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Conductors

RAFAŁ JANIAK

Born in 1986 composer, conductor and  educator. He completed composition with honours in the class of Prof. Stanislaw Moryto (2010) and he graduated in the field of symphonic and opera conducting (also diploma with honours) in the class of Prof. Antoni Wit (2011) at the Frederic Chopin University of Music in Warsaw. In 2016 he got doctorate and in 2020 habilitation.

Among his achievements are many awards won in various music competitions. He is the winner of the 1st award in the competition in the John Paul II 1st Composers’ Competition in Warsaw (2007), the 3rd award in the 4th International Composers’Competition “Musica Sacra” in Czestochowa (2008) and a distinction in the Tadeusz Baird All-Poland Competition  for Young Composers in Warsaw (2010). He was a semi-finalist in Donatella Flick Conducting Competition in London (2014). He is a winner of Opera composing competition organizing by Great Theatre in Lodz,  in which chairman of the jury was Krzysztof Penderecki (2017). His opera “Czlowiek z Manufaktury” was performed in February 2019 with a great success.

He was assistant conductor in National Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra to Antoni Wit (2012/13) and Jacek Kaspszyk (2013/14).

As a conductor he is regularly invited by main polish orchestras including Warsaw Philharmonic, National Polish Radio Orchestra in Katowice, Krakow Philharmonic, Silesian Philharmonic, Polish Radio Orchestra, Sinfonia Juventus, Baltic Philharmonic, Polish Chamber Orchestra Sopot and many others.

During 55. Warsaw Autumn festival he conducted one of the symphonic concerts with Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra (2012). After this concert, he got special invitation to conduct Final Concert in next festival (September 2013), doing polish premiere (second world performance) of extremely demanding new piece by Thomas Adès Totentanz.

In his repertoire are also operatic pieces. He has already prepared and conducted premiere stage performance of Mozart’s opera Cosi fan tutte (2011), and Don Giovanni (2014) in Warsaw Chamber Opera. He was musical director of Tchaikovsky’s Onegin which was performed in Great Theatre in Warsaw (2017). He conducts regularly in Great Theatre in Lodz operas: Strauss’s Ziguenerbaron and Pucini’s Turandot.

From 2017 Rafal Janiak is an artistic director of Chopin University Chamber Orchestra. From many achievements of this young ensemble is worth to mention last orchestra tour in China, on which they play under his baton over 20 concerts (July 2019), several published CDs, which the last is nominated to “Fryderyki 2021” award.

Currently he is a lecturer at the Frederic Chopin University of Music in Warsaw, on which from 2020 he hold a position of dean of Symphonic and Operatic Conducting department.

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WOJCIECH RAJSKI

Conductor, founder and artistic director of the Polish Chamber Philharmonic Sopot.

Born in Warsaw in 1948, Wojciech Rajski is a graduate of the Music Academy in Warsaw where he studied conducting with Bogusław Madey, gaining a diploma with distinction. He then studied at the Musikhochschule in Cologne, Germany, on a DAAD scholarship. In Vienna, he participated in Master Classes with Witold Rowicki.

He made his professional debut in 1971 at the Grand Opera Theatre in Warsaw conducting the ballet Giselle. From 1974-78, he served as Artistic Director and Principal Conductor for the State Philharmonic Orchestra in Poznań and also conduced the Betovenhalleorchester during 1978-80. In 1982 he founded the Polish Chamber Philharmonic Sopot.

From 1993 to 2006 Wojciech Rajski served as Artistic Director of the Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra in Warsaw, regularly performing some of the best European concert halls in France, Switzerland, Sweden, Austria, Spain and Italy.

In addition to concert performances, he realised many recordings for Polish Radio.

Beside the regular work with Polish orchestras, Wojciech Rajski has appeared as a guest conductor with numerous orchestras in Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Mexico, England, Sweden, Greece, Spain and Germany. He has worked closely with several orchestras, including the Orchestre de la Suisse Romaine, NDR Hannover and Bayerische Rundfunk. He has performed with many soloists of world renown including Mstislav Rostropovich, Henryk Szeryng, Sabine Meyer, Ivo Pogorelich and Krystian Zimerman, who toured Germany together with Wojciech Rajski and the Junge Deutsche Philharmonie.

Wojciech Rajski has taken part in numerous international festivals including the Prague Spring, the Festival of Flanders, Festival Gran Canaria, Festspiele Europäische Wochen Passau, the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival, Festivals at Evian and Montpellier, La Chaise Dieu and the Festival in Copenhagen. His discography includes over 50 albums for labels such as EMI, Chant du Monde, Claves, Thorofon, Tacet, Midas, Bis Wifon, KOCH, and many others. He has also records for radio and television in Poland and Germany  for SAT 1, 3 SAT and ARD.

In 1993 Wojciech Rajski began teaching, accepting a position at the Hochschule für Musik in Karlsruhe where he was awarded the title of Professor. Since 1998 he has been a Professor of Conducting at the Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst in Frankfurt am Main, and has also taught conducting classes at the Music Academy in Gdańsk since 2008. In 2010, he received the title of Professor from the President of Poland.

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