Concert halls and opera houses
Poland is not just the music of Chopin! We also have Moniuszko, Szymanowski, Lutosławski, Penderecki, Szymański, Mykietyn, and Gryka. Polish music performed by foreign artists can be heard during the Polish Music Festival in Krakow. The Kronos Quartet performed during last year’s festival in the city.
Music lovers coming to Poland can choose from among almost 180 orchestras, ensembles and choirs who perform throughout the festivals. The National Philharmonic Orchestra in Warsaw, The Polish Radio National Symphonic Orchestra in Katowice, Sinfonia Varsovia and Simfonietta Cracovia are those in the first league.
The Poznan Arte dei Suonatori Orchestra is considered to be one of Europe’s most interesting ensembles playing ancient music. The Royal String Quartet from Warsaw performs with the most renowned world artists. The Lodz Ladies First Symphony Orchestra is a unique, worldwide phenomenon as it is made up only of women.
Polish operas stage classical repertoire, for example, the bold, modern productions by Mariusz Treliński in the National Opera in Warsaw. The ‘Alpha Kryonia Xe’ ballet by Aleksandra Gryka - an uncompromising composer of the young generation – was one of the biggest events of the 2005/06 season, when Treliński was the Opera’s director.
Excellent performances can also be seen in the Wielki Theatre in Poznań and the Dolnośląska Opera in Wrocław, which specialises in spectacular Wagnerian stage settings. These performances take place in the modernist Centennial Hall or on a floating stage on the Odra River.
Tickets for the most important musical event in Poland - Wratislavia Cantans or the Warsaw Autumn, which will be celebrating its 50th anniversary this year - have to be booked long in advance. There are also specialised festivals, devoted to the work of one composer: Mozart, Beethoven and Bach.
World famous stars are present at the festival of ancient music, ‘Song of our Roots’, in Jaroslaw and two events in Krakow, ‘Sacrum Profanum’ and ‘Misteria Paschalia’. The, ‘Chopin and his Europe’ Festival, where a pleiad of concert piano stars have performed over the years, and where the highlight of last season was Martha Argerich.