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Abstract

The paper is an attempt at a synthetic presentation of the Polish composer Grażyna Bacewicz’s (1909–1969) musical output and artistic career, presented against the background of events in her personal life, and of major events in Polish and European history in the first seven decades of the 20th century. Bacewicz was called ‘the Polish Sappho’ already in the years between World Wars I and II, when there were very few women-composers capable of creating works comparable to the most eminent achievements of male composers. Her path to success in composition and as a concert soloist leads from lessons with her father, the Lithuanian Vincas Bacevičius, to studies at the Łódź and Warsaw Conservatories (violin with Józef Jarzębski, composition with Kazimierz Sikorski), and later with Nadia Boulanger at the École Normale de la Musique, as well as violin lessons with André Tourret. Her oeuvre has for many years been linked with neoclassicism, and folkloric inspirations are evident in many of her works. Her crowning achievement in the neoclassical style is the Concerto for String Orchestra of 1948, while influences from folklore can distinctly be heard in many concert pieces and small forms. The breakthrough came around 1958, under the influence of avant-garde trends present in West European music, which came to be adapted in Poland thanks to the political transformations and the rejection of socialist realism. In such pieces as Music for Strings, Trumpets and Percussion of 1958, Bacewicz transforms her previously fundamental musical components (melody, rhythm, harmony) into a qualitatively new type of sound structures, mainly focused on the coloristic aspects. Grażyna Bacewicz also applied the twelve-note technique, albeit to a limited extent, as in String Quartet No. 6 (1960). Her last work was the unfinished ballet Desire to a libretto by Mieczysław Bibrowski after Pablo Picasso’s play Le désir attrapé par la queue.

Abstract

The paper presents a survey of the dominant aesthetic and technical qualities of Justyna Kowalska-Lasoń’s output of compositions. The composer’s interests focus on Oriental cultures, depicting nature, correspondences of arts, and on reflecting the sacrum in music. I have discussed her selected works (Sanctus, The Modern Man I Sing; These PhrasesThese Songs... These Arias..., IMAGE 1929). On the basis of brief analyses of some of Kowalska-Lasoń’s compositions, I have defined her artistic stance and technique and postmodernist, neo-sonoristic sensualism. The distinguishing features of her music are: an open attitude to musical form, to the canon of narrative continuity, to aleatoricism and strict notation, as well as to the degree of correlation between chromatic and diatonic writing. The artist herself considers the epithet ‘nomadic’ as relevant to the character of her works, which are conceived as having a symbolic function.

My composer portrait has been complemented with a list of Kowalska-Lasoń’s selected works, awards, performances, and her students’ achievements.

Abstract

This article is a contribution to scientific research on this aspect of Krystyna Moszumańska-Nazar’s musical output which concerns the connections between her music and other arts, primarily literature and the visual arts, as well as inspirations flowing from nature, religion, philosophy, and broadly understood culture. The article applies structuralist methodology. The starting point for the analysis of the phenomena in question is the musical work itself, its title and its structure, and in the case of vocal-instrumental works - the content and message of the literary text and the person of its author. In the part of the article which deals with the biography and artistic personality of Krystyna Moszumańska-Nazar, as well as by quoting the composer’s own statements in the text, I draw on the personalistic method, especially highly valued in 20th-century philosophy; this method emphasises the role of the human person and personality in analytic work.

In the musicological literature to date there exists no separate, large-scale study dedicated to the subject of non-musical inspirations in the works of Krystyna Moszumańska-Nazar. This topic has been tackled, however, in scientific dissertations dealing with various aspects of the composer’s work. For example, inspirations from the sphere of the sacrum have been indicated by Marek Stefański (2011), whereas Ewa Mizerska-Golonek (1992) writes about inspirations derived from the Biblical text in Krystyna Moszumańska-Nazar’s Song of Songs, and Hanna Kostrzewska (2012) discusses painting as a source of inspiration in the composer’s oeuvre. The main source of information on this subject, however, are the composer’s own statements: her ‘Autorefleksja kompozytorska’ [‘The Composer’s Self-Commentary’]1 and interviews.2

Footnotes

1

K. Moszumańska-Nazar, ‘Autorefleksja kompozytorska’ [‘The Composer’s Self-Commentary’], in K. Kasperek, Krystyna Moszumańska-Nazar. Katalog tematyczny utworów, Cracow, Academy of Music, 2004, pp. 149–153.

2

M. Woźna-Stankiewicz, Lwowskie geny osobowości twórczej. Rozmowy z Krystyną Moszumańską-Nazar [The Lviv Gene of Artistic Personality: Interviews with Krystyna Moszumańska-Nazar], Cracow, Musica Iagellonica, 2007; M. Janicka-Słysz, ‘Z walcem w tle’ [‘With Waltz in the Background’], interview with Krystyna Moszumańska-Nazar, Ruch Muzyczny, no. 18, 2004, pp. 8–9.

Abstract

The present article reflects on the shortage of studies concerning music-composing women in the 18th-century Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, and focuses on one unique figure among those female musicians – Maria Antonia Walpurgis, an aristocrat of Polish descent, who demonstrated versatile talents. Thoroughly educated in her childhood, she was a poet, composer, singer, and director of her own stage works. This paper discusses the aristocratic artist’s most important experiences and achievements in the field of music, as well as analysing her earliest surviving work, the cycle of 6 Arias for Soprano, Strings and Basso Continuo (1747), which Walpurgis may well have performed herself. The arias have been preserved in a manuscript kept at the Sächsische Landesbibliothek in Dresden, shelf mark Mus.3119-F-11. My analysis assesses their style and aesthetic.

Abstract

The article discusses the activities of selected women-composers who worked in Poland in the 19th century. They have been presented in a broad social-political context. Specific historical conditions have been taken into account, which have contributed to the perception of women’s creativity as a mission. The model of women’s activity discussed in the categories of social and political mission influenced the shape and forms of Polish women’s creativity in the first half of the century. In the second half of the century, women’s access to education increased and finally a milieu of professional women-composers emerged. Among them, we should distinguish the group of women born into musical families, due to the fact that some among them took up the profession of composer.

Abstract

Polish women-composers of the interwar period (1918–1939) have not been the subject of adequate research so far. We only have some contributory publications and general surveys dedicated to their output. This paper presents the initial results of a study that aims at creating a more multi-sided, in-depth picture of women-composers’ work, including their participation in local and international music life as well as their achievements in the field of composition, the styles and genres practised by selected representatives of this milieu. The paper also discusses the reception of these phenomena in the press of the period. My research leads me to the conclusion that, despite functioning in a kind of ‘parallel world’ in relation to the virtually all-male domain of music composition ‘proper’, the Polish women-composers did penetrate into that world, contributing to its dominant trends and tendencies, from Romantic inspirations to musical modernism, as well as popular music. Their contributions need to be taken into account if we wish fully to reconstruct and appreciate the Polish music created in that period.

Abstract

The “Dumitru Staniloae” Ecumenical Library of the Metropolitan Church of Moldavia and Bukovina (reffered to below as LMCMB) from Iasi has an invaluable collection of theological books and documents, consisting of more than 100,000 items. The library also has an important number of rare books – 35 of which are psaltic music manuscripts. Manuscript no. 7 from LMCMB is a psaltic Antologhion with Chrysantine notation, written in Romanian using the Cyrillic alphabet. The copyist and the place where it was copied are unknown, but it is possible that it was written at Mount Athos, between 1877 and 1882 (Apud Bucescu, 2009, p. 108). Manuscript no. 7 mainly contains chants for various services, translated and adapted by Nektarios Protopsaltes (1804-1899). Nektarios was one of the best known psalm singers and Romanian composers, founder of a psaltic music school, who was active at the Holy Mountain in the second half of the nineteenth century. Manuscript no. 7 also contains a rarer variant of the Doxastikon Lord, the fallen woman, attributed to another Moldavian composer – Nektarios Frimu (†1856). Like Nektarios Protopsaltis, he was also born in Husi (Moldavia, Romania) – but lived and worked in Iasi. For his achievements, he is honoured with the title of “hierarch of Tripoleos”. He authored the Anthology – Collection of psaltic chants for the Liturgy, (1840) and Collection of Psaltic Chants for Vespers and Matins (1846), one of the first works of its kind in Chrysantine notation in the Romanian language; these volumes were greatly valued during the second half of the nineteenth century. The present paper, which is part of the ampler project of cataloguing the entire collection of psaltic music manuscripts from LMCMB, focuses on the codicological presentation of the manuscript and its musical and liturgical content. The work will also present the authors, the Greek sources the chants were based on, also emphasizing the importance of this codex in the context of the LMCMB collection.

Abstract

The paper analyzes paradigms that highlight the role of active teaching and active learning methods in developing the skills for the professional and social life of the students. The first chapter of the paper argues the need to develop social and creative abilities that lead students to competence in design thinking. Successful response of the student to the demands of professional and social life requires skills like empathy, assertiveness, cooperation, problem solving, implementation of innovative solutions. Ability of design thinking involves a divergent thinking, ability to autonomously design their own strategies in relation to personal development needs, self-assertion and prosocial project development. The training of these skills is possible if the educational environment is one that offers stimulating techniques, adequately prepared human resources, social training contexts. Interactive teaching enables the student to act independently, to be capable of self-management and personal development. The proactive creativity of teachers facilitates active learning methods which will lead to students developing empathy, assertiveness and competence in design thinking.

Abstract

In the music higher education, the appearance of a concept of incompatibility between the performance practice and the studentsʼ theoretical and analytical training is a phenomenon with multiple consequences on their training, on the way of organizing a curriculum and a hierarchical deformed attitude on the different subjects in the curriculum.This study summarizes some of the arguments that emphasize the role played by the study of the Music Analysis in developing the musicianʼs ability to understand music from the perspective of the compositional conception, to discover its importance as a stage in the formation of an original performance concept while highlighting the advantages of a collaborative approach between the two areas of training of the musician.