pianist; b. 13th April 1971 in Katowice. In 1994, she graduated with distinction from the piano class of Professor Andrzej Jasiński at the Karol Szymanowski Academy of Music in Katowice. In that same year, after reaching the semi-final of the Géza Anda Competition in Zurich, she was awarded a private grant to continue her studies at the Zurich Conservatory under Homero Francesch. One of her most valuable experiences was a course at the Basle Music Academy under Krystian Zimerman (1996-1998). She has also honed her skills in masterclasses given by Victor Merzhanov and Leon Fleisher, an in chamber music with members of Amadeus Quartet. In 2008 she obtained a doctorale degree, and in 2015 – a postdoctoral degree from the Karol Szymanowski Academy of Music in Katowice with a thesis on Stefan Kisielewski's Piano Pieces.
She was a scholarship holder of the Regina Smendzianka Foundation and the Fryderyk Chopin Society in Warsaw (1988, 1990, 1995).
Since a very early age, she has been winning top prizes in national and international competitions. In 1992, she won the 2nd prize (1st prize was not awarded) at the 3rd Karol Szymanowski International Competition in Łódź and she also received an award for the best performance of Karol Szymanowski's works. She is the winner of the 6th prize at the 13th Fryderyk Chopin International Piano Competition in Warsaw in 1995.
She regularly gives recitals, as well as concerts with orchestra and chamber ensembles in Poland, other parts of Europe, the USA, Canada, Japan, China and Brasil. She has performed at such prestigious concert halls as Hitomi Memorial Hall in Tokyo, Stadt-Casino in Basle, Rudolfinum in Prague and National Philharmonic in Warsaw. She has taken part in Chopin festivals in Duszniki, Nohant- La Châtre, Mariánské Láznê, Ghent, Geneva and in the "Chopin And His Europe" Festival in Warsaw. She has also participated in a number of contemporary music festivals: the Silesian Days of Contemporary Music in Katowice, the International Festival of Cracow Composers, the Laboratory of Contemporary Music International FestivalInternational Festival in Warsaw and Białystok, and the "Warsaw Autumn".
She has performed as a soloist with such conductors as Kazimierz Kord, Tadeusz Strugała, Tomasz Bugaj, Mirosław Jacek Błaszczyk, Jerzy Salwarowski, Massimiliano Caldi, Agnieszka Duczmal, Jacques Mercier and Reinbert de Leeuw. She has toured the UK twice: in 2005 with The European Union Chamber Orchestra and in 2006 with the Toruń Chamber Orchestra.
Magdalena Lisak's repertoire includes compositions by, among others, Fryderyk Chopin, Franz Liszt, Franz Schubert, Maurice Ravel, Karol Szymanowski, Claude Debussy, Pierre Boulez, as well as Polish women composers – Maria Szymanowska, Tekla Bądarzewska, Jadwiga Sarnecka, Halina Krzyżanowska, Helena Łopuska. In 2000, György Ligeti highly appreciated her performance of his Etudes. She has premiered works by Ryszard Gabryś, Bogusław Schaeffer, Anna Ignatowicz-Glińska, Anna Maria Przydworska, Artur Cieślak, Grażyna-Pstrokońska-Nawratil, Zbigniew Kozub, and Maciej Małecki.
Her interpretations have been recorded for Deutsche Rundfunk, Radio Suisse Romande, Polish Radio and Polish Television, DUX, Polish Radio Katowice and CD Accord. Invited by the Fryderyk Chopin Institute in Warsaw, she has recorded Fryderyk Chopin's works on historical instrument Erard, among others Fantaisie on Polish Airs, Op. 13 with ensemble Il Giardino Armonico under Giovanni Antonini and solo works in the CD series "The Real Chopin" (2013).
Magdalena Lisak pursues various artistic projects under the ægis of the Silesian Music Society, of which she is founder and chair.
In 2003, she became an assistant in the class of Professor Andrzej Jasiński, in 2008 – an assistant professor in the piano class, and currently she is an associate professor, head of the Piano Department at Karol Szymanowski Academy of Music in Katowice. Her teaching work includes masterclasses at the Showa Academia Musicae in Tokyo, lectures at Japanese institutions of higher artistic education and a DVD recording of works for children and youuth as part of the series of didactic releases: The piano. General Method. In addition, she has sat on the jury of the International Chopin Piano Competition in Asia (2010, 2011, 2012) and the Qualification Committee of the Fifteenth International Fryderyk Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw.
updated: 2021 (ac)
Artist's official website: www.magdalenalisak.pl/