Chopin University Chamber Orchestra

Rafał Janiak - Artistic Manager
Aleksander Zwierz - Inspector

The ensemble was formed in 2017 on the initiative of UMFC rector Professor Klaudiusz Baran and then orchestra inspector Aleksander Zwierz - the current manager. The artistic direction of the formation was entrusted to conductor Rafał Janiak. The establishment of the orchestra was guided by the idea of careful selection of musicians so that the ensemble could present a very diverse, often revealing program. The members of the orchestra are outstanding students, selected through a multi-stage audition process. The ensemble can boast numerous successes as well as cooperation with excellent conductors, including Grzegorz Nowak, Michał Klauza, Anna Sułkowska-Migoń and Marcin Nałęcz-Niesiołowski. Almost from the beginning of its existence, the Orchestra has been active in concerts, honoring with its playing important events for the history and culture of Poland. These include performances on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of Tadeusz Kościuszko's death in the Column Hall of the Presidential Palace or during the "National Playing" concert held in the courtyard of the Presidential Palace on the 200th anniversary of Stanisław Moniuszko's birth, as well as at the United Nations Palace of Nations in Geneva on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of Poland's independence. The Chopin University Chamber Orchestra is also active in phonographic activities. Back in 2017, the orchestra, conducted by Rafał Janiak, released its debut album of music by Benjamin Britten, Krzysztof Penderecki and Dmitry Shostakovich through Chopin University Press. The ensemble's next album, recorded with soloist Rafał Grząka, featuring contemporary Polish accordion concertos, was released in 2020. Other albums featuring the Chopin University Chamber Orchestra include: - Paweł Gusnar. Saxophone Varie vol. 4, - Ignacy Zalewski Accordion Works, - Le Clavecin Moderne plus Percussion vol. 1. The Chopin University Chamber Orchestra not infrequently accompanies important UMFC events, playing at such events as the awarding of an honorary doctorate to maestro Arvo Pärt, a monographic concert dedicated to the work of Stanislaw Moryto, or on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of Stanislaw Moniuszko's birth. In July 2019, the orchestra toured China for several weeks, where it played 21 concerts in the most prestigious concert halls, including the Poly Theatre in Shanghai. This first such event in the history of our university was enthusiastically received by Chinese audiences and critics. In December 2020, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the events of December '70, an album was released by Polish Radio Gdańsk, on which the orchestra performed Rafał Janiak's piece entitled December Threnody. The release of the CD was preceded by concerts in Gdynia and Gdańsk, during which Rafał Janiak's piece immortalized on the CD was premiered alongside works by Krzysztof Penderecki Mikołaj Górecki and Paweł Łukaszewski, among others. In March 2023, the orchestra performed in the hall of the Copernicus Center in Chicago, presenting, among others, a piece by Mikołaj Majkusiak entitled On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres for string orchestra and seven magic instruments, written to commemorate Nicolaus Copernicus. On April 19, 2023, members of the orchestra performed at the Grand Theater - National Opera, co-creating a Polish-Israeli symphony orchestra. The concert, attended by the presidents of Poland, Israel and Germany, was part of the celebration of the 80th anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.