polish composers
in "Polish String Quartets." Grazyna Bacewicz (1909-1969);
Krzysztof Penderecki (1933-) and Aleksander Lason (1951-).
United UNI 88014. Performed by the well-known Penderecki
String Quartet, now based in Canada.
BITS & PIECES
Polish Opera news:
A new version of Moniuszko's opera, "Straszny Dwor (Haunted
Castle)" was presented in Luxembourg, January 25-28, by Teatr
Wielki from Warsaw.
The Greater Buffalo Opera Company plans to present this
second most popular opera of Moniuszko on April 18-21, 1996.
Youngest Generation of Polish Composers:
The Composition Competition at the Music Academy in Warsaw
for symphonic or solo with orchestra work was won by Pawel
Lukaszewski for "Arrampicata per orchestra." Second prize
was won by Maciej Zielinski for "Musica per archi A.D. 1993."
Both students were from the class of Prof. Marian Borkowski,
who performed at USC a few years ago together with pianist
and composer Andrzej Dutkiewicz in a recital of solo and duo
piano music by both composers. Excellent review from the Los
Watch out for Lukaszewski! He won II prize ex aequo for his
"Winterreise" for chamber orchestra at the II Forum of Young
Composers in Krakow, May '94.
First performance in Europe of Witold Lutoslawski's last
work, "Subito" was performed in Wroclaw on the first
anniversary of the composer's death, February 7. The work
written for the Gingold violin competition was performed by
violinist Krzysztof Jakowicz. Other works scheduled on this
program: Recitativo e arioso, Partita, String quartet and
Livre per orchestra played by the Wroclaw Philharmonic.
DID YOU KNOW THAT...
There is a Polish connection to Shostakovich? The composer's
grandfather was a Pole, Boleslaw Szostakowicz, one of many
Poles arrested in the 19th c. for anti-Czarist activities and
exiled to Siberia (in 1866). The composer's father, Dimitri,
moved to Petersburg in 1897 where he met and married a
Russian student (also from Siberia) who studied at the St.
Petersburg Conservatory in hope of becoming a concert
pianist. See the book by composer Krzysztof Meyer,
"Szostakowicz" published in 1986 by PWM.
Schwann Opus, Winter 1994/95 edition,
lists Szymanowski under "Z" as Zymanowski?
COMMEMORATIONS & ANNIVERSARIES:
COMPOSERS' ANNIVERSARIES IN 1995:Chopin (185); Paderewski (135); Wieniawski (160);Maria Szymanowska (205)
Deaths: Wieniawski (115); Juliusz Zarebski (110).
Birthdays in June: Alexander Tansman (June 12, 1897).
Deaths in June: Stanislaw Moniuszko (June 4, 1872).Ignace Jan Paderewski (June 29, 1941).
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The Polish Music Reference Center
Director: Wanda Wilk
This page updated on 4/3/96 by Conrad Hunziker III