Composition Competition Winners Announced!


A press conference announcing official verdict of the Composition Competition for Witold Lutosławski's 100th Birthday took place on Monday, 24th of June at Concert Hall of PWM Edition in Warsaw.


1st Prize – 10 000 € founded by The Minister of Culture and National Heritage Bogdan Zdrojewski
Thomas Simaku for the work Concerto for Orchestra
Pseudonym: H. DE JONAS

2nd Prize – 5 000 € founded by The Institute of Music and Dance and The Witold Lutosławski Society
Chris Roe for the work Lavoisier’s Mirrors
Pseudonym: CJR

3rd Prize – 3 000 € founded by The Authors Society ZAiKS
Natalya Chepelyuk for the work Aria II
Pseudonym: Meandr

Honourable Mention:
Chikako Yamanaka for the work Signal to Signalless
Pseudonym: Ccp0703

The meeting was held by: Andrzej Kosowski – Director of The Institute of Music and Dance, responsible for the Year of Lutosławski, Jarosław Kutera – Office Director of Witold Lutosławski Society, Grzegorz Michalski – Chairman of The Witold Lutosławski Society, Tomasz Piotrowski – Secretary of Composition Competition for Witold Lutosławski’s 100th Birthday, Tadeusz Wielecki – composer, jury member, director of Warsaw Autumn – International Festival of Contemporary Music.

160 works from 37 countries have been submitted to the Competition.
Jury: Luca Francesconi, Kazimierz Kord, Magnus Lindberg, Steven Stucky, Paweł SzymańskiTadeusz Wielecki.


Winning Composition will be premiered at the final concert of Warsaw Autumn – International Festival of Contemporary Music on September 2013. Premiere of the 2nd prize work is planned at Mieczysław Karłowicz Philharmonic in Szczecin by International Lutosławski Youth Orchestra (ILYO) on September 2013 as well.

Tomasz Piotrowski
Secretary of Composition Competition for Witold Lutosławski’s 100th Birthday


1st Prize – Thomas Simaku (pseudonym H. DE JONAS) for the work Concerto for Orchestra

The Albanian-born British composer Thomas Simaku (b.1958) began his composition studies with Tonin Harapi at the Tirana Conservatoire. After graduating in 1982, he gained first-hand experience working with folk musicians for three years in the remote town of Përmet in Southern Albania, near the border with Greece.

He moved to England in 1991, and after studies under David Blake at University of York (1991-96) he defended a PhD in Composition. Winner of the coveted Lionel Robbins Memorial Scholarship in 1993 (Simaku was the only candidate in the UK to receive the award that year), he was also Leonard Bernstein Fellow in Composition at Tanglewood, USA (1996), where he studied under Bernard Rands, and a fellow at the Composers’ Workshop, California State University (1998), under Brian Ferneyhough.

Simaku's music has been reaching audiences throughout Europe and the USA for more than two decades, and it has garnered a host of accolades for its expressive qualities and its unique blend of intensity and modernism. His works have been selected by international juries in nine editions of the ISCM World Music Days, including the 2012 Festival in Belgium. His other international festivals included Huddersfield, Tanglewood, Miami, Zagreb-Biennale, Weimar, Rome, Istanbul, Alicante (Spain), Innsbruck (Austria), the November Music Festival (Holland) and Viitassari (Finland).

His music has been broadcast worldwide by radio stations such as BBC Radio 3, SWR2, MDR, WDR, Deutschlandfunk, Amsterdam Radio 4, ORF (Austria), the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), and the National Radios of Japan, Poland, Portugal, Spain and Switzerland, among others. Notable performances of his works have been given by the Arditti Quartet, Diotima Quartet, Kreutzer Quartet, European Union Chamber Orchestra, English Northern Philharmonia, MusikFabrik, Raschèr Saxophone Quartet, New London Orchestra, Concorde Ensemble (Dublin), El Perro Andaluz (Dresden), Insomnio Ensemble (Utrecht), and Athelas Sinfonietta (Copenhagen). His prestigious awards include the First Prize at the Serocki International Competition in 2004, the Leverhulme Fellowship, and a three-year fellowship from the Arts & Humanities Research Council in London. In 2009, Simaku received a British Composer Award from BASCA for his work Soliloquy V – Flauto Acerbo, which the judging panel described as “visionary and entirely original”. Thomas Simaku is Senior Lecturer in Composition at the University of York.

2nd Prize – Chris Roe (pseudonym CJR) for the work Lavoisier’s Mirrors

Chris Roe (b.1988) graduated from Manchester University in 2010 and recently completed a Masters at the Royal College of Music, having studied with Kenneth Hesketh as an Ian Evans Lombe scholar; he was also awarded the RCM Adrian Cruft Prize for composition. Chris is currently involved in two projects to honour Benjamin Britten’s centenary year, working as Apprentice Composer with the Orchestra of the Swan, as well as participating in the Aldeburgh English Song Project.

Chris has worked closely with ensembles including the London Sinfonietta, Composers Ensemble, ECCE, l’Arsenale, and the RCM Wind Ensemble, with performances in the Amaryllis Fleming Concert Hall, Britten Theatre, National Portrait Gallery, and the St. Magnus Festival, and international premieres at the Etchings Festival and Prague’s Rudolfinum hall. In 2011 Chris won the International Antonín Dvorák Composition Competition, and reached the finals in the Villiers Quartet New Works Competition.

Chris has a diverse range of musical interests, with recent projects including a chamber opera for the RCM Opera School and Tête à Tête, a piece for youth orchestra and projected film, and work on 51 Prod.’s recent film (for which he had the special honour of being shortlisted for Cinesonika’s Golden Earwax Award). He has also recently received funding from the PRS/Bliss Trust to study electronic music at IRCAM, and has set up a project called ANIMA bringing together composers, performers and animators for a live music and film event in September.

3rd Prize – Natalya Chepelyuk (pseudonym Meandr) for the work Aria II

Natalya Chepelyuk was born in Pskov, Russia; she studied composition under Professor Dmitry Smolsky and piano under Professor Boris Spektor at the Belorussian State Academy of Music in Minsk, Belarus. Her composition Terzina was performed by the Janacek Philharmonic Orchestra under Zloty Nagy at the 2001 Ostrava New Music Days in the Czech Republic. She received her diploma with distinction in 2001, and went on to pass a Master of Arts examination. In 2002, she studied composition under Enno Poppe at the Hochschule für Musik “Hanns Eisler” in Berlin. Between 2004 and 2009 she studied composition under Professor Theo Brandmüller at the Hochschule für Musik Saar in Saarbrücken, Germany. In this period she wrote a number of pieces, including Pictograms for 6 instruments, They are Praying, Souvenirs, Josef in der Grube for electronics, Wind for solo clarinet, Lied for 4 instruments and voice, and Profumo del mare for mezzo-soprano and piano.

In 2006, she received a commission from the Luxembourg Sinfonietta to write a composition for piano and ensemble for the project Luxembourg and Great Region, European Capital of Culture 2007. The piece e/statico was performed by Marcel Wengler, Inci Yakar and the Luxembourg Sinfonietta in Mainz (Germany), Metz (France), Saarbrücken (Germany) and Luxembourg. In 2012, she was finalist at the 7th Dutilleux International Composition Competition with Air for 7 instruments (Jacques Pési, conductor). In addition, she has worked as composer for the theatre, her most recent collaboration having been with the Saarläendisches Staatstheater on Operation Orchester. Opera Without Singer, directed by Tom Ryser (2013). She received grants from the University of Saarland’s “ZIS”, the Bruno and Elisabeth Meindl Fund, and the International Courses for New Music in Darmstadt. She participated in master classes given by Beat Furrer, Adriana Hölsky, Dieter Mack, and Michael Reudenbach.

Honourable Mention – Chikako Yamanaka (pseudonym Ccp0703) for the work Signal to Signalless

Chikako Yamanaka was born in Matsusaka, Mie Prefecture, in 1983. She was laureate of the 74th Music Competition of Japan in 2005. She graduated from the Tokyo University of the Arts with the Acanthus Music Prize in 2007, and obtained a Master's degree in 2009. In the same year, her Rinne for cello and piano (revised version) received its premiere at the Contemporary Virtuoso! concert organized by the Japan Society for Contemporary Music. She won the Third Prize at the 2010 Toru Takemitsu Composition Award. Her works include Nocturne 1 for piano (2003), Disillient for chamber ensemble (2005), Three Fragments for Piano Played by the Left Hand, Violin and Cello (2006), ytogenesis for orchestra (2007), and A Song for Earth, Sea, and Humans for mixed chorus (2011). She studied with Shozo Aoki, Masayuki Nagatomi, Ichiro Nodaira, and Atsutada Otaka.