Mikolaj Zielenski

Biography

Born: ca. 1585    Died: after 1611   
Hailed as the most important Polish composer of his time, Zielenski was the first Polish composer to write works for an instrumental ensemble -- three fantasias. Of the information that is known about Zielenski, most comes from his two publications. He did serve as an organist to the Archbishop of Gniezno, Baranowski, who was responsible for the printing of Zielenski's music as well as for helping to develop his talent. One collection is a set of Read more offertoria arranged for two choirs ranging from sets for seven to twelve voices. The dialogues between the two choirs were held together through his use of imitation while they were distinguished by specific ranges (one choir sang the high parts and the other choir sang the low parts) and instrumental coloration. The other collection was a set of communiones or antiphons which were much more intimate than the offertoria. These were arranged for three to six voices with some solos. Zielenski's solos are important because they were the first monodies written by a Polish composer. Read less