Varsovia, Sinfonia

39’45 vol. 2

1 Sep 2017

Barcode: 0190295809232

Other participants: Renato Rivolta

On 39'45 vol. 2, the Sinfonia Varsovia Orchestra - under the baton of the Italian conductor Renato Rivolta - present works composed during the war in occupied Warsaw. The album contains works by Grażyna Bacewicz, Tadeusz Zygfryd Kassern, Stefan Kisielewski and the world premiere recording of Pieta. On the smouldering ruins of Warsaw by Ludomir Różycki.

The album is the second of a planned series of releases devoted to music composed during the occupation and marked by war. The next albums will showcase the works of 20th century Polish composers, for whom the war became a very personal experience. We often forget that the generation which formed the backbone of the Polish music scene not long ago took its first steps in composing in a completely different world than the one we were used to seeing them in. While reading Kisiel's ironical articles in the weekly magazine Wprost, who wondered how the reality of the war had influenced his youthful musical sensibility? Were the falling bombs and the ubiquitous suffering the only things contemporary artists had in mind?

This second volume in the 39'45 series contains songs that, despite their common time and place of origin, present different ways of thinking about music. On the one hand, we will find the reflective and pious sounds of Pieta. On the smouldering ruins of Warsaw by Ludomir Różycki, but on the other hand the energetic ragtime in the finale of the Concert for the chamber orchestra by Stefan Kisielewski. Grażyna Bacewicz's Overture also has an exuberant nature, being an example of the quest to free the mind from occupational reality. The concert is complemented by the Concert for string orchestra by Tadeusz Zygfryd Kassern, a composer, diplomat and legal adviser who was born in Lviv and died in New York.

Listening to the variety of emotions and moods accompanying each piece gives us a unique insight into the sensitivity of the young composers, making it evident that, despite the war, they were hopeful about the future, in which underground musicians would return to concert halls.