Liberation

“The predominantly rationalistic European finds much that is human alien to him, and he prides himself on this without realizing that his rationality is won at the expense of his vitality, and that the primitive part of his personality is consequently condemned to a more or less underground existence.”
Carl Gustav Jung  Memories, Dreams, Reflections

„He sinks down onto the throne. He hides his face in his hands. One can feel in him a raging inner struggle” (…)”
“The dream is done! The chain of illusions breaks!”
Karol Szymanowski King Roger (text: Jarosław Iwaszkiewicz, English translation: Andrzej Duszenko)

The point of departure for the upcoming edition of the Festival entitled Liberation is the inaugural performance of King Roger by Karol Szymanowski, an opera showing an attempt to free oneself from culture, its moral and social norms, its customs. The work of the Polish composer describes the conflict between two aspects of humanity: rationality and instinct, and the attempt to free himself from the dramatic dichotomy of these opposing elements. In the year of the anniversary of the end of the World War I and the century of Poland regaining its independence, the Festival also takes up the theme of freedom in the political and social context. We will hear Haydn's excellent Paukemesse, a mass from the period of Napoleonic Wars, the time just after the French Revolution, when the model of functioning of our modern world was formed.

The great Ode to Napoleon by Arnold Schönberg, composed at the height of World War II, refers to the figure of Bonaparte, to the words of the nineteenth-century poetry of George Byron expressing crushing criticism of the defeated emperor. Napoleon betrayed the libertarian ideals that brought him to power, and he became a dictator like many tyrants on the pages of history. The attitude of the totalitarian ruler was pointedly derided in Der Tribun by Mauricio Kagel. The same concert will feature the String Quartet by Anton Webern, considered – just like Schönberg – a degenerate composer and forbidden in the Third Reich. The tribune's madness also contrasts with the beauty of Debussy's work, whose death centenary falls this year. Paradoxically, it is people who give total control to an individual who then tyrannises them. This mechanism was already described in the 16th century by Étienne de la Boétie in the Discourse on Voluntary Servitude, from which comes the title of the concert. Similarly, a soldier from Stravinsky's work, one hundred years ago, who fights to regain his personal freedom, enslaved himself to the devil, giving in to the desire for possession.

Wratislavia cannot miss out on great vocal ensembles. The National Choir of Ukraine Dumka will perform 20th century a cappella works by Henryk Mikołaj Górecki and Ukrainian folk and sacred music. Collegium Musicale from Estonia – also celebrating independence centenary – will present Polish and Estonian contemporary music with the NFM Leopoldinum Orchestra. The Graindelavoix group will come back to the Festival, known for its original sound, to present a programme that addresses the phenomenon of sleep – understood as a momentary release from fatigue and worries. The Italian La Compagnia del Madrigale will perform masterpieces by Claudio Monteverdi from the 8th Book of Madrigals, a volume of fundamental importance to the history of music. The motif of war appears in perfectly dramatic works, but in Monteverdi it is the heart skirmishes – much less disastrous in consequences than military struggles.

In the Polish independence anniversary year, we present an opera by the highly intriguing composer Elżbieta Sikora, whose subject is the persona of Maria Skłodowska-Curie, one of the most important Polish women ever and at the same time one of the most important figures in the history of science. The title character Madame Curie had to fight for the freedom to choose a way of life, facing a spate of stereotypes and prejudices against women. As in the previous years, we invite you to a concert devoted to an outstanding Polish composer of late Baroque and early Classicism. The work of Marcin Józef Żebrowski will be introduced by Andrzej Kosendiak, a tireless explorer of Poland’s Baroque music heritage. The concert features works commisioned by the Monastery of Jasna Góra, an important Polish religious sanctuary and cultural centre. As during every Wratislavia Cantans, we invite you to a typically Wrocław concert consisting of musical treasures from a local library – this time it will be not only the compositions currently stored on Sand Island, but also works from a manuscript originating from Wrocław, now stored in Berlin, with solo violin pieces, authored by Stephen Nau, Giovanni Bassano and Francesco Rognoni - a rarity from beginning of the 17th century,

The Festival will be crowned by the great oratorio work, Messa da Requiem by Giuseppe Verdi performed by John Eliot Gardiner and his Monteverdi Choir and Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique. This esteemed work already has a fully-formed performance tradition, and the famous English maestro proposes us to look at it as we look at early music and ask ourselves what interpretation of this genius funeral piece the composer himself would have wanted. Verdi, just as Szymanowski, to whom the inauguration is dedicated, was a great patriot and a man involved in building an Italian state united during his lifetime, just as Szymanowski was close to the idea of rebuilding Polish statehood.

The programme of the Festival evokes dramatic events from history, each of which to some extent is associated with the pursuit of freedom – for states, social groups, and individuals. The programme is an invitation to reflect on independence and self-determination – do we really want to be free? What do we want to free ourselves from? How much effort are we able to put in the struggle for independence? Let reflection be inspired by music that is always a space of freedom.


Giovanni Antonini
Artistic Director
Andrzej Andrzej Markowski International Festival Wratislavia Cantans


 

MFWC - archiwum / wydarzenia / 2018 EN

Edition 2018
Exhibition of drawings by Eugeniusz Geppert related to the centenary of Poland regaining its independence
 
01.09.2018
Sat.
3:00 PM
NFM, foyer
King Roger
Concert version
07.09.2018
Fri.
7:00 PM
NFM, Main Hall
Masters of French Baroque | Środa Śląska
Free admission
07.09.2018
Fri.
7:00 PM
Church of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross
Histoire du soldat
Igor Stravinsky
08.09.2018
Sat.
5:00 PM
NFM, Red Hall
Masters of French Baroque | Szczawno Zdrój
 
08.09.2018
Sat.
7:00 PM
Henryk Wieniawski Theatre
Media vita in morte sumus | Bardo
 
08.09.2018
Sat.
7:30 PM
Minor Basilica of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Spiritual Capital of Poland
 
08.09.2018
Sat.
9:00 PM
University Church of the Blessed Name of Jesus
Masters of French Baroque
 
09.09.2018
Sun.
5:00 PM
Oratorium Marianum
The Dream of Scipio | Bielawa
Free admission
09.09.2018
Sun.
7:30 PM
Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Media vita in morte sumus / In the midst of life we are in death
 
09.09.2018
Sun.
8:00 PM
Collegiate Church of the Holy Cross and St Bartholomew
Meeting with composers | accompanying event
 
10.09.2018
Mon.
6:00 PM
NFM, foyer -1
Love is(n’t) in the air | A concert of MusMA
 
10.09.2018
Mon.
7:00 PM
NFM, Black Hall
Media vita in morte sumus | Syców
Free admission
10.09.2018
Mon.
7:00 PM
Church of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul
In Paradisum
 
11.09.2018
Tue.
7:00 PM
Collegiate Church of the Holy Cross and St Bartholomew
Monteverdi – Madrigali guerrieri et amorosi
 
12.09.2018
Wed.
7:00 PM
White Stork Synagogue
In Paradisum | Kłodzko
 
12.09.2018
Wed.
7:30 PM
Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Madame Curie
 
13.09.2018
Thu.
7:00 PM
NFM, Main Hall
Monteverdi – Madrigali guerrieri et amorosi | Krotoszyn
Free admission
13.09.2018
Thu.
7:30 PM
Church of St John the Baptist
The Power of Ukrainian Voices | Głogów
Free admission
13.09.2018
Thu.
8:00 PM
Church of Our Lady the Queen of Poland
In tempore belli / At the Time of War
 
14.09.2018
Fri.
7:00 PM
NFM, Main Hall
The Power of Ukrainian Voices | Oleśnica
Free admission
14.09.2018
Fri.
7:00 PM
Minor Basilica of St John the Apostle and Evangelist
The Discourse on Voluntary Servitude
 
15.09.2018
Sat.
5:00 PM
NFM, Red Hall
Battaglie, follie e addii | Legnica
 
15.09.2018
Sat.
7:00 PM
Military Academy, Royal Hall
The Power of Ukrainian Voices
 
15.09.2018
Sat.
9:00 PM
Church of St Stanislaus, St Dorothy and St Venceslaus
Vaghezze e ricercari – musical treasures of Wrocław University Library
 
16.09.2018
Sun.
12:00 PM
Oratorium Marianum
Verdi – Requiem
 
16.09.2018
Sun.
7:00 PM
NFM, Main Hall

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