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Aniela Szlemińska

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Aniela Szlemińska (1899-1964) – soprano. Following her completion of the Conservatory and School of Drama in Lviv, in 1927 she began performing in the city’s Grand Theatre, and later the Poznań Opera. From 1931 until the outbreak of WW II, she was tied with the Polish Radio in Warsaw. She appeared as guest both on national as well as foreign stages (in the United States, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, and Latvia), performing mainly soprano parts. She was also no stranger to lighter repertoire.

In the interwar years she was one of the most prominent Polish opera singers, and her stage as well as radio performances were in great popularity. She participated numerous times in the radio program cycle Profiles of Contemporary Polish Composers. In the period of occupation, she took part in private concerts and taught voice. From 1945 she was professor of vocal performance at the State Postsecondary Music School in Cracow.

In January, 1947 in Cracow, Aniela Szlemińska and the pianist Jan Hoffman gave the world premiere of five pieces from Witold Lutosławski’s Twenty Carols. Stefania Łobaczewska wrote in the concert review that: "Only such a great master of contemporary form as Lutosławski could allow himself for a surely very bold experiment: associating carol melodies with a piano part conceived strictly in the contemporary spirit".

kt / trans. mk