“A stunning display of profound musicality and musical profundity took place in the first of Mateusz Borowiak’s epic three-recital series at Merkin Concert Hall, the venue of his US debut. When I first saw advance notice of the series, presenting the complete piano sonatas of American composer Louis Pelosi, two per recital, coupled with three of the major etude cycles—all twenty- four Chopin, all twelve Debussy, and Rachmaninoff’s Etudes-Tableaux, Op. 39, I thought “This guy is either a foolhardy daredevil, or one of the great pianists.” After this first recital, I’m inclining to the latter.”
Merkin Hall, New York Concert Review Inc., 2017
Mateusz Borowiak, born in London to a family of musicians, spent his formative years studying piano and composition at the Junior Guildhall and Music at the University of Cambridge. Only in his early twenties did he begin studying piano full-time with Professor Andrzej Jasiński at the Academy of Music in Katowice. Despite this multifaceted education he has been very active on the performing scene, playing recitals and concertos as soloist at top venues such as Barbican Hall, Palais des Beaux Arts (Brussels), Salle Cortot (Paris), Gasteig (Munich), Wigmore Hall, Philharmonic Hall (St Petersburg), L’Auditori (Barcelona), Auditorio Nacional de Musica (Madrid), Liszt Hall (Budapest), Paul Klee Centre (Bern), Sejong Arts Center (Seoul), Merkin Hall (New York), National Centre for Performing Arts (Beijing) and Shanghai Symphony Hall; at festivals including St Petersburg International Winter Festival Arts Square, Cambridge 800th Festival, Rubinstein Piano Festival, Klassiek Leeft Meesterlijk Festival in Knokke-Heist, International Chopin Festival in Duszniki, Polish Pianist Festivals in Słupsk and the Royal Cracow Piano Festival, as well as in Austria, Czechia, Latvia, Slovakia, Turkey and Ukraine.
After some early competition successes he was awarded top prizes at international piano competitions including Queen Elisabeth (Brussels), Gawon International Music Society (Seoul), Maria Canals (Barcelona), Rina Sala Gallo (Monza), Yamaha Music Foundation of Europe, the Royal Over-Seas League (London), as well as the Harriet Cohen Memorial Award (London).
Orchestras and ensembles he has performed with include Royal Philharmonic, St Petersburg Philharmonic, London Mozart Players, National Orchestra of Belgium, Royal Flemish Philharmonic, Bilbao Symphony Orchestra, Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra, Casco Phil, Madrid Symphony Orchestra and Silesian String Quartet. Conductors he has worked with include Marin Alsop, Andrey Boreyko, Edo de Waart, Hans Graf, Alan Buribayev, Michał Klauza, Joseph Swensen, Tadeusz Strugała, Aleksander Liebreich, Benjamin Haemhouts, Günter Neuhold, Massimiliano Caldi and Eivind Aadland.
His concerts were broadcast on television and radio throughout Europe, Oceania and North America, on stations including BBC Radio 3, TV5, RAI, RTBF and France Musique. CD releases include Louis Pelosi’s Thirteen Preludes and Fugues (KASP Records New York), ‘Mateusz Borowiak Live at the Queen Elisabeth Competition 2013’ (BNP PARIBAS) and 15 Keyboard Sonatas by Antonio Soler (NAXOS), released in 2014 to wide critical acclaim.
He has given masterclasses at Shanghai Music Academy, Nanning Arts Institute, Girton College Cambridge and Junior Guildhall, and is currently assistant professor at the Karol Szymanowski Academy of Music in Katowice (Poland).
Blanka Kertész, born and raised in Hungary, is a pianist and experienced educator. Having gathered her vast pedagogical experience, she aims to influence the shape of the future of artistic education in Europe. She is the initiator of many educational projects such as KlaWir or VIPano, affecting a wide audience in German-speaking countries as well as throughout Europe. Her students at the Musik Akademie are winners of numerous awards in Germany and Switzerland. Blanka Kertész is also involved in early childhood education and teaches precollege.
After graduating from the Academy of Music in Budapest, she continued her studies in Basel at the Academy of Music, majoring in piano. After receiving her concert and teaching diploma, she broadened her spectrum by continuing her education at the Jazz School and also completed a postgraduate course in free improvisation. She works as a piano teacher at the Basel Music School. She performs as a soloist, chamber music partner and as an accompanist. Blanka Kertész plays orchestral piano in contemporary works as a member of the Basel Sinfonietta. She is also a co-founder and active member of the Piano Duo with Xavier Pfarrer.
Gabriela Glapska is a Polish-born pianist based in Wellington, New Zealand. She received her Master’s Degree with Distinction in Poland studying under the tutelage of prof. Ewa Pobłocka and completed her PhD degree in music with the major performance component from Victoria University of Wellington in 2020.
She is a sought-after chamber musician, accompanist and répétiteur with a strong interest in contemporary music. Gabriela has been the pianist for the annual Nelson Composers Workshops since 2017 and a pianist for the 44th International Viola Congress held in Wellington in 2017. As an advocate for the performance of new compositions, she has collaborated with many award-winning composers on both solo and ensemble projects as well as with Wellington-based contemporary ensemble STROMA and the SMP Ensemble. In August 2022, she performed at the ISCM World New Music Days festival held in Auckland and Christchurch.
Gabriela is a founding member of the Ghost Trio along the violinist Monique Lapins and cellist Ken Ichinose, who completed a national tour for Chamber Music New Zealand’s Music Up Close series in 2021. In October 2023, they performed Beethoven’s Triple Concerto with St. Matthew’s Chamber Orchestra under the baton of Michael Joel in Auckland.
Gabriela also collaborates with soprano Barbara Paterson, TrioNique, Royal New Zealand Ballet, New Zealand Opera (6:24 Voices of Aotearoa) and Wellington Opera (La Traviata).
Polish pianist whose interpretations are characterized by her artistic maturity, expressiveness, and extremely personal, lucid message.
Daria Żurawlowa is the Founder and the vice president of the Elena Aleksiejuk Fundation. She is a founder and a member of the Rachmaninow Piano Duo.
A graduate of the Academy of Music in Bydgoszcz under the supervision of prof. Ewa Pobłocka. She also completed postgraduate studies at the Conservatori Superior de Musica del Liceu in Barcelona under the guidance of prof. Stanislav Pochekin.
Giving the recitals across Europe, she performed at L’Auditori of Barcelona, Montserrat Caballe Hall, Gran Teatre del Liceu, Mozart Hall of the Palma de Mallorca Auditórium, Victoria Eugenia Theatre in San Sebastian, National Philharmonic in Warsaw and in the concert hall of the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra in Katowice among others.
Daria Żurawlowa is a laureate of more than 40 piano competitions, inter alia:
1st prize in the International Piano Competition Eugenia Verdet in Barcelona, Spain
2nd prize in the International Piano Competition Joventuts Musicals in Vilafranca del Penedes, Spain
2nd prize in the International Piano Competition in Druskininkai, Lithuania
1st prize and two special awards (for the best interpretation of Chopin’s polonaise and waltz ) in the International Chopin Piano Competition in Varna, Bulgaria.
Arnold Gniwek is a Polish pianist highly regarded for his exuberant and youthful interpretations, exceptional attention to details and nuances as well as for captivating sound. He gives concerts across Poland, the USA, Switzerland, Spain, France, Germany, Sweden, Slovakia, Ukraine and Italy.
Arnold Gniwek is the president of the Elena Aleksiejuk Foundation, the main organizer of the Piano Competition Online.
In 2014, together with Daria Żurawlowa they formed the Rachmaninow Piano Duo.
He cooperated with such revered conductors as Krzysztof Penderecki, Massimiliano Caldi, Szymon Kawalla.
He draws his incessant inspiration from a large circle of musicians and friends of many passions who in a considerable way helped to mould the artist’s character.
Among his many successes in Polish and international competitions we can name:
1st prize in the International Music Competition in Sogliano al Rubicone, Italy
1st prize at the 15th International Piano Festival in Nałęczów, Poland
Laureate of „Estrada Młodych” in the Polish Piano Festival in Słupsk
3rd prize in the 11th International Piano Competition Eugenia Verdet in Barcelona
Dr Jan Gazdzicki – pianist, composer, piano educator.
His interests as a musician reach beyond the traditional activities of a pianist: he has gained experience as a conductor and premiered his own compositions in 2015. Within the scope of his dissertation, he has also conducted musicological research.
Jan Gazdzicki is also the inventor of the innovative app TunyStones™ and the CEO of the Swiss MusicLab.
Jan Gazdzicki has been a music educator at the Akademie für Musik Basel, Switzerland, since August 2016.
He performed in numerous European countries: as a soloist he played together with the Opole Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra, the Sinfonisches Orchester der Stadt Heidelberg as well as the Capella Villa Duria.
The pianist took part in several broadcasting productions since 1996 and Ars Musici published his audio recording with pieces of J.S. Bach and A. Honegger.
Jan Gazdzicki is a prizewinner of several international piano competitions, as the 1st prize at the Willy Bissing Competition in Hanau, 3rd prize in Palma de Mallorca; special awards of the Deutsche Stiftung Musikleben for the best interpretation of contemporary music.