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15 January 2008
Cardiff University has awarded an honorary fellowship to an internationally acclaimed Polish composer.
Professor Henryk Mikołaj Górecki whose music has been described as "among the most original to have emerged in the third quarter of the 20th century" received the honorary fellowship in recognition of his achievements.
Professor Górecki's career spans more than 40 years, dating from the post-Stalinist era of the mid 1950s and embracing a catalogue of more than 70 acknowledged works. His Third Symphony (‘Symphony of Sorrowful Songs’) brought him world-wide renown through its numerous performances and recordings. His musical idiom is highly original, while often drawing on the simplest of materials whether from Polish folk sources or from sacred sources.
The award was made by Professor Ken Woodhouse, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Engagement at a ceremony held in Poland (14 January).
Professor Robin Stowell, Head of the School of Music said: "Professor Górecki is one of the major contemporary musical figures and this honorary fellowship recognises his international distinction as a composer."
"Górecki’s links with Cardiff University are strong, not least as the subject of ground-breaking books written by staff within the School’s Central European Music Research Centre."
Professor Adrian Thomas, founder-director of the School of Music’s Central European Music Research Centre, also attended the ceremony. Professor Thomas is author of ‘Górecki’ (Oxford University Press 1997) the first historical and analytical study of Professor Górecki and Polish Music since Szymanowski (Cambridge University Press 2005).
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