16.11.2017 History, Music

Ignacy Jan Paderewski: Life and Work

In his day, Ignacy Jan Paderewski (1860-1941) was the living embodiment of a virtuoso pianist and he commanded audience fascination across the globe. What’s more, he was just as impressive as a composer: between 1876 and 1907, he penned classical creations (sonatas, concertos, variations) and romantic works (polonaises, fantasias). he even wrote an opera (Manru).
His patriotism later led him to move into politics. His global fame meant he was a valuable asset to the independence movement’s cause. In Versailles, at the end of the First World War, he did not cease to defend the interests of Poland. Incidentally, his is the signature that one can find on the treaty: he was the first Prime Minister of the Second Republic.

+++ Get to know more about Paderewski on Culture.pl

On 16 November, a concert-conference devoted to the musician and diplomat Ignacy Jan PADEREWSKI will be held by the French musicologist and writer Didier VAN MOERE (he is also the author of the article on the relationship between Artur Rubinstein and Karol Szymanowski in our brochure on Szymanowski) and the young and talented pianist Łukasz KRUPIŃSKI, who will play the same piano which Paderewski himself played in Brussels.

Nocturne in B-flat major, Op. 16 n° 4
Légende in A-flat major, Op. 16 n° 1
Minuet in G major, Op. 14 n° 1
Chants du Voyageur, Op. 8: III. Melody

The date of the concert-conference is no accident: 16 November marks the anniversary of the day in 1918 when Józef PIŁSUDSKI, who had become the Polish head of state, informed various world leaders of Poland’s independence. This day is marked as the Celebration of the Polish diplomatic corps.

The exhibition entitled “Józef Piłsudski: a Polish and European Statesman” which accompanies the event demonstrates the importance of Piłsudski in recovering Polish independence after 123 years of foreign tutelage. Piłsudski proved to be a great diplomat, defender of democratic values and of human and civil rights.

>>> Salons of the Polish Embassy (Avenue Gaulois 29, 1040 Brussels) – see map
>>> Thursday 16 November 2017 – 19h
>>> free of charge – RSVP : bruxelles@instytutpolski.org (before 10 November 2017)

+++ The exhibition will be open for public from 16 November until 12 December 2017

Already before the First World War, this Polish military and statesman was the most important leader of the Polish pro-independence movement. With his so called Polish Legions, he created a framework for the future armed forces of his country, and during the First World War he sought a political solution to the Polish question.As Poland regained its independence in 1918, he alone had the authority to take on the leadership of the state and the army.
Although, after a succesful campaign against the bolsjewist Red Army, Piłsudski only sporadically took important political functions on him, his influence remained enormous even when he wasn’t politically active.
Even after his death this influence is not to be underestimated, and that’s why, up to now, he is regarded as a father of the modern Polish nation.

After a university career dedicated to literature and music, Didier VAN MOERE is currently focusing on his roles as a researcher in musicology and music criticism. His field of research spans from the XVIII century to the present day. he writes about the greatest periods devoted to music, such as “L’Avant-Scène Opéra”, “Concertonet” or “Diapason”. Alongside his huge passion for opera, he is also interested in Polish music. We have him to thank for a monograph on karol Szymanowski in particular.

Born in 1992 in Warsaw, he has played the piano since the age of 5. His training in the piano began at the Zenon Brzewski Music School in Warsaw and led to the Fryderyk Chopin Conservatoire, where he was taught by Alicja PALETA-BUGAJ and Kondrad SKOLARSKI. He is currently honing his craft under Professor Arie VARDI at Hanover’s Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Median. He is also a member of the Ludwig van Beethoven Association.
Even if his career is only just beginning, it has so far been littered with prestigious prizes. In 2016, he won the VII International Piano Competition in Saint-Marin, where he was also awarded the Critics’ Prize, the Orchestra Prize and the Audience Prize. That year, he was also the only Pole to participate in the finale of the Feruccio Busoni International Piano Competition in Bolsano and, in addition, he took part in the semi-final of the Warsaw International Fryderyk Chopin Festival, an esceptional competition held every four years.
His first album came out in January 2017. Entiteld Espressione, it included pieces by Haydn, Chopin and Scriabine.


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