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Łódź | In tribute to Artur Rubinstein – a piano recital for the Philharmonic's 106th birthday

FLDespite the pandemic, the Łódź Philharmonic continues the tradition of birthday piano recitals. On 16 February 2021 at 6.55 p.m. Aleksandra Świgut will perform in tribute to Artur Rubinstein to mark the 106th anniversary of the first concert of the Łódź Symphony Orchestra.

The pianist is a laureate of numerous piano competitions in Poland and abroad, including 1st International Chopin Competition on Period Instruments in Warsaw (2nd prize, 2018) and 47th International Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw (2nd prize and a special prize for the best performance of a solo work by Robert Schumann, 2016). Her interests range from historical to contemporary music. She also performs in chamber ensembles, including a duet with her sister Agnieszka Świgut – a violinist.

During the upcoming concert the pianist will perform Fryderyk Chopin's works favored by Artur Rubinstein, including Sonata in B flat minor, Op. 35 with the Funeral March. The programme will also include Karol Szymanowski's impressionist miniatures: Scheherazade from Masques, Op. 34 No. 1 and The Island of Sirens from Métopes, Op. 29, as well as works by Ludwig van Beethoven, Franz Schubert and the contemporary Israeli composer Sergio Natra.

Information on tickets at: https://filharmonia.lodz.pl/pl 

Online Conference "Hear the Future – Challenges of Acoustic Ecology"

FSzWhat will the future sound like? The conference organised on 16 February 2021 at 10.00 a.m. by the Mieczysław Karłowicz Philharmonic in Szczecin as part of the campaign "I hear good sounds" will present various research perspectives of acoustic ecology – in anthropology, philosophy, sociology, media studies, and in the fields of medicine – otolaryngology and neuropsychology. The online conference "Hear the Future – Challenges of Acoustic Ecology" will be held on the ZOOM platform.

Our environment and public spaces are polluted with noise. Acoustic ecology proposes solutions in this area. The conference will be an attempt at a comprehensive insight into Polish reflection on acoustic ecology. Representatives of the scientific community, activists from the third sector, employees of companies related to acoustics and medical centers will exchange their experiences as part of the nationwide symposium. Theoretical reflections will be confronted with artistic and pedagogical practices.

The event will be attended by, among others prof. Dariusz Brzostek (Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń), prof. Tomasz Misiak (University of Arts in Poznań), dr Jadwiga Zimpel (Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań), dr Anna Dąbrowska (International Center of Hearing and Speech Medincus ). Composer Anna Zaradny will deliver a speech on Sound and Architecture, Senses and Space / Illusion and Deep Listening. Composer Michał Janocha will talk about modern applications and technological solutions useful in ear training. On the other hand, musicologist Krzysztof B. Marciniak ("Glissando") will present his reflections on the Ecology of Sound. We learn to listen anew.

To participate in the event, complete the registration form available at https://uslysz.filharmonia.szczecin.pl/

Participants will be sent a link to the event, conference materials and a certificate of participation.

Bydgoszcz | Opera Dizziness

Opera NovaStarting from 14 February 2021, the Opera Nova in Bydgoszcz invites you to a family musical show – Opera Dizziness composed by Maciej Małecki and directed by Magdalena Małecka-Wippi.

Music for the performance was created as part of the "Composing Commissions" programme carried out by the Institute of Music and Dance. The premiere of this educational opera took place on 14 November 2020 in the online version. On 14 February 2021, Opera Nova invites you to participate live.

What is a libretto? Why is opera sung in Italian? Why do artists have to sing? These questions will be answered by the performance, which introduces children from 6 to 12 years of age into the world of opera, as well as playing with tongue twisters, word duels and sing-along. The content is addressed to both young and adult viewers. The idea of ​​the performance is to familiarize children with the form of classical opera (including the broadly understood aesthetics of classical music), show them the beauty and richness of our native language and encourage them to use the Polish language correctly. The libretto by Magdalena Małecka-Wippi includes songs, e.g. to the poems of Małgorzata Strzałkowska – one of the best authors of children's literature. No previous operatic experience required!

The adventures of the capricious Dot and the sentimental Exclamation Mark, who argue all the time but cannot live without each other, accompanied by string quartet and dancers, will be presented on the big stage during the week of 14-21 February. Gadgets with the graphic motif of the opera (including pads, crayons, magnets, puzzles) will be available on-site.

In order to win double invitations to the show, the Opera Nova intvites you to send on its FB page rhyme slogans – invitations to participate in the performance!

More information at: http://www.opera.bydgoszcz.pl/ 

Faces of Love – Valentine's Day Concert at the Wrocław Opera

Oblicza MiłościThe Wrocław Opera invites you on 14 February 2021 at 6.00 p.m to the Valentine's Day Concert entitled "Faces of Love". The carnival evening will be broadcast on YouTube in two parts: devoted to musical and operetta.

The musical part will feature an overture performed by the Wrocław Opera Orchestra conducted by Adam Banaszak and numerous fragments of Leonard Bernstein's Candide, which was premiered at the Wrocław Opera in December 2017. Martin's laughing song Words, words, words will be performed by Jakub Michalski, Kunegunda's aria Glitter and be gay will be performed by Maria Rozynek-Banaszak, and Song Old Lady by Barbara Bagińska. We also hear fragments of other musicals, including My Fair Lady or Man from La Mancha, performed by Katarzyna Haras, Maciej Krzysztyniak, Jacek Jaskuła and Tomasz Rudnicki.

The second part, devoted to operetta, will open with the overture to The Revenge of the Bat by Johann Strauss and will also feature Prince Orlofsky's cuples performed by Dorota Dutkowska. The most beautiful arias from operettas by Franz Lehár and Emmerich Kálmánn will be performed by Elżbieta Kaczmarzyk-Janczak, Eliza Kruszczyńska, Hanna Sosnowska and Łukasz Rosiak. Anna Lichorowicz will present Ludomir Różycki's Waltz Caton, and Aleksandra Opała Ah! que j’aime les militaires by Jacques Offenbach. We will also hear Edward Kulczyk and Jędrzej Tomczyk.

The concert will be hosted by two soloists: Jacek Jaskuła and Aleksander Zuchowicz, who will also sing during the evening.

Full programme is available at: https://www.opera.wroclaw.pl/1/ 

Polish Sinfonia Iuventus Orchestra: From the Italian land to Poland

POSIThe Jerzy Semkow Polish Sinfonia Iuventus Orchestra is proud to invite you on 13 February 2021 at 7.00 p.m. to a concert dedicated to the musical heritage of Italy. The programme includes an extensive selection of compositions by masters of Italian music. Also the conductor, highly regarded in his homeland, admired throughout Europe and beyond, well known to Warsaw audiences – Massimiliano Caldi – is Italian.

The repertoire will include Rossini’s impressive and incredibly beautiful overtures: to Cinderella and to The Italian Girl in Algiers, as well as compositions from the most outstanding operas composed in the later period: Prelude to Act 3 of Giuseppe Verdi’s epochal Traviata and Intermezzo from Pietro Mascagni’s veristic Cavalleria Rusticana.

The appealing programme will be completed by Concerto soirée, the author of which, Nino Rota, is primarily remembered as “Fellini’s composer” (he is also the creator of the unforgettable soundtrack to Coppola’s Godfather and films by Visconti, Zefirelli and others). Rota was a musician with an excellent “classical” composer education, admired from an early age – even he himself regretted that he owed his fame more to films than to his concertos. This brilliant composition for piano and orchestra will remind of the lesser-known face of the Italian maestro – he was admired for the brilliant virtuosity as well as for charm and wit compared to Prokofiev’s works. We will hear it performed by Maurizio Baglini, who very positively attracted the audience of the 13th International Chopin Competition in 1995, and although he didn’t win the competition at that time, his later career confirmed his great talent. Not much later he won the World Music Piano Master in Montecarlo and began active concert activity on major stages around the world. He is also a valued teacher and has been successfully managing the Amiata Piano Festival in his native Tuscany for many years now.

Piotr Maculewicz

Media patronage: Polish Music Information Centre POLMIC.

The concert will be broadcast online from the Fryderyk Chopin University of Music on the YouTube channel and on the website https://sinfoniaiuventus.pl/ 

Szczecin | Ballet Premiere of "Visions of Love / Myths"

The Castle Opera invites you on Opera na Zamku13 February 2021 at 7.00 p.m. to the ballet premiere of Visions of Love / Myths choreographed by Zofia Rudnicka to the music of Fryderyk Chopin and Karol Szymanowski. The performance is co-organised by the Institute of Music and Dance as part of the "Choreographic Comissions 2021" programme.

The first part of the evening is a dance story of five women of different ages. We will see them in the park, lost in thought and frozen in the frame. Gradually, we will learn about their dreams, hopes and expectations. The protagonists' desires are as timeless as Chopin's music. Selected works by the composer, including preludes – piano miniatures, belonging to the most beautiful musical works of the artist, will create an atmospheric background for the virtuosity of classical dance and an exciting journey into the depths of a woman's soul.

The second part of the performance is the world of ancient mythology, in which fantastic transformations of deities and heroes explain phenomena taking place in nature. We will see the tragedy of Narcissus in love with himself and the metamorphosis of forest nymphs fleeing from the advances of lustful idols. Each myth is a different picture, dance and mood. All of them perfectly reflect the poetry of Szymanowski's hypnotic music, characterized by unusual tonal colors and drama. Neoclassical dance will emphasize the value of brilliant music and fully illustrate the supernatural transformations of mythical heroes.

More information: https://www.opera.szczecin.pl/ 

Silesian Philharmonic: Sebastian Perłowski and Waldemar Matera

FSThe Silesian Philharmonic's concert on 12 February 2021 at 7.00 p.m. will be filled with music by Mozart, Dvořák and Żeleński. The Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Sebastian Perłowski will perform together with Waldemar Matera, who will delight the audience with the beautiful sound of the French horn.

Władysław Żeleński's Gavotte, Op. 45 was composed as a piano piece in the composer's late period. However, during the upcoming concert, we will listen to an arrangement for orchestra, which will certainly allow the listeners to discover new colors and different shades of the work.

Waldemar Matera, French horn player of the Silesian Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra, will perform Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's French horn Concerto No. 3 in E flat major. Mozart wrote a total of four concertos for this instrument and to this day they are the basis of the horn's repertoire. In the 18th century, the horn did not have a valve system yet, so all the possibilities of the player were limited to producing the sound only through the appropriate positioning of the lips against the mouthpiece.

The evening will be crowned by Antonín Dvořák's Symphony No. 7 in D minor, commissioned by the London Philharmonic Society in 1884. In his study of the composer’s work, Otakar Šourek wrote: "Dvořák worked at the D minor Symphony with passionate concentration and in the conscious endeavor to create a work of noble proportions and content, which should surpass not only what he had so far produced in the field of symphonic composition, but which was also designed to occupy an important place in world music". This piece combines lyrical and heroic motifs with a triumphant coda in a major key.

Media patronage: Polish Music Information Centre POLMIC.

More information athttps://filharmonia-slaska.eu/ 

Szczecin Philharmonic: Kisielewski & Strauss

KisielewskiThe first concert of the Szczecin Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Rune Bergmann in 2021 will be held on 12 February at 7.00 p.m. on the streaming platform https://livefilharmonia.szczecin.pl/. The programme will include Richard Strauss's Metamorphosen and Stefan Kisielewski's Concerto for chamber orchestra.

Stefan Kisielewski was one of the most colourful figures on the Polish music scene. Composing was only one of several fields of his public activity. He was also known as a writer, journalist and commentator, social and political activist. Because of his uncompromising stand in all these areas, he became an object of communist repressions. He was dismissed from the faculty of Cracow's State Higher School of Music, where he had taught theory; the periodical "Ruch Muzyczny", of which he was the founder and editor-in-chief, was closed for some time. He was banned from the Parliament, where he represented the Catholic club "Znak"; he was forbidden to publish feuilletons in the Catholic weekly "Tygodnik Powszechny"; he had to publish his books under a pen name in the underground. Despite this persecution, he always remained a great authority.

Kisielewski's music was virtually absent from philharmonic halls, both for political reasons and owing to the conservative neo-Classical style to which the composer remained faithful throughout his artistic life. He viewed music as an autonomous art, and the creative process – as multi-level organisation of sounds. He rejected all extra-musical contents, as well as the Romantic aesthetic. He composed works which were clear in form and made frequent use of classical formal patterns. His musical language combined the traditional tonality with modern atonal music. The strong element of humour and self-irony, characteristic of his works, reflected very well the personality of that man, his brilliant wit and unmanageable humour. The Concerto for chamber orchestra (1949) is one of his most famous ochestral works.

More information athttps://filharmonia.szczecin.pl/pl 

Benedykt Konowalski has died...

KonowalskiBenedykt Konowalski, composer, conductor and pedagogue, died on 27 January 2021 in Warsaw. The Funeral Service will take place on 12 February at the Bródno Cemetery.

Benedykt Konowalski graduated from law at the University of Warsaw. Then he studied composition with Jan Maklakiewicz and Tadeusz Szeligowski (degree in 1960) as well as conducting under Stanisław Wisłocki (degree in 1964) at the State Higher School of Music in Warsaw. In the years 1956–72 he was the music director of the Central Artistic Ensemble of the Polish Army in Warsaw. From 1966 he lectured at the State Higher School of Music in Warsaw, from 1987 as a professor. In the years 1984-87 he was the Vice-Rector of this institution.

He was a composer of symphonies, concerts, oratorios, chamber and choral works. His work includes suites, vocal, vocal-instrumental and ballet music as well an opera and songs for children. As a conductor, he conducted symphonic concerts in the country and abroad. He recorded music programmes for Polish Radio and TV and recorded a dozen or so CDs for Polish Records and the Philips phonographic company in Paris. He conducted performances in music theaters and philharmonics. He made many world premieres of works by contemporary Polish composers. He was a co-founder and in 1972-92 he was the chairman of the editorial board of the Music Publishing House of the Authors’ Agency in Warsaw.

Benedykt Konowalski was a laureate of the Composers' Competition of the Warsaw Branch of the Polish Composers' Union, the Feliks Nowowiejski International Organ Competition and the Grażyna Bacewicz International Composers' Competition. He was awarded, among others, the Knight's Cross, the Officer's Cross, the Honorary Badge of the ZAiKS Association of Authors, the “Polonia Mater Nostra Est” Order of the Social Foundation of Polish Nation Remembrance for Special Merits for the Nation and Polish State, the Medal Commemorating 80 Years of Polish Independence, the Medal of Merit to Polish Culture and the ZAiKS Association of Authors, the Silver Medal for Merit to Culture – Gloria Artis, the Medal of Merit to the Fryderyk Chopin University of Music in Warsaw and the “Milito Pro Christo” Medal.