Katarzyna Zdybel-Nam studied at the State Music School in Zamość with Jerzy Lisak, at Fryderyk Chopin University of Music under Zbigniew Płużek and at the Hochschule für Musik in Stuttgart with Marc Engelhardt. She completed her PhD at the Karol Lipiński Academy of Music in Wrocław under Czesław Klonowski. In 2010, Zdybel-Nam was awarded 1st prize at the G. Rossini International Bassoon and 1st prize at the International Competition for Wind Instruments in Chieri. She also won the Gillet-Fox International Bassoon Competition in Oxford, Ohio. In 2014 she released two solo albums, Portrait and Poetry of the sound. Since 2014 she has served as a lecturer of bassoon at Karol Lipinski University of Music in Wroclaw.
Jan Lukáš Ignatius Dismas Zelenka was baptized on October 16, 1679, in Louňovice, a village southeast of Prague. His father Jiřík, was cantor and organist of the village church. Not much is known of his early education, however, Jan did pursue higher education at the Clementinum, a Jesuit college in Prague. In 1710, Zelenka moved to Dresden, where he was retained as a double bassist in the Hofkapelle. Zelenka began composing for the court of Saxon Electors and the Polish Kings, in Dresden. He was given the title of Kirchenkomponist in 1735, though despite his output of compositions he continued to receive the modest salary of an instrumentalist. After his death in 1745, Princess Maria Josepha of Austria purchased his manuscripts, saving the majority of his music for posterity. None of his works, save a canon in Georg Philipp Telemann’s Der getreue Music-Meister, had been published during the composer’s lifetime. Though, scribal copies of his works were circulated during the 18th century, two of which were found in the estate of Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach. Zelenka's music has only recently attracted the interest of 20th-century musicians, appreciated for its "larger than life" display of virtuosity. Zelenka’s six Trio Sonatas rank among the most challenging pieces written for Baroque double reed instruments.
Pavel Haas was one of an important group of Czechoslovakian composers who were interned in Terezin. Haas studied with Janácek and in the writing of the Suite for oboe and piano the essence of his teacher is quite clear. The piano writing is reminiscent of Janácek’s Concertino. Haas also inherited his instructor’s melodic angularity and fondness for rich harmonies. The suite is quite austere and has a profundity which isn’t immediately obvious. The scherzo movement marked is fiery and the work is marked by a gentle finale.
Jean Françaix was a modern French composer very much in the Neo-Classical tradition of Poulenc. He was a piano virtuoso, an active performer, an orchestrator and a composer with fondness for the wind instruments. His Trio for Oboe, Bassoon and Piano was commissioned by the International Double Reed Society for their 24th Festival in 1994. The piece has been said to evoke the popular sounds of a young modernism in the early 20th century. It is constructed from syncopated urban rhythms, and an essence of musical theatre, as well as occasional plaintive nostalgia. The composer was quoted:
All I ask my listeners is to open their ears and be brave enough to decide whether they like my music or not. I don’t want any intermediary between me and my listeners trying to sway their judgment one way or the other. They should remember they are free human beings, not obedient automata. I want them to crush snobbery, fashion and envy with the power of common sense and to enjoy my music if it gives them pleasure; which of course I hope it does…
Alixandra Porembski, English Language Annotator