Obituary: Prof. Stanisław Moryto

Former president of the Chopin Music University in Warsaw, Professor Stanisław Moryto died on June 5 after a long illness. He was 71. One of the most active personalities on the musical scene in Warsaw, Stanisław Moryto headed the Warsaw Music Academy from 2005 until 2012 and, thanks to his efforts, this venerable institution gained status of “Musical University” as the only such university in Poland.

Born in the mountain town of Łącko in southern Poland, Stanisław Moryto was a composer and organist. He studied in Warsaw, graduating with degrees in organ performance (1971) and composition (1974). Moryto also authored a book, Muzyka z mojego życia [Music From My Life] that was published last year.

Stanisław Moryto organized many festivals, including the Legnica Conservatory Organ Festival, and during the years 1973-1981 was active in the Jeunesses Musicales de Pologne as the society’s president. Later on, he also served as Dean of Composition, Theory and Conducting, and Vice President of the Music Academy in Warsaw.

According to Krystyna Makowska-Ławrynowicz, Moryto’s classmate from high school days, “[…] He was a very sensitive, warm and honest human being. And simultaneously a very obstinate one, because he came from a small town of Łącko and thanks to his intense studying there and at the Music Academy, he became an organist and an excellent composer, who wrote such uniquely important works as his Stabat Mater or Cello Concerto.”

In 2011, Moryto was awarded the title of Doctor Honoris Causa of Keimyung University in Daegu, South Korea. He was also decorated with the Knight’s Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta (2001), and the Crucem, Magni Officialis from the Grand Master of the Order of Malta (2007). In 2012 the President of the Republic of Poland awarded Stanisław Moryto the Officer’s Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta for outstanding achievements in the dissemination of musical culture, achievements in artistic creation and didactic activity.

[Sources: warszawa.wyborcza.pl, polskieradio.pl, polmic.pl; Transl. by Marek Zebrowski]