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(b. 1950, Warsaw)

Biography List of Works Publications


Krzysztof Baculewski (b 1950) is a Polish composer and musicologist. He studied composition under the direction of Witold Rudziński at the Warsaw Academy of Music and he graduated in 1974. Then he continued his studies in Vienna and in Paris, where he focused on composition and music analysis under Olivier Messiaen's direction, and studied electronic music at the Groupe de Recherches Musicales.

As a composer Baculewski belongs to the generation that first came to national attention in mid-1970s. This group includes Rafał Augustyn, Andrzej Krzanowski, Eugeniusz Knapik, Krzysztof Knittel, Andrzej Lasoń, Elżbieta Sikora, Paweł Szymański and Lidia Zielińska. A formative function in the development of this generation was the Festival of Young Musicians for the Young City, held in Stalowa Wola. Knittel, Sikora and Wojciech Michniewski debuted as an electro-acoustic music collective, Grupa KEW. In contrast, Baculewski followed an individual path, initially revealing some French influences (Xenakis, Messiaen). His pieces have been praised for "subtlety of delicate texture" (Le Monde, 1982), and for being "dense and clear, blending tradition with postmodernism in a unique fashion" (Ruch Muzyczny, 1993).

From 1979 to 1986 Baculewski lectured at the Musicology Institute of the Warsaw University. Since 1982 he has been an instructor at the Composition, Conducting and Theory Department in F. Chopin Academy of Music, Warsaw. In 1987 his book Polish Composers' Output 1945 - 84 was published by the PWM Edition. This book is a shorter version of his 1982 doctoral dissertation prepared under Prof. Józef Chomiński at the Institute of Musicology, University of Warsaw.

Baculewski has also been active as a music critic; he wrote articles and reviews on music, mainly in the columns of Ruch Muzyczny.

He has won many competitions for composers. His compositions have been performed in Poland, Finland, France, USA, Germany, Mexico, Hungary and South America.


"Our generation of Polish composers is not intimidated by clusters or triads. We do not favor sevenths, seconds or tritones. We attempt to synthesize new means with tradition, because the time has come for reflection. [....] Aggressiveness and sonoristic tendencies recede into the background. Instead, the music features a return to melody, sonorous beauty, consonances, phrasing and form. Music is not identified with psychodrama; a musical work has to be sufficient in itself and be understood in its own right. [Baculewski, Output of Polish Composers, 1984]

In music there are certain moments which somehow evade rational calculations or planning. After all this is the secret of art: it somehow escapes from a complete intellectual control. Of course, it affects the mind and is created by it, but this is a different matter. [...] In 20th century music the aesthetics of beauty ceased to function and while the category of beauty could be applied to certain particular sounds, in general the aesthetics of beauty belongs in the past. It is in the Renaissance or the Baroque periods that the primary task of an artist was to create beauty or truth. Now, the purpose of art is not to provide beauty nor truth, but rather evoke certain emotions which are intellectual more often than artistic". [Baculewski in an unpublished interview by Trochimczyk, 1986]


Chamber Music

Vivace e Cantilena, for flute, piano, 2 violins, viola, cello and double-bass - 1974

Is - Slottet - 1975

Passacaglia for percussion quartet - 1979

Concertino for harpsichord and string quintet - 1980

Partita for alto E flat saxophone and harpsichord - 1980

Suite de Cheminee for 2 accordions - 1983

String Quartet No. 1 - 1984

String Quartet No. 2 - 1985

String Quartet No. 3 - 1986

Antitheton I for violin, cello and piano - 1989

Orchestral Music

Epitaphium - 1972

A la Recherche des Harmonies - 1976-77

Ground - 1981

Concerto - 1981-83

Concert Armonico for string orchestra - 1987

A Walking Shadow in memory of Andrzej Krzanowski - 1990

Solo Voices, Choir and Baroque Instruments

The Whole & Broken Consort, for 5 recorders, shawn, bombardon, rauschpfeife, 2 crumhorns and percussion - 1986

The Profane Anthem to Anne, for soprano solo, quartet of soloists, chamber choir, 2 violins, viola, cello, violone, harpsichord and organ - 1993

Christmas Motet, for soprano solo, tenor solo, chamber choir, 2 violins, viola, cello, violone, harpsichord and organ - 1993

Antitheton II, for 2 violins and continuo - 1994

Music for Solo Instruments

Sonata for one percussion player - 1972

Meander for flute - 1973

Spring Sonata for flute - 1982

Capriccio Piccolo in Cinque Movimenti for flute - 1992

Stage Works

The New Deliverance, to a libretto by the composer after Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz's drama - 1974

Music for Tape

Quartier Latin, piece in old style - 1981

Voyage a Travers le Paysage Metaphysique, for tape - 1992

Music for Children and Young People

A View in Rain from the Veranda in a Warm Night for cello solo - 1986

Quartet for 12 Instruments - 1987

Arrangements and Reconstructions

Mr. Twardowski, suite from Adolf Gustaw Sonnenfeld's ballet from 1860 - 1975

Piano Concerto in A Flat Major, op. 2 by Ignacy Feliks Dobrzyński, 1824 - 1986

33 Christmas Carols for soloists chamber choir (and continuo) - 1990-93


  • "Lutosławski: Jedna technika, jeden styl?" [Lutosławski: One technique, one style?] Muzyka vol. 40, no. 1-2:156-157, 1995, p. 25-39.

  • "The newly discovered Romantic piano concerto: Concerto in A flat major, op. 2 by Ignacy Feliks Dobrzyński", Polish music/Polnische Musik vol. 26, no. 2-4, 1991, p. 45-49.

  • Polska twórczość kompozytorska 1945-1984. [Polish composers' output 1945-84]. Series: Muzyka polska w dokumentacjach i interpretacjach. Kraków: Polskie Wydawnictwo Muzyczne, 1987) 342 p. Music examples, bibliography, list of works, index. In Polish.

  • "In statu nascendi: O muzyce nowej generacji kompozytorów." [In statu nascendi: Music of the new generation of composers]. In Zeszyty naukowe: Akademia Muzyczna w Krakowie, Poland (1986), p. 245-68.

  • "Polish music week in Hamburg : Hamburski tydzień muzyki polskiej." Ruch Muzyczny vol. 30 no. 2 (January 1986): 17-18.

  • "Zagadnienia faktury w Etiudzie Bairda." [Problems of texture in Tadeusz Baird's Etiuda]. Muzyka vol. 39 no. 1-2 (1984): 83-109.

  • "O muzyce nowej generacji kompozytorów." [The music of the new generation of composers]. Ruch Muzyczny vol. 28 no. 8 (April 1984): 3-5; no. 8 (April 1984) 8-10; no. 10 (May 1984): 17-18.

  • "Psychodrama" Tadeusza Bairda." [Psychodrama by Tadeusz Baird]. Ruch Muzyczny no. 18 (September 1973): 15.

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Based on materials from the program book of the Warsaw Autumn Festival,
Encyklopedia Muzyki
(Warsaw: PWM, 1995), and RILM Abstracts.
Edited and updated in July 2000 by Ewa Grzegrzułka.