"I Hear Music in the Rhythmn of the City"
Article translated from Polski Tydzien
You have studied in Poland, Holland, U.K. and Denmark
Could you tell us more about your education in Europe? Did Europe with open borders effect you, did it make it easier, how did it influence your career?
From a very young age I had always wanted to travel and live in other countries. It was my dream to study abroad. Studies in UK are very expensive so I took advantage of the opportunity to study abroad which for me was free. This allowed me to acquire knowledge and experience of many different styles and teaching methods with outstanding musicians. Living abroad is one of the best ways to immerse yourself in different cultures.
Music is universal, without borders. The ability to move freely in Europe taught me many different approaches to music and education, contact with various emminent musicians and working with them is invaluable experience. It had a huge influence on me.
You have studied with brilliant musicians. What did you learn, what do you remember most?
Having a variety of teachers, I was taguht many different styles. Each teacher is individual with their own way of playing and teaching and it was important for me to assimilate this into my own way of approaching music..
For me though the fundamental objective is to find a beautiful sound through the development of good technique - strong foundations on which to base a musical inspiration and then to colour with my own imagination whilst remaining as true to the composer as possible.
You have taken part in many competitions and concerts. Which of those experiences is especially important to you?
Every performance for me is important, in front of an audience large or small. You learn as much from the success as the mistakes. As a famous pianist said, “every performance is a rehearsal for the next”
Contemporary music is something you are interested in? Why is it so important for you?
The fundamental elements of the music making apply equally in contemporary all classical music. Every form of art has the task of telling a story. As classical music has a strong and long performance history, people have clear opinions and expectations. Contemporary music is new and open to interpretation. This allows the artist more creativity and freedom in execution. You just have to remember that contemporary music like classical or any art form requires a shared understanding and commitment to musical details and of course always good tone and beauty of sound.
You work for the British and International Federation of Festivals. What does your work involve?
The British and International Federation of Festivals gives everyone - from toddlers just beginning an instrument to students and adults the - possibility of performing in public in concert hall conditions. This performance platform gives them a chance to get expert advice from qualified musicians in the music and arts profession.. My work as a juror gives me great satisfaction and is hugely rewarding. It is inspiring to help teach people and share my experience.
How do you place yourself as an artist on the London scene? Is the music world as competitive as finance or media.
London has a very diverse and colourful art scene from all over the world. I feel truly privileged to have access to it on my doorstep. It encourages me to work hard and to seek new forms of interpretation in my playing. For me it is also important to get inspiration from other artists , not only from the world of music, but also visual arts, dance and theatre. London offers an incredibly wide choice. The other side of the coin can be that there can be too much choice! I sometimes see small audiences and that can be sad. However for me it is far better to be in a rich and fertile climate than a desert.
Being an artist in any field is always competitive. I have never worked in finance or media but as one doctor who organises concerts said. It is far easier to have a career in medicine than in music!
You have recorded and given many live performances. Which do you prefer?
I love performing live and I love recording, They are totally different mediums. In a live performance one has the energy of an audience to feed off and give to . One can get away with taking more risks but one can not be perfect. Live performance is more spontaneous. Recording one has the opportunity to edit the work, one aims for perfection. I welcome the intensity of the concentration that is involved but it is a slightly false environment. One can become too obsessed with perfection and lose something of the spontaneous nature of artistry in the process. Music is the communication of feelings to others and in a studio there is only you..
Do you have a favourite composer? I know it’s a difficult question! Is there for example something you always sing in the shower?
I don’t have a favourite composer but perhaps some composers I understand more than others. Perhaps because their emotional language is more suited to my own personality.
I don’t sing in the shower but I do sing on the bike cycling around London.
What music do you listen to everyday? Is it classical?
I love all music, pop, jazz, classical but I also find music in the world all around me, from birds singing to ice cracking in winter. I can also find sounds in the rhythm of the city.
You are a recognized artist in the Polish community in the UK. Many times you have played at Posk and other Polish events and abroad too. How are your impressions of those performances ? Is the Polish audience different from the English audience ?
Performing for a Polish audience is a genuine pleasure because they are from experience very warm and receptive but they are definitely an audience who know exactly what they like and don’t like! They are strong in their opinions and not afraind to share that!..
Even if not musicians they will always have an opinion.. I remember playing in Poland when a lady the next day came up in the park to me, She said I loved your concert but Pani, your minuet.. perhaps it was a little too robust for a minuet…!