New Wojciech Kilar piece
This month will see no less than 3 premieres of pieces by Wojciech Kilar! 😯
[For those not sure who I’m talking about: Kilar is a Polish composer, born in 1932 in, yes, you guessed it, Lviv. To put a long story short: Kilar is an avangardist turned minimalist, who went through a neoromantic stage somewhere in between. His most famous piece is probably Krzesany (1974) – here’s an excellent text about it from The Rambler. Other notable pieces include Angelus (1984), Bogurodzica (1975), Koscielec 1909 (1976 – a personal favorite) and Orawa (1986 – another one). The stuff he has been writing recently doesn’t, to my ears, meet the high expectations built up by his best pieces. He has also composed an astounding number of film scores, including music to Coppola’s Dracula and Polanski’s The Pianist. In my opinion, his best soundtracks come from an earlier period. I have in mind excellent music written to films by Andrzej Wajda and, especially, Krzysztof Zanussi – some of the Zanussi soundtracks are on a par with Kilar’s concert music coming from the same period.]
The first of this month’s series of Kilar premieres will take place this Sunday, during the opening night of the 4th Festival of Polish Music in Cracow.
[A note on the Festival: it was started in 2005, as part of PWM’s 60th anniversary celebrations (PWM is the biggest score publisher in Poland). Since it is a Polish-themed festival, it is always scheduled sometime in early November, so as to encompass the Polish National Independce Day on 11th of November. It has quickly made a name for itself by inviting top-shelf performers from Poland and abroad. The programming is also invariably extremely interesting and I’m very sorry to say I’ve never been to the festival in person. But then, what’s radio for?]
The program of tomorrow’s (Sunday) concert is as follows:
Andrzej Panufnik A Procession for Peace (1982-83)
Ignacy Jan Paderewski Piano Concerto in A Minor op. 17 (1888)
Wojciech Kilar Te Deum for solo voices, choir and orchestra (2008) world premiere
Performers: Piers Lane – piano, Iwona Hossa – soprano, Ewa Marciniec – alto, Rafał Bartmiński – tenor, Piotr Nowacki – bass, Polish Radio National Symphony Orchestra, Polish Radio Choir, Włodzimierz Siedlik – choirmaster, Silesian Philharmonic Choir, Waldemar Sutryk – choirmaster, Wojciech Michniewski – conductor
Of course, the main reason I’m posting this is that the concert will be broadcast by Polish Radio 2 and, as always, you can listen online. (There will be other interesting broadcasts from that festival and I’ll try to add information about them as soon as I find the time.)
The concert starts 19:30 (UTC+1). Here’s a link to the live stream.
Kilar’s Te Deum is dedicated to the memory of Barbara, the composer’s wife, who passed away last November.