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Symphony Orchestra and Choir of the Karol Szymanowski State Music School Complex No. 4 in Warsaw

The origins of the orchestra date back to the 1950s. Until 1970, the orchestra was led by the renowned conductor and composer Feliks Rybicki, who frequently performed with it at the National Philharmonic. From 1989 to 1996, the orchestra collaborated with the Helmholtz Gymnasium in Karlsruhe (Germany). In those years, the orchestra was led by Krzysztof Lewandowski, Andrzej Borzym, Andrzej Affeltowicz, and Marcin Nałęcz-Niesiołowski and became renowned in many cities in Poland and Germany for their performance of Haydn’s oratorio The Creation. From 1998 to 2005, the orchestra was led by Ruben Silva, collaborating with conductors of the younger generation (Łukasz Borowicz, Ewa Strusińska). During this period, the orchestra made numerous appearances at the National Philharmonic and the Fryderyk Chopin University of Music.

In the following years, conductors including Tadeusz Wojciechowski and Andrzej Straszyński took the stand. From 2009 to 2013, the orchestra was led by charismatic Maciej Niesiołowski. In 2013, Marta Kluczyńska became the conductor of the ensemble. Under her baton, young musicians performed spectacular renditions of masterpieces such as Mozart’s Coronation Mass and Dvořák’s Symphony No. 8. An extraordinary event occurred in January 2014, when the legendary concertmaster of Sinfonia Varsovia and the school’s teacher, Prof. Jan Stanienda, conducted a concert. For the students, it was a unique opportunity to connect with a great artist and learn from his rich experience as a soloist and orchestral musician. The Gala Concert at the National Philharmonic in 2017, celebrating the school’s 70th anniversary, was an exceptional event. The orchestra was led by the internationally acclaimed conductor Łukasz Borowicz, a distinguished graduate of the school and was joined by outstanding alumni and musicians from the National Philharmonic, Teatr Wielki – Polish National Opera, and the school’s faculty. In 2017, Wojciech Pławner became the conductor of the orchestra. Under his direction, the ensemble has already performed 8 concerts, including the 75th Anniversary of the school (2022). Amid the challenging time of the pandemic, working with students online, he prepared an experimental mosaic recording of an excerpt from Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5. In 2018 and 2019, he conducted the orchestra at the La Folle Journée festival.