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Piotr Sułkowski,

conductor; b. in 1970. He graduated in music education (1993) and conducting (diploma with distinction in 1996, after studies with Jerzy Katlewicz) from the Academy of Music in Krakow. During his studies he obtained a scholarship of the Internationale Bachakademie to participate in master classes taught by H. Rilling and J.E. Gardiner in Germany, and later - a grant of the Oregon Bach Festival, which allowed him to study in the United States. He was also granted the President of the City of Krakow Artistic Scholarship. In 2011 he obtained a PhD at the Academy of Music in Krakow.

He co-founded the "Forum of Young Composers" Festival as well as the Academy’s Sinfonietta - Forum Sinfonia chamber orchestra, with which (still as a student) he won the 1st prize for the best performance granted by a jury comprising journalists and music critics. He toured with the orchestra in Poland and abroad (e.g. in the United States, Great Britain, Germany and Spain).

Piotr Sułkowski conducted many well-known ensembles, such as the Krakow Opera Orchestra, Beethoven Academy Orchestra, Signature Symphony Orchestra Tulsa OK (of which he was the principal guest conductor in 2008-14), Toruń Symphony Orchestra (music director in 2009-11), Warmia and Mazury Philharmonic Orchestra in Olsztyn, Orquesta Sinfonica de Navarra, Coro Premier Ensemble de AGAO (Spain), and the Polish Radio Choir in Krakow (deputy director of the choir in 2008-09). Since 2011 he has held the post of the managing and artistic director at the Warmia and Mazury Philharmonic in Olsztyn. He has been a member of the Board of the Society of Polish Philharmonics since 2013.

The artist premiered numerous operas and new works by contemporary composers. His Krakow staging of The Rape of Lucretia by Benjamin Britten was named "the best production of the year at the Bydgoszcz Opera Festival" (2004). At the Festival of Polish Music (2007) in the Szymanowski Year he presented the world premiere of unknown operetta Husband Lottery, or Fiancé No. 69 by Karol Szymanowski. In the same year he conducted the soloists and ensembles of the Krakow Opera in the world premiere of Cracovia est, an oratorio by Krakow-based composer Dariusz Regucki. The performance became the culminating point of the 750th Anniversary of Granting Civic Rights to the City of Krakow. In 2010 he conducted the Orquesta Sinfonica de Navarra in the premiere of Carmen by Georges Bizet in Pamplona (the production marked the 20th anniversary of the Coro Premier Ensemble de AGAO). Also in 2010 he led the Beethoven Academy Orchestra during the international opera project Fidelio – To the Victims of the Holocaust, which was staged in several Polish cities and received good reviews (e.g. in the British magazine Opera).

He gained his experience during his long-time work (1995-2007) as a conductor and later artistic director of the Krakow Opera, as well as the music director of the Opera Wildwood Festival AR (USA). He was also a co-founder of the Krakow Chamber Opera, with which he staged several works. He is a co-organiser and manager of the Young Chamber Musicians' Spring - Festival of Children's Chamber Ensembles, held since 2001 in Krakow. Since 2008 he has been the artistic director of Barbakan Festival, which he initiated.

Piotr Sułkowski also dedicates much time to teaching. Since 1993 he has led the orchestra and choir of the Fryderyk Chopin State Comprehensive Music School in Krakow, with which he makes annual tours to France, offering educational programmes to French teenagers. He also teaches conducting and directs vocal ensembles at the Feliks Nowowiejski Academy of Music in Bydgoszcz.

He recorded extensively for record companies and for the television. In 2009 his CD Marek Stachowski - Works for Cello & String Orchestra, recorded with cellist Dorota Imiełowska and the Beethoven Academy Orchestra, won the Ring de Classiqueinfo award. He also recorded Bartosz Chajdecki’s soundtrack for the Polish historical TV series The Days of Honour. In 2012 the National Broadcasting Council appointed him to join the Programme Board of Radio Olsztyn.

For his artistic achievements Piotr Sułkowski received numerous awards and distinctions, including St. James Award from the President of Olsztyn for The Nutcracker by Pyotr Tchaikovsky (2012, Warmia and Mazury Philharmonic Orchestra), the title and award of an Eminent Personality of the Warmia and Mazury Region (category: culture) from the Warmia and Mazury Business Club (2013), the "Best of the Best" trophy (2014) for achievements on the national scale and international promotion of the Warmia and Mazury Region in 2013, Medal for Merit to Culture - Gloria Artis (2014) from the Minister of Culture and National Heritage, Pegasus Award of the Governor of the Warmia and Mazury Province (2015) for "artistic achievements and contributing to the culture development of Warmia and Mazury".


updated: November 2015 (wa)