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composers (W)


Krzysztof Wołek,

composer, improviser, installation artist; b. 14th April 1976 in Bytom. In 1999 he graduated from the Karol Szymanowski Academy of Music in Katowice in the composition class of Edward Bogusławski. Then he studied composition with Louis Andriessen, Martijn Padding, and Gilius van Bergiek at the Royal Conservatoire in the Hague. In 2007 he completed his PhD in composition and computer music at the University of Chicago under the supervision of Marta Ptaszyńska and Howard Sandroff. He is currently an associate professor of Music Composition and Director of Digital Composition Studies at the University of Louisville. 

He has attended international music courses led by Louis Andriessen, Zygmunt Krauze and Roger Reynolds. He has received awards, grants and stipends from the University of Chicago, University of Louisville, Foundation for Contemporary Arts, Kentucky Arts Council and Polish Ministry of Culture and National Heritage.

His compositions received various awards such as the 1st prize for Mobile Variations at the Concours Internationaux de Musique et d'Art Sonore Electroacoustiques in Bourges (2007) and the award for Eppur si muove at the competition organized by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers ASCAP (2006).

His works span a broad spectrum, from purely acoustic, improvisational, and electronic to various forms of multidisciplinary collaborations. As a composer and improviser, he has an ongoing collaboration with various artists and ensemble such as New Music Orchestra, Agata Zubel, Marek Chołoniewski, Jakob Kullberg, Defibrillator, Dominik Strycharski, and Małgorzata Walentynowicz. He has received commissions from, among others, the Warsaw Autumn Festival, the Siemens Foundation, and SCI/ASCAP. His works have been presented at various festivals of contemporary music and art in Europe, North America, and Asia, including the "Warsaw Autumn" Festival, the University of Louisville New Music Festival, SEAMUS National Conference, SPARK Festival, the International Computer Music Conference, Audio Art Festival, International Contemporary Dance Conference, Musica Polonica Nova and ISCM World Music Days.

Krzysztof is a passionate advocate of contemporary acoustic and electronic music and multimedia compositions. Beside teaching at the University of Louisville Krzysztof gives guest lectures at various universities around the world. Previous guest appearances included, among others, Columbia College Chicago, the University of Chicago, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Indiana University, Katowice Academy of Music, Kraków Academy of Music.

He serves on the jury of the The Grawemeyer Award for Music Composition. Since 2009 he works as a programming committee member of the Warsaw Autumn Festival. He is an organizer and jury member of the Frank Robert Abell Young Composers Competition for New Chamber Music. In addition, he is a supportive member of the International Society for Contemporary Music (ISCM), Polish Composers' Union (ZKP), Polish Society for Electroacoustic Music (PSME), and International Computer Music Association (ICME).

updated: 2018, 2020 (ac)

Composer's website: www.krzysztofwolek.com


Three short pieces in Bartók style for piano (1995)
Sonata for woodwind trio (1995)
Links for symphony orchestra (1996)
Concerto for violin and chamber orchestra (1997)
L’homme et la mer for mixed choir (1997)
Archealea for piano and tape (1998)
Duo 1998 for 2 clarinets (1998)
String Quartet (1998)
(A)Symmetrics for symphony orchestra * (1999)
For Madmen only! for tenor saxophone and piano (2001)
The Body for large ensemble (2003)
The Void for symphony orchestra (2003)
Bend for flute, bass clarinet, piano, percussion, 2 violins, 2 violas and 2 cellos (2003)
Imaginary Soundspace for video and electronics (2003)
Empty for violin (2004)
4Drums for 4 conga or darabuca drums (2004)
Mobile Variations for 6-channel surround tape (2005)
Changing Lanes for string quartet and electronics (2005)
Eppur Si Muove (And Yet, it Does Turn) for soprano, chamber ensemble, 4-channel surround live and prerecorded electronics, and video * (2006)
Ins of Outs and Outs of Ins for 2 computers (2007)
Un Claro Del Tiempo for soprano, flute, piano and electronics * (2008)
Arguro for flutes and live electronics * (2009)
Elements for chamber ensemble and live electronics * (2009)
4WayStop, computer improvisation (2009)
Strained Jaws, improvisation fir flute and 3 computers (2010)
Improvised Rhizomes, improvisation for cello and 2 computers (2010)
Transitivo, audiovisual installation (2010)
Spark for cello and orchestra (2010)
Collective Improvisation for soprano, flute, piano and live electronics (2011)
Agenda for improvising saxophone and computer (2011)
Yamantaka for 2 marimbas and tape (2011)
Bouncing, audiovisual installation (2012)
Motions, Stases for piano and chamber ensemble * (2012, 2014)
Bouncing, audiovisual installation with kinect controller (2013)
Roots, improvisation for viola and  2 computers (2013)
Gest-Reakcja-Manipulacja-Interpretacja, improvisation for voice, recorders, trombone, 2 computers and 2 dancers (2013)
Open Boarders, improvisation for soprano, piano, electric guitar and computers (2014)
Mud for chamber ensemble and fixed media (2015)
Zero Gained, improvisation for no input mixer (2016)
Nici, chamber opera based on "Jak Ocalał Świat" by Stanisław Lem (2016)
Na N for soprano and piano (2016)
Spin for symphony orchestra and live electronics (2017)
Various forms of Friction for cello and symphony orchestra (2017)
Various forms of Friction for cello and sinfonietta (2017)
Echo Psów for soprano and piano (2018)
Amplified, What is There? for amplified clarinet, violin, percussion and piano (2018)
Shadowings for viola and live electronics (2019)
Missing voices for flute, violin, cello and tape (optional) (2019)


Krzysztof Wołek – Elements, Agata Zubel – soprano, Szymon Bywalec – conductor, New Music Orchestra (ACD 188) (2012)