10 episodes

The late Krzysztof Penderecki was a legend of contemporary music. In this new limited podcast series, hear two famous British journalists, Jack Pepper and Charlotte Gardner, delving into the maestro's iconic work.

Hosting five episodes each, every episode focuses on a single piece from Penderecki's impressive body of work. From the piece itself and the history of its creation, hear interesting stories from the master's biography, the history of Poland, and the world at the time the composition was created. Learn all about the influence of the composer on the world of contemporary culture, and not only on classical music.

Want to learn more about Penderecki? The show is a companion piece to the site PendereckisGarden.pl.

Penderecki's Garden Adam Mickiewicz Institute

    • Music

The late Krzysztof Penderecki was a legend of contemporary music. In this new limited podcast series, hear two famous British journalists, Jack Pepper and Charlotte Gardner, delving into the maestro's iconic work.

Hosting five episodes each, every episode focuses on a single piece from Penderecki's impressive body of work. From the piece itself and the history of its creation, hear interesting stories from the master's biography, the history of Poland, and the world at the time the composition was created. Learn all about the influence of the composer on the world of contemporary culture, and not only on classical music.

Want to learn more about Penderecki? The show is a companion piece to the site PendereckisGarden.pl.

    Metamorphosen: Creativity and Intimacy

    Metamorphosen: Creativity and Intimacy

    Metamorphosen, Penderecki’s Second Violin Concerto, was written for the German violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter between 1992 and 1995. Drawing on the contrasts between this work and the First Violin Concerto, which was premiered by Isaac Stern in 1977, and contextualising Metamorphosen with the Second Violin Sonata and La Follia, this podcast will explore a meeting of musical minds in one of the most striking works for violin and orchestra of the late twentieth century. 
    Transcription WCAG

    • 37 min
    The Passion of St Luke: Belief and Redemption

    The Passion of St Luke: Belief and Redemption

    “I was aiming for something that seemed unreachable”, said Penderecki of the St Luke Passion, a work written to mark one thousand years of Christianity in Poland, but commissioned by Westdeutscher Rundfunk to celebrate the 700th anniversary of Münster Cathedral. How was such a fundamental expression of faith received in Communist era Poland, and where does the St Luke Passion sit in a lifetime of composing sacred music? In this podcast we reflect on belief and redemption in choral music. 
    Transcription WCAG

    • 43 min
    Brigade of Death- Brigade of Death: Memory and Outrage

    Brigade of Death- Brigade of Death: Memory and Outrage

    On 8 September, 1939, when Krzysztof Penderecki was just a few weeks shy of his sixth birthday, German forces took control of his home town of Dębica with its majority Jewish population. Between then and the liquidation of the Dębica ghetto in 1943, the young Penderecki had to witness the Nazi regime’s systematic intimidation, segregation and extermination of Europe’s Jews as it played out literally his own doorstep. Twenty years later he took Leon Weliczker’s Holocaust memoir, Brigade of Death, and constructed a work for narrator and electronics which, following its premiere, would not be performed again until 2011. Reflecting on a painful history in this podcast, we explore Brigade of Death and the reactions of different generations of listeners to Penderecki’s work. 
    Transcription WCAG

    • 35 min
    Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima: Terror and Sorrow

    Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima: Terror and Sorrow

    Fifty two strings. Eight minutes. Thirty seven seconds. Completed in 1960, Krzysztof Penderecki’s Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima has become one of his most well-known works thanks to its use in soundtracks of films by David Lynch, Wes Craven and Alfonso Cuarón. In this podcast we explore its genesis, how its textures suggest an incomprehensible terror and sorrow, and its transition from abstraction to memorial. 
    Transcription WCAG

    • 32 min
    Symphonies - Symphony No 7, 'Seven Gates Of Jerusalem'

    Symphonies - Symphony No 7, 'Seven Gates Of Jerusalem'

    In the final episode of Jack's curated series, he charts the changing musical styles embraced by Penderecki across his career, using his symphonies as a starting point. Zooming in on the Seventh Symphony, Jack explains how Penderecki paints the epic picture of the founding of a city. Jack grapples with the challenges posed by a radically varied musical language, and argues that, far from a weakness, this eclecticism could be Penderecki's great strength.
    Transcription WCAG

    • 26 min
    Screen - Soundtrack to The Saragossa Manuscript

    Screen - Soundtrack to The Saragossa Manuscript

    Jack celebrates Penderecki's score to a classic work of Polish cinema.
    We hear how Penderecki embraced a varied musical language for the task at hand, from crashing organ chords to dancing guitars. Plus, we hear about his impact on the next generation of film composers, including a collaboration with Radiohead's Jonny Greenwood.
     
    Transcription WCAG

    • 21 min

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