POLISH HEROINES OF MUSIC – a new album in the SOUNDS series

POLISH HEROINES OF MUSIC – a new album in the SOUNDS series

18 / 01 / 2021
Does music call for gender equality? It can surely defend itself. Nonetheless, the artistic advantages of excellent present-day women-composers and their eminent predecessors are worthy of being noticed and highlighted. Women have their separate and distinctive voice in Polish music. In recognition of the need to acknowledge that voice, on 29th January ANAKLASIS will release the CD POLISH HEROINES OF MUSIC, comprising orchestral works by Elżbieta Sikora, Hanna Kulenty, Grażyna Bacewicz, and Agata Zubel.

This most recent album in the SOUNDS series is the result of cooperation between PWM Edition and the Adam Mickiewicz Institute, specifically – of IAM’s programme ‘Polish Heroines of Sound’, implemented as part of a wider campaign known as ‘Polska Music’. The programmes aims to create and disseminate a new canon of music by Polish women-composers. The third project participant is the French Orchestre Pasdeloup, which has undertaken to record four pieces by outstanding Polish women-artists. The orchestra is led on this album, appropriately to the task, by Marzena Diakun, an extraordinarily gifted woman-conductor.

“The openness of Orchestre Pasdeloup and its head, Marianne Rivière, to this project, promoting little-known works by Polish women-composers, and to contemporary music at large, is of great importance to me,” emphasises Marzena Diakun. “Poland and France, artists from both countries, have met and worked together on this remarkable project.”

Elżbieta Sikora’s piece Sonosphère V. Wanda Landowska, included on our CD, combines acoustic tradition with electric modernity. The mastery of French jazz guitarist Misja Fitzgerald Michel, whose virtuosic electric guitar solo conjures up, in accordance with the composer’s intentions, the nervousness and sound colour of Jimi Hendrix’s playing, will leave no one indifferent. Hanna Kulenty’s Aisthetikos brings us in contact with metaphysical trance and musical surrealism. This work is interpreted here by excellent soloists: saxophonist Bartłomiej Duś and pianist Magdalena Duś, who premiered the piece less than a year ago at Kielce’s Świętokrzyska Philharmonic. Contradizione is a classic by the eminent composer and violin virtuoso Grażyna Bacewicz, who also was a proficient pianist and writer. Agata Zubel’s In the Shade of an Unshed Tear attempts to explore the possibilities of a Beethoven orchestra in contemporary music. Our ANAKLASIS release features the world premiere recording of this composition.

The CD POLISH HEROINES OF MUSIC is part of our SOUNDS series, in which the interpretations are just as crucial as the repertoire. Apart from excellent soloists, a key role is played here by Orchestre Pasdeloup, France’s oldest continually performing orchestra (est. 1861), headed by Marianne Rivière, who is the only female orchestra director in France. Collaborations with these outstanding artists have made it possible to present, on the ANAKLASIS album POLISH HEROINES OF MUSIC, not only the most interesting phenomena in contemporary music writing, but also the allure and brilliance of women-artists active in the music market.

As of 29th February, the CD will be available for purchase at PWM’s brick-and-mortar bookshop, at,, as well as the other best music shops and bookstores, online services, and the virtual shop of the empik chain!
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