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JUBILEE CONCERT

A few words about a concert that did not take place…
As part of the 75th anniversary of the Poznań Boys’ Choir, we planned a series of three concerts, each of which was to focus on a different aspect of our group’s history.
The first one took place on 23 November 2019, preceded by a liturgy during which we recalled Jerzy Kurczewski and all his pupils who died. After the mass, we performed Gabriel Faure’s nostalgic Requiem in an intimate version, similar to the original vision of the creator, prepared by John Rutter (the recording from the concert will soon appear on our channel).
On 29 March 2020, the next stage of our jubilee was to take place, in the form of an extraordinary concert, which has not yet been seen in the history of our group… We wanted to dedicate it entirely to the person of Jerzy Kurczewski – the artist, considering this area of his activity still little known and appreciated, and whose artistic and, above all, educational value seems to be worth spreading more widely.
From the very beginning of the ensemble’s existence, i.e. from the Miniature of a dozen or so people, with whom Kurczewski gained valuable musical experience and first conducting touches, he showed the ability to create arrangements (at the beginning mainly of Polish folk music), which he was able to skilfully adapt to the vocal capabilities of his charges. Throughout his extensive artistic activity, he created several hundred arrangements – of varying degrees of difficulty – for his ensemble, intended for boys’ (children’s) and boys’-men’s ensembles at particular stages of their artistic development. Today, they form the basis for shaping the vocal sensitivity of the students of the Jerzy Kurczewski PSChJK Poznan School of Choir.
Few people know, however, that Kurczewski also wrote original pieces, unfortunately not all of them survived, and many of them never saw the light of day. One of such works is “Flies the Pliszka”, which, like his other compositions, was edited by our conductor (Jacek Sykulski) from the composer’s manuscripts, in this particular case from an old music notebook in which Kurczewski noted down each voice individually. In the case of ‘Pliszka’, we did not manage to establish the date of the composition’s creation, nor did we obtain knowledge whether he ever performed it with his choir. We are still working on many of his works, hoping that one day we will be able to publish them so that they can serve other choral ensembles, at different levels of their artistic development.
While preparing for this concert, we tried to select our repertoire in such a way as to show the artistic progress of the band’s founder; starting with Miniaturka – Kurczewski’s first musical child, through arrangements dedicated to vocal ensembles and choir, original compositions, to the hits of all time, that is “Polonaise” and “Krakowiak”, to perform which we were going to invite our older colleagues – Jerzy Kurczewski’s pupils.
We wanted the founder of the Poznań Boys’ Choir to look at the person of the founder as multifaceted as possible, showing the dynamics and determination with which he lived, created and acted in these difficult times in the history of our country.
Our wonderful friends from Jerzy Kurczewski’s Girls’ Choir of the Poznan School of Choir were also involved in the project.
Although the concert did not take place for known reasons, we believe that we will be able to present it to our Poznań audience at another, more favourable time.

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