Witold Lutoslawski

Biography

Born: January 25, 1913; Warsaw, Poland   Died: February 7, 1994; Warsaw, Poland  
Lutoslawski was the leading progressive figure in Polish music of the second half of the twentieth century. Born in Warsaw, he showed an exceptional musical talent at an early age, with his first compositions dating from 1922. He studied piano, violin, and composition (with Witold Maliszewski, a pupil of Rimsky-Korsakov), graduating from the Warsaw Conservatory in 1937. Two years, at the beginning of World War II, Poland was occupied by the Nazi Read more Germany; and Nazi repression included censorship on artistic expression. Lutoslawski survived the difficult war years as well as the subsequent Stalinist period by writing for radio, film, and theatre. In addition, he arranged folk-songs and composed music for children.

Considered too formalist, his concert music was rarely performed. His first substantial orchestral work, The Symphonic Variations was premiered in 1939. It is a work firmly rooted in tonality with a folk-like theme that is varied in a kaleidoscopic way. His first stylistic period culminated in the folk-influenced, three-movement Concerto for Orchestra (1954).

With the cultural thaw which started in the late '50s, his reputation began to grow, at home and abroad, as did his compositional style, with twelve-tone techniques appearing in Funeral Music (1958). In this work, Lutoslawski continually resolves ascending scales with semi-tone intervals that tend to anchor tonal centers within keyless regions. In Jeux Vénitiens (1961), Lutoslawski took his first step into a "limited aleatory music" -- after hearing a performance of John Cage's Concerto for Piano in 1960. Lutoslawski's elegant String Quartet (1964) utilizes four rhythmically independent strands simultaneously, yielding wonderfully dense and elastic textures. In the Live pour orchestra (1968) the work's four main sections are connected by controlled aleatory passages. Most of his subsequent works were orchestral, fully chromatic, orchestrated in a manner suggesting Debussy and Ravel, and consistently develop an opposition between aleatory and metrical textures. Lutoslawski went on to compose nearly twenty major orchestral works, including Symphony No. 3 (1982), for which he was awarded the prestigious Grawemeyer Award, and his final Symphony No. 4 (1992), commissioned and premiered by the Los Angeles Philharmonic.

He also composed works for distinguished soloists, such as Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, (&Les espaces du sommeil), Heinz and Ursula Holliger (Concerto for Oboe and Harp), Anne-Sophie Mutter, Chain II, Mstislav Rostropovich (cello concerto), and Krystian Zimmerman (Piano Concerto). Lutoslawski's extensive experience conducting his own works helped him to refine his musical language, his later works becoming more lyrical and harmonically transparent. Read less
Lutoslawski: Concerto for Orchestra - Brahms: Piano Quartet, Op. 25 / Harth-Bedoya, Fort Worth
Release Date: 04/01/2016   Label: Harmonia Mundi  
Catalog: 807668   Number of Discs: 1
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Lutoslawski: Symphony No 3, Etc / Otaka, Bbc No Of Wales
Release Date: 02/20/1996   Label: Bis  
Catalog: 743   Number of Discs: 1
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Lutoslawski, Penderecki: Cello Concertos / Thedéen, Et Al
Release Date: 04/01/1999   Label: Bis  
Catalog: 937   Number of Discs: 1
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Dutilleux: Tout Un Monde Lointain; Lutoslawski: Cello Concerto / Poltera, Van Steen
Release Date: 12/08/2009   Label: Bis  
Catalog: 1777   Number of Discs: 1
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Browse 151-175 of 210 Available Recordings
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  • 151.
    Enescu, Reger, Brahms, Lutoslawski: Works For Violin And Piano / Annette-barbara Vogel, Ulrich Hofmann
    Label: Cybele   Catalog: 350901 Release Date: 11/26/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Max Reger,  Witold Lutoslawski,  Johannes Brahms,  George Enescu
    Performer:  Annette-Barbara Vogel,  Ulrich Hofmann
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  • 152.
    Works For Flute And Harp - Rust, Zamara, Busser, Ibert, Etc
    Label: Dux Records   Catalog: 347 Release Date: 09/24/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Friedrich Wilhelm Rust,  Antonio Zamara,  Paul-Henri Büsser,  Camille Saint-Saëns  ... 
    Performer:  Anna Sikorzak-Olek
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  • 153.
    Lutoslawski, Dutilleux: Cello Concertos / Rostropovich
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 67868 Release Date: 09/17/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Witold Lutoslawski,  Henri Dutilleux
    Performer:  Mstislav Rostropovich
    Conductor:  Witold Lutoslawski,  Serge Baudo
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestre de Paris
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  • 154.
    Guitar Impressions - Music For Two Guitars / Hebb, Svitt
    Label: Gega New   Catalog: 214 Release Date: 09/01/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Stanley Myers,  Isaac Albeniz,  Witold Lutoslawski,  Jacques Ibert  ... 
    Performer:  Bernard Hebb,  Finn Svit
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  • 155.
    Pavane - Encore Selections / Hiromi Okada
    Label: Camerata Records   Catalog: 608 Release Date: 06/25/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Emmanuel Chabrier,  Johannes Brahms,  Anton Webern,  Witold Lutoslawski  ... 
    Performer:  Hiromi Okada
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  • 156.
    Lutoslawski: Orchestral Music Vol 7 / Wit, Et Al
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8555270 Release Date: 11/20/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Witold Lutoslawski
    Conductor:  Antoni Wit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 157.
    Lutoslawski, Nielsen, Prokofiev / Stoltzman, Leighton Smith
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 63836 Release Date: 10/23/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Carl Nielsen,  Sergei Prokofiev,  Witold Lutoslawski
    Performer:  Richard Stoltzman,  Tomasz Bielak
    Conductor:  Lawrence Leighton Smith
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 158.
    Bartók, Lutoslawski: Concertos For Orchestsra / Davis
    Label: Apex   Catalog: 7406192 Release Date: 10/15/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Béla Bartók,  Witold Lutoslawski
    Conductor:  Sir Andrew Davis
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 159.
    Milestones - 6 Cello Concertos / Peter Wispelwey, Et Al
    Label: Channel Classics   Catalog: 14982 Release Date: 09/11/2001   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Anton Arensky,  Witold Lutoslawski,  Sir Edward Elgar,  Karl Davidoff  ... 
    Performer:  Paolo Giacometti,  Pieter Wispelwey
    Conductor:  Jac Van Steen,  Lawrence Renes,  Richard Tognetti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra,  Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra,  Netherlands Wind Ensemble  ... 
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  • 160.
    The Best Of Lutoslawski
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8556692 Release Date: 08/21/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Witold Lutoslawski
    Performer:  Krysztof Bakowski,  Andrzej Bauer,  Peter Paleczny
    Conductor:  Antoni Wit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra Katowice
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  • 161.
    Etudes Pour Piano Vol 2 / Erika Haase
    Label: Tacet   Catalog: 100 Release Date: 07/16/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  György Ligeti,  Alexander Scriabin,  Witold Lutoslawski,  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Erika Haase
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  • 162.
    Lutoslawski: Selected Works / Jakowicz, Michniewski, Et Al
    Label: Cd Accord   Catalog: 29 Release Date: 02/27/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Witold Lutoslawski
    Performer:  Krzysztof Jakowicz
    Conductor:  Wojciech Michniewski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Sinfonia Varsovia
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  • 163.
    Live Recital No 1 / Harold Wright
    Label: Boston Records   Catalog: 1023 Release Date: 01/01/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Witold Lutoslawski,  Francis Poulenc,  Bohuslav Martinu,  Claude Debussy  ... 
    Performer:  Luis Batlle,  Harold Wright
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  • 164.
    A Game Of Go / Quattro Mani
    Label: Klavier Records   Catalog: 11106 Release Date: 11/01/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Witold Lutoslawski,  Frederic Rzewski,  Haskell Behrend Small,  Aaron Copland  ... 
    Performer:  Alice Rybak,  Susan Grace
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Quattro Mani
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  • 165.
    Nocturnal  / Julian Bream
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 54901 Release Date: 10/17/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Frank Martin,  Witold Lutoslawski,  Leo Brouwer,  Toru Takemitsu  ... 
    Performer:  Julian Bream
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  • 166.
    Mozart, Fauré, Prokofiev, Lutoslawski / Thorsen, Grimse
    Label: Simax   Catalog: 1210 Release Date: 08/31/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Witold Lutoslawski,  Sergei Prokofiev,  Gabriel Fauré,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Marianne Thorsen,  Hĺvard Gimse
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  • 167.
    Label: Cd Accord   Catalog: 15 Release Date: 07/25/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Witold Lutoslawski
    Performer:  Ewa Poblocka
    Conductor:  Witold Lutoslawski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra Katowice
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  • 168.
    Capriccio - Mid-century Music For Clarinet / Howard, Carno
    Label: Centaur Records   Catalog: 2201 Release Date: 04/15/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Witold Lutoslawski,  Paul Hindemith,  Heinrich Sutermeister,  Leonard Bernstein  ... 
    Performer:  Zita Carno,  David Howard
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  • 169.
    Lutoslawski At The Guildhall Vol 1
    Label: Somm   Catalog: 219 Release Date: 11/30/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Witold Lutoslawski
    Performer:  Louise Hopkins
    Conductor:  Wojciech Michniewski,  Witold Lutoslawski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Guildhall Symphony Orchestra
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  • 170.
    Solo Cello - Hindemith, Krenek, Ligeti, Etc / Boettcher
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 5616 Release Date: 09/14/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Jacques Ibert,  Ernst Krenek,  Witold Lutoslawski,  Hans Werner Henze  ... 
    Performer:  Wolfgang Boettcher
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  • 171.
    Kagan Edition Vol 20 - Romantic Music And Miniatures
    Label: Live Classics   Catalog: 192 Release Date: 05/01/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Béla Bartók,  Dmitri Shostakovich,  Witold Lutoslawski,  Fritz Kreisler  ... 
    Performer:  Vladimir Skanavi,  Oleg Kagan
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  • 172.
    Lutoslawski, Penderecki: Cello Concertos / Thedéen, Et Al
    Label: Bis   Catalog: 937 Release Date: 04/01/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Krzysztof Penderecki,  Witold Lutoslawski
    Performer:  Torleif Thedéen
    Conductor:  Leif Segerstam
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 173.
    Elgar, Lutoslawski: Cello Concertos / Wispelwey, Van Steen
    Label: Channel Classics   Catalog: 12998 Release Date: 03/09/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Witold Lutoslawski,  Sir Edward Elgar
    Performer:  Pieter Wispelwey
    Conductor:  Jac Van Steen
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 174.
    Lutoslawski: Orchestral Works Vol 6 / Wit, Polish Rso
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8554283 Release Date: 03/09/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Witold Lutoslawski
    Performer:  Olga Pasichnyk
    Conductor:  Antoni Wit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 175.
    Four For Tango - Piazzolla, Turina, Et Al /Guitars A Quattro
    Label: Intim Musik   Catalog: 51 Release Date: 12/15/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Astor Piazzolla,  Federico Moreno-Torroba,  Witold Lutoslawski,  Joaquin Turina
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Guitars a Quattro
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