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Lutosławski Year Celebrations in Beijing

2005-01-07

On 17 December 2004 the opening of the exhibition "Witold Lutosławski and His Musical Ideas" and a concert of the composer's works took place at the Central Conservatory in Beijing.

On 17 December 2004 the opening of the exhibition "Witold Lutosławski and His Musical Ideas" and a concert of the composer's works took place at the Central Conservatory in Beijing. The ceremony was organised to mark the tenth anniversary of the artist's death and the declaration of 2004 as the Lutosławski Year by the Polish Parliament. The event, the initiative of which was taken up by the Polish Embassy, was prepared by PWM Edition and the Witold Lutosławski Society in Warsaw. On the Chinese part, the organisers were the Central Conservatory in Beijing and the Chinese Musicians' Society.

The commentaries on the exhibition are found in the catalogues (English and Chiniese) accompanying the exposition. The Chinese version, commissioned and translated by the Embassy, was prepared by PWM Edition.

The representatives of the Conservatory authorities including the Rector, Professor Wang Cizhao, took part in the opening ceremony, as well as the vice-Chairman of the Chinese Musicians' Society, Mr Wang Shiguang and the vice-Secretary General, Professor Zhang Xian. Among those present there were also representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Education, Chinese diplomats, representatives of artistic societies and cultural institutions as well as journalists. The Conservatory students, students of other educational institutions including the Polish Institute of the Beijing Foreign Languages University as well as the Poles living in Beijing also arrived in great number.

During the opening ceremony, Professor Zhang Xian received the Honorary Award for her "Distinguished Service for Polish Culture", granted by the Minister of Culture of the Polish Republic. The prize-winner has promoted Polish music in China for years; she has also organised such important musical events as "Chopin Days – A Week of Polish Music" in Beijing in 2002 and a cycle of events entitled "From the Treasury of Musical Culture of China" in Warsaw in May 2004.

The programme of the concert included the Bucolics for piano, Recitativo e arioso for violin and piano, Dance Preludes for clarinet and piano, Bucolics for viola and cello, Epitaph for oboe and piano, Partita for violin and piano and Four Silesian Melodies for four violins – all performed by the conservatory students. For most of them and also for the greater part of the audience this was their first contact with Lutosławski's music. The concert was favourably received by the audience and the performance highly thought of by musicians and the lectureres of the conservatory. The event aroused mass media interest: there was information about the Lutosławski Year celebrations in the press, including the weekly Yingyue Zhoubao (Music Weekly), where the account of the exhibition and the concert as well as the news of the distinction awarded to Mrs Zhang Xian appeared on 24 December 2004. There was also information published about the winning of the Honorary Prize at the International Witold Lutosławski Composition Competition in December 2004 by Mrs Guo Yuan, a professor of the Conservatory in Sichua.

During the exhibition at the Conservatory the Embassy presented those interested with the promotional materials about Poland including Polish music and CDs with Lutosławski's music.

In March 2995 similar events will be organised in the music conservatories of the cities of Tianjin and Chengdu.

(on the basis of the materials sent by the Polish Embassy in Beijing)

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