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Teatr muzyczny Stanisława Moniuszki, pod. red. Magdaleny Dziadek i Elżbiety Nowickiej, Wydawnictwo PTPN, Poznań 2014.
O wodewilach i operach Stanisława Moniuszki
Od „Cyganów” Franciszka Dionizego Kniaźnina (1786) do „Jawnuty” Stanisława Moniuszki (1860)
„Biuraliści” Stanisława Moniuszki: wokół komedioopery Fryderyka Skarbka oraz partytur warszawskiej i krakowskiej
„Widma” Moniuszki wobec „Dziadów” Mickiewicza
Jan Chęciński – moniuszkowski librecista
Stanisław Moniuszko i świat literatury w połowie XIX wieku
Moniuszko – romantyk
Narodowy kompozytor nieistniejącego kraju. Stanisław Moniuszko i wskrzeszenie Wielkiego Księstwa Litewskiego w pieśni
Moniuszko w trzech „teatralnych odsłonach” – jako pracownik teatru, widz i twórca dzieł scenicznych
Opery Moniuszki w polskim Lwowie – uniesienia, powinności, nadużycia
Luba Kijanowska, Lidia Melnyk
Recepcja twórczości operowej Stanisława Moniuszki w ukraińskiej kulturze muzycznej
„Halka” Stanisława Moniuszki w teatrze Tymczasowym i Narodowym w Pradze (1868-1898)
Postać i muzyka Stanisława Moniuszki w kontekście ideologii słowiańskiej
Recepcja postaci i twórczości Moniuszki w polskim piśmiennictwie – źródła kontrowersji
Stanisław Moniuszko w polskiej krytyce muzycznej (1945-1989)
Dobrochna Ratajczakowa, On Stanisław Moniuszko’s comédies en vaudeville and operas
This two fundamnetal genres in S. Moniuszko’s works are in marked contrast to one another, as highlighted in this article. While these two genres share their theatrical purpose and the dulaity of the dramatic and musical structures, this duality is also different. In a comédie en vaudeville, the songs (cuplés) tended to be loosely related to the typically predictable and trivial plot, while the structure of the work was either disintegrated or fuzzy. As a result, this lack of integrity was an integral part of the genre, dating back to the 18th century. While the importence of the opera in the bourgeois theatre of the 19th century continued to increase and opera itself was ranked high in the contemporary hierarchy of dramatic and theatrical genres, the importance of the comédie en vaudeville waned. It was popular and useful rather than artistic, and as such became inscresingly old-fashioned. Nevertheless, in Poland examples of it were staged as late as 20th century. Unlike the comédie en vaudeville, opera as a genre was based on two major factors determining its dramatic content and the music: the teatrical effect and the cultural ritual, treated as one of the attraction factors. They both had an important element of display, which was of importance especially in the second half of the century, where such social displays were valued, and shared their civilisation and cultural heritage with Joseph Paxton’s Crystal palace, a sort of template of Western civilisation. The Cristal Palace can be viewed as a design of a huge spectacle-cum-universe enclosed in a single building, radiating exposition, entertainment and result-creating values. This article shows how Moniuszko’s fully theatrical operas fit into this framework.
Alina Żórawska-Witkowska, From Franciszek Dionizy Kniaźnin’s „Gyspies” (1786) to Stanisław Moniuszko’s „Jawnuta” (1860)
In his opera „Jawnuta” (Warshaw 1860) and its earlier version „Gyspies” (Vilnius 1852) Stanisław Moniuszko resorted to an old and apparently still attractive libretto, ‘Gyspies” by Franciszek Dionizy Kniaźnin (Puławy/Siedlce 1786). In line of the contemporary style of the genre, the spoken parts were interwined with pieces of music. However, the author of the librettos to Moniuszko’s „Gypsies” and „Jawnuta” remains unknown. There are no mentions of the librettos or the musical script of „Gypsies”; the only known copies of the „Jawnuta” score come from as late as 1905-1906. Therefore, the opera as we know it is undoubtedly different from its premiere version; on top of that, only one copy includes the last verses of the spoken parts, directly preceding the pieces of music. Therefore, the article is an attempt at identifying the author and the literary/dramatic aspects of the works in question by reffering to the avaiable sources (newspapers, letters, music scores). In the conslusion, the article’s author states that, in the case of „Jawnuta”, the libretto is based on an old text by Kniaźnin, most probably edited by the composer himself („The Gypsies”). Hovever, later in „Jawnuta” could have been rewritten by Władysław Ludwik Anczyc or Jan Chęciński and, additionally, equipped with quite numerous insertions (as many as 9 cases out of 17 pieces of music in the score from 1906) by other poets: Władysław Syrokomla, Józef Korzeniowski, Kazimierz Brodziński, Edmund Wasilewski, Jan Czeczot, Jan Nepomucen jaśkowski as well as unrecognised authors. At present, „Jawnuta” is performed with the music included in the scores from the eatly 20th century, intertwined with spoken parts which come from the original text by Koźmian (a case in point begin Teatr Wielki in Warshaw , February 1991). The attempt at ordering the complicated text-related issues is only an introduction to a more in-depth, strictly musical analysis of this undoubtedly interesing piece of work, which remains attractive on stage even if the proliferation of krakowiak dances, mazurkas and the presumed gypsy topos may seem anachronistic to contemporary viewers, especially young ones.
Sviatlena Niemahaj, Stanisław Moniuszko’s Biuraliści: issues around the comic operacomic opera by Fryderyk Skarbek and the Warshaw and Kraków scores
The article is dedicated to a comic operacomic opera (Biuraliści) by Moniuszko and Skarbek; it was probably staged in Minsk in 1830-40. I provide an explanation for the score, attributed to S. Moniuszko and stored in the Warshaw Music Society, by comparing it with an anonymus, hand-written score of Biuraliści from the Jagiellonian Library, as well as information about tha staging of this comic opera in Warshaw and Kraków in 1829-43. At the same time, I concur with the opinion of Biuraliści as Moniuszko’s first piece of music for the stage and I undermine the stereotype in the literature on the subject about this comic opera’s fragmentary score.
Małgorzata Sułek, Moniuszko’s „Widma” compared to Mickiewicz’s „Dziady”
Stanisław Moniuszko’s „Widma” cantata is the largest piece of music written to date on basis of the second part of Adam Mickiewicz’s „Dziady”. Poland’s most important Romantic drama. The main goal of this article is to present the characteristics of Moniuszko’s Widma with reference to its literary original. In the article, I also discuss the musical version of Dziady originated in the 19th and 20th centuries by Polish and foreign composers, as well as the issue od the presence of Mickiewicz’s drama in Moniuszko’s works. Another issue under discussion in the cantata as the composer’s choice; he intuitively felt it best reflected the mystery play-like atmosphere of the literary original. The ariticle also touches upon the possible sources of Moniuszko’s inspiration and the excessively favourable reviews of „Widma”. For political and historical reasons, 19th and 20th-century musicologists and music critics treated the cantata as a musical equivalent to Mickiewicz’s drama.
Alina Borkowska-Rychlewska, Jan Chęciński – Moniuszko’s librettist
In this article, I present Jan Chęciński, an actor, theatre director, poet, translator and librettist of several of Stanisław Moniuszko’s important operas („Straszny dwór”, „Beata”, „Verbum nobile”, „Paria”) from the point of view of 19th century theatre and music criticism. Contemporary critics deemed the author of „Szlachectwo duszy” a great comedy writer, an expert in theatre stating and a drama writer with an excellent command of the Polish language. His protagonists were appreciated for their credible psychological traits and deep emotions. Sometimes Chęciński resorted to Polish sources (tested in his own dramas and modelled on Aleksander Fredro’s comic effects) filling his works with an apotheosis of Poland and Polish traditions. On the other hand, he would also tap into European developements especially Italian opera buffa and French comic opera, and therefore contributed to the perception of Moniuszko as both a „familiar” and „universal” composer. Chęciński’s experience was of importance here, too; he accumulated it when translating the librettos to European masterpieces of the opera seria (the works of Halèvy, Meyerbeer and Verdi). In this way he became acquainted with the rules of providing an opera libretto with a structure and the principles of ordering this structure.
Elżbieta Nowicka, Stanisław Moniuszko and the world of literature in the mid-19th century
Stanisław Moniuszko was part of the generation of writers, poets, literary and music critics who were born around 1820 and made their debuts in the 1840s. As they were members of the same generation and good friends, the question arises of the community spirit of Moniuszko’s Warshaw circles on the level of ideas, imagery and aesthetics typical of this generation. Two of Moniuszko’s works are analysed: “Halka” and “Hrabina” with Włodzimierz Wolski librettos. An analysis of “Halka’s” libretto indicates numerous intertextual relations with Mickiewicz’s “Dziady” revealed in very diverse ways: from relatively simple allusions to sophisticated semantic inversions. “Hrabina” is located in the rich, but poorly explored thematic area of disappointment, which seems to me to be one of the most important attitudes in the 19th century, widely represented in the European literature and art. A study of the varieties and modes of artistic presentation of this experience serves as a keys to interpreting “Hrabina”.
Magdalena Dziadek, Moniuszko – the Romantic
The author has attempted to reconstruct the discussion conducted in the second half of the 19th century by Polish music critics on the origins of Moniuszko’s music, its sources and reference to the varieties of Romanticism in music. The results of this reconstruction is quite suprising, as it differs from Moniuszko’s image as “a national romantic” whose artistic ambition was to create popular national music. This image was propagated by Moniuszko’s dilettante biographers; his contemporaries endeavoured to interpret his intent and achievements from a European perspective. This was accompanied by a significant change to the hierarchy of Moniuszko’s works created in Vilnius and Warshaw, as suggested by his biographers. The top of the hierarchy was occupied by the cantats and religious musical works, at the expense of his operas and songs. The article’s author attempted to find the reason behind this decision, taking into account the trends and directions of 19th century European music. Not only the trends openly followed by the composer but also others, completely unfamiliar to him (predominantly Wagner’s works) are taken into consideration. In addition, text have been found which document a stronger relation between Polish music criticism of Moniuszko’s achievements at the philosophy of Romantic music.
Radosław Okulicz-Kozaryn, A national composer from a non-existent country. Stanisław Moniuszko and the revival of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania
The author analyses the importance of S. Moniuszko’s opinions and artistic decisions against the background of the cultural revival in Vilnius between the November and January uprisings (1830, 1863). Whose short-term goal was to simulate the arts in the capital city and whose long-term goal was reconstructing and reinforcing the identity of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. This ambition is reflected in “Śpiewnik domowy” (“Home songbook””, 1842),, especially in the light of the accompanying articles and discoussions with the prevailing texts by J. I. Kraszewski, S. A. Lachowicz and A. Korwin-Milewski. The community of artists advocating this idea mirrored the real-life relations between them. The identification of this relations and an analysis of deeply-rooted textual choices leads to the construction that Moniuszko’s songs were a continuation of the poetic “Lithuanian school”, remaining – like those relations – under the patronage of Adam Mickiewicz. His authority influenced Moniuszko’s work on smaller and larger dramatic forms, rather intuitively treated as a higest form of poetry, a platform for operations. Disregarding the usually succesfull attempts at resorting to lower-grade talents (O. Korwin-Milewski or W. Dunin Marcinkiewicz who wrote also in Belarussian), Moniuszko’s intention was to have J. I. Kraszewski, and later on W. Syrokomla as associates. According to Moniuszko’s contemporaries (R. Podbereski, A. H. Kirkor and other), despite their religious original, the mythological cantatas revolving around “Witolorauda” were interpreted in line with the composer’s intent as a simulation of powers from the past and a symbol of Lithuania’s former glory. W. Syrokomla was aware of the prophet-like traits of the composer’s works and their democratic underlying message, as reflect in the poet’s forgotten “W imionniku Stanisława Moniuszki”. Both artists realized the complementary nature of their respective achievements. Moniuszko tried to involve Syrokomla in many of his initiatives in the realm of high and popular culture alike. Syrokomla started to write a libretto based on Lithuania’s past (“Margier”) and attempted to adept “Cyganie”. However, despite their efforts and the huge success of the melodies written to the poet’s works (“Lirnik wioskowy”) they dod not manage to create a piece of work worthy of their combined talents and shared efforts to revive the Grand Duchy.
Anna Wypych-Gawrońska, Moniuszko in three “theatrical scenes”: as a theatre worker, a spectator and a composer
This article is an attempt at presenting Stanisław Moniuszko in the context of his relations with the theatre in three “theatrical scenes”. This is because Moniuszko maintained relations with the theatre all his life, as an employee (conductor and director), a recipient (spectator and critic) as well as an author of stage works composed with the theatre in mind. Like many of his contemporaries, Moniuszko was a theatre lover, frequenting theatres and taking advantage of all forms of theatrical art, sensitive to various aspects of the cultural scenery. The theatre was also Moniuszko’s place of employment; he wrote for the theatre, taking advantage of his experience as a conductor and spectator The composer’s letters reflect his attitude to art, confirming his love of the theatre which did not prevent him from being critical both as the institution’s employee (an internal view) and as a spectator (an external outlook). Irrespective of his attitude to the theatre, all his life Moniuszko was faithful to it as a versatile theatre lover in the broadest possible meaning of the work.
Agnieszka Marszałek, Moniuszko’s operas in the Polish Lvov: elation, responsibilities, abuse. The Annex
Only eleven of Stanisław Moniuszko’s numerous pieces of work written for the theatre (out of well over twenty) had been staged in the Lvov theatre by 1945. For over the hundred years, the following works were presented on the local stage:: “Nocleg w Apeninach” (“A Night in the Apennines”), “Flis”, “Nowy Don Kichot” (“The New Don Quixote”), “Halka”, “Jawnuta”, “Karmaniol”, “Verbum nobile”, “Widma” (“The Phantoms”) – a cantata staged since 1878 also as “Dziady” (“Forefather’s Eve”) in a version tailored yo the theatre; “Hrabina” (“The Countess”), “Milda” (an oratorio) and finally “Straszny Dwór” (“The Haunted Manor”). The first premiere of Moniuszko’s work in Lvov was in 1841, the last one – in 1877. In the following sixty years, five of the above mentioned titles were withdrawn and no new work by Moniuszko was staged. Therefore, only six pieces of work were regularly performed.
This article presents the history of the substequent premieres in chronological order. It is worth mentioning that after the unsuccessful staging of “Nocleg w Apeninach”, followed by “Nowy Don Kiszot”, the first piece of music appreciated by the audience was “Flis”. However, “Halka” and “Straszny Dwór” were the most popular operas, staged in Lvov with short breaks nearly every season. However, it was not the audience’s interest (which dwindled over time) that contributed to these operas’ great popularity, but rather Moniuszko’s position as an uncontested leader and “father of the Polish opera” whose pieces of work was regular items of the repertoire. The need to boost the prestige of the Polish theatre, especially after 1872 when the Polish opera house was established, was strictly related to establishing the canon of the musical repertoire. As a result, Moniuszko as an author of opera buffa and operettas quickly slipped into oblivion, while his position as a composer of serious and national music was emphasized, even if their national character is anything but undisputed, as has been often mentioned in this article.
My intention is to present not only what wasn’t staged in Lvov but also to highlight the repertoire-related negligence. Of importance to this article is the presentation of the way of “administering” the staging of Moniuszko’s works. Characteristically, a presentation of several pieces of work favoured in this article as an element adds splendor to the celebrations of state and national anniversaries (becoming a rule over time). It is worth emphasizing that despite the changeable political situation, these operas were “used” when celebrating the anniversaries of the various uprising, as well as the emperor’s birthday or the visit of a royal family member to Galicia. Ironic as it seems, it also shows how vague the message of Moniuszko’s “national” operas was, if they could serve this diverse purposes.
In the light of the censorship of Mickiewicz’s “Dziady”, the only thing left was Moniuszko’s substitute musical version in the work of a cantata, commonly known as “Widma”. The reason why I refer to it as a substitute is that only the text from the second part of the dramatic poem was used i. e. the fragments which seemed least risqué from the point of view of censorship. Despite positive reviews, this piece of music followed the path of the “occasional” ones, although the spectrum was limited to All Soul’s Day.
Interestingly, when Poland regained independence in 1918 not much changed with respect to the way which Moniuszko’s work were treated by the Lvov theatre: previously unknown works continued to be banned from the stage, while the composer was invariably treated as the “monumental creator of the immortal “Halka”. Not one attempt was made to reinterpret only of the staged works.
The stage history of Moniuszko’s operas in Lvov is therefore as much a story of love of this composer’s music as a reflection of the process of fossilization. The latter was detrimental to the reception of Moniuszko’s music. On top of that, for a long time there were problems with handling these works in Lvov, as the “shadows of the masters” rather diverted attention from the ongoing changes taking place in musical conventions that it intimidated. This was a case even if in the early 20th century, Moniuszko had worthy successors (Żeleński, Noskowski, Paderewski, Różycki, Nowowiejski, finally Szymanowski). In the interwar period there was no ability (willingness?) to “undermine” this scenario, even if the theatre operated as an independent institution in independent country. The outbreak of WWII finally put an end to the existence of the Polish opera (as early as December 1939, the name was changed to the Ukrainian Theatre of Opera and Ballet). In 1945, when the Soviet authority was well established, the Polish artists moved to Poland in her new borders. This was the end of the history of Moniuszko’s operas in the Polish Lvov.
The attachment to this article provides a detailed list of Moniuszko’s works staged in Lvov in the period in question, accompanied by the days of the spectators, and the cast wherever it could be established.
Luba Kijanowska, Lidia Melnyk, The reception of Stanisław Moniuszko’s operas In Ukraine’s music culture
This article is dedicated to 150 years of Stanisław Moniuszko’s operas, vocal, choral and chamber music in Ukraine’s musical culture. The affinity of Moniuszko’s “national romanticism” based on folklore and the traditional Ukrainian “hearth philosophy” is discussed in detail. According to the authors, this affinity promoted the huge popularity of “Halka” staged by Ukrainian professionals and amateurs, alike in the 19th and 20th centuries. A review is also included of the performers in the leading roles in the Ukrainian staging of Moniuszko’s operas in the 19th and the first half of the 20th century as well as contemporarily, in the independent Ukraine.
The authors took into consideration the variety of forms and ways of staging Moniuszko’s works, as well as extending the artistic offer. Not only the arias from the most popular operas and several songs, but also works previously unknown to the Ukrainian audience have made their way into the concert halls, enriching the didactic repertoire, introducing some variety at festivals and contests.
Jiří Kopecký, Moniuszko’s „Halka” In the Interim Theatre and the National Theatre in Prague (1868-1898)
The article is an attempt at reconstructing the history of several premieres of “Halka” in the Czech national theatre (in the Interim Theatre and the National Theatre) between 1868 and 1898. The author’s presentation of the history of the staging as well as its social reception starts with a remark that in Prague, Stanisław Moniuszko was perceived as an opera composer in the broad context of Slavic music. Ta a large extent, the success of “Halka” depended on the contemporary social and politician tensions among the Slavic nations. The Czech premiere of “Halka” took place on 28 February 1868 with Bedřich Smetana as conductor. The Prague audience had already been introduced to Mikhail Glinka’s operas which competed with “Halka”. The tension between Russian and Polish culture reached its climax in the dispute between Smetana and Mily Balakirev. Smetana’a support of Moniuszko’s “Halka” resulted in the negative reception of the Czech composer’s opera in Russia. On the other hand, the repeated staging of Moniuszko’s “Halka” in the Interim Theatre and later on in the National Theatre in Prague contributed to the position of the Czech opera in other countries.
Mateusz Andrzejewski, Stanisław Moniuszko and his music in the context of Slavic ideology
The article presents facts from the composer’s life and work which can be interpreted from the perspective of Slavic ideology (Slavophilia), which was popular in the 19th century. The article starts with the rather obscure issue of this ideology’s impact on the music culture in Central and Eastern Europe, especially the ideology’s relation to national music. Further on, the author discusses the influence of Slavophilia on the reception of Moniuszko’s works in Poland, Russia and the Czech lands in the composer’s lifetime and after his death. Moniuszko’s contacts with Russian and Czech artistic circles, premieres of his works in Russian and the Czech lands as well as their reception in the music press in both countries are discussed in the context of this ideology. The author sheds new light on some episodes from Moniuszko’s life, e. g. his controversial participation in the opening of the Prague Národni Divadlo (National Theatre) or the composer’s attitude to the Russian occupiers.
Agnieszka Topolska, The reception of Moniuszko and his works in Polish literature – sources of controversy
There is a thought-provoking discrepancy between the opinions repeated for over hundred years and the actual attitude of Moniuszko’s audience to his life and works. An analysis of texts dedicated to the composer with special emphasis placed on the language and the rhetoric employed indicates the sources of this discrepancy. Some thought of Moniuszko as a genius, others as merely a skilful craftsman; he has been presented differently depending on the changing social and politician conditions, and the mental meanders of Polish society. However, Moniuszko had his own contribution to his elusiveness by defying clear-out classifications, taking into account predominantly the philosophy of life. The underlying factor behind the diverse and sometimes contradictory opinions was the need to create a myth to which historical truth needed to be subordinated.
Rafał Ciesielski, Stanisław Moniuszko in Polish music criticism (1945-1989)
The reception of Stanisław Moniuszko’s music output in Polish music criticism, 1945-1989, has not yet been examined as a separate issue, unlike the relatively frequently research motifs in his work. On top of the general subjects (Moniuszko as the father of the national opera, the opera as a genre enjoying a wide social reception, the changes in the operation of opera houses, the condition of the opera in Poland), more detailed issues have also been investigated: subsequent premieres, anniversaries of the composer’s birth and death, as well as the anniversaries of his premieres (“Halka”, “The Haunted Manor”) and the formula of the Moniuszko Years (1950, 1958, 1965, 1969, 1972).
In the musical criticism of Moniuszko’s works, his operas prevail, together with the issues of subsequent stagings and performances. Music critics have been cautious in terms of their analyses, drawing conclusions and making generalizations, as well as in the creation of the contemporary image of the composer, typically relying on preconceived opinions.
In this context, the hypothesis may be posted that, to a large extent, Moniuszko’s image in music criticism, 1945-1989, was quite close to the composer’s image in the reality of the 19th century, when Poland lost her independence. At that time, his image was meant to reinforce and integrate the entire society under Moniuszko’s banner, rather than the analyse his compositional technique or initiate discussion. When Poland lost its independence yet again, there was a need for distinct national emblems, which confirmed the utility of the composer’s traditional status, based on an artistic message taking into account primarily social and national issues. This status was well connected to the new (albeit previously reognised) conditions, relations and mechanisms.