EDITION 2020

 

AIRIS STRING QUARTET (Aleksandra Czajor - violin I, Grażyna Zubik - violin II, Malwina Tkaczyk - viola, Mateusz Mańka - cello) 
One of the most interesting ensembles of the young generation in Poland, Airis String Quartet was founded in 2008 in Kraków. In less than half a year since its inception, it achieved the first significant success, winning the 2nd prize at the International Competition of Contemporary Chamber Music in Kraków. The following years brought many other awards and distinctions, including at such competitions as the Charles Hennen Competition in the Netherlands (EMCY Prize for Excellent Performance, 2012), Malta International Music Competition (3rd prize, 2015), Karol Szymanowski International String Quartet Competition in Katowice (special prize for the best performance of a 20th century composer’s work, 2017) and the International Ludwig van Beethoven Chamber Music Competition in Lusławice (special prize for the best performance of Krzysztof Penderecki’s piece, 2017). The quartet also took part in two scholarship programmes: The Minister of Culture and National Heritage’s ‘Young Poland’ (2016) and the Institute of Music and Dance’s ‘Artist-in-Residence’ (2015). Airis String Quartet has mastered its skills under the direction of musicians of the Dafô Quartet in Kraków, ArtEZ Conservatorium in Zwolle in the Netherlands in the class of Jeroen Reuling and Sarah Kapustin, at the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst in Vienna in the class of Johannes Meissl and at the Karol Szymanowski Music Academy in Katowice in the class of Piotr Szumieł, the viola player with Apollon Musagète Quartett. The ensemble was also a member of the European Chamber Music Academy, and during numerous master classes it has had the opportunity to work with outstanding artists from such ensembles as Ysaÿe Quartet, Quatuor Diotima, Alban Berg Quartet, Melos Quartet, Quatuor Danel, Szymanowski Quartet, Silesian String Quartet, Royal String Quartet, and Apollon Musagète Quartett. Airis String Quartet performs at home and abroad. The music of the 20th and 21st centuries has had a special place in its wide and varied repertoire for many years. Composers of the young generation often entrust the quartet with premiere performances of their works. The quartet has enjoyed collaborations with such artists as Krzysztof Penderecki, Rafał Augustyn, Miłosz Bembinow, Ib Nørholm, Paweł Łukaszewski, Michał Dobrzyński, Łukasz Pieprzyk, as well as with composers of film music and music for computer games, and among them Garry Schyman (Bioshock), Krzysztof A. Janczak (Dans les pas de Marie Curie) and Arkadiusz Reikowski (Kholat, Father and Son). The ensemble continues to look for new inspirations, often crossing the boundaries of classical music; on Airis String Quartet’s initiative, several new works have been composed as part of the programme ‘Collections’ – priority ‘Composing Commissions’. Several CD Albums, film and game music soundtracks recordings with quartets participation appeared during last 6 years and in 2018 purely quartet debut album “Hartmann” had its premiere. The Members of Airis String Quartet teach at music schools and at the Karol Szymanowski Academy of Music in Katowice, introducing younger generations to the secrets of chamber music and instrumental studies.

PIOTR RACHWAŁ - violin
„Piotr Rachwał in my opinion is an extraordinary artist. He represents really rare type of musician, who can integrate his best features of his rich personality with faithfull interpetation of works, which he performs.” Robert Kabara wrote about Piotr Rachwał. Piotr Rachwał is an artist who started to perform from an early age. As a twelve year old he performed for the first time as a soloist with Silesian Philharmonic. So far, he has performed in, among others, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Germany, China, Switzerland, France, Italy or Austria. An artist took part in many renowned music festivals. He has performed during the Abu Dhabi Music Festival, Chopin and his Europe in Warsaw, Ada Sari International Festival in Nowy Sącz, Cracovia Sacra, Music in Old Cracow, Muzyka na Szczytach in Zakopane. Musician is the winner and finalist of numerous polish and international competitions, among others, Talents for Europe (6th prize), Witold Lutosławski Competition (finalist), Nationwide Auditions of Chamber Ensembles (2nd prize), Nationwide Forum for Young Instrumentalists (1st prize). Piotr Rachwał is a scholar of Rotary Club, Marshal of Silesian Voivodship and Rector of Music Academy in Cracow. Violinist cooperate with Beethoven Academy Orchestra and AUKSO Chamber Orchestra.

BARBARA ŁYPIK-SOBANIEC - cello
A graduate of the Krakow Academy of Music (diploma with honors) in the cello class of prof. Witold Herman. She perfected her skills at numerous music courses. In 1993, she received a scholarship from the European Mozart Foundation. In 1992 she became the laureate of the second prize at the 11th International Chamber Music Competition in Łódź. Together with the Capellae Cracoviensis orchestra, she gave concerts in Germany and the USA. In the years 2000-2007 she cooperated with the Sinfonietta Cracovia orchestra. Since 1995, she has been a member of the piano trio, which she cocreates with Roman Reiner and Sławomir Cierpik. In 1996, together with the ensemble, she recorded the album "Memories from Krakow's Kazimierz", which features traditional Jewish melodies in the arrangement of the ensemble. In 1997 she started working at the Music Academy in Krakow, at the Department of Cello and Double Bass, and since 2014 she has been working at the Department of Chamber Music. In 2000 she won the second prize (in the soloist category) at the 4th International Contemporary Chamber Music Competition of Krzysztof Penderecki in Krakow. As an interpreter of contemporary music, she has performed many times at contemporary music festivals (e.g. Krakow Composers’ Music Days, Stravinsky and his Ukraine, Ustyluh 2011, Concert in the memory of K. Moszumańska-Nazar, Paris, 2012, International Contemporary Music Festival, Polotsk, Belarus, 2015) as a soloist and chamber musician. She has premiered numerous works, among others: a retrieved quartet of Ignacy Jan Paderewski, pieces by Zbigniew Bujarski, Maciej Negrey, Kamil Kruk as well as pieces dedicated to her by Adam Walaciński, Nadim Husni and Anna Zawadzka-Gołosz. In 2010, she received the title of doctor of musical arts. Since 2010 she has been working as an assistant professor at her alma mater. Since 2011 she has been performing with a violinist Maciej Lulek and pianist Sławomir Cierpik forming the Malawski Trio. In 2014, she recorded the album "Walaciński’s chamber music". Since 2014, she has been performing with the Hybrid Piano Quartet, with which she recorded works of Karol Szymanowski, Jarosław Płonka and Zygmunt Noskowski (2017). In the years 2014-2016, she was the president, currently she is a vice-president of the Małopolska Manufaktura Sztuki Association. As part of the Association's activity, she coorganizes concerts and artistic events, including Hebdów Meetings with Art, Master Courses for children and youth entitled Summer Manufacture of Art as well as the Chamber Music Festival "Music in Old Balice", of which she is the artistic director. She gives numerous concerts – in Poland and abroad.

SŁAWOMIR CIERPIK - piano
Graduated with distinction from the Academy of Music in Krakow in 1992, where he studied piano with Prof. Tadeusz Żmudziński, and chamber music with Prof. Maria Szmyd-Dormus. He is Associate Professor at the Chair of Chamber Music of the Academy. Following his graduation, he honed his skills during master classes with Ryszard Bakst and the Wiener Schubert Trio, amongst others. He is a laureate of numerous awards and honorary mentions, including the 2nd prize at the 11th Chamber Music Competition in Łódź (1992), the 2nd prize at the W. A. Mozart`s Chamber Music Competition in Krakow (1991) and the prize for the best ensemble of the Chamber Music Class at Weikersheim Castle, Germany (1992). He is a holder of the golden badge of the Primus Inter Pares competition, funded by the Mayor of the City of Krakow. Sławomir Cierpik has performed at home and abroad. He has recorded albums and made recordings for TV and radio.

MAGDALENA KULIG - mezzosoprano
As an international opera and concert singer she sang u.a. at the Festiwal Wratislavia Cantans, at the Oper im Berg Festival Salzburg, at the Kammeroper Schloss Rheinsberg and at the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival. In addition, her passion for different chamber music projects, e.g. with the saxophone quartet of the Berliner Philharmoniker "Clair obscur". Her concert activity has already taken her to many countries in Europe, South America and Asia. She worked with well-known conductors such as Christoph Eschenbach, Christopher Hogwood and Wojciech Rodek. Magdalena Cornelius completed her vocal studies at the Music Academy in Wroclaw (PL) and completed as well studies of history. Further she studied voice with Gloria Banditelli in Vicenza (IT). Further courses and impulses she received by Ingrid Kremling, Della Jones and Cheryl Studer. She was a fellow of the Dartington International School (UK) and the Richard Strauss Institute in Garmisch- Partenkirchen and is a winner of international singing competitions.

MACIEJ ZIMKA - accordion
He’s a graduate of the studies at the Academy of Music in Kraków (Poland) in the accordion class of Professor Janusz Pater, graduated also a PhD of the Academy. Maciej Zimka is a prize-winner at numerous instrumental competitions, both Polish and international ones. Among others he won 1st prize at the I International Accordion Competition in Vilnius or 1st prize at the 47. International Accordion Festival in Klingenthal (chamber music category). Maciej Zimka is an active musician performing classical and modern music. He performed during numerous festivals, including Sound 12 in Newcastle upon Tyne (England), Les Cles du Classique (France/Spain), Concerts at Lempertz (Belgium), Ibla Music Festival (Italy), .Share.Music.Leipizg. (Germany), Prikarpacka Vesna (Ukraine), Audio Art Festival, MOZG Festival, Euro Chamber Music Festival, “Wawel at Dusk” Festival (Poland) . Maciej Zimka also toured the USA and Israel. Maciej Zimka is also an active composer. He composes works for the accordion, other instruments and chamber music ensembles. He won Grand Prix at VII International Composition Competition in Sanok (Poland). Since 2011, Maciej Zimka is involved in the activities of the NGO - Foundation for Art Forum in the field of international cooperation and organization of many cultural projects, the Cracow Festival of Accordion especially.

PIOTR PAWLAK - piano
Student at Music Academy in Gdańsk in piano class of Waldemar Wojtal. Piotr has performed at numerous musical events in Poland, Spain, Germany, Lithuania, Hungary, Russia, Georgia, Denmark, Belgium, Austria, Czech Republic, United Kingdom, United States and China. As a soloist, he has played with the Lower Silesia Philharmonic Orchestra, Holy Cross Philharmonic Orchestra, West Bohemian Symphony Orchestra, Ningbo Symphony Orchestra, Polish Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra Sopot and Baltic Philharmonic Orchestra. He was a scholarship recipient of the Polish Children's Fund, Minister of Culture and National Heritage, Polish Ministry of National Education, Prime Minister, Marshal of the Pomeranian District and Mayor of the City of Gdansk. In 2014 he was awarded of a scholarship funded by Kristian Zimerman. Piotr is a laureate of a number of national and international piano competitions. He won the first prize and the prize for the best improvisation on the XI Darmstadt International Chopin Piano Competition (2017), the first prize on the II International Competition for Young Pianists “Chopin at Wawel” in Cracow (2019), the second prize (first was not awarded) on the 8th International Chopin Piano Competition in Budapest (2018), the second prize on the I Beijing International Fryderyk Chopin Competition for Young Pianists (2016), the second prize on The Stanisław Moniuszko International Competition of Polish Music in Rzeszów (2019) and also an honorable mention and an audience award on the XI International Competition for Young Pianists “Step Towards Mastery” in Sankt Petersburg (2017). Piotr was a participant of the XVII International Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw (2015) and he is qualified to the XVIII Competition (2020) as a laureate of the National Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw (2020).

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Elena Lola Loli

Graduated with honours from the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw. Her diploma work film “And I Am the World” took place in “Coming Out 2014” exhibition of best diploma works. Author of graphic and musical performances based on contemporary music and surreal literature. Film and stage actress. Polish Film Academy Award winner – in 2009 she received “Eagle” for role in the movie “Little Moscow”.
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