Music is my most loyal friend, it is the only thing I am 100% sure of. It has never let me down and never left me alone.
By playing the piano I can show all my emotions. I play when I am happy and when I am sad. Playing the piano is also a kind of escape from the world around, from troubles and sometimes from people.
No one in my family is a musician. It was my grandmother’s dream that there will be professional pianist in our family. My parents sent me to music school when I was 7, and they told me that they wanted me to graduate the first level of music education (6 years), and after that, it will be my choice if I want to continue the education.
When I was 10 , I met my second teacher Mrs. Maria Droga.
She not only taught me how to play, but also how to think as a pianist, how to fight stage fright, how to believe in my own capabilities. The three years that we spent together were very important in my life, and made me decide who I want to be in my life.
Another important person in my education as a pianist was prof. Jan Jański, who had been my teacher for 6 years while I was a student of Music Academy In Poznań. He is a true teacher, a wonderful person and student of amazing prof. Zbigniew Drzewiecki. Hard work based on recording and analyzing my prospers, listening to records of great pianists like Michelangeli Arturo Benedettiego or William Kapell, and choosing the best music pieces for me. But most of all prof. Jański belived in me completely, so I could believe in me as well.
In the meantime I also was a student of Hochschule fuer Musik und Theater in Rostock, Germany, where I was influenced by Matthias Kirschnereit, Stephan Imorde and Karola Theill. Prof Theill showed me alternative methods of playing the piano – how to accompany others and work with singers – that has helped me lots in my career.
I listen to many kinds of music, not only to classical music. I am a fan of Keith Jarrett, whose music, in my opinion, should be known by every pianist.
My grandmothers Gross Und Kalmann piano, standing in her living room, and my little concerts for my family as well as first real performance at the age of 8 in the Music School, where I played “Lukrowane Jabłuszka” by Tadeusz Kassern.
My parents discovered my love for the piano because as a child I was always near it. My first steps after coming home were always towards the instrument.
Proudest career moment…
The concert for the 10 pianos and orchestra. I am a president of Multi.Art Society and together with Filharmonia Kaliska we organized the concert for the 1850 years of my home city Kalisz. It was a huge project: first part was a concert for 10 pianos and philharmonic orchestra, second part was for the pianos and a big band. We had seven young composers, who created brand new pieces for the first part, and also special arrangements for jazz standards in the second part.
What was really wonderful about the project was the evolution from first ideas, through management, to final performance. I am very proud that I was part of it, especially that it was my first public performance after my daughter Hania was born a year before.
The greatest pianist gets the best and most spectacular tone, and that distinguishes them from the others.
In my opinion, the most important element is musicality, not technique – the technique is only a mean. As I am chamber musician I value ability to partnership and cooperation among musicians. I keep noticing that, music might be better than words in communication.
My advices for young pianists:
The piano is a demanding friend, it doesn’t like long parting. But on the other hand, you cannot practise all day long – you have to live your life, learn your life lessons so you have something to play about!
You need to read a lot, listen to concerts, specially the live ones, and not only piano music. When you play Sschumann, you need to know about his love to Clara Wieck, when you play Beethoven’s sonata you need to listen to his symphony. To all of those who want to learn how to accompany, I recommend a performance with a vocalist – this might be a perfect lesson.
Every possible performance is a challenge. I teach in The Ignacy Jan Paderewski Academy of Music in Poznań and in School of Music in Kalisz and I try to spend as much time with my family and my daughter Hania as possible, and of course I try to perform and learn new pieces.