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Jakub Polaczyk won the American Prize in Composition 2020

PolaczykJakub Polaczyk, New York City based Polish composer, received the American Prize in Composition 2020 in the instrumental chamber music professional division for the work OJIBBEWAY.

The American Prize National Nonprofit Competitions in the Performing Arts is the nation's most comprehensive series of contests in the classical arts. The American Prize is nonprofit, unique in scope and structure, and is designed to evaluate, recognize and reward the best performers, ensembles and composers in the United States based on submitted recordings. There is no live competition. The American Prize recognizing and rewarding American excellence in the performing arts since 2010.

On 9 June 2020, David (Volosin) Katz, chief judge of the American Prize National Nonprofit Competitions in the Performing Arts, announced the winners, runners-up and honorable mentions of The American Prize in Composition, 2019-20, instrumental chamber music division. The first prize in professional division went to Jakub Polaczyk for the work OJIBBEWAY for flute, accordion and piano. The composition, inspired by paintings of Georg Catlinwas, was first performed in Poland during the 31st International Festival of Krakow Composers in 2019 by a trio composed of: Andrea Biagini, Cesare Chiacciaretta and Fausto Bongelli.

Jakub Polaczyk is a winner of numerous awards and stipends. He is currently teaching at the New York Conservatory of Music and since 2018 he has been also appointed a New Music Director of the Chopin and Friends Festival in New York where he is directing the “New Vision International Composition Competition” and since 2018 associated with IMONY organization as a composer and orchestrator. He graduated from the Carnegie Mellon University, PA and Academy of Music in Krakow, Poland.

Representatives of the Regional Initiative of Excellence in New York

AM Bydgoszcz

The Regional Initiative of Excellence, a new project of the Feliks Nowowiejski Academy of Music in Bydgoszcz, established cooperation with the Manhattan School of Music. On 3-6 March 2020, representatives of the Bydgoszcz music community will perform in New York.

Professor Katarzyna Popowa-Zydroń will lead the masterclass, and Professor Ewa Pobłocka and Adam Kośmieja, PhD will perform solo recitals at the Mikowsky Recital Hall. The programme will include excellent works by Polish composers of the 20th and 21st centuries, among others A piacere and Sonata by Kazimierz Serocki, Zerstreutes Hinausschauen by Tomasz Sikorski, Coma Berenices by Jerzy Kornowicz, and Three miniatures for piano by Agata Zubel.

Professor Solomon Mikowski from the Manhattan School of Music will take part in the Forum.Beethoven in Bydgoszcz in December 2020. The pianist will lead a seminar for students of the Bydgoszcz Academy.

Heidelberger Komponistinnenpreis 2020 for Bettina Skrzypczak!


The famous Polish composer Bettina Skrzypczak received the "Heidelberger Komponistinnenpreis 2020" award. This prestigious distinction has been granted since 1987 only to women-composers. This is the only such award in the world.

In the recent years the award granted at the request of a specially appointed Chapter of the City of Heidelberg went to such composers as: Zofia Gubajdulina, Galina Ustwolskaja, Adrian Hölszky, Kaija Saariaho and Olga Neuwirth.

The recommendation of the Heidelberg City Chapter of the work of Bettina Skrzypczak stated: "Care for structural details and thoughtful dramaturgy of the form are combined in her works with respect for the laws of perception, which is reflected in the sound processes of extraordinary intensity. [...] Through the visceral expressiveness and emotional suggestibility her music strongly affects the listener. [...] The composer also devotes attention to other fields of knowledge: from aesthetics, through philosophy, to exact sciences. "

The award ceremony will take place on 19 February 2020 during a concert with the Philharmonisches Orchester Heidelberg orchestra conducted by Joseph Bastian, who will perform Betina Skrzypczak's Initial for symphony orchestra (2005). This composition, premiered in 2007 in La Chaux-de-Fonds by the Orchester de Chambre de Lausanne (dir. Marco Angius), was performed in Poland the same year during the "Warsaw Autumn" International Festival of Contemporary Music performed by SWR Symphonieorchester (dir.Rupert Huber).

Chicago | US Premiere of Paderewski's Suite in G for Strings


The Chicago Chopin Society invites you to a Gala Concert “If Chopin Met Paderewski…” followed by a banquet, which will be held on 7 March 2020 at 6:30 p.n. at the Holiday Inn Chicago North Shore (5300 W. Touhy Ave., Skokie, Illinois).

The Chicago Chopin Society has established a vibrant tradition of partnership with American Music Festivals, presenting performances by the Lincolnwood Chamber Orchestra in a variety of venues throughout Chicagoland. They share a mission of promoting cultural exchange and working together have focused on exploring Polish classical repertoire and folk traditions. Their concerts feature Polish American performers, with a commitment to new music with a respect for artistic heritage.

Many of their unique programs are given to commemorate important historical events, reaching new audiences from diverse backgrounds to learn about Polish culture. The organizations co-presented the 2017-18 International Cultural Exchange Festival in Chicago, a four-concert series showcasing the beauty and influence of Polish music. In September of 2018 they joined with Save St. Adalbert Church for a fundraising concert at the Church, celebrating Poland's 100th Anniversary of Independence. They have also performed together on concerts at the Taste of Polonia Festival (Poland's Great Composers, Kosciuszko Memorial, and Old Traditions - New Frontiers) and two Christmas Spectaculars at the Copernicus Center. With "If Chopin met Paderewski..." the Chicago Chopin Society and American Music Festivals continue to show artistic leadership in the community, proudly presenting the United States premiere of Paderewski's Suite in G for Strings.

We warmly acknowledge Conrad Miczko, the generous co-sponsor of the event, as well as Barbara Mirecki, Thaddeus Mirecki and Drs. Barbara and Waldemar Niklinski who facilitated this premiere performance of the Paderewski composition in the USA.

More information athttps://www.americanmusicfestivals.org/

Petersburg | Jerzy Stankiewicz's lecture about Olivier Messiaen's "Quartet at the end of time"

Instytut Polski w Petersburgu

Jerzy Stankiewicz, vice president of the Polish Composers' Union Branch in Krakow, will give a lecture titled A new look at the genesis of Olivier Messiaen's "Quartet at the end of time" in Stalag VIII A Görlitz, on 17 February 2020 at 6.30 p.m. at the Polish Institute in St. Petersburg.

The meeting will also feature a screening of the French documentary and musical The Charm of Impossibilities (dir. Nicolas Buenaventura Vidal, 2006), illustrating the hypotheses regarding the creation of the Quartet at the end of time at the turn of 1940/41 in the Nazi POW camp in Görlitz (today in Zgorzelec in Lower Silesia, Poland) .

Olivier Messiaen (1908–1992) – a French composer, organist, lecturer, he was one of the most important figures of 20th century music, a mystic on the one hand, and a bold experimenter on the other hand. In 1931 he was appointed organist of the La Trinité church in Paris and held this function until his death. In 1940 he was imprisoned in the Stalag, and after his release in 1941 he took the position of professor of harmony (only in 1966 he became a professor of composition) at the Paris Conservatory. He was an extremely charismatic teacher, and among his students were eminent artists who, like himself, formed the shape of 20th-century music, leading it in previously unknown directions: Pierre Boulez, Karlheinz Stockhausen, and Iannis Xenakis. Meetingpoint Messiaen – a meeting place for youth and experienced musicians from Europe and other continents – is currently operating in Görlitz.