VOCAL–INSTRUMENTAL PIECES

 

Angelus for soprano, mixed choir and orchestra (1984)

S solo-coro misto-4444-4441-batt (6esec) cel 2ar pf-archi
Duration: 24'
Premiere: 12 X 1984, Katowice, perf. Polish Radio Choir of Kraków and WOSPR in Katowice, cond. A. Wit

A vocal-instrumental work to the text of the Angelic Greetings, writing with the Jasna Góra monastery in mind, and the ceremonial opening - after restoration – of the local Altar. "This was probably my first religious piece," Wojciech Kilar said. "Immediately, however, I was embraced by doubt, somehow I daren’t admit to purely religious music. It is, after all, Angelus 1984, a song in which the sacred and profane - as usual in my work - intertwine and unite. [...] The religiosity of this work is inextricably linked with what is happening in our country."

Kilar’s "Angelus" is contained in the form of a symmetrical arch. The prayer is first recited several times by the choir, like the rosary. Growing in strength this turns into a song: a musical request, plea, and finally a dramatic call for Mary. At the end it returns to its original form, spoken - gradually fading, petering out and retreating. (Leszek Polony)

Angelus for soprano, mixed choir and orchestra (1984), perf. NOSPR, Warsaw Philharmonic Choir, H. Wojnarowski, DYX 0484
Angelus performed during 22.Festival Gaude Mater, Adam Klocek (dir.)


Bogurodzica for mixed choir and orchestra (1975)

coro misto-4444-4441-batt (6esec) 2ar pf (a 4 mani)-archi
Duration: ca 10'
Premiere: 18 IX 1976, Warsaw, „Warsaw Autumn"
performers: Choir and Orchestra of the National Philharmonic, cond. W. Rowicki

A piece written for large symphony orchestra and mixed choir. "The form - very compact, continuous; architectonics and internal design - strikingly simple; musical focus - the maximum; effect - powerful, moving. The new (although at the same time deeply rooted in tradition) vision of the old hymn emerges from the pure rhythm - "military" or knightly - pointed, clearly a march; growing, becoming more powerful. Two formulae govern the motion (rhythm) in the whole piece: dotted rhythm and measured movement with regular rhythm of equal time values. The basic principles of development of this form are - growing, elemental contrast, repetition. The internal system of sound organization is consistent and simple. Vocal melodies - reduced; recitation one one sound dominates (quasi-imitation between voices inside the choral texture." [Bohdan Pociej]

Bogurodzica for mixed choir and orchestra (1975), perf. NOSPR, Warsaw Philharmonic Choir, H. Wojnarowski, DYX 0484
Bogurodzica performed during 22.Gaude Mater Festival, Adam Klocek (dir.)


Diphthongos for mixed choir, 2 pianos, percussion and strings, (1964 )

coro misto-0000-0000-batt (6esec) 2pf-archi (12.12.0.8.4)
Duration: 4'

A youthful composition by Wojciech Kilar belonging to his avant-garde work. Based on rustling-percussive material, he uses unconventional vocal effects, such as cries of the Trobriand song "lo'uwa" and instrumental effects (arpeggios beyond the bridge, pizzicato with a plectrum). The main form-creating factor in the piece is dynamics, which the composer shows in the score in a particular graphic way (timeline graph).


Exodus for mixed choir and orchestra (1981)

Instrumentation: coro misto-4444-6661-batt (6esec) cel 2ar 2pf-archi (9.8.7.6.10)
Duration: ca 23'

"Exodus" - a poem for choir and orchestra, whose title refers to the Biblical Book of Exodus. Its first performance at the Warsaw Autumn Festival in 1981 provoked, as Leszek Polony wrote, "a frenetic ovation. The audience, at first consternated by continual repetition of the chord E - major (laughter was even heard), was eventually abducted by the force and dynamism of the composition." The motto of the composition were the biblical words of the song: we will sing unto YHWH, for He is highly exalted;...", which the people of Israel chant after passing through the Red Sea.

The formal concept of the piece refers to "Bolero" by M. Ravel. The composer has confirmed in his statements that this reference is fully intentional. “"Exodus" would be the third - after Ravel and Shostakovich (Symphony No.7) - version of a fascinating crescendo form, based on one theme or idea obsessively repeated. The dynamic growth of the form, where multiple repetition of this simple formula leads to the entrance of the choir. The Latin text of the song refers to the basic ideas and words – tssencehe e of Christianity: the existence and presence of God, the joy of faith, the call for God's help, the desire to surrender to His care: Domine Deus unus, Ecce Venita tuus populus, Domine, Alleluia, Hosanna homini, Hosanna ei qui Venite in nomine Domini hodie. The culmination of the work, evolving from simple and naive melodic formulae, strikes directly with its triumphant, ecstatic and even eschatological dimension. [Leszek Polony]

Exodus for mixed choir and orchestra (1981), perf. NOSPR, Warsaw Philharmonic Choir, H. Wojnarowski, DYX 0484
Exodus performed during 22.Gaude Mater Festival


Magnificat for soprano, tenor, baritone, mixed choir and orchestra (2006)

STB solo-coro misto-3333-4331-batt (4esec) ar pf-archi
Duration: 45'

After "Missa pro pace”, "Magnificat" is Wojciech Kilar’s second strictly liturgical work. The composer divided the text of the canticle of Mary from the Gospel according to Luke into seven parts. The form of the work is concentrated, centered around the middle section, extolling mercy, omnipotence and the greatness of God. The symmetrical counterpart of the prologue with the introductory fanfare of trumpets, horns and trombones is a majestic finale, which begins with a fugal exposition in the brass. [Leszek Polony]

The work was accompanied by a dedication "To my wife". “This is my thanks to the Lord for life and for a free Poland. Also for the fact that hereDona nobis pacem". The composer refers in it to musical idioms of the early Middle Ages, Baroque and Romanticism. The work was received with great enthusiasm and became the subject of an artistic books published by renowned designer Jacek Wdzięczak. Bohdan Pociej wrote about the piece that "Wojciech Kilar’s religious composition, his first Mass, develops and takes place in sacred time: meditation, contemplation, prayerful focus. The music of the mass - deeply traditional, rooted in medieval piety - is unusual in its expression. It strikes with its inner strength, spirituality, explaining through the power of faith. This power of this simple and focused music can be felt by all the participants in the mystery of the mass. For Wojciech Kilar wrote religious music, to the core – with complete adequacy of resources, language and style of the Latin Mass text. It may therefore also serve the liturgy – to make the devotional mass in the church especially solemn. [Bohdan Pociej].

[Bartosz Kamiński, Gazeta Wyborcza 13-14.01.2001]

Magnificat (choir), perf. The Silesian Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir, Miroslaw Jacek Blaszczyk - conductor, DUX 0592

Magnificat anima mea Dominum (soprano), perf. The Silesian Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir, Miroslaw Jacek Blaszczyk - conductor, DUX 0592

Quia respexit humilitatem (soprano, choir), perf. The Silesian Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir, Miroslaw Jacek Blaszczyk - conductor, DUX 0592

Quia fecit mihi magna (soprano, bass, choir), perf. The Silesian Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir, Miroslaw Jacek Blaszczyk - conductor, DUX 0592

Fecit potentiam (choir), perf. The Silesian Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir, Miroslaw Jacek Blaszczyk - conductor, DUX 0592

Esurientes implevit bonis (soprano, tenor, bass), perf. The Silesian Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir, Miroslaw Jacek Blaszczyk - conductor, DUX 0592

Suscepit Israel (soprano, tenor, bass, choir), perf. The Silesian Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir, Miroslaw Jacek Blaszczyk - conductor, DUX 0592


 

Missa pro pace for 4 solo voices (SATB), mixed choir and orchestra (2000)              

Duration: 70'
SATB solo-coro misto-3333-4331-timp 2ar pf-archi
Commissioned by: the National Philharmonic
Premiere: 12 Jan 2001, Warsaw Philharmonic   Symphony Orchestra and Choir, K. Kord conductor, I. Kłosińska (S), J. Rappe (A), Ch. Daniels (T), R. Tesarowicz (B)

Missa pro pace is the composer’s first strictly liturgical work. Written in 2000 after a commission from Kazimierz Kord to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the National Philharmonic Jubilee. It is a traditional cycle, following the Ordinary of the Mass. In it, the composer refers to the musical idioms of the early Middle Ages, Baroque and Romanticism. The work was received with great enthusiasm. Bohdan Pociej describes it as “deeply traditional, rooted in medieval piety – it is extraordinary in its expression. Its inner strength and spirituality is striking, which can only be explaned by the strength of faith. The power of this simple and and condensed music can be felt by every listener who participates in the mystery of the mass. For Wojciech Kilar wrote music which is religious to the core – using means, language and style completely adequate for the Latin text of the mass”

Kyrie, Chór Opery Wrocławskiej, Charles Daniels - tenore, Zofia Kilanowicz - soprano, Piotr Nowacki - bass, Orkiestra Symfoniczna Filharmonii im. Witolda Lutosławskiego we Wrocławiu, Marek Pijarowski - conductor, Jadwiga Rappé - alto
Gloria, Chór Opery Wrocławskiej, Charles Daniels - tenore, Zofia Kilanowicz - soprano, Piotr Nowacki - bass, Orkiestra Symfoniczna Filharmonii im. Witolda Lutosławskiego we Wrocławiu, Marek Pijarowski - conductor, Jadwiga Rappé - alto
Credo, Chór Opery Wrocławskiej, Charles Daniels - tenore, Zofia Kilanowicz - soprano, Piotr Nowacki - bass, Orkiestra Symfoniczna Filharmonii im. Witolda Lutosławskiego we Wrocławiu, Marek Pijarowski - conductor, Jadwiga Rappé - alto
Sanctus, Chór Opery Wrocławskiej, Charles Daniels - tenore, Zofia Kilanowicz - soprano, Piotr Nowacki - bass, Orkiestra Symfoniczna Filharmonii im. Witolda Lutosławskiego we Wrocławiu, Marek Pijarowski - conductor, Jadwiga Rappé - alto
Agnus Dei, Chór Opery Wrocławskiej, Charles Daniels - tenore, Zofia Kilanowicz - soprano, Piotr Nowacki - bass, Orkiestra Symfoniczna Filharmonii im. Witolda Lutosławskiego we Wrocławiu, Marek Pijarowski - conductor, Jadwiga Rappé - alto


Siwa mgła (Hoary Fog) for baritone and orchestra (1979)

Bar solo-0000-4330-batt (4esec) ar pf-archi (7.6.4.6.10)
Duration: 18’
Premiere: 14 IX 1979, Bydgoszcz, performers: Kraków Philharmonic, cond. J. Katlewicz, A. Bachleda (Bar)

A vocal - symphonic poem, dedicated to Andrzej Bachleda. The composer's poetic inspiration was the song "Górole, górole, górolska muzyka " in which the gray fog "sat on Giewont" and obscured Juhas’s way to the girl (L. Polony). "I wrote Siwa mgła in the summer of 1979 for a commission from the seventeenth Bydgoszcz Music Festival,” said the composer, “and dedicated it to Andrzej Bachleda, who also gave the first performance together with the Kraków Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Jerzy Katlewicz, 14 September 1979 in Bydgoszcz. The crux of the piece is the song [nuta] „wierchowa”, long fascinating for me, and probably of ancient origin; something rare and unusual in its elemental simplicity and deliciously rich folk-melody structure. The natural perfection of this is a puzzle for a professional composer. All the elements of the piece are brought out from the musical and verbal text of this song. After a long introduction in which a series of mountainers’ scales are built on top of seven transpositions and chords weave together lightening or darkening the landscape "mist", the song appears chanted by a baritone in its original form, exactly equivalent to the known notation. The next appearances of the "nuta" are separated by more and more built-up orchestral episodes, being like a programmatic commentary to the text of each stanza; the piece is therefore a variant form of the symphonic poem.


Solenne per 67 esecutori (1967)

Soprano ‘off’ con microfono-0000-4440-batt (4esec) pf (2esec)-archi (12.0.4.4.4)
Duration: 7’
Piece dedicated to Nadia Boulanger
 

Premiere: 22 September 1967, Contemporary Music Festival “Warsaw Autumn”, A. Malewicz – Madey (mezzosoprano), Orchestre Philharmonique de l’ORTF (now Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France), cond. Ch. Bruck

This piece is the result of the composer’s sonoristic searching. It is characterized by unusual performance forces (soprano with a microphone, brass group, expanded percussion section, a piano for two pianists and strings, in total - as in the title, 67 musicians), the application of quasi - stereo effects and a tendency for reduction of musical resources. Sonorism "in this gains in the precision of the sketch, more nuanced colours in the note-clusters, a harmonically full sound, stronger form, but does not lose anything of its vigour and dynamism, which are the individual essence of Kilar’s music. It is "solemn", celebratory - as suggested by the title (Leszek Polony, „Żywioł i modlitwa”, p. 100).


Symphony No. 4 Sinfonia de motu for soprano, baritone, choir and orchestra (2005)

S Bar solo-coro misto-4444 4441-batt cel ar pf-archi
Duration: 60'
Piece commissioned by the Towarzystwa Fizyków Polskich (Society of Polish Physicists)
Premiere: 12 IX 2005, Warsaw, perf. Iwona Hossa (S), Jarosław Bręk (Bar), Choir and Orchestra of the National Philharmonic, cond. Antoni Wit

Sinfonia de motu was written in 2005, which was the world Year of Physics. The composer wrote his musical motto, composed of five notes, in the score of the piece: G E C H A. These represent an encryption of the basic concepts and sizes on physics - the gravitational constant, the electron charge, speed of light, Planck's constant and the atom. This musical structure became the motivic material for the entire symphony.
Extensive excerpts from Dante's Divine Comedy served as a literary text for the composer. They form a certain entirety, which leads from the sense of darkness, the initial chaos and hell - to the heavens, the stars, eternal and supreme light, and finally the all-embracing love, "which moves the sun and the stars" - and so to the final triumphant song of praise in honour of the Creator: Gloria.

The individual movements have literary titles: 1. Selva (forest, woods): 2. Cammino (road, journey); 3. Luce (light); 4. Amor (Love).

The first of these is purely instrumental, it develops gradually, in a majestic Largo. The second movement, Allegro moderato, begins in the spirit of a demonic scherzo, from which emerges the theme of the Dies Irae. The third movement is the lyrical centre of the symphony, a mystical and ecstatic Adagio, a song with soprano and baritone in an extended reprise form. The final movement, the most complex and extensive, is in itself a monumental cantata, with the participation of all elements of the performance forces.

From the perspective of the final Gloria - the title of the symphony takes on its proper sense. This, of course, is not about movement in purely physical terms, but about That "which sets everything in motion", "that moves the stars and the sun". In this most mystical and passionate of his works, Kilar reveals the message of his entire output. (quoted from Leszek Polony: discussion of the work in the third Festival of Polish Music programme notes).


Symphony No. 5 Advent Symphony for choir and symphony orchestra (2007)

coro misto-3333-4332-batt (2esec)-pf-archi (12.12.12.8.6)
Duration: 45'
Piece commissioned by the Silesian Philharmonic
Premiere: 16 XI 2007, Katowice, VIII G. Fitelberg International Conducting Competition, perf. Choir and Orchestra of the Silesian Philharmonic, cond. Mirosław Jacek Błaszczyk

The work was commissioned by the Silesian Philharmonic and had its premiere in November 2007 during the inauguration of the eighth Grzegorz Fitelberg International Competition for Conductors in Katowice. In the four-movement work there are references to the musical culture of Silesia; the second movement is based on the seventeenth century Silesian church song “Jezu, Jezu, do mnie przyjdź” and the third on the German Advent song “Herr, send herab uns deinen Sohn” (Andernacher Gesangbuch, Cologne 1608). In the first and fourth movements the composer used the choir, the text for which are words ending the Apocalypse of St. John and Amen.

Advent Symphony, I - Larghetto meditativo, perf. Chór i Orkiestra Filharmonii Śląskiej, dyr. Miroslaw Jacek Blaszczyk, wyd..DUX 0781 (Wojciech Kilar Katowicom), 2010
Advent Symphony, II. Largo religiosamente perf. Chór i Orkiestra Filharmonii Śląskiej, dyr. Miroslaw Jacek Blaszczyk, wyd..DUX 0781 (Wojciech Kilar Katowicom), 2010
Advent Symphony, III. Andante solennemente, perf.. Chór i Orkiestra Filharmonii Śląskiej, dyr. Miroslaw Jacek Blaszczyk, wyd..DUX 0781(Wojciech Kilar Katowicom), 2010
Advent Symphony, IV. Largo, supplichevolment, perf. Chór i Orkiestra Filharmonii Śląskiej, dyr. Miroslaw Jacek Blaszczyk, wyd..DUX 0781(Wojciech Kilar Katowicom), 2010


Te Deum for solo voices, mixed choir and orchestra (2008)

SATB solo-coro misto-0000-4331-timp ar pf-archi (8.7.6.5.4)
Duration:  30'
Premiere: 9 XI 2008, Kraków, IV Festival of Polish Music, perf. NOSPR, Polish Radio Choir in Kraków, Choir of the Silesian Philharmonic, P. Lane (pf), I. Hossa (S), E. Marciniec (A), R. Bartminski (T), P. Nowacki (B), W. Michniewski (dir)

Work dedicated to the memory of the composer's wife, Barbara Kilar, based on the text of the solemn hymn of praise from the Latin liturgy. "The musical language of the piece is a synthesis of the composer's previous experience in many areas. The basic form of the piece is repetition on different levels of organization of the work, from the repetition of sounds, motives or phrases, to the repetition of entire sections or segments which leads to a ritualized musical narrative. Consonance dominates in shaping the melodic-harmonic structure, with fifths-octaves or filled with thirds. The piece has clear tonal centres, and the diatonic use of modal progressions give the whole an archaic atmosphere. (Regina Chłopicka, programme notes for the IV Festival of Polish Music.)


Upstairs - Downstairs for 2 girls’ or boys’ choirs and orchestra (1971)

2 cori ragazzi(e)-6000-4440-batt (6esec) cel ar pf-archi  (7.6.6.6.6)
Duration: 12’
Premiere: 25 IX 1971, Warsaw, „Warsaw Autumn", performers: Symphony Orchestra of the Silesian Philharmonic and Choir of the State Music Liceum in Katowice, Karol Stryja (dir)

Upstairs-Downstairs is one of Wojciech Kilar’s last avant-garde works, who, as the composer has often stressed, had already announced new trends, spoken of another breakthrough. Premiered at the Warsaw Autumn Festival in 1971 it "goes beyond sonorism toward a new synthesis that combines the harmony of tonal clusters with tonal core of form " (Leszek Polony). Two children’s choirs perform vocals (there are no words used).


Veni Creator (2008)

coro misto-0000-0000-archi (6.5.4.3.2)
Duration: 15’
Premiere: 13 September 2008, Saragossa, perf. AUKSO Chamber Orchestra of the City of Tychy, the City of Katowice Singers Ensemble Camerata Silesia, cond. Marek Moś, 28 November 2008, Katowice, perf. AUKSO Chamber Orchestra of the City of Tychy, the City of Katowice Singers Ensemble Camerata Silesia, cond. Marek Moś

"This piece was created at a particular moment, very difficult, probably the toughest in the composer’s life. We talked many times about this and he knows perfectly well that in moments of complete despair when fate deals a huge blow to us, work is therapy," said the director of the Aukso orchestra, Marek Moś. The composition was written in 2008 to the Latin text of the hymn to the Holy Spirit, used in the Catholic church during the liturgy.

Veni Creator (2008), AUKSO, Camerata Silesia, Anna Szostak dyr, DUX 0856


Victoria for mixed choir and symphony orchestra (1983)

coro misto-2222-4331-batt (5esec) 2ar pf-archi (8.7.6.5.4)
Duration: 4’
Premiere: 20 VI 1983, Katowice, perf. Choir of the Silesian Phiharmonic, WOSPR, cond. Antoni Wit

The work was created to celebrate the second visit of Pope John Paul II to Poland. In anticipation of it the composer, "reminded his compatriots of the famous 'message', which King Jan III Sobieski wrote to Pope Innocent XI folliwng victory in Vienna: "Venimus, vidimus, Deus vicit - We came, we saw, God was victorious." Born of optimism and unshakable faith, it is undoubtedly an occasional piece, a sort of hymn of praise to welcome the distinguished guest" (L. Polony). The piece was first performed in the presence of the Holy Father 20 June 1983, in Katowice’s Cathedral of Christ the King, by artists of the National Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra and the Silesian Philharmonic Choir, conducted by Antoni Wit. "300 years after the victorious siege of Vienna the composer greeted the Polish Pope with a hymn of thanksgiving, and at the same time aroused hope among the Poles for the rebirth of the fatherland after the drama of martial law." (Marek Skocza).

Victoria, perf. The Silesian Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir, Miroslaw Jacek Blaszczyk - conductor, DUX 0592