Conductor and music teacher born on the 11th of February, 1950 in Kłomnice near Częstochowa.
Conductor and music teacher born on the 11th of February, 1950 in Kłomnice near Częstochowa. Bugaj has led an impressive international career having conducted orchestras in Poland and abroad.
Bugaj began his career with the Warsaw Chamber Opera (WOK) in 1974 passing through all the stages of a conducting career from assistant - including to Kazimierz Kord, Jerzy Maksymiuk, and Jurgen Jurgens, to principal conductor, and finally to music director. He has worked on a broad and extensive repertoire from Medieval to Contemporary Music. He conducted operas by Joseph Haydn, Giovanni Battista Pergolesi, Domenico Cimarosa, Giovanni Paisiello, Georg Philipp Telemann, George Frideric Handel, Gioachino Rossini, Gaetano Donizetti, but his main specialty is the music of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. With the WOK, he led numerous tours abroad in both Europe and the United States. In addition, working parallel to his career with the Chamber Opera, he was the artistic director of the Pomeranian Philharmonic in Bydgoszcz from 1980-84 and from 1987 to 1990 he was the artistic director of the Artur Rubinstein Philharmonic in Łódź. Starting in 1998 until 2005, he was the artistic director of the Kraków Philarmonic and from 2006 to 2008, the music director of the Teatr Wielki Polish National Opera in Warsaw.
He studied conducting with Stanisław Wisłocki at the State Higher School of Music in Warsaw from 1969-74. Between 1969-72 he also studied musicology at the University of Warsaw.
Bugaj has led an impressive international career having conducted orchestras in Poland (including the National Philharmonic Orchestra, Polish Radio Great Symphony Orchestra, Sinfonia Varsovia, Kraków Philharmonic Orchestra, Polish Radio Orchestra in Kraków), Italy (Orchestra Sinfonica Siciliana in Palermo), Slovakia (Slovak Philharmonic, Bratislava Orchestra), Russia (Russian National Symphony Orchestra in Moscow), Germany (Nordwestdeutche Philharmonic in Herford, Münchener Rundfunk Orchester, orchestras in Aachen, Berlin, Bochum, Duisburg, Essen, Hagen, Flennsburg, Gelsenkirchen, Mannheim, Stuttgart, Saarbrücken, Weimar, and Wiesbaden), the United Kingdom (Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Bournemouth Sinfonietta, London Philharmonic, Royal Scottish National, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, BBC Philharmonic, BBC Scottish Symphony, BBC Welsh, Scottish Chamber), Ireland (RTE in Dublin), Austria (Mozarteum Orchestra), Luxembourg, Finland, Norway, Spain (Orquesta Nacional de España, Orquesta Simfonica de Gran Canaria, Orquesta Simfonica de Bilbao), United States (National Chamber Orchestra in Washington), Chile (Orchesta Sinfonica de Chile). He has also conducted performances at the opera houses of Warsaw, Łódź, Poznań, Gdańsk, Bilbao, Pamplona, and Leeds (Opera North).
He has taken part in many festivals, including Wratislavia Cantans, Festival de Asturias, Bath International Festival of Music and Arts, Berliner Festwochen, Karintischer Sommer, Cheltenham International Festival of Music, Istanbul International Festival, and the festivals in Bergen, Lucca, Ravello, Taormina, Milan, Montreux, and Newport. He has appeared at leading concert venues, including Alte Oper in Frankfurt, Berlin Philharmonic, Schauspielhaus in Berlin, Herkulessaal in Munich, Liederhalle in Stuttgart, Auditorio Nacional in Madrid, Grieghallen in Bergen, Royal Festival Hall and Barbican Hall in London, Teatro la Fenice in Venice, Grosses Festspielhaus in Salzburg, and the Grand Hall of the Moscow Conservatory.
He also has many radio and television recordings to his credit, both in Poland and abroad (Polish Radio, Polish Television, Westdeutscher Rundfunk, Bayerischer Rundfunk, BBC), as well as recording for record labels, including Orpheo (the first recording with the Warsaw Chamber Opera: the one-act operas of Christoph Willibald Gluck: "La Corona" and "La Danza"), Polskie Nagrania, Yedang (South Korea), and Musiques Suisses.
Throughout his career he has won multiple prizes in international competitions. He won his first award in 1976 at the Gino Marinuzzi Conducting Competition in San Remo. He followed this in 1978 by winning first prize at the Conducting Competition in Bristol, United Kingdom. In 1994, he was honoured with the Premio de la Critica at the Conducting Competition in Chile. He has been a judge in various competitions in Pamplona, Bilbao and Warsaw.
Bugaj has been teaching conducting at the Academy of Music in Kraków since 1997, and was also the Chair of Conducting from 2000-2005. Since 2003, he has also been a teacher, with the title of full professor, at the Academy of Music in Warsaw. He was appointed head of the Warsaw music school's Chair of Conducting in 2006.
Author: Małgorzata Kosińska, Polish Music Information Centre, Polish Composers' Union, January 2003, updated: October 2009.