Instytut Kultury
www.umwd.pl

Music Lovers' Association

The Jelenia Góra Music Lovers' Association groups music lovers systematically attending concerts organized by the Jelenia Góra Philharmonic and other musical institutions. The stems from the Music Lovers’ Club organized informally in 1984 by the Jelenia Góra Public Cultural Association. The club then functioned independently under the auspices of the Jelenia Góra Philharmonic and in 2000 transformed itself into the Music Lovers’ Association, which was statutorily registered at the Regional Court in Jelenia Góra and subsequently at the Wrocław Registry Court on the basis of presented by-laws.

Its endurance and development always went hand-in-hand with successes of the Lower Silesia Philharmonic in Jelenia Góra. Its artistic growth in the presentation of musical art has and continues to attract a growing number of concertgoers (entertainment, jazz, chamber and symphony), as well as club meetings of the Music Lovers' Association. They are organized between concerts with guest appearances by musical personalities: conductors and soloists. They are indeed the attraction of these informal meetings of music lovers. The guests speak about their professional achievements and artistic plans as well as about the creators of music played during Friday concerts. Some meetings are dedicated, among others, also to the popularisation of specific groups of instruments presented by orchestra concertmasters, who most often are also instructors at both local music schools.

In this manner, Jelenia Góra music lovers are increasingly active in development of musical life in the region and the activity of the Lower Silesia Philharmonic in Jelenia Góra, while having another opportunity to spend an evening among persons with similar interests.

Interestingly, ever younger music lovers join the association, which in itself is a phenomenon on the country's musical map (solely supported by membership dues), whereby potential candidates must first demonstrate systematic concert attendance and the ability to attend club meetings held on average twice per quarter. Meeting agendas always depend on Philharmonic events, that is, program attractions offered in specific concert seasons.

Interested non-members may attend announced meetings with artists since doors are open to all. They take place at the Philharmonic usually on Wednesday at 17:00 in the hall of mirrors.

Józef Sukniewicz, Chairman
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An assessment by the Music Lovers' Association in Jelenia Góra summarizing 20 years of work of Zuzanna Dziedzic as Director of the Lower Silesia Philharmonic (speech given by the chairman of the MLA)
(the E. Edward Czerny Foundation co-organised a ceremony held on 19 January 2010 that was attended by provincial, County and municipal authorities; he began his career as a conductor and composer at the Municipal Theatre in Jelenia Góra in 1951)

A prominent feature of anniversaries is a reflection on the passage of time, which without exception affects all, including music lovers in Jelenia Góra as well as our association. During this entire time, thanks to the openness of the Philharmonic director, we have and continue to organize our artistic-educational club meetings over coffee with conductors, soloists and orchestra musicians. I well remember those years because we previously worked with Ms. Zuzanna Dziedzic when she still served three years as deputy director.
We were concerned at the time about what would happen to the Philharmonic after the departure of the overworked Mr. Strahl and whether the orchestra in Jelenia Góra would survive. Rumours circulated that Lower Silesia authorities could not afford to finance three philharmonics. It was argued that the one in Wałbrzych could also easily serve the Jelenia Góra region, especially given the lack of a true concert hall in Jelenia Góra and the resulting small number of listeners eager to listen to music in a small hot room. Moreover, the quality of concerts also did not satisfy us often, among others, due to many musicians having poor instruments.

There was hope for change when Z. Dziedzic became director. As time has demonstrated, we were not disappointed as anticipated results were achieved over the years. The public Music Lovers’ Club, which attracted Philharmonic fans, was popular at the time because we defended our orchestra and constituted influential backing. We also supported local decision-makers and parliamentarians in seeking funds for the construction of a new concert hall. After they were obtained Director Dziedzic personally supervised work on this costly and highly complex investment of historic value to the city.

She was able to coordinate construction problems with the resolution of the Philharmonic's artistic matters. At the start she hired a young promising conductor, Jan Jazownik, who through his enthusiasm achieved much for the orchestra. He was succeeded in subsequent seasons by entitled conductors such as Tadeusz Wicherek and Tomasz Bugaj. She then invited musical personalities Robert Satanowski and Prof. Andrzej Chorosiński to cooperate on a systematic basis.

However, Artistic Director Jerzy Swoboda did most at the time for development of the Philharmonic Orchestra, that is, an improvement of its musical image and the feelings of music lovers. Under his stewardship we began to more frequently appreciate the quality of interpretation, better orchestra playing and sound as well as a more attractive repertoire.

It is worth recalling that the Jelenia Góra local government supported the centrally subservient Philharmonic in the atmosphere of flourishing musical culture in the Karkonosey capital while the new concert hall was under construction. Then Mayor Zofia Czernow organized a financing campaign at enterprises for the purchase of a Steinway & Sons concert piano, which took place in 1998.

Previously, the Music Lovers’ Club appeared informally in 1984 under the auspices of the Jelenia Góra Public Cultural Association and 10 years ago transformed itself into the Music Lovers' Association. However, it would have no reason to exist or inspiration for action if not for the artistic success of the symphony orchestra and, as a result, the growing number of listeners.

Qualitative transformation took place in this manner together with the passage of time of an entire institution, which today is distinguished in Poland through its level of performance, variety of musical offer, attractive festivals, the Chopin Competition for Children, honourable cooperation with leading schools of music, and, among others, the exceptionally friendly atmosphere that always prevails here.

It also arises from the attitude of the musicians themselves, who we admire for their diligence, artistic achievements and altruistic cooperation with the Music Lovers' Association in Jelenia Góra. The musicians as well as we music lovers can be proud of the fact that the orchestra is presently directed by an acclaimed artist, conductor Jacek Mirosław Błaszczyk.

The achiever of these successes, an excellent manager and promoter of cultural life in the Jelenia Góra region therefore deserves full credit, also for hearing out our program or performance suggestions and assisting with association activity. An obvious wish therefore arises: may this work last as long as possible.
J.S., Chairman
Jelenia Góra, 19 January 2010