„Orthodox Church Music” Foundation
2 T. Sołoniewicz str.
17-200 Hajnówka, Poland

tel. +48 85 682 20 89

Place of Festival realisation:
Podlasie Opera and Philharmonic in Białystok
2 Podleśna str. Poland





42 Międzynarodowy

Festiwal  Muzyki  Cerkiewnej


42 th International  Festival

of    Orthodox    Church   Music

25 – 28.05.2023 r



Honorary Patronage

of the President of the Republic of Poland

Andrzej Duda



Patronage of the Polish Composers’ Union


Dear Ladies and Gentlemen
In this year’s Festival, to which I cordially invite you,
in recognition of the longterm friendship shown to us by the late Prof. Krzysztof Penderecki, we mark the 90th anniversary of his birth. We treat the day of May 25, on which we will begin the Festival, as Krzysztof Penderecki’s Day. During the previous editions of the Festival, in Maestro’s presence, we led to performances of all his works inspired by Orthodox Church music: from „Hymn to St. Danilo” in 2003, through the performance of „Cherubic song” by the Moscow Conservatory Choir, conducted by him, to the two-time international Polish-Russian (in Bialystok and St. Petersburg) performance of „Utrenya” (Matins).
We honored the Master’s 80th anniversary in a special way. Prominent composers from Poland, Russia, Moldova, Belarus, Macedonia and Ukraine responded to my request to dedicate works of Orthodox Church music composed especially for the occasion. These works were excellently performed by the choir of the St. Petersburg Conservatory. Pleased with the concert, Maestro noticed that a rare thing happened among eminent composers, as they generally do not dedicate their works to other composers. In addition to these compositions, the concert featured one more – it was dedicated to us, and adapted by the author to the Eastern rite the Psalm „De profundis”, „Iz glubiny vozzvah” from the Oratorio „Seven Gates of Jerusalem”. Later, these pieces were performed many times during the Festival, and many choirs have permanently included them in their repertoire.
On the occasion of the composer’s 85th anniversary in 2018 “Cherubic song” was jointly performed by the choirs from Ukraine, Lithuania and Russia.
Today we propose a special concert. In addition to Orthodox Church music, the music of the Catholic Church will also be heard. Concert „Sacrum of the East and the West in the choral music of K. Penderecki” is an artistic symbol, a reflection of kinship and a tribute to the Catholics and Orthodox who have lived in Białystok, Podlasie, Poland for centuries. We are glad that the performance of this unique concert was undertaken by the National Philharmonic Choir under the direction of Bartosz Michałowski. We have included compositions by John Tavener – an outstanding English composer, who also creates Orthodox Church music, who passed away 10 years ago. He followed our Festival, and we benefited from his kindness on many occasions. We found it very appropriate to include in the program – a form rarely seen today – a concert of Orthodox Church music, a composition by Romuald Twardowski, whose merits for the Festival are invaluable.
I invite you to listen to this concert. I also invite you to attend the competition auditions. Orthodox Church music of the Old Believers of Latvia, American Copts, Romanians, Moldavians, Greeks, Bulgarians, Estonians and Ukrainians will be presented before the international Jury. After several years of cooperation, thanks to the efforts of the organizers and the help of Mr. Aleksander Prokopiuk – Honorary Consul of the Republic of Kazakhstan in Poland, we will host an excellent opera choir from the capital of this country. In addition to the presentation of Orthodox Church music, at our request, outside and after the competition auditions, the choir will present choral music of Kazakhstan. It is different from the European one, but also very beautiful.
We will also hear a prayer of the 16th-century Podlasie, which has survived to our times thanks to the priceless Irmologion from Suprasl, created 425 years ago. This song will be sung by Belarusians – representatives of Free Belarus. Refugees from this country, for the first time in Poland, during the Festival will perform a concert of Orthodox Church music exclusively by Belarusian composers, whose works have been ignored for years, or, as now in Belarus, the anthem „Mahutny Bozha” (Almighty God) – forbidden.
I cordially invite you to listen to all the concerts. I invite you with the hope that all our plans will come true. It will be the best compensation for the efforts of the organizers and the kindness of many institutions and people
involved in the organization of this year’s 42 editions of the Festival. I thank all of you very much.
With expressions of respect
Mikołaj Buszko



“Sacrum of the East and the West
in the music of Krzysztof Penderecki”

Choir of the National Philharmonic in Warsaw
conductor: Bartosz Michałowski

The choir celebrates this year its 70th anniversary. It is mainly focused on participation in symphonic and oratorio concerts with the National Philharmonic Orchestra and a cappella performances on its home stage. The Choir appears regularly at the International Festival of Contemporary Music „Warsaw Autumn” and the International Festival „Wratislavia Cantans”. The Choir has also performer extensively abroad (Europe, Israel, Russia, Turkey). It has been frequently invited to perform in concerts with outstanding orchestras in Germany, Israel, Italy, France. In 1988, 1990 and 2001 the Choir sang in ceremonial concerts organised for John Paul II in the Vatican. The Choir’s wide repertoire comprises over 400 oratorios and a cappella works, ranging from the Middle Ages to contemporary pieces. A particular place in the Choir’s repertoire is occupied by Polish music, especially pieces by Krzysztof Penderecki. The Choir has performed and recorded all of his oratorios and a cappella works receiving a prestigious Grammy Award in the category of best choral performance. The Choir also received several Fryderyk Awards of the Polish Phonographic Academy. Since 2017, the Choir’s conductor has been Bartosz Michałowski – a graduate of choral conducting at the Paderewski Academy of Music in Poznań, founder, conductor and Artistic Director of the Poznań Chamber Choir, laureate of numerous competitions, lecturer at the Fryderyk Chopin Music University, founder and director of the Opus 966 National Composers’ Competition, creator of composition master classes for children and youth, he has collaborated regularly with renowned institutions and orchestras, he premiered and recorded numerous pieces, participated in conferences on choral music and voice emission, jury’s member of choral competitions. In addition to his rich conducting experience, he has spent many years working on enhancing skills and knowledge in the field of voice emission, having completed master classes in Poland, Great Britain and Germany.
1. Krzysztof Penderecki – Missa Brevis:
– Kyrie
– Gloria soloists: Tomasz Warmijak, Adam Miroszczuk, Mariusz Cyciura
– Benedicamus Domino
– Sanctus
– Benedictus
– Agnus Dei
2. Krzysztof Penderecki – O Gloriosa Virginum
3. Krzysztof Penderecki – Cherubic hymn
4. Krzysztof Penderecki – Out of the depths I cry to you
5. John Tavener – Three Antiphons
6. Krzysztof Penderecki – Thou didst descend into the tomb
7. Romuald Twardowski – Come, let us sing to the Lord
8. John Tavener – Many years


“Almighty God” – singing soul of Belarus

„Concordia” Choir – Warsaw (Free Belarus)
Conductor: Galina Kazimirouskaya

The choir was founded in 2007 and its main goal is to promote Belarusian choral culture. The repertoire covers over 150 works from various eras and styles, including works by contemporary Belarusian composers (e.g. A. Litvinovsky, L. Simakovich, O. Podgayskaya, G. Kazimirouskaya and others). The choir performed concerts in Belarus and abroad, and is a laureate of international competitions and festivals (including IFOCM 2021), collaborated with choirs from Sweden and Germany, hosted choirs from all over the world. In 2020, due to the political situation in Belarus and ban on the activity, the choir temporarily suspended its activity. Last year it was reactivated in Poland and continues its activity in Warsaw. The artistic director and conductor of the choir is Galina Kazimirouskaya – a graduate of choral conducting of the State Belarusian Academy of Music, singer, composer, teacher, director of the Artistic Center of the Belarusian Musicians’ Union, organizer of national and international choral music festivals, author and participant of international projects, laureate of many awards. Since 2020, she has been the director and conductor of the “Volny Choir” („Free Choir”), which has become a symbol of the Belarusian revolution since August 2020, performing Belarusian patriotic songs, hymns, and also actively taking part in protests against the dictatorial regime.
1. Taste and see – from the Suprasl Irmologion
2. Praise the Name of the Lord – chant from Monastery in Jabłeczna
3. Mikola Kulikovich – To Thee we sing
4. Svyatlena Nemahay – Prayer to the Mother of God
5. Irina Denisova — My soul
6. Aleh Hadoska – Bless the Lord, o my soul
7. Alaksei Turankou – Praise the Name of the Lord
8. Mikola Kulikovich – Credo
9. Mikola Kulikovich – Holy God
10. Alaksei Lakhnovich – Lord’s prayer
11. Mikola Butoma – Now lettest Thou
12. Salomka – God is with us
13. Aleh Zalotnieu – Christ is risen
14. Alaksei Turankou – Celebrate today
15. Fabian Abrantovich – God, who nations
16. Mikola Ravensky – Almighty God

„Choral music of Kazakhstan”

Choir of the State Opera and Ballet Theatre
“Astana Opera” – Astana, Kazakhstan
Principal conductor: Yerzhan Dautov

For many centuries Kazakh musical art developed in the sphere of one-voice singing. The Kazakh language, until a certain time, did not have a word “choir”, but rather the phrase “kosylyp aitu”, which means the expression of the desire to sing together, as a group. Choral singing became firmly established in the 1920s. The entire path of choral art in Kazakhstan can be divided into three stages:
1. 1930-1940 – the prevalence of choral arrangements of Kazakh folk songs
2. 1950-1960 – the appearance of original choral works and active development
of the genre of choral poems and choral suites
3. 1970-1980 – the development of the cantata and oratorio genre, the genre
of choral song and choral miniatures.
The opening of the Almaty Conservatory in 1944 promoted further development of choral conducting education in Kazakhstan. Bakhytzhan Baikadamov is the founder of choral singing in Kazakhstan. He was the first arranger of kui (traditional Kazakh instrumental piece for folk instruments – dombra, kobyz and sybyzgy) and folk songs. Choral art in Kazakhstan in the late 20th and early 21st centuries has a wide genre range: choral miniature, choral poem, choral kui, choral cycle, kui-vocalise for chorus, choral concerto, cantatas, oratorios, etc. A cappella genre deserves special attention as a separate stratum of contemporary musical culture, incorporating the specific creative styles of
Kazakhstani composers.
1. Serikzhan Abdinurov – Kui
2. Alibi Abdinurov – Kuyrmash (children’s game)
3. arrang. Beibit Akosh – Yapurai (folk song)
4. arrang. Y. Korobeinikova – Medley on the themes of Kazakh songs
5. Gaziza Zhubanova – Zhalgyz Yemen (Lonely Oak)
6. Yerkegali Rakhmadiyev – Chorale from „Kamar-Sulu” Opera (Beauty Kamar)
7. Jake Runestad – Nyon-nyon
8. Leroy Anderson – Plink, plank, plunk
9. Mynzhasar Mangytayev – Kyrmandagy Aitys (Aitys on the Threshing Floor) from the suite
“Chants of Karatau” (Aitys is a traditional competition of singers)
10. Bakhytzhan Baikadamov – Kokek (Cuckoo)