March 1995

Polish Music Reference Center Newsletter Vol. 1, no. 3

Flash News

Grazyna Bacewicz’s “Piano Quintet” and “Quintet for Winds” are now available from European American Retail Music Tel. (800) 345-6296) or Fax (610) 993-0563 (24 hrs/day); $61.75 and $54.00 respectively.

Other chamber music scores to order from them: Panufnik’s “Concertino” for percussion; Tansman’s “Suite” for ob, cl, bsn; Szymanowski’s “String Quartets nos. 1 and 2“; Gorecki’s “Lerchenmusik” for cl, cello & piano and Chopin’s “Piano Trio.

Calendar of Events

Polish Music @ The Los Angeles Philharmonic 1994/1995 Season

October 6 and 9, 1994
LutoslawskiPiano Concerto
Paul Crossley, piano
Esa-Pekka Salonen, conductor

November 10 and 13, 1994
LutoslawskiFlowers and Fables
Dawn Upshaw, soprano
Esa-Pekka Salonen, conductor

April 12, 13, 15 and 16, 1995
SzymanowskiViolin Concerto no. 1
Esa-Pekka Salonen, conductor

Don’t miss the Szymanowski Violin Concerto! It is a beautiful piece composed in 1916. First performance in the U.S. was in Philadelphia, Leopold Stokowski conducting, in 1924. (fourth performance after the world premere in Warsaw, followed by Prague and Paris.) Order tickets by phone: (213) 972-0777.

From Polonaise To Penderecki: Polish Music @ The University Of Michigan

March 6-23, 1995
Polish Music: Composers, Art And Politics 1944 – 1994

Danuta Gwizdalanka, musicologist from Poznan, Poland
A series of lectures addressing trends in Polish music since 1956; the avant-garde of the 60s; new approaches to the traditions of romanticism and folklore; the works of Lutoslawski, Penderecki, Gorecki and others. All lectures are free and open to the public. Tu-Th 4:00-5:30.

March 10, 1995
Composition Seminar With Krzysztof Penderecki.

3:30-5:30 p.m. Public welcome.
8:00 p.m. The Annual Copernicus Lecture.  Maestro Krzysztof Penderecki, interviewed by Bogdana Carpenter. Free.

March 11, 1995
Performing Chopin.

4:00 p.m. Garrick Ohlsson, piano, free.
8:00 p.m. The Warsaw Sinfonia, Allison Eldredge, cello, Penderecki conducting his “Viola Concerto” transcribed for cello. Reserved seating. Tickets $16, 26, 32, 42.

March 12, 1995
The Complete Solo Piano Music Of Frederic Chopin

4:00 p.m. Garrick Ohlsson, piano
Tickets $ 14, 18, 24, 26.

March 23-25, 1995.
Composer Henryk Gorecki visiting on campus.

March 24, 1995
The Music of Henryk Gorecki.

8:00 p.m. Contemporary Directions Ensemble, University of Michigan School of Music, H. Robert Reynolds, conductor performing “Quarteto, op. 5” String Quartet no. 2; “Musiquette 2” op. 23; “Kleines Requiem fur eine polka.” Free.

March 25, 1995
Composition Seminar With Henryk Gorecki.

10:00 – noon. Hosted by Music Composition department. Public welcome.

March 31, 1995
The Complete Solo Piano Music of Frederic Chopin.

8:00 p.m. GARRICK OHLSSON, piano. Reserved seating. Tickets $14, 18, 24, 26.

Recordings – Latest Releases

First CD appearance of any of Grazyna Bacewicz’s four symphonies. Koch Schwann SCH 311432. Also features her “Concerto for Orchestra.”

United UNI 88014 “Polish String Quartetes” includes the Bacewicz String Quartet no.3 (called a masterpiece by Witold Lutoslawski). The other string quartettes are by Penderecki String Quartet now stationed in Canada.

For anyone interested in any of the seven String Quartetes composed by BACEWICZ look up:

  • Fanny Mendelssohn Quartet (nos. 4 and 7) on Troubadisc
  • Grazyna Bacewicz Warsaw Quartet (nos. 4 and 7) Olympia OCD 310
  • Wilanow String Quartet (nos. 3 and 5) Olympia OLY 387

The music scores to the string quartettes are available from PWM (Polskie Wydawnictwo Muzyczne), Foreign Trade Dept., al Krasinskiego 11a, 31-111 Krakow, Poland or contact Theodore Presser, their representative in U.S. Fax: (215) 527-7841.

Latest Gorecki Recordings

IKOS” (Gorecki, Travener, Part) features Gorecki’s choral pieces, “Totus Tuus and Amen“. Choir of King’s College, Cambridge, STEPHEN CLEOBURY, conducting. #55096.

For another choral work, “Beatus Vir” see ARGO 436835-2 performed by the Prague Philharmonic Choir.

Henryk Wieniawski’s “Violin Showpieces,” a CD produced by Naxos NXS 8,550744, was favorably reviewed by Alan Gary Campbell in the H&B Recordings Direct magazine. “Some extremely difficult passages played extremely well by the Russian phenomenon, Marat Bisengaliev and accompanist John Lenehan. Only $6.50. Unbelievable bargain!

Speaking of Wieniawski, the Henryk Wieniawski Musical Society of Poznan has just announced the dates for the XIth International Wieniawski Violin Competition. It is scheduled for October 12, 1996. See Competitions for details.

Many new releases by great artists are now available at your favorite record store. Important to look up Garrick Olhsson playing Chopin’s Complete Works on Arabesque label (2-Z6642-2).


March 1 is Chopin’s birthday. Born 185 years ago in 1810. The Larousse Encyclopedia of Music, edited by Geoffrey Hindley, states that “his immense contribution to the piano music and musical Romanticism of the 19th century has been recognized and that he is also recognized to be an outstanding genius who is the incarnation of the national Polish style.” They further state that his role as the representative of the spirit of Poland has been accepted throughout the world.

March 3 is Kazimierz Serocki’s birth date (1922). One of Poland’s outstanding contemporary composers, founder of the Warsaw Autumn International Contemporary Music Festivals, died in 1981. It seems that none of his “best” works are available on CD or LP. The only recordings available at the moment are, “Concerto for trombone and orchestra” BIS CD 538; “Continum” for percussion instruments Olympia OCD 324; “A Suite of Preludes for piano” Olympia OCD 316 and “Suite for 4 Trombones” Olympia OCD 318.He won prizes for his “Sinfonietta” for 2 string orchestras; “Musica concertante” and for a song cycle, “Eyes of the Air.” Witold Lutoslawski considered his “Pianophonie” for piano, electronic tape and orchestra (1976-78) a fine piece of craftsmanship. He also wrote “Forte e piano” for two pianos and orchestra (1967) that should be interesting.

Also Born This Month

Karol Kurpinski born on March 6, 1785, died September, 1857. Violinist, composer, conductor, teacher, music critic. General director of the Warsaw Opera from 1824-1840. Founder of the first Polish music journal, “Tygodnik Muzyczny.

Piotr Perkowski, born on March 17, 1901, studied privately with Karol Szymanowski and under A. Roussel (1926-28) in Paris. Founder of the Society of Polish Musicians in Paris. Very active in the Polish Composers Union. Composer and professor. Among his pupils; Baird Natanson, Szajna-Lewandowska, Rudzinski and Maksymiuk. Prized compositions: “Wedding Suite,” “Piece for violin and piano” dedicated to Szymanowski and “Dramatic Symphony.” Only available recording: “Symphony in D” on Olympia OCD 315.