Maria Kunińska-Opacka

In 1951 she graduated with distinction from Stefan Belina-Skupiewski’s singing class at Katowice’s State Higher School of Music (now the Academy). She also studied violin with Irena Dubiska. She made her debut at the Silesian Opera in 1946 as Mercedes in Bizet’s Carmen and Flora in Verdi’s La traviata. She sang under such outstanding conductors as Jan Krenz and Stanisław Skrowaczewski.

In 1947–1957 she was a soloist at Bytom Opera. She was invited to sing on Poland’s major concert and festival stages, as well as for Polish and foreign radio broadcasters (Chopin’s songs, among others).

As a teacher she first worked at the Wieniawski Music Studio in Warsaw, later at the State Higher School of Music (now the Academy) in Łódź, and in Warsaw. In 1972–1977 she continued her artistic career in Nairobi (Kenia).

Her repertoire included about twenty operatic parts (such as Siébel in Gounod’s Faust, Priestess in Verdi’s Aida, and Tatyana in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin), numerous works by contemporary composers (Mycielski, Kisielewski, and others), Baroque oratorios and cantatas, as well as songs and operettas. For six years she was the only performer of the soprano part in Szymanowski’s oratorio Stabat Mater.

Her accolades include the Cavalier’s Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta, as well as the Gold Badge of Merit of the SPAM Association of Polish Musicians.
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