Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Krzysztof Penderecki chamber music - 46th Warsaw Autumn Festival, 20 09 2003

The Maestro, enjoying some afternoon sweets and coffee

Here is another serving of music by the SIlesian String Quartet in their second incarnation, with Szymon Krzeszowiec having replaced Marek Moś, playing along with some friends.
The concert was held during the Warsaw Autumn Contemporary Music Festival in 2003, which was also the year of Penderecki's 70th birthday.

The two string quartets (1960 and 1969) are the early fire and brimstone Penderecki we have come to know and love (or love to hate, depending on where your particular tastes lie). Single movement works of brevity, they explore the sound-making possibilities of the instruments individually and in combination.

They have been combined with two other works - the 2nd Sonata for violin and piano (1999), commissioned by Anne-Sophie Mutter and the Sextet for piano, violin, viola, cello, clarinet and French horn (2000). These two works represent the composer's late, neo-romantic style which has been evolving since the late 1970's, starting (more or less) with the 1st Violin Concerto.

These two works are fairly typical of the later period, with many early Penderecki diehards wanting to hang and mutilate (in random order) the Maestro for treason, abandoning of youthful ideals and, in so many words, for becoming an old, soft fart instead of the hardcore avantgardist of days of yore.
The explanation is simple. The man has a huge manor and estate in the south of Poland. He plants rare trees for a hobby. He's got a wife and a festival to run. You can't do that by writing buzzing sounds that a few academics will understand and fewer music lovers will want to buy. Only accessible works will generate enough cabbage to maintain the standard of living he's become used to.
So sit back and enjoy. This is still good music. It just sounds a little more like Brahms and Schubert.

You may hear echoes of the Piano Concerto in the Sextet.

All in all, lively performances by some of Poland's best musicians young and old. You may know Kaja Danczowska, an expert violinist of the middle generation, from her Deutsche Grammophon recordings with Krystian Zimerman. She also plays 1st violin in the group Zimerman assembled for his recordings of the Bacewicz Piano Quintets for DGG.

The set list:
1st String Quartet (1960)

2nd Sonata for violin and piano (1999)
2nd String Quartet (1969)
Sextet for piano, violin, viola, cello, clarinet and French horn (2000)

The String Quartets were played by the Silesian String Quartet:
Szymon Krzeszowiec - 1st violin
Arkadiusz Kubica - 2nd violin
Łukasz Syrnicki - viola
Piotr Janosik - cello

The Sonata was played by
Kaja Danczowska - violin
Sławomir Cierpik - piano

The Sextet was played by
Robert Marat - piano
Szymon Krzeszowiec - violin
Łukasz Syrnicki - viola
Piotr Janosik - cello
Artur Pachlewski - clarinet
Wiesław Grochowski - French horn

1 comment:

Sandflyer said...

For visitors old and new:
This is the same concert I uploaded on this blog a while back. It took me some time to get back to restoring the blog after the powers that be fried the old links.

APE individual files ~314 MB