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Władysław Żeleński (1837-1921)
Piano Works - vol. I
AP0124 , DDD - TT: 74'13"
Copyright (R)2004/5, (C)2005
World Premiere Recording


  1. Deux Morceaux Op. 63
  2. Oda do młodości. Marsz uroczysty Op. 51
  3. Marsz uroczysty ku czci nieśmiertelnego wieszcza Adama Mickiewicza Op. 44
  4. Deux Mazourkas Op. 31
  5. II Sonata Op. 20

Ławrynowicz Joanna, piano

booklet: Magdalena Todynek (Polish, English French)


Since the very beginnings of my interest in classical music, I have always thought of Władysław Żeleński, a distinguished Polish composer of the second half of the nineteenth century, as a mysterious and extraordinary person. He certainly may be regarded as mysterious if we take into account that musicians and musicologists, and even his family, were taking all the necessary steps so that he would remain an altogether unknown, obscure figure. On the other hand, unusual in the sense that living in all the unfavourable conditions, he was still able to write a plethora of worthwhile works. These include symphonic, as well as chamber pieces, solos, operas, and songs. Alas, despite relatively easy access to his works, hardly anyone is reaching out for them. Having not been able to accept such a state of affairs, I embarked, surely within my limited range of possibilities, on a project based on an idea to restore this composer to his deserved hall of fame status. In our present times, we tend to look down upon the legacy of our ancestors. We behave in a way which suggests that we treat the period between Chopin and Szymanowski as one devoid of any worthy musical names, save for Paderewski, whom we hold in high esteem for his outstanding merits for the Polish independence rather than his musical achievements. However, the basic fact that Żeleński pieces in their time were brought out by the Bohemians, Germans, French, or Italians must stand as firm proof that his output does not lack anything in quality! At the outset of my publisher's career I put out Władysław Żeleński's organ pieces. Next, I took advantage of his repertoire of songs. At present, my meeting with brilliant Polish pianist Joanna Ławrynowicz has resulted in a project to record and publish Żeleński piano music, which would appear on the market on discs and in the form of scores. In this way, the composer's music will be available not only to listeners, but to musicians as well. The latter will finally have a chance and opportunity to access this repertoire much more easily. In fact, this is the idea that drives me to fulfil the plan most. It is a great joy and satisfaction to me to reveal that this goal has already partly been achieved. For some time, the illustrious pianist Joanna Ławrynowicz has been including Żeleński works in her concert programmes, and they have been greeted with genuine enthusiasm in whatever venues she performed them. In the field of her educational duties, Ławrynowicz has been sharing her excitement towards the works of this composer with her students, and consequently the list of enthusiasts never ceases to swell. I firmly believe that the first volume of Władysław Żeleński's piano works will encourage a lot of you, dear listeners, to reach out for other records with his music and indulge in discovering it further and further. We are ready to give access to the scores for anyone who shows interest. [Jan A. Jarnicki]............................................... Druga połowa tego roku obfituje w znakomite albumy z polską muzyką, po które warto, a nawet trzeba sięgnąć. Mam tu na myśli płyty z muzyką fortepianową (...) Żeleńskiego. (...) Pierwszy z serii album z muzyką fortepianową Władysława Żeleńskiego to kolejny klejnot płytowy. Napisał on wiele oper, kantat, pieśni, symfonii, utworów kameralnych i fortepianowych. Gruntowne wykształcenie zdobył w Krakowie, Pradze i Paryżu. Jego trwająca blisko 50 lat działalność na polu pedagogiki muzycznej przyniosła wspaniałe plony (Statkowski, Stojowski, Opieński). Muzyka fortepianowa Żeleńskiego jest bardzo różnorodna: wirtuozowska, motoryczna, liryczna, śpiewna, niezwykle malarska, poetycka, bardzo melodyjna i emocjonalna. Nagrania tych dzieł podjęła się utalentowana młoda pianistka Joanna Ławrynowicz (ostatnia uczennica Haliny Czerny-Stefańskiej). Jej interpretacja urzeka grą prawdziwie piękną, subtelną, pełną emocji. Fortepian przykuwa uwagę namiętnością, nostalgią, a wysublimowane wykonanie całkowicie pochłania słuchacza. Błyskotliwa gra Ławrynowicz oddaje indywidualność i oryginalność każdej kompozycji, olśniewa pełną kontroli perfekcją i różnorodnością brzmień. Okładkę płyty zdobi piękny obraz Malczewskiego, co dodaje wartości albumowi, bo oprócz muzyki promuje również polskie malarstwo. Wielkie brawa i uznanie! [ks. Arkadiusz Jędrasik/Nasz Dziennik 2005-11-07]