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"Halka" by Stanisław Moniuszko staged in Łódź

h Grand Theatre in Łódź will stage Stanisław Moniuszko’s Halka. The production directed by Jarosław Kilian will be premiered on January 21, 2017.

The choice of a premiere date was no coincidence as the beginning of year 2017 marks an anniversary of the Theatre’s new building at Dąbrowskiego Square - it was opened on January 19, 1967. On Saturday evening, the artists will be conducted by Wojciech Rodek.

The first version of this work, written to a libretto by Włodzimierz Wolski, was completed in 1848. In 1858, its revised version comprising 4 acts was premiered. "Moniuszko in his works tried to combine Western European Romanticism with the spirit of the Polish culture. Halka is without a doubt an example of successful combination of features of Italian, French and German opera with elements typical for Polish folklore and music tradition. (…) Thanks to its patriotic and social significance, it became an expression of Polish national identity. In order to understand this opera story about an abandoned girl, we have to set it in the right context – of a social discord, which at Moniuszko's time led to the Gallician slaughter. Halka is a young woman sustained between two worlds: of the immoral nobility and vengeful highlanders. There are no unambiguously bad or good characters here. It is not a tearful melodrama. It is a cruel parable of human loneliness". (source: www.operalodz.com)

Tickets available on-line at: www.bilety24.pl

Firs Have Been Rustling for Half a Century

s Grand Theatre in Łódź will celebrate its 50th anniversary with a special concert held under the title Firs Have Been Rustling for Half a Century on January 20, 2017.

The significance of Stanisław Moniuszko’s Halka might be easily spotted when one realizes that it was selected to inaugurate several Polish opera theatres - Poznań Opera House (1919), Wrocław Opera (1945), and Silesian Opera in Bytom (1945). The situation was not different in Łódź as the newly-constructed building of the Grand Theatre opened its doors on January 19, 1967 by staging Moniuszko’s opera. It is this very tradition that will be revived exactly fifty years later.

The anniversary concert, performed by the soloists, choir, ballet and orchestra under the baton of Wojciech Rodek, will feature fragments of Halka and Krzesany by Wojciech Kilar.

More information: www.operalodz.pl

Krzysztof Penderecki: monographic concert

p A concert devoted to music by Krzysztof Penderecki will be held on January 18, 2017 at the Academy of Music in Gdańsk.

The programme includes Penderecki’s chamber works: Three Miniatures for violin and piano (1959), Capriccio per Siegfried Palm for cello (1970), Cadenza per viola sola (1984; arranged for violin by C. Edinger in 1987), Prelude for clarinet (1987), Duo concertante for violin and double bass (2010) and Sonata No. 2 for violin and piano (2000).

The compositions will be interpreted by the Academy’s lecturers and performers of the Polish Baltic Philharmonic: pianists Bogna Czerwińska-Szymula and Paweł Rydel, violinists Karolina Piątkowska-Nowicka, Anna Wandtke, Piotr Kwaśny and Andrzej Kacprzak, cellist Tadeusz Samerek, doublebassist Sebastian Wypych and clarinetist Andrzej Wojciechowski.

Admission free.

Paweł Hendrich - New Music Orchestra’s composer-in-residence

h New Music Orchestra’s concert planned for January 15, 2017 at the Chamber Hall of the Polish Radio National Symphony Orchestra in Katowice will mark Paweł Hendrich ’s composition residency held in season 2016/17.

The programme includes the composer’s Pteropetros for accordion, wind quintet and string quartet, and Accant for accordion and computer. The orchestra will be conducted by Szymon Bywalec, while the accordion parts will be performed by Rafał Łuc (ensemble’s artist-in-residence).

Next concertspresenting works by Hendrich will be held on March 5 (premiere of Hordiaver) and April 30 (Liolit for chamber orchestra).

The concert is co-financed by the Institute of Music and Dance ("Composer-in-residence" programe).

Carols and Pastorals - Concert of the Polish Association of Choirs and Orchestras

kThird new year’s concert, organized by the Warsaw branch of the Polish Association of Choirs and Orchestras, will be held on January 15, 2017 at St. Mary’s Church (7 Conrada Street) at 4.00 pm in Warsaw.

The concert will be performed by Gregorianum Men’s Choir (dir. by Berenika Jozajtis), Ecumenical Chamber Choir of the Evangelical Reformed Church (dir. by Paweł Hruszwicki), Canzonetta Children’s Choir and Camerata Varsovia Choir (dir. by Elżbieta Siczek). The artists will present carols and pastorals written and arranged by such composers as Rafalski, Nikodemowicz, Moniuszko, Nowowiejski, Mazur, Szaliński, Kubiak, Victoria, Davis, Maragno, Wood, and Pierpont.

Admission free.

Music and Magic

mKrakow Opera will stage a performance for children entitled Music and Magic on January 17, 2017.

The work is meant to engage whole families - both younger and older children, and their parents. Its content brings to the audience’s attention motives from well-known fairy tales (Snow White, Little Red Riding Hood, Cinderella), references to The Tempest by William Shakespeare, as well as several themes such as the power of music (that triggers one’s imagination) and an on-going clash of contradictions: music vs. noise, beauty vs. ugliness and good vs. evil. The music was composed by Andrzej Zarycki, while the libretto was written by Wojciech Graniczewski.

The project is co-financed by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage ("Composing Commisions" programme, implemented by the Institute of Music and Dance).

Next performances will be held on March 7, April 19, and May 5.

More information: www.opera.krakow.pl

Marzena Diakun wins Polityka’s ”Passport” Award

d Conductor Marzena Diakun received Polityka’s "Passport" Award at the prize-giving gala held on January 10, 2017.

Other nominees in the "classical music" category included singer Krzysztof Bączyk and saxophonist Łukasz Dyczko. Diakun was distinguished for her consistent and impressive personality and career development, which she achieved against the odds and brilliant interpretation of the opera Lost Highway by Olga Neuwirth, which had its Polish premiere at the 16th T-Mobile New Horizons International Film Festival in Wrocław (2016).

A "Passport" is an annual award granted by the weekly magazine Polityka since 1993. This year, it was presented in 8 categories: literature, film, theatre, classical music, popular music, visual arts, digital culture, and a creator of culture.

Polish Radio Orchestra plays Polish music

porPolish Radio Orchestra and saxophonist Cezariusz Gadzina under Michał Klauza will perform compositions by Polish composers on January 15, 2017 at the Witold Lutosławski Concert Studio of Polish Radio in Warsaw.

The programme includes Little Overture by Roman Palester, Polish Suite, Op. 37 by Aleksander Zarzycki and a premiere performance of The Autumn Poem for saxophone and symphony orchestra by Maciej Małecki. The new work is dedicated to Cezariusz Gadzina who will interpret its solo part.

Tickets available on-line at: www.polskieradio.bilety24.pl

Meet the Composer: Tomasz Jakub Opałka

oTomasz Jakub Opałka will be the special guest of the meeting held on January 10, 2017 at 5.00 pm at Coffeetura in Warsaw, during which the compositions from his first monographic album Emerge will be presented.

Born in 1983 Tomasz Jakub Opałka belongs to few composers of younger generation who gathered rich experience in writing symphonic works in such a short time. The repertoire of his first monographic CD includes 4 compositions for large instrumental ensembles - Collision of the Matter, Emerge, D.N.A. and Quadra. The album release was co-financed by the PKO Foundation.

The meeting will be chaired by Kinga A. Wojciechowska (editor in chief of the "Presto" magazine).

More information: Facebook event