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Krzysztof Penderecki

Prizes and Awards

1959

  • 1, 2, and 3 prizes in the second competition held by the Polish Composers' Association for young Polish composers for his compositions Strophen (verses), Emanationen (emanations), and Aus den Psalmen Davids (from David's psalms).
  • UNESCO award for Threnody

1962

  • First prize in the composition competition in Cracow for Kanon (canon)

1966

  • Great Nord-Rhein Westhalia Art Award for St. Luke's Passion

1967 

  • Prix Italia for St. Luke's Passion
  • Sibelius Gold Medal

1968

  • Prix Italia for Dies Irae

1970

  • Award from the Polish Composers' Association

1977

  • Gottfried von Herder Award from the W.v.s. Foundation, Hamburg

1978

  • Prix Arthur Honegger for Magnificat

1981

  • Médaille de la Ville de Paris (Échelon Vermeil)

1983

  • Sibelius Award from the Wilhouri Foundation in Helsinki

1985

  • Premio Lorenzo Magnifico in Florence
  • Samuel Simons Sanford Award

1986

  • Stefania Niekrasz Medal from the Association of Polish Musicians Abroad

1987

  • Karl-Wolf-Award, art award from the Israeli Wolf-Foundation

1988

  • Grammy Award from the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences for his Cello Concerto No. 2, with Mstislav Rostropovich, conductor: K. Penderecki

1989

  • Manuel de Falla Gold Medal from Accademia de Bellas Artes, Granada

1990

  • Das Grosse Verdienstkreuz des Verdienstordens der Bundesrepublik Deutschland

1992

  • Two Grammy Award nominations
  • Grawemeyer Music Award (April 28), Louisville Kentucky
  • Das Österreichische Ehrenzeichen für Wissenschaft und Kunst, Wien

1993

  • The UNESCO/IMC Music Prize

1996 

  • Commandeur de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres Republique Française

1997

  • Crystal Award, World Economic Forum - Davos
  • Certificate of Merit, 3000 Years of Jerusalemn

1998

  • Business Centre Club Special Award - Warsaw
  • “Four Hundred Years of Warsaw’s Municipality” Medal - Warsaw

1999

  • Grammy Award for Best Classical Contemporary Composition, "Penderecki: Violin Concerto No. 2 - Metamorphosen" (Anne-Sophie Mutter, violin) 
  • Grammy Award for Krzysztof Penderecki, conductor, for Best Instrumental Soloist Performance (with Orchestra), "Penderecki: Violin Concerto No. 2 - Metamorphosen" (Anne-Sophie Mutter, violin)
  • AFIM Indie Award for the Credo recording on Hänssler label
  • Köhler-Osbahr-Stiftung Music Award

2000

  • Best Living Composer, Midem Classic, Cannes
  • Ordine Al Merito della Repubblica Italiana

2001

  • Grammy Award for Best Choral Composition, “Penderecki: Credo”
  • Premio Principe de Asturias de las Artes
  • Statuetka Złotego Hipolita, Hipolit Cegielski Society in Poznań

2002

  • Roman Guardini Prize, Catholic Academy Munich

2003

  • Grand Prize from the Foundation of Culture, Warsaw
  • State Award, Northrhine Westfalia

2004

  • Medal Commemorating the 300 Years of St Petersburg
  • Praemium Imperiale, Japan (in appreciation of outstanding achievement in the art, man’s enduring legacy)

2005

  • Order of the White Eagle (Poland’s highest decoration)

2006

  • Baltic Star
  • Three Star Order (Commander of the Three Star Order, Riga, Latvia)
  • Tadeusz Kotarbiński Medal

2008 

  • Solidna Firma Status
  • Diploma of Honorary Professor of Yerevan, Komitas State Conservatory
  • Gold Medal of the Minister of Culture of Armenia

2009

  • Ordre de Mérite du Grand-Duché de Luxembourg
  • Order of Honour from the President of the Republic of Armenia, Yerevan, 28 October

2010

  • Bronze Medal, Distinguished Visitor, University of Toronto, Faculty of Music (medal designed by Sandra Noble Goss)

2011

  • Grand-Croix de l’Ordre “Pro Merito Melitensi”
  • Sacem award for the best original music (Krzysztof Penderecki, De Natura Sonoris) in Quay brothers film “Maska” (Annecy Animated Film Festival 2011)
  • “A step forward”- the award of the Council of Federation of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation and the Senate of the Republic of Poland
  • Polish Television Academy’s Golden Super Wiktor Award for the most outstanding personality

2012 

  • Viadrina Preis, Europa Universität Viadrina Frankfurt (Oder)
  • Lifetime Achievement Award 2012, International Classical Music Awards
  • Grand Decoration for Services to the Republic of Austria in Gold
  • Transatlantic Life Achievement Award, Film Festival Poznań
  • Nuovi Eventi Musicali Award, Florence

2013

  • Polityka’s Passports Creator of Culture award for outstanding and innovative compositions, which made Polish music internationally renowned
  • Grammy Award in the Best Classical Compendium category for a Naxos CD with Penderecki’s works, recorded by the Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra under Antoni Wit
  • Civitas Schinesghe Passport distinction from the Gniezno Starosta
  • Gold Cross of Merit from the Chapter of the Order of Saint Stanislaus, Gniezno
  • Coronation Medal from the Mayor of Gniezno Jacek Kowalski for propagating Polish cultural values in the world
  • SuperGuarantee of Culture from TVP Kultura
  • Honorary Badge of the Podlaskie Voivodeship, Białystok
  • Gold Medal of Honour for Services to the Małopolskie Voivodeship
  • Lifetime Achievement Award from the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts at the 41st International Istanbul Music Festival
  • Commemorative medal "Merito de Wratislavia – For Services to Wrocław"
  • “Nicolaus Copernicus Astrolabe” statuette from the Mayor of Toruń
  • Medal to mark the 50 years of granting town charter to Władysławowo

2014

  • Gold Medal of the City of Yerevan
  • Diamond Laurel of Abilities and Competence, Zabrze

Honorary Doctorate Titles

  • Rochester University (February 1972)
  • Saint Olaf College, Northfield, Minnesota (March 1977)
  • Bordeaux University (May 1979)
  • Louven University (February 1979)
  • Georgetown University, Washington D.C.  (November 1984)
  • Belgrade University (April 1985)
  • Universidad Autonoma Barcelona  (November 1986)
  • Madrid University (Universidad Autonoma de Madrid) (April 1987)
  • Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznań  (November 1987)
  • Warsaw University (November 1993)
  • Universidad Catolica, Buenos Aires (1994)
  • Academy of Music, Kraków (1994)
  • Academy of Music, Warsaw (1994)
  • University of Glasgow (1995)
  • Jagiellonian University, Cracow (1998)
  • University of Cluj, Romania (1999)
  • Ukrainian National Tchaikovsky Academy of Music (1999)
  • Duquesne University, Pittsburgh (1999)
  • Universität Luzern (2000)
  • University of St. Petersburg (2003)
  • Yale University (2003)
  • University of Leipzig (2003)
  • Baldwin-Wallace College, Ohio (2004)
  • Seoul National University (2005)
  • Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität, Münster (2006)
  • Stanisław Moniuszko Academy of Music in Gdańsk (2008)
  • Kotlarevski State University of Fine Arts, Kharkiv (2010)
  • National University of Ireland, Maynooth  (2010)

Honorary Member

  • Royal Academy of Music, London (March 1974)
  • Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, Rome
  • Musikaliska Akademien, Stockholm
  • Akademie der Künste der Deutschen Demokratischen Republik, Berlin
  • Akademie der Künste, West Berlin
  • Academia Nacional de Bellas Artes, Buenos Aires
  • Académie Internationale de Philosophie et de l'Art, Berne (February 1987)
  • Officier de l'Ordre de Saint Georges de Bourgogne, Brussels (April 1990)
  • Membre de l'Académie Nationale des Sciences, Belles-lettres et Arts, Bourdeaux
  • Academia Scientiarium et Artium Europaea, Salzburg (1993)
  • Honorary Member of the City of Strasbourg Medal, Strasbourg (February 1995)
  • Fellowship of the Royal Irish Academy of Music, Dublin(1995)
  • Commandeur de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, Paris (1996)
  • Honorary Professor at the Moscow Tchaikovsky State Conservatory (February 1997)
  • Certificate of Merit from Mayor of Jerusalem (January 1997)
  • American Academy of Arts and Letters, (1998)
  • Artistic Advisor to the Beijing Music Festival, Beijing (1998)
  • Honorary Artistic Director of the Cracow Philharmonic, Cracow (1998)
  • Honorary Professor of the Beijing Music Conservatory, Beijing (1998)
  • Bayerische Akademie der Schönen Künste  (1998)
  • Musikpreis der Stadt Duisburg (October 1999)
  • Honorary Trustee of The Kosciuszko Foundation, New York City (April 1999)
  • Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde Wien (March 2000)
  • Adopted Citizen of Puerto Rico (2000)
  • Honorary Fellowship, The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, (July 2001)
  • Honorary Member, Academia Argentina de Musica (June 2004)
  • Honorary Citizen of Buenos Aires (Visitante Ilustre de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires) (July 2004)
  • Fondation Félix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Paris/Leipzig (2004)
  • Honorary Citizen of the Zakliczyn District, Poland (2004)
  • Honorary Professor of the Musical Academy in Riga (2005)
  • Honorary Member of International Harp Contest in Israel
  • Honorary Professor of Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory in St. Petersburg (September 2007)
  • Honorary Member of the Committee of the Lublin Oncology Center named after St John of Dukla
  • Honorary Chairman of the Jury of the 15th International Henryk Wieniawski Violin Competition (October 2016)
  • Honorary Member of Pro Sinfonika, Poznań
  • Honorary Member of the Composers Union of Armenia

Krzysztof Penderecki

Born on November 23, 1933, in Dębica, Poland, Krzysztof Penderecki began studying composition under Franciszek Skołyszewski. He later studied at the Cracow Conservatory under Artur Malawski and Stanisław Wiechowicz and graduated in 1958. He was then appointed as a professor at the Conservatory. Between 1966 and 1968, Penderecki was a lecturer at the Volkwang Hochschule für Musik in Essen, Germany. In 1968, he received a grant from the German Academic Exchange Organisation — DAAD. He was appointed rector of the Cracow Conservatory in 1972.

Krzysztof Penderecki's first public appearance on an international level was in 1959 at the Warsaw Autumn Festival. There he performed Strophen, one of three works for which he received first prizes at the 2nd National Young Composers Competition. The other two works were Psalms of David and Emanations. In 1959, he composed Threnody for the Victims of Hiroshima. For this, one of his best known and most often performed compositions, he received the UNESCO prize. This piece was followed by a series of successes: in 1960 at the Donaueschinger Musiktage with Anaklasis, the following year with Polymorphia, Phonograms, and Psalm, and in 1966, St. Luke's Passion, the first major work of his career. This piece was commissioned by the West German Radio in Cologne to celebrate the 700th anniversary of the Munster Cathedral in which the piece was first performed on March 30, 1966. On this day, Penderecki was reborn — the performance marked a turning point in his career making him the most acclaimed artist since Igor Stravinsky. The following year brought the composition and performance of another major choral work, Dies Irae, known also as the Auschwitz Oratorio.

In 1968-69, Penderecki wrote his first opera, The Devils of Loudun, commissioned by the Hamburg State Opera where it had its world premiere in 1969. Since then, this work has been produced numerous times, has been broadcast, televised, and released on record.

Utrenya was Penderecki's next major work. The first part of this composition, The Entombment of Christ, premiered at the Altenberger Cathedral in 1970; the second part, The Resurrection of Christ, premiered one year later at the Cathedral of Munster. He then wrote another oratorial work, written in 1970 for the United Nations, the cantata Cosmogonia. The premiere was marked by the presence of presidents, royalty, and prime ministers, and the piece was lavishly praised as a brilliant and extremely original work. In 1971 he composed the De natura sonoris No. 2 for Zubin Mehta. The work is based on a piece of the same title, composed in 1966.

In 1972 Penderecki began his conducting career. Since then, he has been seen on the podiums of the most important orchestras of the world.
From 1972 to 1978, Krzysztof Penderecki was a professor at the Yale University School of Music.

Penderecki completed his Symphony No.1 in 1973 and personally conducted the world premiere at Peterborough in England. In addition, he composed Canticum Canticorum Salomonis. And he wrote Magnificat, one of his most important works for bass solo, vocal ensemble, two mixed choirs, boy's choir, and orchestra. It was written to commemorate the Twelfth Centenary of the Salzburg Cathedral, and Penderecki himself conducted the world premiere at the Salzburg Festival in 1974.

Penderecki's second stage work, Paradise Lost — the Sacra Rappresentazione is based on a libretto by Christopher Fry after Milton. It had its premiere at the Lyric Opera in Chicago on November 29, 1978. In January, 1979, Penderecki conducted a stage production of Paradise Lost at the Teatro alla Scala in Milan and, having been invited by Pope John Paul II, gave a concert at the Vatican. The world premiere of Penderecki's Concerto for Violin and Orchestra No.1 took place in Basle in April, 1977 with Isaac Stern as the soloist. Zubin Mehta conducted the first performance of the Symphony No.2 in New York on May 1, 1980, and also at the Salzburg and Lucerne festivals while touring Europe.              

Te Deum, written in 1979/1980 for solo, choir, and orchestra, was conducted by Penderecki at its world premiere in Assisi during the summer of 1980. In 1981, it was performed in New York, Berlin, Warsaw, and Paris. On January 11, 1983, Penderecki conducted the premiere of his Concerto for Cello and Orchestra No.2, performed by the Berlin Philharmonic with Mstislav Rostropovich as the soloist. It was followed by the Concerto for Viola and Orchestra which had its world premiere on July 24, 1983 in Caracas and by the Polish Requiem. The Requiem had its premiere on September 28, 1984 and was commissioned by the Würtemberg Radio and State Theater to commemorate the fortieth anniversary of the end of World War II. This major choral work has been in the programs of international concert halls since its debut.           

The world premiere of Penderecki's third opera, The Black Mask, based on the play by Gerhart Hauptmann, was the focus of attention at the 1986 Salzburg Festival. It was immediately followed by performances in Vienna and the first U.S. performance took place at the Santa Fe Opera during the summer of 1988.         

In March 1987 Penderecki's Song of Cherubim for a cappella choir was premiered at a gala concert given in Washington D.C. on the occasion of Mstislav Rostropovich's 60th birthday. Veni Creator, also for a cappella choir, was conducted by Penderecki himself when he received an honorary doctorate from the University of Madrid in April 1987. That same year, he received the Karl-Wolf Award from the Israel Wolf-Foundation.     

In 1988 Penderecki received a Grammy Award from the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences for his Concerto for Cello No.2, M. Rostropovich as soloist, and recorded by ERATO. In November 1989, Lorin Maazel conducted Penderecki's Symphony No.4, Adagio, commissioned by the French Government for the bicentennial of the French Revolution.             

The premiere of Penderecki's fourth opera, King Ubu (based on Alfred Jarry), took place on July 6, 1991 at the Munich State Opera.          

The premiere of K. Penderecki's Sinfonietta took place in Warsaw on February 16, 1992 with the Sinfonia Varsovia under the composer's baton. This work was performed again in May, 1992 by the musicians of the Philadelphia Symphony Orchestra and, on the same day, in Seville during the World Expo '92. Another recent composition, Benedicamus Domino, for a male a cappella choir was performed for the first time in April 1992 at the Easter Music Festival in Lucerne.         

Penderecki's Symphony No.5 had its world premiere on August 15, 1992 in Seoul. In 1992 Penderecki finished his Flute Concerto dedicated to Jean-Pierre Rampal — the first performance by Jean-Pierre Rampal took place on January 11, 1993 in Lausanne with Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne under the composer's direction. In August 1992 K. Penderecki finished his Beneductus for a cappella choir for Maestro Lorin Maazel. The premiere of Penderecki's Sanctus, the final part of the Polish Requiem, took place in November 1993 with the Stockholm Royal Philharmonic.        

In 1995 Penderecki finished his Violin Concerto No.2 written for Anne Sophie Mutter. It was premiered in June 1995 In Leipzig with MDR Orchestra conducted by Mariss Jansons. December 1995 witnessed the premiere of Penderecki's finished Symphony No. 3, performed in Munich with the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of the composer.           

In December 1996 Krzysztof Penderecki completed his new work, Seven Gates of Jerusalem, which will close the celebrations of 3000 years of Jerusalem. Its world premiere was held on 9 January 1997 in Jerusalem. In February 1997 he was awarded the Crystal Award in Davos, Switzerland. The world premiere of Penderecki's Hymn to St. Daniil took place on 4 October 1997 in Moscow. The piece was commissioned by Channel Six of Moscow Television to mark the 850 years of Moscow. Penderecki's Hymn to St. Adalbert was written to mark the millennium of Gdańsk and was premiered on 18 October 1997.             

The world premiere of Penderecki's Credo took place in July 1998 at the Bach Festival in Eugene, Oregon. The European premiere was held as part of the Krzysztof Penderecki Festival on 5 October 1998 in Cracow, Poland.             

In 1999 Krzysztof Penderecki received two Grammy Awards  for Best Classical Contemporary Composition, (Violin Concerto No.2 Metamorphosen performed by Anne-Sophie Mutter) and for Best Instrumental Soloist Performance (Penderecki Violin Concerto No.2 under the composer's baton).
On 23 January 2000, Krzysztof Penderecki received the Best Living Composer award at the Midem Classic in Cannes and in October 2000 an honorary doctorate from the University of Luzern.

Penderecki’s Sonata for Violin and Piano was premiered by Anne-Sophie Mutter and Lambert Orkis at the Barbican in London on 29 April 2000. The Sextet, commissioned by the Musikverein, was first performed on 7 June 2000 at the Musikverein in Vienna by Mstislav Rostropovich, Yuri Bashmet, Julian Rachlin, Dmitry Alexeev, Radovan Vladkovic and Paul Meyer.             

In January 2001 he completed his Concerto Grosso for Three Cellos which was premiered in June 2001 in Tokyo under the baton of Charles Dutoit by Boris Pergamenschikow, Han-Na Chang, and Truls Mrk. On 26 October 2001 the Jury of the Principe de Asturias Foundation awarded him the prestigious Principe de Asturias de las Artes Award 2001. On 7 December, Krzysztof Penderecki became an honorary member of the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts in Hong Kong. The Piano Concerto, commissioned by Carnegie Hall, was premiered on 9 May 2002 by  Emanuel Ax and the Philadelphia Orchestra conducted by Wolfgang Sawallisch.

On 19-20 June 2005 in Vienna, there was a premiere of Penderecki’s Largo for Cello and Orchestra, a work commissioned by the Musikverein and dedicated to Mstislav Rostropovich. It was performed by Mstislav Rostropovich and the Wienerphilharmoniker conducted by Seiji Ozawa.

26 June 2005 in Luxembourg saw the premiere of Symphony No.8 (Lieder der Vergänglichkeit) for Soprano, Mezzo-soprano and Baritone with the EuropaChorAkademie and Luxembourg Philharmonic Orchestra led by Bramwell Tovey  The piece was commissioned by the Government of Luxembourg to mark the opening of the new Josephine Charlotte Philharmonic Hall.

photo Mirosław Pietruszyński

Penderecki was the principal guest conductor of the Norddeutscher Rundfunk Orchester in Hamburg and the Mitteldeutscher Rundfunk Sinfonie Orchester in Leipzig. In 1987-1990 he was the artistic director of the Cracow Philharmonic Orchestra and in 1992-2002 the artistic director of the Casals Festival in San Juan, Puerto Rico. In September 1997 Krzysztof Penderecki became the music director of the Sinfonia Varsovia orchestra, becoming its artistic director in July 2003 – a position he holds to this day, often working with the orchestra as a conductor.
He has been the artistic advisor to the Beijing Music Festival since 1998 and a guest conductor of the newly formed China Philharmonic Orchestra since October 2000.

Krzysztof Penderecki began his anniversary year 2003 by conducting a concert at the National Philharmonic in Warsaw with the Sinfonia Varsovia Orchestra. The program included his Concerto grosso and Sinfonietta per archi and Dvorak’s Symphony No.9.

Symphony No. 8 for three soloists, choir and orchestra (Lieder der Vergänglichkeit) was premiered on 26 June 2005 in Luxembourg. The world premiere was performed by Olga Pasichnyk (soprano), Agnieszka Rehlis (mezzosoprano) and Wojciech Drabowicz (baritone); the Luxembourg Philharmonic Orchestra and the EuropaChorAkademie were conducted by Bramwell Tovey. The Symphony  No.8 was commissioned by the Government of Luxembourg to mark the opening of the new philharmonic hall – the Josephine Charlotte Philharmonic Hall.

The premiere of Ciaccona for violin and viola took place on 9 September 2009 at the Julian Rachlin & Friends Festival in Dubrovnik.

In 2010, to mark the bicentenary of Fryderyk Chopin’s birth, he composed A sea of dreams did breathe on me... Songs of reverie and nostalgia for soprano, mezzo-soprano and baritone. In 2010, the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Wien (Musikverein) commissioned him to write a work to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the Musikverein in Vienna – Double Concerto for Violin and Viola, which was premiered on 22 October 2012 in Vienna by the Bavarian Radio Orchestra conducted by Mariss Jansons with Janine Jansen (violin) and Julian Rachlin (viola). The first German performance (by the same musicians) took place on 15 and 16 November in Munich. The work was recorded for BR-Klassik. The Polish premiere was held on the composer’s 79th birthday in Poznań. Krzysztof Penderecki conducted the Poznań Philharmonic Orchestra with soloists Fumiaki Miura (violin) and Julian Rachlin (viola).

Krzysztof Penderecki’s new version of his opera The Devils of Loudun was premiered in Copenhagen on 12 February 2013.

2013 marked Krzysztof Penderecki’s anniversary year. Many concerts and festivals featuring the composer’s works took place on the occasion of his 80th  birthday: the Witold Lutosławski Festival in Warsaw (February), a concert in St Petersburg (St Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra), the opening of the European Krzysztof Penderecki Center for Music (May), performances of the Polish Requiem in Wrocław and Vilnius, concerts dedicated to Krzysztof Penderecki in Lvov and Cracow (Sinfonietta Cracovia), the Polish Requiem in Naantali, the Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival (July), the Festival Pablo Casals in Prades, the Schleswig-Holstein Festival, the Ohrid Festival (Macedonia). In July, Krzysztof Penderecki was composer-in-residence at the Marlboro Music Festival (USA), and in August he conducted the Penderecki Musik Akademie Westfalen (concerts in Amsterdam, Münster and other cities).

More concerts took place in Košice, Bonn (Beethovenfest, Piano Concerto - Resurrection with soloist Rudolf Buchbinder under the composer’s baton), Hanover (concert with Sinfonia Varsovia, of which he is the artistic director), Italy (soloist Massimo Mercelli), Budapest (Double Concerto and Symphony No.8) and Minsk (Credo). The premiere performance of the Adagio was played by the Czech Philharmonic under the direction of Maestro Jiří Bělohlávek on 10 September in Prague.

Last year’s Beijing Music Festival was dedicated, among others, to Krzysztof Penderecki. On 15 and 16 October, the composer conducted the China National Orchestra, with the programme featuring the Double Concerto (Julian Rachlin – viola and Vera Tsu – violin) and Symphony No.8. Works for string orchestra were performed in the second concert.

Further concerts were held in Warsaw, Bielsko-Biała and Zabrze (participation of Krzysztof Penderecki in a new festival named after him). Krzysztof Penderecki has been in the United States since 24 October. The New York Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Maestro Charles Dutoit, performed the composer’s Concerto grosso. On 1 November Yale University celebrated his birthday with a concert by the Philharmonia Orchestra of Yale under the composer’s baton. The concert programme included Krzysztof Penderecki’s Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima and Symphony No.2. On 2 November, Maestro Charles Dutoit conducted the Concerto Grosso with the Boston Symphony Orchestra (soloists Gautier Capuçon, Daniel Müller-Schott and Arto Noras). At this year’s BBC Proms in August, Maestro Dutoit also conducted the Concerto Grosso with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.

A festival dedicated to Krzysztof Penderecki’s music, on the occasion of his 80th birthday, was held between 17 and 23 November in Warsaw. It brought together friends, artists and composers, including Lorin Maazel, Charles Dutoit, Valery Gergiev, Lawrence Foster, Marek Janowski, Andres Mustonen, Long Yu, Leonard Slatkin, Maximiano Valdes, Alexander Liebreich, Rafael Payare; leading Polish conductors (Jacek Kaspszyk, Krzysztof Urbański, Gabriel Chmura); soloists Anne-Sophie Mutter, Julian Rachlin, Barry Douglas, Yuri Bashmet, Arto Noras, Daniel Müller-Schott, Danjulo Ishizaka, Ivan Monighetti, Michel Lethiec, Radovan Vlatkovic, Iwona Hossa, Agnieszka Rehlis, Olga Pasiecznik, cantor Alberto Mizrahi. The best Polish orchestras and choirs performed (Sinfonia Varsovia, the Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra, Sinfonia Iuventus, the Warsaw Philharmonic Choir, the Cracow Philharmonic Choir, the Choir of the Podlasie Opera and Philharmonic, the Choir of the Wielki Theatre, and the Warsaw Boys’ Choir). Chamber ensembles included the Shanghai Quartet.

A Penderecki festival was held in Seoul in early December. On 13 December in New York’s Carnegie Hall, Anne-Sophie Mutter performed the premiere of the composer’s La Folia, which is dedicated to her.

November 2013 saw the premiere of Anna Schmidt’s German-Polish documentary about Krzysztof Penderecki, as well as the publication of two books: The Penderecki Saga by Wydawnictwo Literackie and Penderecki. Lusławice by Wydawnictwo Bosz (Polish-English version).

photo Janusz Marynowski

In 2013 there was an international conference at the Academy of Music in Kraków (Generation 33). In late 2013 and early 2014, St Luke Passion was performed in Caracas (Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra under the composer’s baton) and there was a concert by the Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra in Moscow. In February 2014, the composer conducted his Polish Requiem in a series of concerts with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, and in March 2014 Krzysztof Penderecki took up the post of composer-in-residence at the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia.

Ludwig van Beethoven Assocation
March 2014