• BBC R3 ‘Polska!’: Brochure & Previews

Screen Shot 2013-11-18 at 20.26.52For its main Polska! image, the BBC chose a still photograph by Eustachy Kossakowski of a 1967 happening by one of Poland’s most exploratory theatre directors, Tadeusz Kantor.  It was taken at Osieki on the north-west Polish coast during ‘A Sea Concert’.  Kossakowski took a number of photos of the event.  Here are a couple, including the one which furnished Polska! with its striking image:

A Sea Concert:1

Tadeusz-Kantor Eustachy Kossakowski Panoramic Sea Happening, Osieki, 1967

Ironically, although it was understandable for practical reasons on radio, Kantor did not feature in the drama coverage of Polska!.  The ‘conductor’ was the Polish artist Edward Krasiński, best known perhaps for his introduction a year later of a wide blue sellotape line that wove its way through his installations.

Here is the complete publicity brochure for the festival.

Polska! brochure cover

Polska! brochure:1

Polska! brochure:2

Polska! brochure:3

Polska! brochure:4

Polska! brochure:5

Early publicity was key.  But there is always one disaffected voice carping from the sidelines, warping both the intention and the actuality.  In this instance, it was Dermot Clinch in his ‘A Critical Guide: Staying In (Friday)’, The Independent on Sunday, 14 November 1993:

Polska! (7.30pm-12.30am R3).  Gone are the days of single programmes based simply on a single idea. It’s theme nights and seasons all the way.  Today, the start of Polish fortnight – and what more beguiling hook than the “75th anniversary of the reconstitution of Poland as an independent state”?  Including: Szymanowski’s String Quartet no.2 (7.45pm) and Lutoslawski’s Fourth Symphony (11.15pm).  And then the big names: Zarebski, Krupowicz, Palester…

The anticipatory response elsewhere was overwhelmingly positive.  Here are six preview pieces (I’ll post reviews later): one by myself, one from the radio critic of The Sunday Times, a short contribution from the senior music critic from The Guardian, plus an interview with me in London’s Dziennik Polski and two pieces from Warsaw’s Gazeta Wyborcza and Rzeczpozpolita.

• Adrian Thomas, ‘Cultural glories of the great survivors’, The Times, 19 November 1993
• Ewa Turska, ‘Sezon polski w BBC’, Rzeczpozpolita, 19 November 1993
• Dorota Szwarcman, ‘Sezon polski w BBC 3’, Gazeta Wyborcza, 19 November 1993
• Paul Donovan, ‘Radio Waves: Poles without politics’, The Sunday Times, 21 November 1993
• Tomasz Walkiewicz, ‘Jestem zauroczony tym krajem’ (interview with Adrian Thomas), Dziennik Polski, 22 November 1993
• Andrew Clements, ‘Diary: Polishing up Radio 3’, The Guardian, 23 November 1993

Polska! Thomas

Polska! Turska

Polska! Szwarcman

Polska! Donovan

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Polska! Clements

• BBC R3 ‘Polska!’: 19 November 1993

Screen Shot 2013-11-18 at 20.26.52Twenty years ago today I was in Warsaw preparing to present my first ever live concert, and I could hardly have chosen a more publicised event.  I was at Studio S1 at Polish Radio, broadcasting to BBC Radio 3 for the opening concert of Polska!, the most extensive celebration of any nation’s culture mounted by a single BBC channel.  For 18 days, from 19 November to 6 December 1993, Radio 3 broadcast over 120 separate programmes involving producers, writers, performers and broadcasters not only from the musical world but many others too: poetry, fiction, drama, art, cabaret, history, cuisine, politics.

In late 1992, I was working as Head of Music at Radio 3.  I was wondering how the station might celebrate the 60th birthdays, at the end of the following year, of Krzysztof Penderecki (23 November) and Henryk Mikołaj Górecki (6 December) as well as mark the 80th birthday of Witold Lutosławski at the start of the 1993.  (Little did we know that Lutosławski had already been diagnosed with cancer as Polska! began and that he would die in February 1994.)  I went to discuss the idea of a festival with the Controller of Radio 3, Nicholas Kenyon, and we quickly realised that we had the resources to organise something really special, involving not only all the BBC orchestras and the BBC Singers but the other departments which contributed to the rich variety of Radio 3’s programming.  If I remember correctly, it was Nicholas Kenyon who came up with the title and he was unreservedly enthusiastic and encouraging.  And so Polska! was born.


Over the next 18 days, I will be posting occasionally about Polska!, its live and recorded music repertoire, its non-musical programmes, the press coverage in the UK and in Poland, and including as many direct images of press reviews etc. as possible.

Although I had left the channel at the end of June 1993, I remained deeply involved in the planning and programming of Polska! and was slated to do some of the presentation, both in Poland and the UK.  Hence my ‘continuity’ presence in Warsaw on 19 November.  A flavour of the musical breadth of the festival may be gathered from that evening’s five-hour opener, ‘Poland Now’ (a second blockbuster came towards the end of the festival).

Homma 1993

The opening evening’s main feature was the live broadcast from Polish Radio 2.  The first half was devoted to chamber music (I was intent on including the then-neglected Zarębski Piano Quintet, which today has a deservedly higher profile), while the second consisted of contemporary vocal repertoire (including Paweł Szymański’s recent Miserere, a commission from Polish Radio).

Polska! Programme 19.11.93

In the interval, for ‘A Musician’s Lot’, I talked with Szymański and two other Polish composers – Rafał Augustyn and Zygmunt Krauze –  as well as to the pianist Paweł Kowalski, to Monika Strugała, one of the organisers of the choral festival Wratislavia Cantans, to Elżbieta Szczepańska, Head of Promotion at the music publisher PWM, and to Andrzej Rakowski, a professor at the Chopin Academy of Music in Warsaw and the author of a recent report on music education in Poland.

In the 45′ profile of Polish political life – still a compelling issue four years after the ‘Round Table’ conference of 1989 had restored a level of democracy to the country – Piotr Kowalczuk was joined by Krzysztof Bobiński (Financial Times), the writer and lawyer Wiktor Osiatyński and Andrzej Wróblewski (Polityka), among others.

A second recent Polish Radio commission followed – Stanisław Krupowicz’s Fin-de-siècle, introduced by the composer and performed by WOSPR (Polish Radio Great SO), conducted by Takao Ukigaya.  For ‘A Composer’s Lot’, I was joined again by Augustyn, Krauze and Szymański, by three other composers, Krupowicz, Hanna Kulenty and Marta Ptaszyńska, and by Grzegorz Michalski from Polish Radio 2 and Elżbieta Szczepańska from PWM.

We were then able to draw on that year’s ‘Warsaw Autumn’ festival when Lutosławski had conducted a complete programme of his own music with the Warsaw PO (it turned out to be his last appearance on the podium in Poland). He talked with me about the Fourth Symphony to introduce the broadcast.  Palester’s Adagio for Strings (1954) was performed by Sinfonia Varsovia under Jan Krenz.

The evening had begun with a specially recorded performance by Piers Lane of Chopin’s Etudes op.10 (virtually all of Chopin’s music was played during Polska! and Lane bookended the festival on 6 December with the Etudes op.25).  It ended with Szymanowski’s Myths and, like every subsequent evening of the festival, the last notes were left to one or more of Szymanowski’s mazurkas.

• On music and the Jagiellonians

Barely had I posted about the arrival of a new collection of essays on early Polish music (New ‘Eastern European Studies’ series) than one of its editors, Paweł Gancarczyk, drew my attention to another volume that he has co-edited, with Agnieszka Leszczyńska, and which came out last year: The Musical Heritage of the Jagiellonian Era (Warsaw: Instytut Sztuki PAN, 2012).


It is, unfortunately, the case that many Polish academic publications, even when specially produced in foreign-language editions, rarely escape to wider audiences.  Yet this collection of twenty seven essays, nineteen of which are in English, eight in German, has a range and line-up deserving of international appreciation.  It shares a few authors with The Musical Culture of Silesia before 1742 (see preceding post) but it has a broader geographical and musical reach.  Together, their forty eight essays are a fascinating insight by current authorities into several centuries of Poland’s musical and cultural history.

The Musical Heritage of the Jagiellonian Era

Elżbieta Witkowska-Zaremba: Patterns of music education in Central Europe in the fifteenth century: codices with the Jagiellonian mark
Jūraté Trilupaitiené: Musical culture of the Jagiellonian dynasty in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania: between sacrum and profanum
Dominika Grabiec: Musical motifs in Christ’s Passion: the Mocking from the Holy Trinity Chapel at Lublin Castle and miniatures from the Cracovian Dominican meditations (ca. 1532)
Hrvoje Beban: Inter arma (non) silent musae.  Renaissance musical culture in Croatia during the reign of the Jagiellonian dynasty
Elżbieta Zwolińska: Einige Bemerkungen zu den musikalischen Kontakten zwischen dem Hofe der letzten Jagiellonen und dem Habsburgerhause
Eva Veselovská: Mittelalterliche Notationssysteme vom Gebiet der Slowakei aus der Wendezeit des 15. und 16. Jahrhunderts
Veronika M. Mráčková: Staff notation in sources from the convent of St George in Prague
Jan Ciglbauer: Neumarkter Cantionale: Geistliche lateinische Lieder um 1470 und ihre Vergangenheit in mitteleuropäischen Handschriften
Ian Rumbold: Austrian or Bavarian?  Hermann Pötzlinger’s music book (Munich, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Clm 14274): a new source of information
Katelijne Schiltz: Rosen, Lilien und Kanons: Die Anthologie Suavissimae et iucundissimae harmoniae (Nürnberg, 1567)
Christian Thomas Leitmeir: Teodoro Riccio’s Liber primus missarum (1579): a musical ambassador between Prussia and Poland
Marc Desmet: Establishing a chronology of Jacob Handl’s printed masses.  Evidence and problems
Barbara Przybyszewska-Jarmińska: An overlooked fantasia for instrumental ensemble by Francesco Maffon.  GB-Och MSS Mus. 372-376 as a vestige of Paweł Działyński’s diplomatic mission to England in 1597?
Pawel Gancarczyk: Musical culture of the Teutonic Order in Prussia reflected in the Marienburger Tresslerbuch (1399-1409)
Bartosz Awianowicz: The Graeco-Latin vocabulary of Petrus Wilhelmi de Grudencz
Gioia Filocami: The musical taste of Archbishop Ippolito I d’Este between Hungary and Italy
Thomas Napp: Upper Lusatia: cultural transfer and spatiality in early modern Central Europe
Danuta PopingisDas singende Uhrwerk zu Füßen von König Zygmunt August – ein Beitrag zur Herkunft des automatischen Glockenspiels im Rechtstädtischen Rathaus von Danzig
Janka Petőczová: Musical culture in Bardejov (Bártfa, Bartfeld, Bardiów) in the mid-sixteenth century
Agnieszka Leszczyńska: A common musical tradition: links between Upper Hungary and Prussia around 1600
Marta Hulková: Musikalische Handschriften von der Wendezeit des 16. und 17. Jahrhunderts in der Musikaliensammlung von Levoča (Leutschau/Lőcse)
Magdalena Walter-Mazure: On how the nuns sang Vespers in fractus – alternatim practice in liturgical music of Polish female Benedictines
Julia Miller: Luca Marenzio: questions of performance in Poland and Italy
Reinald Ziegler: Claudio Monteverdis Publikation einer Messe und einer Vesper 1610.  Zum transfer von Kompositionstechniken im konfessionsverschiedenen Umfeld, oder: Welche kompositorischen Impulse gingen von einem heute als epochemachend empfundenen Werk aus?
Teresa Krukowska: Wie europäisch war des musikalische Repertoire der polnischen evangelischen Kantonalien im 16. Jh. und wie europäisch ist es heute?
Anna Ryszka-Komarnicka: An episode from the reign of King Władysław II Jagiełło of Poland in Gismondo re de Polonia, a dramma per musica by Leonardo Vinci (1727)
Marco Beghelli: An imaginary Poland in nineteenth-century opera

• New ‘Eastern European Studies’ series

The postwoman’s just delivered the first volume in a new series, ‘Eastern European Studies in Musicology’.  It’s a collaboration between the University of Wrocław and the German publisher Peter Lang, under the general editorship of Maciej Gołąb (Wrocław).  I should declare an interest in so far as I am on the Editorial Board, along with colleagues from Brno, Vilnius, Lviv, Moscow and Budapest.  The series promises to bring not only new perspectives on music from this wide geo-cultural area but also the writings of a host of authors to the attention of a broader public.  This new volume sets the benchmark.

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The Musical Culture of Silesia before 1742 contains twenty one essays under the editorship of Paweł Gancarczyk (Warsaw), Lenka Hlávková-Mráčková (Prague) and Remigiusz Pośpiech (Wrocław).  Why the specific date, 1742? This was the year that Silesia came under Prussian rule.  Prior to that, it had been subject to centuries of shifting political and cultural influences (which of course did not stop then).  The wonderfully varied contents of this first volume reflect this history.  Sixteen of the essays are in English, the remaining five in German.  There are plentiful illustrations, an index of people mentioned in the essays, but no author biographies except academic affiliations at the top of their contributions.

The Musical Culture of Silesia before 1742

Elżbieta Witkowska-Zaremba (Warsaw): Early Keyboard Music in Sources from Prague and Silesia
Veronika M. Mráčková (Prague): The Silesian Tradition of Hymns to Czech Saints
Jan Ciglbauer (Prague): Two Alleluia Chants in Nicolaus Cosel’s Manuscript: On the Creation of New Liturgical Music in 15th-Century Central Europe
Paweł Gancarczyk (Warsaw): A New Fragment of 15th-Century Polyphony in Silesia and the Tradition of the Central-European Repertory
Lenka Hlávková-Mráčková (Prague): Die Saganer Stimmbücher (Das Glogauer Liederbuch) und die Traditionen des polyphonen Liedes in Mitteleuropa
Jaap van Benthem (Utrecht): Die Saganer Stimmbücher (Das Glogauer Liederbuch): eine unbeachtete Quelle für Johannes Tourout?
Jacobijn Kiel (Houten – Heřmánkovice): Two Anonymous Salve Settings in Warszawa, Biblioteka Uniwersytecka, RM 5892
Christian Thomas Leitmeir (Bangor): Lutheran Propers for Wrocław/Breslau: The Cantus Choralis (1575) of Johannes Knöfel
Marc Desmet (Saint-Étienne): Jacob Handl’s Compositions Preserved in the Brzeg Manuscript Collection: Presentation and Chronological Clues
Bernhold Schmid (Munich)Nach dir, Herr Christe, thut mein hertz verlangen. Ein unbekanntes Kontrafakt zu Jacob Regnarts Tutto lo giorno aus der Bibliothek des Gymnasiums in Brieg
Thomas Napp (Reichenbach): Transferprozesse zwischen Görlitz und Breslau am Beispiel des Meistergesangs im ausgehenden 16. Jahrhundert
Janka Petőczová (Bratislava): The Role of Silesia in the Development of Musical Culture in the Towns of Spiš/Zips and Šariš/Scharosch
Paulina Halamska (Warsaw): Protestant Elite Milieu in the 17th-Century County of Kłodzko/Glatz as Exemplified by the Family of the Wrocław/Breslau Organist Tobias Zeutschner.  Gloss to the Biography
Tomasz Jeż (Warsaw): Jesuit Melodrama in Baroque Kłodzko/Glatz
Barbara Przybyszewska-Jarmińska (Warsaw): Marcin Mielczewski (d. 1651) and Alberik Mazák (1609–1661): A Silesian Perspective
Grzegorz Joachimiak (Wrocław): A Week in the Blacksmith’s Life: Lutenists from Silesia and Bohemia around Count Losy von Losinthal (1650–1721)
Remigiusz Pośpiech (Wrocław): Ein Schlesier aus Oppeln in Prag: Franz Ludwig Poppe (1671–1730) und seine Werke in tschechischen Sammlungen
Václav Kapsa (Prague): On the Way from Prague to Wrocław: Sacred Music by Early 18th-Century Prague Composers in Silesia
Marc Niubo (Prague): Bernard Artophaeus and Bohuslav Matĕj Černohorský.  Casual Examples of Czech Music in Baroque Silesia or the Last Traces of Music by Minorities in Wrocław?
Dominika Grabiec Warsaw): The Motif of «Deafening with Trumpets» in Central European Passion Iconography, the Religious Renewal Movement «Devotio moderna» and Reform of the Begging Monastic Orders
Martina Šárovcová (Prague): Choral Books from the Observant Franciscan Monastery in Wrocław from the End of the 17th Century.

• New CD Note (Szymanowski vol.2/Chandos)

CHSA 5123Eight months after its first Szymanowski CD with the BBC SO under Edward Gardner, Chandos has issued the second volume, combining two works from the composer’s ‘Polish’ period to go along with Louis Lortie’s brilliant recording of the Symphonie Concertante on vol.1.  Although I’ve not heard the new CD yet, I’m expecting equally fresh and vivid accounts of the Stabat Mater (1925-26) and the ballet Harnasie (1923-31), not least because of the addition of the BBC Symphony Chorus and an excellent raft of singers.  These include Lucy Crowe, who sings so beautifully on Chandos’s CD of Lutosławski’s vocal works (2011).

Here’s the link to my booklet note for this new Szymanowski CDor you can scroll the CD NOTES tab above.

• WL100/43: Variations, **17 June 1939

There was a time not so long ago in Kraków when you could find a really good antykwariat (second-hand bookshop) in several of the city’s central streets.  Those days are long gone, but in the 1990s I was able to build up my collection of library of books on Polish culture by delving into such emporia.  My most unexpected find was a bundle of old concert programmes.  These were mainly from the Kraków Philharmonic’s concerts between 1945 and 1952.  And in amongst these fascinating documents were a couple of other items, of which this one-off programme is the earlier. It is notable now for marking the concert premiere of Lutosławski’s Symphonic Variations (1936-38).

Lutosławski’s completed this, his first proper orchestral work, in mid-December 1938 and it was given a live broadcast on Polish Radio in April the following year.  Its first public performance, however, took place on Saturday 17 June 1939.  In the programme, it’s called simply ‘Variations’; whether ‘Symphonic’ was mistakenly omitted  or added later I cannot tell.  While it has never really made a huge impact in the broadly held canon of Lutosławski’s music, it is evidence of his early maturity, his ear for orchestral colour, and his symphonic instincts.  (It’s been programmed in this year’s BBC Proms, on Wednesday 7 August.  The performers are the BBC SO under Edward Gardner, reprising, along with the Piano Concerto and Louis Lortie, two of the pieces on their scintillating Chandos CD ‘Witold Lutosławski. Orchestral Works II’, CHSA 5098‘.)

Krakøw concerts 17-20.06.39 cover

The premiere was given by the Polish Radio [Symphony] Orchestra, conducted by its founder and music director Grzegorz Fitelberg.  It was the opening concert of the Kraków Arts Days Festival, which ran from 17-20 June 1939. Three of the five concerts, including this one, were given in the arcaded Renaissance courtyard of Wawel Castle in Kraków (in Lutosławski literature, the festival has normally been called the Wawel Festival).  All three Wawel concerts began at 21.00 hours – I hope the weather was balmy!  That’s more than could be said for what happened two and a half months later.

This programme is printed on cream card measuring 27 x 21 cms, printed in dark blue ink and folded to provide four sides (among the obvious misprints are E. Edgar, Bethoven, and con fucco).  The second side gives the programme for the first of the three symphonic concerts. For this ‘Concert of Polish Music’, the Polish Radio SO was joined by the singer Ewa Bandrowska-Turska (1894-1979), one of Poland’s most distinguished sopranos, and the pianist Józef Śmidowicz (1888-1962), who had been Lutosławski’s piano teacher in 1924-25.

Krakøw concert 17.06.39

Even though Kurpiński was a key figure in the development of opera in nineteenth-century Poland, his music today clings onto public awareness only through the overtures, such as this one to his opera Jadwiga, Queen of Poland (1814).  Melcer’s folk-infused Piano Concerto no.2 in C minor (1897) has maintained a certain place in the Polish repertoire.  Modern recordings by Jonathan Plowright (Hyperion, 2007) and Joanna Ławrynowicz (Acte Préalable, 2008) have been joined by an archive recording by Melcer himself (Selene, 2012).

The selection of four songs by Szymanowski includes two from his cycle Songs of a Fairytale Princess (1915), three songs from which he orchestrated in 1933 and were premiered by Bandrowska-Turska (there’s another mistake: the op. no. for the third song should be op.26).  Szymanowski had died in 1937, and Fitelberg was his ardent champion, so it was fitting that the programme included Fitelberg’s orchestral arrangement of Szymanowski’s Nocturne and Tarantella for violin and piano (1915).  The final work in this first programme was the now long-forgotten First Symphony by Woytowicz, who went on to run one of the artists’ cafes where Lutosławski and Andrzej Panufnik played their two-piano arrangements in war-torn Warsaw.

Krakøw concerts 18.06.39

Side 3 of the programme announces the two non-symphonic concerts in the Kraków Arts Days Festival.  The first, on Sunday 18 June, in the Bednarski Park south of the River Vistula, was of folk music played by Polish Radio’s Small Orchestra, Chorus and vocal soloists.  This was followed by the second, an ‘Evening of Musical Serenades’, which was given in the courtyard of the Jagiellonian University near Wawel.  This mixed programme included Mozart, 16th and 17th-century madrigals, songs by unnamed Polish composers, etc.

Krakow cncerts 19-20.06.39

Side 4 outlines the details of the last two symphonic concerts.  The first, on Monday 19 June, included two works by Mieczysław Karłowicz, his tone poem Stanisław i Anna Oświecimowie (1907) and the Violin Concerto (1902). Pieces by three lesser-known composers followed: the symphonic poem Anhelli (1909) by Ludomir Różycki, the Cello Concerto (1928, on Gregorian themes) by Jan Maklakiewicz and the overture Swaty polskie (Polish Courtship, 1903) by Feliks Nowowiejski.  The soloists were Irena Dubiska (1899-1989), a noted violinist who in 1930 founded the Polish Quartet of which the other soloist, the cellist and composer Kazimierz Wiłkomirski (1900-95), was also a member.  Dubiska went on, like many other distinguished players, to perform in Woytowicz’s cafe during the Second World War.

The final concert, on Tuesday 20 June, cast its net outside Poland (muzyka obca = foreign music), including Elgar’s tribute to the stateless Polish nation during the Great War, Polonia, and Beethoven’s Sixth Symphony.  Of more interest is the repertoire by Ravel, Debussy and de Falla: Daphnis et Chloé (Second Suite), Nocturnes and the Suite from The Three-Cornered Hat.

• Research grants (Polish music) for 2013-14

20110307_imt_logoThe Institute of Music and Dance has announced its international grant-awarding competition for research into Polish music.  It’s called ‘Blank Pages of Music’. Applicants, primarily those working on lesser-known topics of Polish music and dance, are encouraged to apply for grants of up to 10,000zl (c. £2000) for individuals or up to 20,000zl (c. £4000) for a group of researchers.  The total fund for 2013-14 is 100,000zł (c. £20,000).

30 June 2013: deadline for submission of applications.
1 October 2013 – 30 June 2014: research period for successful applicants.
31 July 2014: deadline for hardcopy and electronic submission of completed research projects.

For further details, please click on Blank Pages of Music – 3rd Edition, where you will find three pdf links about the programme, past awards and an application form.

• WL100/35: Lutosławski in Riga

This photograph was taken in Riga on 4 May 1935.  Lutosławski was part of a group of music students from Warsaw who were on a little concert tour.  He played his new Piano Sonata, which he’d finished at the end of December 1934 and played on Polish Radio in 1935.  It then disappeared from view and was not published until after his death.


The photograph is interesting for a particular reason.  Karol Szymanowski was also in Riga on what turned out to be his last major concert tour (with his sister, the soprano Stanisława Szymanowska-Korwin and the violinist Wacław Niemczyk) and the two parties met.  Szymanowski is on the left (looking in), Lutosławski on the far right (looking to camera).  It was their one and only meeting.  Lutosławski recalled: ‘Szymanowski was extremely kind to our small group.  He came to our concert, we walked around town together and accompanied him to Radio Riga. […] After our concert, Wacław Niemczyk told me: “Karol liked your Sonata very much; however, he wouldn’t say it to you.”‘

• Polish Music at the 2013 BBC Proms

Polish Music at the 2013 BBC Proms

p0179z7mThe 2013 BBC Proms have been launched today.  It is great to see Polish music taking a prominent role, instigated by the centenary this year of the birth of Witold Lutosławski.  This is no mean feat, given that 2013 also marks the centenary of the birth of Benjamin Britten and the bicentenaries of Verdi and Wagner.  And this is not to mention other anniversaries, like the 50th anniversary of the death of Francis Poulenc.

There are seven pieces by Lutosławski in this year’s programme.  There are also two by both Andrzej Panufnik (his centenary falls next year) and Karol Szymanowski.  And there is one each by Henryk Mikołaj Górecki and Krzysztof Penderecki, who were born 80 years ago.  There is also a concert including music of the Polish Renaissance.  An outline calendar of Polish music at the 2013 Proms is given below.

My essay for the BBC Proms Guide may be read here.

Prom 1 • 12 July
• Lutosławski: Variations on a Theme by Paganini

PCM 1 • 15 July
• Lutosławski: Partita

Prom 8 • 17 July
• Lutosławski: Cello Concerto

Prom 9 • 18 July
• Szymanowski: Symphony no.3 ‘Song of the Night’

PCM 2 • 22 July
• Polish and other European Renaissance Music

Prom 32 • 7 August
• Lutosławski: Symphonic Variations
• Lutosławski: Piano Concerto

Prom 44 • 15 August
• Penderecki: Concerto Grosso

Prom 55 • 23 August
• Lutosławski: Concerto for Orchestra
• Panufnik: Tragic Overture
• Panufnik: Lullaby

PSM 4 • 24 August
• Lutosławski: Paroles tissées

Prom 68 • 2 September
• Szymanowski: Violin Concerto no.1

Prom 71 • 4 September
• Górecki: Symphony no.3 ‘Symphony of Sorrowful Songs’

• New CD Note (Dobrzyński/Chandos)

CHAN 10778Here is music, by a Polish contemporary of Chopin, which is barely known even in Poland.  Ignacy Feliks Dobrzyński was a couple of years older than Chopin and they both studied in Warsaw under the same teacher, Józef Elsner.  Whereas Chopin spent most of his adult life outside Poland, Dobrzyński remained in Warsaw.  This double CD includes an operatic overture, Monbar (the setting is Haiti!), alongside Dobrzyński’s Piano Concerto (written when he was 17) and his Characteristic Symphony in the spirit of Polish Music. The CD also includes the original first movement of the Symphony.

Here’s the link to my booklet note for this Dobrzyński CD, or you can scroll the CD NOTES tab above.

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