2020 Paderewski Lecturer Krzysztof Meyer

The Polish Music Center, USC, Announces the
2020 Paderewski Lecturer: Krzysztof Meyer

Please join us to meet Krzysztof Meyer, one of the greatest living Polish composers, who will discuss his life and music during the 19th Annual Paderewski Lecture. Due to the pandemic and social distancing restrictions, this year’s Paderewski Lecture will be a virtual event broadcast on the new Thornton/LIVE platform.

Sunday, October 11 at 11:00 a.m. (PDT) at thorntonlive.usc.edu

No RSVP necessary! Just visit the Thornton/LIVE homepage above on Sunday Oct. 11, and make sure the volume is on volume

Event details:

2020 Paderewski Lecture with Krzysztof Meyer
Sunday, October 11 at 11 a.m. Pacific Time
[12 noon Mountain/1 p.m. Central/2 p.m. Eastern / 8 p.m. Central European Time]
One-time broadcast on Thornton/LIVE: www.thorntonlive.usc.edu
Free admission

The Polish Music Center at the USC Thornton School of Music announces the 2020 Paderewski Lecture with Krzysztof Meyer. A distinguished Polish composer and noted pedagogue, Meyer will describe his studies with Krzysztof Penderecki and Witold Lutosławski, his musical influences and friends, including Shostakovich and Ligeti, and his signal musical achievements as a prolific composer of orchestral, stage and chamber music. He will also discuss his books about music and musicians and summarize the six decades of his creative life. During the last section of his lecture Krzysztof Meyer will be joined by his wife, Danuta Gwizdalanka, a noted musicologist and author of books on Weinberg, Szymanowski, Shostakovich and Lutosławski—the latter two of which she co-authored with her husband.

The 2020 Paderewski Lecture will be presented in Polish with English subtitles, taking the form of a conversation led by Marek Zebrowski, Director of the Polish Music Center, USC. This one-time live broadcast can be accessed on Thornton/LIVE at www.thorntonlive.usc.edu on Sunday, October 11 at 11:00 a.m. (PDT).

About Krzysztof Meyer

Born in 1943, Krzysztof Meyer is one of the most distinguished living Polish composers. A student of Stanisław Wiechowicz and Krzysztof Penderecki in Kraków, Meyer later studied in Paris with Nadia Boulanger and became a protégé and a lifelong friend of another great icon of Polish contemporary music, Witold Lutosławski.

As a composer, Meyer made his debut at the prestigious Warsaw Autumn Festival in 1965 when he was still a student. Throughout the 1960s, he also performed as a pianist with the MW2 ensemble devoted to premiering avant-garde and experimental music, and performed his own piano and chamber works.

Krzysztof Meyer and Antoni Wit 1983
Krzysztof Meyer with Maestro Antoni Wit in 1983

Beginning in 1966, for two decades Meyer served as professor of composition in his native city of Kraków. In 1987, he moved to Germany to take a professorship at the Hochschule für Musik in Cologne, a post he held until his retirement in 2008. Krzysztof Meyer is also the author of two significant biographies of his two most important friends and mentors, Dmitri Shostakovich and Witold Lutosławski. Both books have been translated into a number of foreign languages.

Meyer’s Music

A prolific composer of chamber music, Meyer authored 15 string quartets, several trios for various ensembles as well as duets for violin and piano and cello and piano, among others. Meyer’s nine symphonies as well as his other orchestral works and over a dozen solo concertos stand out in the realm of orchestral music. His extensive catalogue of compositions is complemented by stage works, including two original operas, Cyberiada and The Maple Brothers, as well as his completion of Shostakovich’s The Gamblers and a ballet based on Stanisław Moniuszko’s opera, The Countess.

Krzysztof Meyer’s works have received a number of prestigious international awards, including First Prize for Symphony No. 3 at the Fitelberg Composers’ Competition, First Prize at the Szymanowski Competition for Symphony No. 4, the Prince of Monaco Prize for opera Cyberiada, UNESCO Prizes for String Quartet 2 and 3, the Polish Composers’ Union Award, the Alfred Jurzykowski New York City Award, and the Johann-Stamitz Award, among others.

To experience the music of Krzysztof Meyer before or after the lecture, visit the PMC’s curated playlist at www.youtube.com.

Krzysztof Meyer with his former teacher, Krzysztof Penderecki, at the Poznan Philharmonic

About the Polish Music Center 

Founded in 1984 by Wanda and Stefan Wilk, the Polish Music Center at the USC Thornton School of Music was officially opened on 23 January 1985. Its archival collection began with gifts of manuscripts by Witold Lutosławski and Stanisław Skrowaczewski. Currently, the PMC Manuscript Collection holds well over 200 works by leading Polish composers. In addition to the Manuscript Collection, the PMC Archives also include the Henryk Wars/Henry Vars Collection (donated in 2005), Bronisław Kaper Collection (donated in 2007), Roman Ryterband Collection (donated in 2015), and Paderewski Archive: the Paso Robles Collection (deposited by various donors since 1990).

Besides being a library, museum and research institution, since 1994 the PMC publishes its monthly Newsletter online with information about Polish music and musicians worldwide. The Polish Music Center also organizes annual concert series, presentations and conferences on the USC campus and around California, including the Paderewski Festival in Paso Robles.

All events subject to change

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