Lutosławski Featured In Concert Halls Throughout the World
Witold Lutosławski, photo credit: Agencja Forum
Bachtrack - the largest Internet search engine associated with classical music concerts - ranked Witold Lutosławski the 48th most frequently performed composer of the year 2013, with a +31 growth from his previous position of 79th in 2012.
The year 2013 marked the 100th anniversary of the Polish composer Witold Lutosławski. On this occasion, one of the greatest Polish composers of the twentieth century echoed throughout concert halls around the world - from Britain and the United States to Japan and China. It was a special musical jubilee for music lovers around the world who also celebrated the two hundredth birthday of Richard Wagner and Giuseppe Verdi, the hundredth anniversary of Benjamin Britten and the fiftieth anniversary of the death of Francis Poulenc. The main question is, are anniversaries the main factor that gets translated into the number of performances, and consequently, the number of audiences for these great artists?
Anniversaries make a big difference for some composers. Photo credit: Bachtracks.com
According to Bachtrack’s most recent statistical analysis, one of the most frequently performed composers in the world has become Benjamin Britten (with an increase of 18 positions in the ranking on Bachtracks.com. Britten surpassed the music of Schubert and Brahms, which are classics in the repertoire of probably every philharmonic orchestra. In the U.K., Britten has surpassed all and become the most performed composer. There was an equally strong increase of interest in the music of Wagner ( 20 points higher) and Verdi (17 points higher ) ; their anniversaries were also celebrated reverently by the Polish philharmonic.
As a result of the 100th year celebrations, Lutosławski’s position on Bachtrack.com grew by 31 points and the Polish composer now ranks the 48th most frequently performed composer in the world. His songs have been performed throughout the world by, among others, Sir Simon Rattle (who was also ranked by Bachtrack as one of the busiest conductors of last year), Antoni Wit and Esa -Pekka Salonen, as well as soloists such as Anne Sophie Mutter, Truls Moerke and Krystian Zimerman.
One of the biggest successes of the year of Lutosławski was a series of concerts titled Woven Words, produced by the London Philharmonic Orchestra in cooperation with the Adam Mickiewicz Institute. The event included orchestral concerts, chamber music, and a series of videos covering the ouevre of Lutosławski, as well as scientific workshops.
Another surprising production from the Year of Lutosławski was the film KwartetSmyczkovy by the Brothers Quay - creators of animations including Insytut Benjamenta and Street of Crocodiles based on a story by Bruno Schulz. The premiere took place at the Ruhrtriennale festival, curated by Heiner Goebbels. Lutosławski's String Quartet performed by the Arditti String Quartet – one of the most famous bands performing new music.
Regarding String Quartet by the Polish composer, the Brothers Quay note:
In the case of Witold Lutosławski, we had received collected works by him, everything was on CD. So every morning, when we're doing our homework, we have to listen to a piece every day, we played it again, played it again next day... We think that music complements images – that's the idea instead. In this case the String Quartet promised a lot for images... the String Quartet had enough space for the images.
Edited by E.M. 09.01.2014