A birthday gala for Poland's best-known living composer, Krzysztof Penderecki. International stars celebrated his 80th anniversary in 2013 with a special gala with the artist himself in attendance.
Outstanding artists such as Anne-Sophie Mutter, Valery Gergiev, Charles Dutoit and Polish musicians honored Penderecki with a concert presenting a unique selection of his works at the Teatre Wielki in Warsaw. The brilliant Anne-Sophie Mutter, who has regularly collaborated with the composer, played the Duo Concertante alongside bassist Roman Patkolo and Valery Gergiev directed his moving Credo for choir and orchestra.
Krzysztof Penderecki is considered as one of the greatest Polish contemporary composers. His work includes vocal and orchestral music as well as chamber and sacred music. He began his career as a composer in 1959 when he won the three prizes at the prestigious Warsaw Competition. In 1961, he won the Prize of the UNESCO International Tribune of Composers in Paris for Threnody for the Victims of Hiroshima, a piece for 52 string instruments representative of his innovative composition.
His music will also be used for movies by directors such as Wojciech Has (The Saragossa Manuscript), William Friedkin (The Exorcist), Stanley Kubrick (The Shining), Andrzej Wajda (Katyń) or Martin Scorsese (Shutter Island).
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By Anna Schmidt