Oratorio Music Concert Filharmonia Narodowa

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Oratorio Music Concert
Andrzej Boreyko, photo: Michał Zagórny

Antonín Dvořák set about composing his Stabat Mater following the crushing death of his daughter, in 1875. He resumed work in the autumn of 1877, when cruel fate had again deprived him of two more children. The composer created what is perhaps the most elaborate setting of this Marian hymn in the whole musical literature. He forged its monumental character through the highly emphatic repeats of textual phrases and slow ‘cortège’ tempi that dominate the work. This is an extremely focussed, contemplative and tender composition. The impression of homogeneity is not diminished by the fact that the composer employs a great variety of means. He shows himself to be a splendid symphonist: the orchestral part in this oratorio is particularly important and masterfully treated. The twenty strophes were set in the form of ten (unsymmetrical) sections with solo and ensemble parts, combined in various ways with choral passages. This work was first performed on 23 December 1880 in Prague (cond. Adolf Čech), and two years later a performance in Brno was led by a young Leoš Janáček. Particularly successful proved to be performances of Stabat Mater at the Royal Albert Hall in London (Dvořák’s highly successful debut as a conductor abroad) and in Birmingham in 1884.

Piotr Maculewicz


Izabela Matuła

An honoured graduate of the Krzysztof Penderecki Academy of Music in Krakow (2009), Izabela Matuła represented Poland at the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World Competition in 2009.Her first operatic roles were Gabrielle in Krzysztof Penderecki’s The Devils of Loudun, Marguerite in Charles Gounod’s Faust and Micaëla in Georges Bizet’s Carmen with Krakow Opera. In the years 2012–2018, she was engaged at Theater Krefeld und Mönchengladbach, performing roles of Ellen Orford in Benjamin Britten’s Peter Grimes, Amelia in Giuseppe Verdi’s Un ballo in maschera and title parts in Giacomo Puccini’s Suor Angelica and Leoš Janáček’s Káťa Kabanová. Her repertoire includes roles such as Contessa Almaviva (Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro), Amelia (Un ballo in maschera), Mimi (Puccini’s La boheme), and the main roles: Puccini’s Tosca and Madama Butterfly, Antonia (Jacques Offenbach’s Les Contes d'Hoffmann), Elsa (Richard Wagner’s Lohengrin), Leonora (Verdi’s Il trovatore), Daughter (Paul Hindemith’s Cardillac), Wally (Alfred Catalani’s La Wally). Guest appearances have taken Izabela Matuła to Teatr Wielki – Polish National Opera in Warsaw (as Desdemona in Verdi’s Otello, Leonora in Verdi’s La forza del destino and as Halka in Stanisław Moniuszko’s opera), to Bergen (as Lauretta in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi), to Bilbao (as Mimi) and to Palermo (as Dorotka in Jaromír Weinberger’s Schwanda, der Dudelsackpfeifer), among others. She also performed at the Nationaltheater Mannheim, Theater an der Wien, Landestheater Linz, Theater Dortmund, Oper Frankfurt and in Nürnberg, Braunschweig, Darmstadt and Düsseldorf.

Izabela Matuła is also internationally successful as a concert singer. Her repertoire ranges from works by Johann Sebastian Bach and Ludwig van Beethoven to Gustav Mahler, Dmitri Shostakovich and especially numerous pieces by Krzysztof Penderecki.