Saturday, July 19, 2014

Great Polish Composers: Karol Jozef Lipinski

Great Polish Composer Karol Jozef Lipinski
 October 30,1790 – December 16, 1861
Karol Lipiński was a violinist, composer and conductor; born in Radzyń (Podlasie region), near Lwow (which is now Lvov, Ukraine)

As many great Polish composers and musicians, Lipiński began to learn the violin at the age of five, from his father.  When his family moved to Lwow in 1799, he became the concertmaster of the palace orchestra of Adam Count Starzeński, which was led by Lipinski's father.

During this period of time, Karol became interested in playing the cello and demonstrated a remarkable ability to learn to play it as fast as he did the violin.

In 1809 he accepted the position of concertmaster of the opera theatre orchestra, and three years later became the orchestra's kapellmaster. Five years later Lipinski went to Vienna, and met Ludwig Spohr, a German composer and violinist, who encouraged Lipinski to follow the career of violin virtuoso.  Lipinski heeded his advice, gave up his position at the Lwow theatre, and immersed himself completely in mastering violin technique, and expanding his musical repertoire.

After his Lwow performance in 1817, Lipinski embarked on an ambitious musical tour that took him through Hungary and Croatia on his way to Italy.  There he performed in Venice, Milan, Padua, Verona, and Piacenza to great acclaim.

A year later, Lipinski twice appeared on the stage in Piacenza, with the renown Italian composer and violinist, Niccolo Paganini

As if this tour were not gruelling enough, Lipinski's next tour lasted several years!  During this period of time he performed concerts in Lvov, Kiev, Krzemieniec, Kamieniec Podolski, Vilno, Cracow, Wroclaw, Poznan,Leipzig, Berlin, Moscow, and St. Petersburg.  Everywhere he performed, the crowds of admirers wildly applauded him.

Subsequently he performed concerts in Warsaw in 1827 to 1828, which led to an appointment as first violinist in the Court of the Polish Kingdom.  In May 1829 he performed during the coronation ceremony of Nicholas I,  and then in 1831, in the Tsar's Court. 

After a sojourn of three years, he returned to touring throughout Europe, performing in Leipzig, Frankfurt, and in Paris, (where Chopin collaborated with him), London, Manchester, Wroclaw and Vienna (where he was bestowed with honorary citizenship.)

Lipinski settled in Dresden in 1839, and for the next twenty years, he performed in numerous symphony and chamber concerts, accompanied by Franz Liszt. He also served as the concertmaster for Frederick-August, the King of Saxony. 

His tours took him again to Lvov, Kiev and  Warsaw, and he worked as a teacher while
parenting his teenage sons Jozef Joachim and Henryk Wieniawski.

In 1846, Lipinski was compelled to minimize his concert activities due to suffering rheumatic fever.  In recognition of his great contributions to the royal court, Lipinski was honoured with the Knightly Order of Prince Albert.  When he retired in 1861, he settled in his estate in Urlov and established a music school for talented children.

Major compositions:

Two polonaises op. 1 for violin and orchestra
Siciliano varié op. 2 for string quartet
Symphony in E flat major op. 2 no. 1 (before 1810)
Symphony in C major op. 2 no. 2 (before 1810)
Symphony in B major op. 2 no. 3 (before 1810)
Sonnet for orchestra (before 1810)
Favorite-Mazurka for orchestra (before 1810)
Szlachta czynszowa czyli Kłótnia o wiatr / Tenant Noblity or the Argument about the Wind, opera (1810-14)
Two capriccios op. 3 for violin and piano or for solo violin
Variations in G major op. 4 for string quartet
Variations in G minor op. 5 for violin and orchestra
Three polonaises op. 5 for piano
Concert polonaise op. 6 for violin and orchestra
Rondo alla Polacca in E major op. 7 for violin and orchestra (before 1817)
Trio for two violins and cello op. 8 (1821)
Three polonaises op. 9 for violin and string quartet
Three capriccios op. 10 for violin and piano or for solo violin
Variations on Rossini's opera 'Cinderella' op. 11 for violin and orchestra
Trio for two violins and cello in A major op. 12
Rondo alla Polacca op. 13 for violin and orchestra
Concerto for violin and orchestra in F sharp minor op. 14 (1822)
Variations on the theme of Bellini's opera 'The Pirate' op. 15 for violin and orchestra (ca. 1820-24)
Duo on the theme of Meyerbeer's opera 'Il Crociati di Egitto' op. 16 for violin and orchestra (ca. 1820-24)
Rondo alla Polacca on the theme of Polish songs op. 17 for violin and orchestra (ca. 1820-24)
Rondeau de concert op. 18 for violin and orchestra (ca. 1820-24)
Variations on the theme of the cavatina from Rossini's opera 'The Barber of Seville' for violin and orchestra (ca. 1820-24)
Souvenir de la mer Baltique, divertissements op. 19 for violin and piano or for solo violin
"Military" concerto for violin and orchestra in D major op. 21 (ca. 1826)
Variations de bravoure sur une Romance militaire op. 22 for violin and orchestra
Fantaisie et variations op. 23 on the motifs of Bellini's opera 'La sonnambula' for violin and orchestra (ca. 1824)
Rodacy we Wszechnicy Wrocławskiej / Compatriots at Wroclaw University for 4 voices (1826)
Concerto for violin and orchestra in E minor op. 24 (1830-33)
Adagio elegico op. 25 for violin and orchestra
Fantasia and variations using motifs of Meyerbeer's opera 'Les Hugenots' op. 26 for violin and orchestra"
Three capriccios op. 27 for violin and piano or for solo violin
Great fantasia using motifs of Bellini's opera 'The Puritans' op. 28 for violin and orchestra
Polonoise guerrière op. 29 for orchestra (1837)
Three capriccios op. 29 for violin and piano or for solo violin
Fantasia on Verdi's opera 'Ernani' op. 30 for violin and piano or for solo violin (ca. 1845)
Fantasia on the theme of Neapolitan arias op. 31 for violin and piano or for solo violin
Concerto for violin and orchestra in A major op. 32 (1844)
Fantasia using the motifs of Stefani's opera 'Cracovians and Mountaineers' op. 33 for violin and orchestra (before 1826)
Impromptus op. 34 for violin and piano or for solo violin (ca. 1842)

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