Maria Szymanowska


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Szymanowska, Maria

 

(née Wolowska). Born Dec. 14, 1789, in Warsaw; died July 25,1831, in St. Petersburg. Polish pianist and composer.

Szymanowska studied piano under A. Lissowski and G. Gremm, and possibly composition under F. Lessel, in Warsaw. In the second decade of the 19th century she began giving concerts and composing. Beginning in 1815 she toured numerous Western European cities and Russia, where in St. Petersburg she received the title of court pianist in 1822; she subsequently appeared in Kiev, Moscow, L’vov, and Kremenets. In 1828 she took up residence in St. Petersburg, where she taught, composed music, and gave concerts; among those who visited her home were A. S. Pushkin and A. Mickiewicz, who was later to marry her daughter. Goethe, L. Cherubini, J. N. Hummel, and J. Field dedicated works to her.

A precursor of F. Chopin, Szymanowska contributed to the formation of a Polish national style. In her compositions, she made use of the musical idiom and rhythms associated with folk dances, and she created works in a variety of miniature piano genres: preludes, nocturnes, études, and dances. In her songs set to the lyrics of Polish and French poets, Szymanowska combined features characteristic of Polish music with the Western European lyric song, whose traditions she transformed to suit her purposes.

REFERENCES

Belza, I. Mariia Shimanovskaia. Moscow, 1956.
Russko-pol’skie muzykal’nye sviazi: Stat’i i materialy. Moscow, 1963.
Iwanejko, M. M. Szymanowska. Kraków, 1959.

O. V. LEVTONOVA

References in periodicals archive ?
I got particularly interested in two groups of sources: the first one consists of albums (Stammbucher), particularly those of Maria Szymanowska and her daughters.
Maria Szymanowska, an eminent Polish pianist and composer, one of the famous musical figures before Chopin, had a passion for collecting the autographs of artistic celebrities.
The set is called A Collection of Music Notes and Scores Kept by Maria Szymanowska and Helena Malewska (MAM 982).
The manuscripts of Maria Szymanowska were probably the oldest music sources included in the collection of the Adam Mickiewicz Museum, founded in 1903 by Wladyslaw Mickiewicz, the son of Adam and Celina.
Polish pianist-composer Maria Szymanowska (1789-1831) is one of the most fascinating figures of the early-nineteenth-century musical scene.
Szymanowska scholarship in Polish and Russian is rather extensive, with major biographies on the composer already a half century old (in Russian by Igor Belza, Mania Szymanowskaia [Moscow: Izd-vo Akademii nauk SSSR, 1956]; in Polish by Teofil Syga and Stanislaw Szenic, Maria Szymanowska i jej czasy [Warsaw: Panstwowy Instytut Wydawniczy, 1960]).
The letters, comprising the time period 1830-46 and located at the Historical Society in Charleston, South Carolina, "include passages written by Maria Szymanowska, Celina Szymanowska, and other members of their circle" (p.
Polish-born Maria Szymanowska, a woman of singular intelligence and personal strength, had an internationally prominent career in the early nineteenth century.
Examples of ballroom mazurkas by the likes of Jozef Damse, Karol Kurpinski, Maria Szymanowska, and Ludwika Dmuszewska demonstrate how blandly this diet must have nourished the young Chopin, and, by comparison, how profoundly he transformed the expressive terrain of the genre.