Intermusica Artists' Management

 

 

Intermusica represents Stanislaw Skrowaczewski worldwide

Manager:
Leyla Güneş

Artist Manager:
Gwilym Evans

Administrator:
Francis Williams

Other Links:

Stanislaw Skrowaczewski's website

Seeking the Infinite: Stanislaw Skrowaczewski's biography

Star Tribune feature

Stanislaw Skrowaczewski

Conductor

Stanisław Skrowaczewski commands a rare position in the international musical scene, being both a renowned conductor and a highly-regarded composer. He has conducted all the top orchestras during his long and distinguished career, and now in his 90th year Skrowaczewski is the oldest working major conductor.

Born in 1923 in Lwów, Poland, Skrowaczewski began piano and violin studies at the age of four, composed his first symphonic work at seven, gave his first public piano recital at 11, and two years later played and conducted Beethoven’s Third Piano Concerto. A hand injury during the war terminated his keyboard career, after which he concentrated on composing and conducting. In 1946 he became conductor of the Wrocław (Breslau) Philharmonic, and he later served as Music Director of the Katowice Philharmonic (1949-54), Kraków Philharmonic (1954-6) and permanent conductor of the Warsaw National Philharmonic Orchestra (1956-9).

Skrowaczewski spent the immediate post-war years in Paris, studying with Nadia Boulanger and co-founding the avant-garde organization, Groupe Zodiaque. In 1948 he conducted the Paris premiere of Shostakovich’s Fifth Symphony with L’Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France. After winning the 1956 International Competition for Conductors in Rome, he was invited by George Szell to make his American debut, conducting the Cleveland Orchestra in 1958. This led to engagements with the New York Philharmonic, Pittsburgh Symphony and Cincinnati Symphony orchestras and, in 1960, to his appointment as Music Director of the Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra (now the Minnesota Orchestra), a position that he held for 19 years. During the 1960s he made his debuts with the Royal Concertgebouw, London Symphony, Philadelphia, Chicago Symphony, Boston Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Munich Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic and Berlin Philharmonic orchestras, as well as with the Vienna State Opera and Metropolitan Opera (New York). In particular, he became a regular guest-conductor of the Philadelphia and Cleveland orchestras and the Berliner Philharmoniker.

From 1984 to 1991 Skrowaczewski was Principal Conductor of The Hallé. With The Hallé he gave concerts across England, led tours throughout Europe and the USA and recorded extensively. In 2007 Skrowaczewski was appointed Principal Conductor of the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra for three highly successful seasons, during which time many of his performances were recorded live for Columbia Records.

Guest engagements continue to take Skrowaczewski across North America, Europe and Japan. Highlights of his 2013/14 season include opening the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra’s season at the Alte Oper, and returning to the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra, Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, and Galicia Symphony Orchestra. In July 2014, he makes a long-awaited return to the Cleveland Orchestra, conducting Shostakovich’s Fifth Symphony, the work that he conducted at his debut with the orchestra in 1958. Skrowaczewski is currently Conductor Laureate of the Minnesota Orchestra, which he conducted in their much-anticipated ‘homecoming’ concerts in February 2014. He is also Principal Guest Conductor of the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie, and Honorary Conductor Laureate of the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra in Tokyo, both of which he conducts every season.

Still an active composer, Skrowaczewski’s works have recently been performed by the Bavarian Radio Symphony, Deutsche Radio Philharmonie, Bruckner Orchester Linz, Yomiuri Nippon Symphony and Minnesota orchestras. His Concerto for Orchestra (1985) and Passacaglia Immaginaria (1995) were both nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. Earlier award-winning compositions include Overture 1947, which won the Karol Szymanowski Competition in Warsaw, and Ricercari notturni (1977), which received the first Kennedy Center Friedheim Award. Music for Winds (2009) was commissioned by a consortium of nine orchestras from the USA, Germany, Austria and Japan. Recordings of Skrowaczewski’s music are found on Oehms Classics, Reference Recordings, Albany Records and Innova.

The recipient of numerous accolades, Skrowaczewski is a Commander of Polonia Restituta with White Star, one of Poland’s highest decorations,‎ and has six Honorary Doctorates, awarded most recently by the universities of Minnesota and Wrocław, the New England Conservatory of Music and the Karol Szymanowski Academy of Music, Katowice. Skrowaczewski’s interpretations of Bruckner have earned him the Bruckner Society of America’s Kilenyi Medal of Honor and the Gold Medal of the Mahler-Bruckner Society, and his programming of contemporary music at the Minnesota Orchestra was acknowledged with five ASCAP Awards and the Ditson Conductor’s Award, bestowed by Columbia University, New York. He is the recipient of the 2004 McKnight Foundation Distinguished Artist Award, one of Minnesota’s highest cultural recognitions. In 2013 the University of Minnesota established the Stanislaw Skrowaczewski Endowment in Conducting in honour of his remarkable contributions to music and to Minnesota.

Of particular note within his extensive discography are Skrowaczewski’s complete recordings of Bruckner’s and Beethoven’s symphonies with the Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra (now Deutsche Radio Philharmonie) for Arte Nova Classics (now Oehms Classics), which received enormous critical acclaim. The Bruckner set won the 2002 Cannes Classical Award in the ‘Orchestral 18/19 Century’ category and was also included in BBC Music Magazine’s ‘Top Ten Discs of the Decade’.

Published in 2011, a comprehensive account of Skrowaczewski’s life and work can be found in Seeking the Infinite: The Musical Life of Stanisław Skrowaczewski, by Frederick Harris, Jr. Currently, two documentary films about Skrowaczewski are in progress in Poland and the United States.

Stanislaw Skrowaczewski is represented by Intermusica.
2013/14 season / 846 words. Not to be altered without permission. Please destroy all previous biographical material.

Bach, J.S.
(arr. Skrowaczewski

Toccata and Fuge in D minor, BWV.565
Romance in G major
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
Denon
COGQ-34
(2007)
Bach, J.S.
(arr. Skrowaczewski)

Toccata and Fugue in D minor, BWV.565
Minnesota Orchestra
Minnesota Orchestra at 100
(1997;
re-released 2003)
Barber
Medea’s Meditation and Dance of Vengeance
NHK Symphony Orchestra
King
KICC3022
(1996)
Bartók
Concerto for Orchestra
Divertimento for String Orchestra
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
306
(2004)
Bartók
Concerto for Orchestra
Dance Suite
Minnesota Orchestra
Vox Box
12
(1992;
re-released 2003)
Bartók
Works for Orchestra
Minnesota Orchestra
Vox Box
3015
(1976-82;
re-released 2008)
Beethoven
Leonore Overture No.2
NHK Symphony Orchestra
Altus
028
(2002)
Beethoven
Overtures and Incidental Music
Minnesota Orchestra
Bach Society of Minnesota
Phyllis Bryn-Julson (soprano)
Vox Box
5099
(1980;
re-released 1994)
Beethoven
Piano Concerto No.5 ‘Emperor’
London Symphony Orchestra
Gina Bachauer (piano)
Mercury Living Presence
432018
(1962;
re-released 2008)
Beethoven
Piano Concerto No.17 in G major, K.453
Piano Concerto No.27 in B-flat major, K.595
Minnesota Orchestra
Walter Klien (piano)
Vox Box
3609
(1980; re-released 2004)
Beethoven
Symphonies 1 & 4
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
521
(2006)
Beethoven
Symphony No.1 in C major, Op.21
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
DVD (live)
(2005)
Beethoven
Symphonies 2 & 3
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
522
(2006)
Beethoven
Symphony No.3 ‘Eroica’
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
RCA Red Seal
BVCC-34055
(2002)
Beethoven
Symphonies 5 & 6
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
523
(2006)
Beethoven
Grosse Fuge
Symphony No.5
NHK Symphony Orchestra
Altus
031/032
(2002))
Beethoven
Symphonies 7 & 8
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
524
(2007)
Beethoven
Symphony No.9
Annette Dasch (soprano)
Daniela Sindram (mezzo soprano)
Christian Elsner (tenor)
Georg Zeppenfeld (bass)
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Chor des Bayerischen Rundfunks

Oehms
525
(2006)
Beethoven
Violin Concerto in D major
Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra
Minnesota Orchestra at 100
(1965;
re-released 2003)
Berlioz
Symphonie fantastique
‘Love Scene’ from Roméo et Juliette
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
319
(2004)
Berlioz
Symphonie fantastique
London Symphony Orchestra
Chandos
8727
(1990)
Brahms
Piano Concerto No.1
London Symphony Orchestra
Barry Douglas (piano)
RCA Victor Red Seal
7780
(1988;
re-released 2008)
Brahms
Piano Concerto No.2
London Symphony Orchestra
Gina Bachauer (piano)
Mercury Living Presence
434340
(1964;
re-released 1994)
Brahms
Symphony No.1
Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbrücken Kaiserslautern
Oehms
OC408
(2011)
Brahms
Symphony No.1 in C minor, Op.68
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
Denon
COGQ-34
(2007)
Brahms
Symphony No.1
Academy Festival Overture
Hallé Orchestra
IMP Classics
882
(1987;< /br> re-released 2001)
Brahms
Symphonies Nos.2 & 3
Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbrücken Kaiserslautern
Oehms
OC409
(2012)
Brahms
Symphony No.2 in D major, Op.73
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
Denon
COGQ-29
(2007)
Brahms
Symphony No.2
Tragic Overture
Hallé Orchestra
IMP Classics
857
(1990)
Brahms
Symphony No.3 in F major, Op.90
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
Denon
COGQ-39
(2008)
Brahms
Symphony No.3 in F, Op.90
Variations on a Theme of Haydn
Hallé Orchestra
IMP Classics
(1991)
Brahms
Symphony No.4
Hungarian Dances Nos.1, 3 & 10
Hallé Orchestra
IMP Classics
(1991)
Britten
Concerto for Piano and Orchestra, Op.13
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Robert Leonardy (piano)
Arte Nova
74321 277692
(1994)
Bruckner
Symphony in F minor
Overture in G minor
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
208
(2001;
re-released 2010)
Bruckner
Symphony No.0 ‘Nullte’
Adagio from String Quintet in F major
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
209
(1999;
re-released 2010)
Bruckner
Symphony No.1
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
210
(1998; re-released 2010)
Bruckner
Symphony No.2
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
211
(2000;)
re-released 2010)
Bruckner
Symphony No.3
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
212
(1996;
re-released 2010)
Bruckner
Symphony No.3 in D minor
National Philharmonic Orchestra - Warsaw
Muza
SX2093
(1981)
Bruckner
Symphony No.4 'Romantic'
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
213
(1998;
re-released 2004)
Bruckner
Symphony No.4 'Romantic'
Hallé Orchestra
IMP Classics
(1993;
re-released 1997)
Bruckner
Symphony No.5
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
214
(1996;
re-released 2004)
Bruckner
Symphony No.6
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
215
(1997;
re-released 2004)
Bruckner
Symphony No.7
London Philharmonic Orchestra
LPO
0071
(2013)
Bruckner
Symphony No.7 in E major
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
Denon
COGQ-50
(2011)
Bruckner
Symphony No.7 in E major
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
DVD (live)
(2005)
Bruckner
Symphony No.7
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
216
(1991;
re-released 2004)
Bruckner
Symphony No.7
NHK Symphony Orchestra
Altus
030
(2002)
Bruckner
Symphony No.8 in C minor
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
Denon
COGQ-1029
(2010)
Bruckner
Symphony No.8 'Apocalyptic'
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Oehms
217
(1993;
re-released 2004)
Bruckner
Symphony No.9 in D minor
Symphony No.8 in C minor
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
Nippon Columbia
[DVD]
COXO1024
(2010)
Bruckner
Symphony No.9 ‘Dem lieben Gott’
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Denon
COGQ-41
(2009)
Bruckner
Symphony No.9 in D minor
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
Oehms 218
(2001;
re-released 2004)
Bruckner
Symphony No.9
Minnesota Orchestra
Reference Recordings
18
(1997)
Chopin
Complete music for piano and orchestra
Orchestre de la Société du Conservatoire Paris
Alexis Weissenberg (piano)
EMI Classics
00906
(1968-77;
re-released 2007)
Chopin
Piano Concertos 1 & 2
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Ewa Kupiec (piano)
Oehms
218
(2004)
Chopin
Piano Concerto No.1
New Symphony Orchestra of London
Artur Rubinstein (piano)
RCA Victor Living Stereo
67902
(1961;
re-released 2005)
Elgar
Enigma-Variations
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Arte Nova
74321 277692
(1994)
Handel
Water Music (Suite)
Royal Fireworks Music
Minnesota Orchestra
Vox
QTV-S 34632
(1976;
re-released 2009)
Henze
Ode an den Westwind
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Gustav Rivinius (cello)
Arte Nova
894040
(1999;
re-released 2005)
Lalo
Cello Concerto in D minor
London Symphony Orchestra
János Starker (cello)
Mercury Living Presence
E4756621
(1962;
re-released 2005)
Liszt
Piano Concerto No.2
Berliner Philharmoniker
Krystian Zimerman (piano)
Coup d’Etat
CO505
(1979)
Lutoslawski
Concerto for Orchestra
NHK Symphony Orchestra
Altus
031/032
(2002)
Lutoslawski
Concerto for Orchestra
Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
RCO Live
11004
(1993;
re-released 2011)
Mahler
Symphony No.4
Hallé Orchestra
Alison Hargan (soprano)
IMP Classics
972
(1993)
Mayer, William
Two Pastels
Andante
for Strings
Minnesota Orchestra
Phoenix USA
120
(1969-70;
re-released 1995)
Mendelssohn
Symphony No.4 'Italian'
Minneapolis Symphony
Mercury Living Presence
434363
(1963;
re-released 1995)
Messiaen
Et exspecto resurrectionem mortuorum
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
Denon
COGQ-29
(2007)
Mozart
Piano Concerti Nos.17 & 27
Minnesota Orchestra
Walter Klien (piano)
Vox
9037
(1978;
re-released 2009)
Mozart
Symphony No.29
NHK Symphony Orchestra
Altus
029
(2002)
Mozart
Symphony No.41 'Jupiter'
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
RCA Red Seal
BVCC-34055
(2002)
Ohana
Livre des prodiges
Orchestre National de France
Erato
45503
(1984;
re-released 2007)
Ohana
Chiffres de Clavecin
Nouvel Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France
Elisabeth Chojnacka (harpsichord)
Erato
45503
(1984)
Penderecki
Violin Concerto
Minnesota Orchestra
Isaac Stern (violin)
Sony
64507
(1979;
re-released 1995)
Prokofiev
The Love for Three Oranges Suite
Minnesota Orchestra
Vox Box
12
(re-released 1995)
Prokofiev
Romeo and Juliet: Ballet Suites Nos.1 & 2
Minnesota Symphony Orchestra
Mercury Living Presence
432004
(1963;
re-released 1990)
Prokofiev
Romeo and Juliet: Suites
Kölner Rundfunk-Sinfonie-Orchester
Denon
CO-78840
(1996)
Prokofiev
Romeo and Juliet: Suite No.2
NHK Symphony Orchestra
King
KICC3022
(1996)
Prokofiev
Scythian Suite
Romeo & Juliet

Suite from Love for 3 Oranges
Minnesota Orchestra
Vox Box
3016
(1997;
re-released 1992)
Ravel
Daphnis et Chloé (Ballet Suites Nos.1 & 2)
Ma Mère l’Oye (Complete Ballet Version)
Valses nobles et sentimentales
Minnesota Orchestra
Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab
4008
(1975;
re-released 2005)
Ravel
Daphnis et Chloé (Suites 2)
Pavane
Bolero
La Valse
Rhapsodie Espagnole
Fanfare from L’eventail de Jeanne
Minnesota Orchestra
Regis
1206
(1975;
re-released 2007)
Schubert
Symphony No.8 'Unfinished'
Symphony No.5 in B-flat
Rosamunde: Incidental Music
Minneapolis Symphony
Mercury Living Presence
462954
(1963;
re-released 1998)
Schubert
Symphony No.9 in C 'Great'
Minneapolis Symphony
Mercury Living Presence
434354
(1961;
re-released 1995)
Schumann
Cello Concerto in A minor, Op.129
London Symphony Orchestra
János Starker (cello)
Mercury Living Presence
E4756621
(1962;
re-released 2005)
Schumann
Piano Concerto in A minor
Minneapolis Symphony Orchestra
Byron Janis (piano)
Mercury Living Presence
432011
(1962;
re-released 1991)
Schumann
Symphonies 1 & 4
Deutsche Radio Philharmonie
Oehms
707
(2007)
Schumann
Symphonies 2 & 3
Deutsche Radio Philharmonie
Oehms
708
(2008)
Schumann
Symphonies No.4
NHK Symphony Orchestra
Altus
029
(2002)
Shostakovich
Symphony No.1 in F minor, Op.10
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
Denon
COCQ-84575
(2008)
Shostakovich
Symphony No.1 in F minor
Symphony No.6 in B minor
The Hallé
Hallé
CDHLL 7506
(1996-7; re-released 2004)
Shostakovich
Symphony No.5 in D minor
Symphony No.10 in E minor
The Hallé
Hallé
CDHLD 7511
(1990-1; re-released 2006)
Shostakovich
Symphony No.5
Minneapolis Symphony
Mercury Living Presence
434323
(1962; re-released 2006)
Shostakovich
Symphony No.10 in E minor, Op.93
Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin
Weitblick
SSS0076
(2008)
Skrowaczewski, Stanisław
Concerto for English Horn and Orchestra
Minnesota Orchestra
Thomas Stacy (English horn)
Phoenix USA
120
(1969-70;
re-released 1995)
Skrowaczewski, Stanisław
Music at Night
Fantasy for Flute and Orchestra
Il Piffero della Notte
Symphony [2003] Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbrücken Kaiserslautern
Roswitha Staege (flute)
Oehms
712
(2008)
Skrowaczewski, Stanisław
Passacaglia Immaginaria
Chamber Concerto
Concerto for Clarinet in A & Orchestra
Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra
Richard Stoltzman (clarinet)
Albany Records
481
(2001)
Strauss, R.
Also sprach Zarathustra
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
Denon
COCQ-84575
(2008)
Strauss, R.
Also sprach Zarathustra
National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain
IMP Classics
6600932
(1998)
Stravinsky
Le sacre du printemps
NHK Symphony Orchestra
King
KICC3022
(1996)
Stravinsky
The Rite of Spring
Petrouchka
Firebird
Suite
Minnesota Orchestra
Vox Box
3016
(1977;
re-released 1992)
Tchaikovsky
Serenade for Strings in C major, Op.48
Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra
Denon
COGQ-39
(2008)
Tchaikovsky
Symphony No.5
NHK Symphony Orchestra
Altus
028
(2002)
Wagner
Tannhäuser: Overture and Venusberg Music
Tristan und Isolde: Prelude and Liebestod
Tristan und Isolde: Prelude to Act III
Minnesota Orchestra
Vox
QTV-S34642
(1976;
re-released 2011)
Weber
Overtures
Hallé Orchestra
IMP Classics
1105
(1994)
Wienawski
Violin Concerto No.2
Orchestre de la Suisse Romande
Michel Schwalbé (violin)
Biddulph Recordings
164
(1963;
re-released 1998)

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  • English Reviews
  • German Reviews

  • ENGLISH REVIEWS

    Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbrücken Kaiserslautern / BRAHMS: Symphony No.4 (Oehms)
    “Plenty to get excited about here, first and foremost the sheer energy of Skrowaczewski’s performance… Right from the opening bars, where theme and accompaniment… swim along in ardent harmony, you sense that this is a goal-orientated performance. Where others make Brahms sound portly, Skrowaczewski works the fat back into gleaming muscle.

    …this is a marvellous performance, the crowning glory of Skrowaczewski’s Brahms cycle, very well played and recorded.”
    Rob Cowan, Gramophone, February 2014

    “It’s a lovely performance – wise, affectionate and warm-hearted – and it’s one that should be of great interest to this conductor’s admirers… It’s the conclusion of a complete Brahms cycle that Skrowaczewski has made with this Saarbrücken orchestra over the last few years and it is certainly a fitting climax to that series.

    …everything is beautifully shaped and expressively moulded. Skrowaczewski and his players really breathe here, and the results are beautiful and very moving.

    …Skrowaczewski injects energy just when it’s needed and as a whole this is a fascinating performance…

    …I found myself deeply moved by Skrowaczewski’s recording and entirely gripped by the intensity, the warmth and the communicative power of the music-making… I would urge every Brahmsian to try to hear this utterly individual performance.”
    Nigel Simeone, International Record Review, January 2014

    Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra / PROKOFIEV; RAVEL; SHOSTAKOVICH
    “…the Pole’s physical and mental agility, which we had already had the opportunity to admire during his guest performance with the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra in March this year, paid dividends once again.”
    Klaus Ackermann, Offenbach-Post (Offenbach am Main), September 2013

    “The enduring power of his artistic presence and his agility are amazing, but this is not what really stands out about Skrowaczewski. Rather, it is the breathtaking results his interpretations are still able to achieve and the way he goes about this that are spectacular.

    …he is one of the very last contemporaries of Dmitri Shostakovich, who died in Moscow in 1975. This exceptionally serious artist does not come across as vain in any way, and it seems clear that he devotes all of his efforts to the service of music rather than showmanship. Particularly in the case of Shostakovich, this lends his performances an authenticity that the next generation will only be able to experience in recordings.

    It was immediately apparent to the listener […] that Skrowaczewski already had a very clear, detailed idea of how the music should sound. He knows how everything fits into the overall shape of the work and how to go about building a great, dynamic whole filled with tension and climaxes. Above all, he is able to find coherent connections and bring out the full impact of this finely-honed, expressive music that follows in the footsteps of Mahler, without lingering on superficial effects.”
    Harald Budweg, Frankfurter Allgemeiner Zeitung (Frankfurt), September 2013

    “The task of discovering the enduring core of Shostakovich’s symphonic output, beyond just the historical communist setting, will increasingly fall to younger conductors. The audience gave Skrowaczewski the recognition he deserved, as a man who is capable of giving us, today, an eloquent musical insight into his contemporaries.”
    Axel Zibulski, Wiesbadener Kurier (Wiesbaden), September 2013

    “…the Pole’s physical and mental agility, which we had already had the opportunity to admire during his guest performance with the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra in March this year, paid dividends once again.”
    Matthias Gerhart, Frankfurter Neue Presse (Frankfurt), September 2013

    “Skrowaczewski immediately set the scene for his vision of how he wanted this Russian music to be understood with the searing orchestral crescendo that begins Prokofiev’s “Romeo and Juliet” suite – casting it in a harsh, unforgiving light, with hard shadows, and diametrically opposed to the impressionistic, evocative nature of Ravel’s music.

    Skrowaczewski marshalled the foundry-workers of the orchestra [in Shostakovich ‘sSymphony No.10] to bring to life a radical and incisive interpretation.”
    Bernhard Uske, Frankfurter Rundschau (Frankfurt), September 2013

    London Philharmonic Orchestra / BRUCKNER: Symphony No.7 [LPO 0071]
    “There is no question that Stanisław Skrowaczewski’s approach to Bruckner is grandly old-school; but it displays a humanity that is a world away from the brassier cosmos of Karajan or Klemperer and its modesty, its classicism, is reflected in the nurturing of small details and the intimacy and charm of such detail, almost Mozartian at times.

    …Skrowaczewski allows himself the luxury of some very free phrasing, drinking in the atmosphere and lingering over one or two key passages […]

    The playing is fine throughout – and orchestra truly listening, in the chamber-music sense of the word […]

    …one is left in no doubt that the man on the podium comes with a wealth of experience and is in love with every bar.”
    Edward Seckerson, Gramophone (UK), October 2013

    “Older conductors have a knack of searching out the metaphysical in Bruckner, and the veteran Polish-born Skrowaczewski is no execption: his reading is in the mould of Wand (RCA) and Von Matacic (Denon), luminous in texture and majestically clear of purpose, with an exceptionally serene slow movement and a warm-hearted Trio. Tempi are wonderfull sustained – “old” does not always mean “slow” – and climaxes are reached patiently and lyrically, if not always with optimal intensity.”
    Andrew Clark, Financial Times (London), August 2013

    Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra / BEETHOVEN; SHOSTAKOVICH; BRAHMS
    “He is at an age at which he is becoming a legend in his own lifetime: Polish conductor Stanisław Skrowaczewski, on first name terms with the elite orchestras of the world, has once again brought inspiration to the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra. Conducting repertoire by Beethoven and Brahms, the nearly ninety year old showed an astonishing vigour on the podium.”

    “This doyen, conducting clearly and apparently effortlessly, gave an exciting performance of the [second Leonore] Overture, which so clearly points forward to the arias of the opera. The audible hope and fear resolved into a liberating trumpet solo before the orchestra broke into consciously controlled jubilation.”

    “[In Brahms’s First Symphony] Skrowaczewski channelled the themes and motifs of the constantly evolving current of sound with great calm and serenity, and maintained the tension right through to the compellingly exaggerated rest.”

    “It is in such moments that one is tempted to speak of the legacy that Skrowaczewski will leave. But we wish this most pleasant of maestros a long life before then!”
    Klaus Ackermann, Offenbach-Post, March 2013

    “Stanisław Skrowaczewski, who will be ninety years old this October, possesses authority without arrogance. He has been an established conductor of Brahms’s repertoire for many decades, but only recorded his symphony cycle at the turn of the century, twice over. The Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra benefitted from his wisdom and experience in their performance of Johannes Brahms’s First Symphony at the Alte Oper Frankfurt. After a dramatic beginning and a lyrical opening section, Skrowaczewski set a pressing tempo which made the repeat of the exposition, avoided by most conductors, seem quite natural and necessary. […] Then, after the Andante sostenuto, taken at a confidently flowing pace, Skrowaczewski allowed the orchestra only the shortest of pauses for breath before launching rapidly into the Allegretto of the third movement. His interpretation was much more ‘grazioso’, as Brahms in fact stipulated, than usual in performances of this native composer.”

    “The final transition was the most exciting of all […] In Skrowaczewski’s hands, the break before the last movement became the omitted crotchet from the first bar of the opening Adagio. The movement began tautly, then Skrowaczewski allowed the brisk Beethoven-esque C major theme to ring out ‘con brio’, as a cheerful celebration. The orchestra followed this great musician in congenial partnership through the wide-ranging phrases, maintaining the unity of the piece, and the intensely focussed audience rewarded the performance with enthusiastic applause.
    Christoph Schwandt, Frankfurter Rundschau, March 2013

    “On Friday evening at the Alte Oper Frankfurt, the audience made it a point of honour not to allow him to leave the podium at the end of his concert with the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra. Polish conductor and composer Stanisław Skrowaczewski, born in 1923, has enjoyed enormous success in all the main international concert halls for over half a century now.”

    “…Stanisław Skrowaczewski, who celebrates his 90th birthday in just a few months, drew on his enormous wealth of experience and his equally enormous musical passion to lead the HR-Sinfonieorchester through a century and a half of dramatic musical history.”

    “…Brahms’s first symphony provided equally weighty material, pointing back towards Beethoven’s Leonore Overture with its internal dramatic development and noble tone language, whilst still going its own way. From the rudimentary material of the first few bars, Stanisław Skrowaczewski developed an exciting performance of the first movement, and its chromatically opposing tendencies radiated throughout the entire piece.”
    Christina Pfänder, Gieβener Allgemeine, March 2013

    “The audience had already had the opportunity on previous occasions to admire the particularly wide dynamic range and the unusually vivid contrasts in tonal colours characteristic of Stanisław Skrowaczewski’s performances. Of course, the frequently spectacular results achieved by the almost 90-year-old conductor (and composer) from Poland in his attempts to reveal the core of the music are indirectly supported by those composers themselves, such as Shostakovich, who were also brilliant orchestrators.”

    “Skrowaczewski’s legendary performance with the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra three years ago, when Shostakovich’s Symphony No.5 was on the test bed, is still talked about in Frankfurt’s musical circles today. This time […] although he was understandably not as physically fit as back then, once on the rostrum he was still as wide awake, focussed and uncompromising in his interpretation as ever. Even after the first couple of bars, he left no doubts: Ludwig van Beethoven’s ‘Leonore’ Overture No.2 in C major Op.72, although consisting of the same musical material as its ‘smoother’ sister (‘Leonore’ No.3 Op.72), was the more experimentally developed piece. The Overture resembled a symphonic poem in its wide-ranging dramatic outline, and was much more than simply the preparation for a particular succession of operatic characters so typical of the genre. In Skrowaczewski’s interpretation, the constant conflict and consonance of the ‘rescue’ themes rang out stirringly on the solo trumpet.”

    “And then came the Shostakovich! His Concerto for Cello and Orchestra No.1 in E-flat major Op.107 […] was performed with such fittingly consistent relentlessness by Skrowaczewski, the HR musicians and the splendid young soloist Johannes Moser, which can only be achieved by the highest levels of discipline and concentration.”

    “…The vivid range of sounds was equally exemplary in the final piece of the programme: Johannes Brahms’s Symphony No.1 in C minor Op.68. Once again, Skrowaczewski effortlessly managed to bring clarity to the thickly interwoven themes of the opening movement, without necessarily needing to mute the dynamics. Altogether, this was a most impressive evening at the Alte Oper Frankfurt.”
    Harald Budweg, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, March 2013

    The Hallé / LUTOSŁAWSKI; SHOSTAKOVICH
    “It’s not often you can truthfully use the phrase ‘living legend’ to describe someone in the arts, but Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, the Halle’s conductor on Thursday, surely merits that description.”

    “He’s close to 90 now and can justifiably be mentioned in the same breath as giants of the recent past such as Bernstein and Karajan.”

    “His interpretation of two masterpieces of the 20th century came with the authenticity of a conductor (and fellow-composer) who knew their creators well.”

    “…he directed [Lutosławski’s Concerto for Orchestra] with life, imagination and dignity, and from memory.

    “The delicated balancing of tender sounds was masterly, the closing sections very moving.”

    “Skrowaczewski’s hand gave [Shostakovich’s Symphony No.5] intense humanity and depth […]”
    Robert Beale, Manchester Evening News, March 2013

    Bruckner Orchester Linz / MOZART; SHOSTAKOVICH
    “It’s already fairly astonishing to see an 89 year old conducting a concert, and all the more so when he conducts the entire concert from memory. But with Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, even that wasn’t the most remarkable aspect of the performance.”

    “It must be such a pleasure to perform under Skrowaczewski’s baton, and to give of your very best. It is rare to experience the Bruckner Orchester Linz playing with such concentration, perfection and inspiration, and the standing ovations at the end of the concert were definitely well deserved.”

    “The programme included Mozart’s Jupiter Symphony, performed with unusual liveliness and with every detail as clear as a bell, so that even the most jaded audience-member could hear something new in the score. It was obvious from the Mozart how inspiring working with the Polish-American conductor, born in 1923, must be; and even more so in Shostakovich’s Fifth Symphony. This performance was simply a work of genius, as Skrowaczewski laid bare all the emotional frontiers of the piece.”
    Oberösterreichische Nachrichten, five stars, January 2013

    London Philharmonic Orchestra, with Garrick Ohlsson (piano) / BRAHMS; BRUCKNER
    (arr. SKROWACZEWSKI); SHOSTAKOVICH

    “On the podium was the Polish conductor and composer Stanislaw Skrowaczewski. And this man will be ninety next year - yes, ninety - but the crackling energy he brought to Shostakovich’s First Symphony could have shamed conductors a quarter his age.”

    “…the London Philharmonic on top form …”
    Michael Church, Independent, October 2012

    “Stanisław Skrowaczewski opened Brahms’s D minor Piano Concerto in spacious and reflective terms, fully the marked Maestoso, paving the way for a seamless ‘of similar mind’ first appearance from Garrick Ohlsson.

    “Skrowaczewski was in his element with Shostakovich’s First Symphony …”

    “Shostakovich 1 is a Skrowaczewski speciality (he has made a notable recording of it with the Hallé) and here left his score of it unopened (the Bruckner was similarly ‘from memory’).”

    “The performance was incisive and tart from the off, Skrowaczewski relishing the music’s daring, irreverence, individuality, dissimilarity and sleights of hand … Shostakovich 1 is nothing if not theatrical and dramatic; Skrowaczewski made much of the side drums’ linking crescendo into the finale, alive to the movement's depth, drive and emotion, and building to a shattering and tragic climax …”

    “From further sentimental reminiscences to an edgy and brazen coda (gong-strokes courtesy of the conductor, I imagine), Skrowaczewski’s coup de grace was the brutal final chord and his motionless stance at its impact: several seconds of stunned silence ensued before applause broke through …”

    “Recently turned 89 (on October 3), Stanisław Skrowaczewski remains alert and vigorous. Long absent from London before this week (something like twenty years!) yet with a full conducting schedule, it would be nice to think that when the LPO announces its 2013-14 Season that a 90th-birthday concert is included, a good opportunity to include Skrowaczewski’s own music, such as the large-scale, large-orchestra Passacaglia Immaginaria.”
    Colin Anderson, Classical Source, October 2012

    London Philharmonic Orchestra, with Hilary Hahn (violin) / MOZART; BRUCKNER
    “…Stanislaw Skrowaczewski still has plenty of fire in his belly.”

    “…as he gave the downbeat for [Bruckner’s] Seventh, I expected the sort of imposing symphonic swell that only a veteran of Mittel European music-making could offer.

    “The results were more surprising. Skrowaczewski had placed a miniature score on his stand, and then never turned a page of it. And what we heard often sounded as if we were floating above Bruckner’s great edifice, viewing it all from something of a distance.”

    “…there were precious dividends from this lofty approach. Bruckner is often compared to Schubert, and here, for once, in the loving and understated way in which Skrowaczewski brought out the inner voices of the orchestration, you could hear where the two composers meet.”

    “…there was also never any doubt that the conductor knew where this music was headed, and knew that it needed no extraneous interference. The LPO … offered him rapt adoration.”
    Neil Fisher, Times, October 2012

    “This symphony [Bruckner’s Symphony No.7] played a pivotal role in the life of the conductor … and he certainly has his own conception of it. The first two movements were deliberate in pace, perhaps the slowest I have ever heard in the concert hall, but this was never the enforced languor of age. The symphonic argument unfolded slowly, patiently and with all the evidence of an experienced ear, always coherent, never faltering. The strings sounded as luminous as it’s possible to sound in this still-tough acoustic and the brass were rock solid. Inner voices, sometimes lost in the melee, spoke clearly.”

    “… the LPO were in tremendous form, right across the stage. The scherzo had just the right admixture of coarseness and refinement, but nothing could have prepared us all for the buoyant, sprightly finale. The musicians seemed every bit as delighted as the audience by the end …”

    “I never believed I would hear an account of a Bruckner symphony that rivalled Günter Wand at his best, but last night I did.”

    “The audience was so intent and so bewitched, and the playing so refined, that for the first time in quarter of a century of Festival Hall concert-going I noticed the slight rumble of trains passing by outside. Truly an evening to remember!”
    Michael McManus, Gramophone, October 2012

    “This concert was superb, a wonderful marriage of common purpose.”

    “London has been blessed by some superb accounts of Bruckner's music recently: the Fifth Symphony from Claudio Abbado and the Lucerne Festival Orchestra, and also Bernard Haitink with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra; Seventh from Haitink and the LSO, and Kurt Masur with the Philharmonia Orchestra; Eighth from Haitink at the Royal College of Music, and Christoph von Dohnányi and the Philharmonia. Also memorable was this Seventh from Skrowaczewski.”

    “At spot-on 70 minutes, this reading benefited from such expanse: there was space to breathe with Skrowaczewski (the score in front of him but unopened), the music never dragging, and was a performance as one dreams of – of majesty, grace and full expression.”

    “The ascent to glory was captivating from the off, moments of serene bliss gave way to uplifting climaxes in the opening movement. Skrowaczewski tempted the LPO to great heights of playing.”
    Kevin Rogers, Classical Source, October 2012

    Minnesota Orchestra / J.S. BACH (arr. SKROWACZEWSKI)
    “It helps to have a living piece of history on the premises like Stanislaw Skrowaczewski. The Minnesota Orchestra's music director from 1960 to 1979, he was the chief driving force behind getting Orchestra Hall built. Reprising the first piece he conducted at its 1974 opening, his own arrangement of J.S. Bach's Toccata and Fugue in D Minor, he showed remarkable vigor and intensity for a man of 88.”
    Rob Hubbard, Pioneer Press, June 2012

    Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich, with Paul Lews (piano) / MOZART
    “…just as with any truly great conductor, the audience heard things that they had never noticed before. For example, how the composer framed the brass section, as if he were putting them on a stage by themselves, with the strings in the orchestra pit.”
    Martin Ebel, Tages-Anzeiger, May 2012

    “The Symphony in D major KV.385, the ‘Haffner’, took on a lively character under Skrowaczewski’s baton. One reason for this was that the conductor took the dynamics to the extremes. Another was that he employed very fast tempi for the outer movements, which was especially appropriate for the final movement, marked ‘presto’. The third characteristic of Skrowaczewski’s interpretation of Mozart was his thorough exploration of sound colours.”
    Thomas Schacher, Neue Zürcher Zeitung, May 2012

    Minnesota Orchestra / BRUCKNER: Symphony No.8
    “…it's hard to imagine an account more passionate or more thoughtful than Skrowaczewski's. (Is there another conductor who integrates the seemingly incongruous elements of Bruckner's style – Schubert's lyricism and Wagner's orchestral timbres, learned counterpoint and 19th century monumentality – so completely?) Conducting without a score, he was master of the work's global design and of its finest detail.

    Music unfolds in time, but the Eighth has one foot in eternity, at least with Skrowaczewski at the helm. "When I conduct the Eighth Symphony," the conductor told an Australian interviewer (as quoted by Harris) in 1994, "it seems to me that it is already over in a moment. ... It is like a religious meditation or a dream: You lose the notion of time."

    It's one thing for a musician to feel time dissolving and quite another to transmit that feeling to an audience, as Skrowaczewski did Thursday morning. And amid the colossal climaxes and general massiveness, the conductor was unfailingly attentive to the symphony's intimate side – a vein most conspicuous in the bewitching Trio of the second movement and in the sublime third.

    The Minnesota Orchestra, alas, doesn't play Bruckner often enough to qualify as one of the world's great Bruckner orchestras (a special breed). Yet on Thursday it managed to sound like one -- a tribute to Skrowaczewski's incandescent leadership. The brass was stirring; the strings glowed. I've heard nothing more beautiful than the protracted sigh at the Adagio's end.

    Music-making on this exalted plane comes our way but rarely.”
    Larry Fuchsberg, Star Tribune, April 2012

    “Conductors half Skrowaczewski's age can be left sweat-soaked and staggering by this symphony.

    Yet Thursday's performance seemed built on a solid foundation of mutual confidence between conductor and ensemble, he intense, they intent on bringing the full complement of colors to his interpretation. It's a paradoxical symphony in that it can seem both massive and essentially simple, its themes never mutating into shapes too far removed from their plainspoken initial assertions. Yet those themes can sweep you away like the wondrous washing waves that the violas and cellos send forth in the Scherzo or summon up a celebration as when the brass rings forth like a city full of church bells. But never did this performance feel more like a precious treasure than on the Adagio, a movement during which Bruckner manages to sound so much like his musical hero, Richard Wagner, yet expresses his ideas in a voice entirely his own. This movement felt like the sound of Skrowaczewski's heart and spirit, urgency pouring forth from the podium and eloquently articulated by the orchestra. The triumphant finale sealed the overarching impression that this was an experience to be savored.”
    Rob Hubbard, Pioneer Press, April 2012

    Deutsche Radio Philharmonie / BRAHMS: Symphony No.1 [Oehms]
    “I can’t imagine anyone hearing this epic performance without being struck by its grandeur. This is conducting in the great line of Furtwangler and Bernstein, and goes to the top of my list for performances of this symphony.”
    Don O’Connor, American Record Guide (Cincinnati, OH), March/April 2012

    St. Louis Symphony Orchestra / WEBER; MENDELSSOHN; SCHUBERT
    “White-haired, stooped, he moves slowly and looks fragile. Once he gets on the podium, however, there is no question about his ability to lead with clarity and strength.

    With just one closed-up score in front of him for the entire concert, he led all three works from memory.

    The orchestra was in terrific voice throughout, playing with the sense of security and unity, clarity and balance …”
    Sarah Bryan Miller, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, February 2012

    Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, with Matthias Goerne (baritone) / HARTMANN; BRUCKNER
    “Skrowaczewski may have discovered his love for a full, rousing brass sound in America. And now the Philharmonie have once again mastered this sound. Yet the slight, unassuming conductor also gave the Philharmonie plenty of room; he was happy to place his trust in them. Incidentally, he last conducted the orchestra 25 years ago.”

    “Skrowaczewski is what you might call a tried and tested Bruckner expert. He allowed Bruckner’s music to flow, and shaped the harsh complexity of the opening movement of the third symphony most effectively. But he is not a man of conflict and rebellion; at heart, he is a romantic, an analyst of beauty. Perhaps this comes from the conductor’s life experience and wisdom. The Adagio came across as a sweet seduction, and the finale was impressively staged, yet it faded away without any great after-effects.”

    “But first we experienced all the ills of the modern world, as seen by Karl Amadeus Hartmann fifty years ago, played by armour-plated brass and flickering strings. [...] By the end of the half-hour piece, the orchestra had brutally hammered home its proclamation, and was silent once again.”
    Volker Blech, Berliner Morgenpost, May 2011

    “The agile Polish conductor had returned to the Berlin Philharmonie, at the age of 87. Stepping in for the seriously ill Seiji Ozawa (75), Skrowaczewski was an overwhelming success, acclaimed by a standing ovation at the end of the concert. The applause wasn’t only for his intellectual presence and physical fitness, but also for his astonishing clarity in conducting a long Bruckner symphony and a difficult, unknown piece from the German post-war repertoire.”

    “Bruckner’s third symphony was an undeserved consolation [to the Hartmann]. No sudden explosions of trumpet triads out of an empty atmosphere of string tremolos, no stark images of an empty cosmos; instead, the piece was shaped from the very beginning in the classical style. And yet in the moments of greatest refinement and certainty, such as the self-satisfied country dances of the Scherzo or the lyrical flute entry, you could still smell a touch of the mildew which had settled over the orchestra after their vivid depiction of catastrophe in Hartmann’s piece.”
    Matthias Nöther, Berliner Zeitung, May 2011

    “Stanisław Skrowaczewski is a force of nature. Now in his late 80s he led the Berliner Philharmoniker in an energetic and intense program that was transmitted live as part of the Berliner Philharmoniker Digital Concert Hall.”

    “Before leading the orchestra into the third movement, Skrowaczewski paused and smiled at the strings. It was all they needed. Unlike the Hartmann Gesangsszene this work would seek, and ultimately find, reintegration. Skrowaczewski energetically led the orchestra through the surprising key changes that are used to shock this work out of its minor key opening.”

    “After the celebratory closing, Skrowaczewski paused briefly, then with a flourish he set his baton on the conductor's stand and accepted applause. He was so well received that the audience continued clapping even after the orchestra had left the stage. Skrowaczewski made one last appearance to the delight of the hall, walking to the edge of the steps and waving. It was a thrill to have the opportunity to hear this great conductor, who represents one of our final connections to an age that is all but lost. How wonderful to have this performance preserved in the archives of the Berliner Philharmoniker.”
    SonicLabyrinth.blogspot.com, May 2011

    “By the end of Hartmann’s Gesangsszene, the Philharmonie was silent. They had already said everything that this piece could contribute to the evils of this world. They had allowed themselves to be dragged by the 87-year-old conductor Stanisław Skrowaczewski through the blackest depths of technology, to make metallic machine music, with flickering strings.”

    “Then the proven Bruckner expert tackled Bruckner’s third symphony. According to Skrowaczewski, the first movement is all about marking out the boundaries and creating the right effects.”

    “The brass section played with great majesty, and the second theme was bursting with lyrical string playing, punctuated with firm caesuras. The Polish conductor showed his analytical side, and his fondness for great sentiments.”
    Daniel Wixforth, Der Tagesspiegel, May 2011

    Deutsche Radio Philharmonie / BRAHMS
    “This fifth SR matinee yesterday in the Congresshalle was one of the highlights of the current concert season. I haven’t heard the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie play with such liveliness and such a beautiful tone on all levels for a long time. And all because Stanislaw Skrowaczewski was conducting, engrossed in Johannes Brahms.”

    “The 87-year-old maestro recreated the symphonic structure with unbelievable vitality, and the orchestra filled the structure with a most magnificent sound. This was a truly wonderful performance.”
    Saarbrücker Zeitung, February 2011

    Utah Symphony / BRUCKNER: Symphony No.9
    “No orchestra in its right mind could refuse the Polish-born conductor a long-term contract. His musicality and innate interpretative talents would benefit any ensemble. He is among the last of a long line of great conductors and a worthy successor to some of the profession's legends […]”

    “Walking onstage he may look like a frail, elderly gentleman, but looks are deceiving. Once Skrowaczewski steps onto the podium he ignites the orchestra with his passion. With age his conducting has become less vigorous and bold, but with his minimal gestures he nevertheless imparts to the orchestra that fiery passion he has for the music. He shows the musicians and audience that one doesn't need to have choreographed moves on the podium when one has the kind of deep understanding for the music that Skrowaczewski certainly has. And with an orchestra of talented players at his fingertips, the result of this collaboration is magical.”

    “Skrowaczewski is one of today's foremost interpreters of Bruckner's symphonies. He has recorded the Ninth three times now (with the Minnesota Orchestra, the Saarbrücken Radio Symphony in Germany and most recently with Japan's Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra), and he brought his perceptiveness and penetrating understanding of this work to his Utah Symphony performance.”

    “The performance was remarkable in many ways, not the least of which was the fact that Skrowaczewski conducted the nearly hour-long symphony from memory. Without the aid of a score he still captured the nuances and brought out the finely woven interplay of the voices. His tempos in the outer movements tended towards the broad and expansive and that allowed him a much larger palette of expressions that penetrated the core of the music.”

    “He coaxed a lush romantic sound from his forces that served Bruckner's music well. The orchestra played magnificently, not only the expanded brass section, which Skrowaczewski never allowed to overpower the rest of the ensemble, but also the other sections as well. The playing was articulate and beautifully executed and gorgeously lyrical, even in the brisk but not overly fast scherzo.”

    “This was a Bruckner one couldn't help but love and admire. And one can only hope Skrowaczewski makes it back to Salt Lake City in the not too distant future.”
    Edward Reichel, Deseret News, November 2010

    “Conductor Stanislaw Skrowaczewski brought his formidable musicianship to Abravanel Hall to lead the Utah Symphony in Bruckner’s ninth and last symphony […] The 87-year-old conductor’s long history with the Utah Symphony — he led the orchestra in its first concerts in Abravanel Hall, back in 1979 — is dwarfed by his lifelong love affair with the Bruckner symphonies, which he discovered as a 7-year-old boy.”

    “Even more astonishing than the fact that he conducted the hourlong symphony from memory was Skrowaczewski’s command of the orchestra. “Conducting … doesn’t cost me any physical effort, only mental work,” he said in a preconcert interview with The Salt Lake Tribune. “I always try to make my gestures precise and clear.” Indeed, it was remarkable to watch the conductor gesture ever so subtly with his left hand and then hear the orchestra respond instantaneously.”
    Catherine Reese Newton, The Salt Lake Tribune, November 2010

    Minnesota Orchestra / SKROWACZEWSKI; BEETHOVEN; BRAHMS
    “For 51 seasons, the conductor/composer has remained steadfast and serious about his music making.”“…the years haven't dimmed his musicianship or his message. He is an artist of utter seriousness, with little time for fluff; if you're seeking entertainment or relaxation, look elsewhere.”

    “His music-making has taken on something of the life-and-death urgency one hears in the wartime recordings of conductor Wilhelm Furtwängler, or in Stalin-era recordings of music by Shostakovich.”
    Larry Fuchsberg, Star Tribune, October 2010

    hr-Sinfonieorchester (Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra) / CHOPIN; SHOSTAKOVICH
    “There are many good reasons to regard the hr-Sinfonieorchester’s opening concert of the season at the Alte Oper as one of the most brilliant and splendid performances this orchestra has ever given. The main reason this concert proved so extraordinary was the conductor, Stanislaw Skrowaczewski. This memorable musician has conducted all the major orchestras in America and Europe over the last five decades, and he is a living legend as far as performances of Bruckner’s works are concerned. In just four weeks, Skrowaczewski will celebrate his 87th birthday, yet he remains physically fit, with a sharp mind and great artistic agility.”

    “Structural clarity reigned amidst the orchestral turmoil, the dynamics were polarised and contrasted to their extremes, and Skrowaczewski brought the individual solo voices to the fore with great expression.”
    FAZ Rhein-Main-Zeitung, September 2010

    “The 86-year-old currently boasts half a century of success as both conductor and composer, including regular engagements as guest conductor of the HR-Sinfonieorchester since 1979. Together with Ewa Kupiec on the piano, their performance of Chopin’s piano concerto was a brilliant opening for the new season.”

    “Under Skrowaczewski’s baton, the orchestra played with great power and boldness.”

    “Spellbound by the performance, they rewarded the musicians with tumultuous applause.”
    Alsfelder Allgemeine, September 2010

    “This was the ideal team to perform the music of Polish composers. 87-year-old Stanislaw Skrowaczewski has never relinquished his passion for his native countrymen, despite his many years conducting in America.”

    “The orchestra played with flawless balance and faultless strings, as if greeting an old friend.”

    “The experienced conductor proved himself a shrewd customer here [in Shostkovich’s Symphony No.5] as well, drawing rich and colourful playing from the orchestra.”

    “The elderly statesman of conducting received the audience’s appreciative applause in amongst his musicians.”
    Frankfurter Neue Presse, September 2010

    The Hallé / BEETHOVEN; SHOSTAKOVICH
    “…one of the highlight concerts of Manchester’s current season…

    That’s assessing it on musical quality alone – quite apart from the heroic journey made by the 86-year-old conductor, Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, to get here… As a former principal conductor of the Hallé, he is a man who takes loyalty very seriously…

    Skrowaczewski conducted Shostakovich’s 10th symphony with all the authority of one who knew its composer and his times at first hand. There was nothing stuffy about it either, as he achieved extraordinary dynamism but kept its explosiveness under constant control…

    Getting pace and weight right in the rejoicing of the last movement can be tricky: too light and it sounds flippant, too heavy and it seems vindictive. This was perfect – and brought its own irresistible smile.”
    City Life, April 2010

    Bayerischen Rundfunks Symphonieorchester / BRUCKNER; SKROWCZEWSKI
    “Skrowaczewski’s performance of Bruckner’s much undervalued Second Symphony was an unforgettable experience. He brought out the light-heartedness of the first movement, pulsating with cheerfulness. The conductor approached the piece with unbounded energy, and the musicians of the BR Symphony followed with delight. The numerous general rests (Bruckner’s ‘pauses for breath’) were not simply empty spaces, and did not interrupt the flow, which Skrowaczewski phrased effortlessly whilst maintaining the momentum of the piece: the splendid build-up from the gentle beginning of the adagio, followed by the bubbling scherzo and energetic finale. An absolute triumph!”
    Münchner Merkur, December 2009

    “The concert-going public in Munich is a little sensitive when it comes to performances of Bruckner, and unfamiliar interpretations are initially met with scepticism. The rapturous applause that greeted Stanislaw Skrowaczweski’s performance with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra should therefore be recognised as high praise, and not simply a polite pat on the shoulder for the 86 year old conductor and his musicians. Yet Skrowaczewski, expert as he is on Bruckner, did not behave like a guru on the podium, casting a spell over the audience; he came across rather as down-to-earth, in the tradition of the Kapellmeister of days gone by.

    The integrity of Skrowaczewski’s interpretation was most apparent in the second movement, where the considerable level of craftsmanship and the almost naïve directness of the music, given scope to speak for itself, moved the audience in its simplicity. The piece stood before us, exactly as it was, without extraneous flourishes, with its strengths and weaknesses, and therefore with great effectiveness.”
    Süddeutsche Zeitung, December 2009

    Deutsche Radio Philharmonie / SKROWACZEWSKI; BEETHOVEN; BRAHMS
    “Stanislaw Skrowaczewski wrote his piece Music for winds as a resigned reaction to the current decline of “high art” and consequent rise of “superficial art”. It is a tragic piece, its instrumentation full of character, with beautiful moments full of hope but also aggressive moments of rebellion.

    Skrowaczewski wove the orchestral part of Beethoven’s 4th piano concerto with refinement. Even the ‘opera scene’ in the central movement was shot through with classical unity and musical unanimity between the performers. This was a brilliant performance, greeted with rapturous applause.

    In Brahms’ 4th Symphony, the conductor must translate the dense score into a rich appassionata, constantly kindling the flames to the point of volcanic explosion. Skrowaczewski (aged 86) championed the piece with passion: each phrase was dramatic yet profound, and admirably true to the original score. The orchestra performed at their very best.”
    Saarbruecker Zeitung, December 2009

    Dresden Philharmonic / BRUCKNER; SZYMANOWSKI
    “Stanislaw Skrowaczewski… demonstrated in the violin concerto how to partner an orchestra without resorting to extravagant gestures, whilst keeping the overall view of the piece in mind. In Anton Bruckner’s 2nd Symphony in C minor, he showed how to steer such a giant with only few visible gestures. What a contrast to the leaping, waving, dancing “stars of the podium”! We already have Skrowaczewski to thank for a recording of the complete Bruckner Symphonies, which rightly puts him in the category of Bruckner specialist.

    It was quickly obvious how much intensive work had gone into rehearsing this piece, in order to achieve such a high standard of performance. Because of this, Skrowaczewski could keep control with very few means. He allowed the Philharmonie plenty of space to play, for which they thanked him with their dedication to the music.

    It was especially obvious in the finale, made up of so many sound pictures, that we were dealing with a conductor who understood how to use the diverse abilities of the Philharmonie, and harness them to give a wildly applauded performance.”
    Dresdner Neueste Nachrichten, November 2008

    The Hallé / Recording: SHOSTAKOVICH Symphonies Nos. 5 & 10
    "Arguably the most completely satisfying version of Shostakovich's Tenth on disc - thrillingly played and comfortably seeing off most of the bigger guns."
    BBC Music Magazine, February 2008

    New Skrowaczewski Flute Concerto a marvel
    Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, 84, has graduated from being an institution to being a phenomenon. It's hard to think of another living musician who has trod a comparable path: from prodigy -- he wrote his first orchestral composition at age 7 -- to elder statesman. Both facets of the Polish-born composer-conductor, who has conducted the Minnesota Orchestra in each of the past 47 seasons, are on striking display this week in Orchestra Hall (an edifice he helped build).

    The program's centerpiece is the world premiere of Skrowaczewski's "Fantasia for Flute and Orchestra - The Piper in the Night," commissioned by the Saarbrücken [Germany] Radio Symphony (with which the conductor has lately recorded the Beethoven symphonies) and written for flautists Adam Kuenzel, the Minnesota Orchestra's principal, and Roswitha Staege, formerly principal in Saarbrücken. Effectively a flute concerto (with the first of its several cadenzas at the very beginning), the work, in three movements, is scored for both the standard flute and its lower-pitched, more somber alto sibling. Much of the best writing is for the latter, which Kuenzel plays gorgeously.

    Skrowaczewski's music typically feels open-ended. His scores aren't self-contained, neatly wrapped musical objects; they are a means for conversing with their maker - especially when he's on the podium.

    Kuenzel's performance is masterful (though I wish he could dispense with the score and address himself directly to the audience). Whether playing long, tensile lines or incorporating extended techniques (bent notes, key clicks, blowing into the instrument), he is intensely and unfailingly musical.

    Framing the "Fantasia" are two of Vienna's crown jewels: Mozart's "Jupiter" Symphony and Brahms' Second. If Skrowaczewski's vigorous "Jupiter" seemed a bit retro in sonority with overweight strings, his Brahms was glorious: rich but not padded. The Adagio, in particular, attained a tragic nobility that recalled the legendary conductors of old.
    Larry Fuchsberg, Star Tribune, October 2007

    Skrowaczewski makes concert memorable
    Stanislaw Skrowaczewski belongs to a small club of 20th century dual composer/conductors whose distinguished ranks include names like Mahler, Strauss, Bernstein and Boulez. That the 84-year-old continues to pursue both careers into the 21st century is astonishing.

    This week, the Minnesota Orchestra is giving the premiere performances of the latest work by its conductor laureate: a flamboyant, three-movement sonic exercise for flute and percussion-heavy orchestra titled "Fantasie per Flauto ed Orchestra, Il Piffero della Notte ". The composer conducted the first performance Thursday, with Principal Flute Adam Kuenzel as soloist.

    Typically, Skrowaczewski tried to direct the majority of the resulting applause to the soloist and performers and not to himself. The 20-minute work, according to program notes, was commissioned by the Saarbrücken Radio Symphony Orchestra, where Skrowaczewski is principal guest conductor, and it was written for that orchestra's flautist and her husband, a percussionist. It requires not only a huge percussion battery, but a flautist who has to switch frequently between the standard orchestral flute and the longer alto flute.

    A first reaction is that it's quite a showpiece - a cavalcade of instrumental colors and shifting moods. It's filled with solo cadenzas. The three movements proceed almost without pause and they range from pounding Stravinsky-style chords to rapid figurations, "bent" notes, glissandos, and a tremendous selection of percussive effects using chimes, marimbas, temple blocks, vibraphone, celesta and other less-than-familiar percussion devices.

    Skrowaczewski may have seemed self-effacing when he directed applause to Kuenzel, but it's not like the soloist didn't earn it. It was an exemplary performance exhibiting great technical skill and musical interpretation.
    David Hawley, Pioneer Press , October 2007


    GERMAN REVIEWS

    Bruckner Orchester Linz / MOZART; SHOSTAKOVICH
    „Natürlich versetzt es in Erstaunen und Bewunderung, wenn am Pult ein 89-Jähriger steht, der noch dazu das ganze Konzert auswendig dirigiert. Das ist aber im Fall von Stanislaw Skrowaczewski nicht das Bemerkenswerte.

    „Es muss eine Freude sein, unter ihm spielen zu dürfen und für ihn das absolut Beste zu geben. So konzentriert, makellos und gleichzeitig derart inspiriert erlebt man das Orchester nicht so oft, und die Standing Ovations zum Schluss waren mehr als gerechtfertigt.

    „Auf dem Programm: eine Interpretation von Mozarts Jupiter-Symphonie, ungemein lebendig und höchst detailreich musiziert, die selbst erfahrene Hörer Neues heraushören ließ. Schon hier war die beflügelnde Arbeit mit dem polnisch-amerikanischen Dirigenten des Jahrgangs 1923 zu spüren. Umso mehr noch in Schostakowitschs V. Symphonie, die schlichtweg genial gelang und alle emotionalen Grenzgänge dieses Werks offenlegte.“
    Oberösterreichische Nachrichten, fünf Sterne, Januar 2013

    Berliner Philharmoniker / HARTMANN; BRUCKNER
    „Nun ist der agile polnische Dirigent mit langjährigem US-amerikanischen Wirkungsfeld in die Berliner Philharmonie zurückgekehrt, im Alter von 87 Jahren. […] fuhr Skrowaczewski einen überwältigenden Erfolg mit finalen Standing Ovations ein. Die galten, so darf man hoffen, nicht ausschließlich seiner geistigen Präsenz und körperlichen Fitness, sondern vor allem seiner erstaunlichen Hellsicht beim Dirigat einer langen Bruckner-Symphonie und eines unbekannten, schwierigen Werks der deutschen Nachkriegs-Moderne.“
    Matthias Nöther, Berliner Zeitung, Mai 2011

    Deutsche Radio Philharmonie / BRAHMS
    „Sie war ein Höhepunkt in der laufenden Konzertsaison, diese fünfte SR-Matinee gestern in der Congresshalle. Die Deutsche Radio Philharmonie hat man lange nicht mehr so lebendig, so klangschön in allen Registern gehört. Denn Stanislaw Skrowaczewski stand am Pult und vertiefte sich in Johannes Brahms.“

    „Der 87-jährige Maestro entwickelte das sinfonische Gebäude mit unglaublicher Vitalität, das Orchester füllte es mit aller klanglichen Pracht. Ein wunderbares Erlebnis.“
    Saarbrücker Zeitung, Februar 2011

    Brucknerfest: Bruckner Orchester Linz, Stiftskirche St. Florian / BRUCKNER: Symphonie Nr.5„Skrowaczewski hat auf Grund seiner tiefgreifenden Einsichten und langen Erfahrungen eine überaus spannende, wirkungsstarke und ebenso anrührende Interpretation geliefert. Mitgespielt haben auch das mystische Halbdunkel und die Akustik der Barockkirche.„Das Linzer Orchester konnte zeigen, wozu es fähig ist – ein herrlich ausgewogenes, präzises und deutliches Spiel.„Es gelang eine denkwürdige Aufführung. [...] Es folgten Bravorufe, und tosender Beifall überschüttete den Dirigenten.“Franz Zamazal, Oberösterreichische Nachrichten, September 2010

    hr-Sinfonieorchester (Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra) / CHOPIN; SHOSTAKOVICH
    „Es gibt gute Gründe, das Saisoneröffnungskonzert des hr-Sinfonieorchesters in der Alten Oper als eines der brillantesten und großartigsten in der Geschichte dieses Ensembles einzustufen. Hauptakteur dieses in solchem Ausmaß seltenen Glücksfalls war der Dirigent Stanislaw Skrowaczewski. Man erinnert sich gern an diesen Musiker, der vor vier, fünf Jahrzehnten immer wieder auch Gast führender Klangkörper in Amerika und Europa war. Als Bruckner-Interpret ist er fast eine Legende. In vier Wochen wird Skrowaczewski die Vollendung seines 87. Lebensjahres feiern - ein körperlich relativ fit wirkender Mann, ein enorm wacher Geist, ein agiler Künstler.“„Strukturelle Klarheit herrschte noch im größten Orchestergetümmel, die Dynamik wurde in größtmöglichen Kontrasten polarisiert, hervortretende Einzelstimmen [...] ließ Skrowaczewski so expressiv wie möglich zur Geltung kommen.“
    Harald Budweg, FAZ Rhein-Main-Zeitung, September 2010

    „Der 86-jährige Dirigent und Komponist wartet seit einem halben Jahrhundert mit großen Erfolgen auf, seit 1979 war er mehrmals mit den HR-Sinfonikern als Gastdirigent aktiv. Gemeinsam mit Kupiec am Flügel gelang ihm mit Chopins Klavierkonzert ein brillanter Saisonauftakt.“

    „Mächtig und kühn intonierte das Orchester unter Dirigent Skrowaczewski die Komposition.“

    „Niemand konnte sich der Klangkraft entziehen, die Musiker wurden mit stürmischem Applaus belohnt.“
    Christina Rühl, Alsfelder Allgemeine, September 2010

    „Für die Musik polnischer Komponisten ist das quasi die ideale Besetzung. Der mittlerweile 87 Jahre alte Stanisław Skrowaczewski hat seine Leidenschaft für seine Landsleute auch in den langen Jahren seines Wirkens bei amerikanischen Orchestern niemals aufgegeben.“

    „Als wollte man einen guten alten Bekannten begrüßen, musizierte das Orchester mit makellosen Streichern und tadelloser Ausgewogenheit.“

    „Auch hier [in Schostakowitschs 5. Sinofnie] zeigte sich der betagte Dirigent noch immer mit allen Wassern gewaschen und entlockte dem Klangkörper ein großformatiges, farbenreiches Spiel.“

    „Inmitten der Musiker nahm der große alte Herr am Pult den dankbaren Applaus entgegen.“
    Frankfurter Neue Presse, September 2010

    Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks / BRUCKNER; SKROWACZEWSKI
    „Skrowaczewski machte [Bruckners Zweite] zum Erlebnis. [...] Auffallend ist die lichte Leichtigkeit, mit der Bruckner den geradezu fröhlich durchpulsten Kopfsatz in Szene setzt. Der Dirigent ging mit ungebremster Vitalität ans Werk, die BR-Symphoniker folgten voller Freude. Die vielen Generalpausen (Bruckners „Atemhoslen“) gerieten nicht zu Leerstellen, zerrissen keineswegs das Gefüge, das Skrowaczewski mit leichter Hand aufbaute und in Spannung hielt: Mit großartigen Steigerungen im zart beginnenden Adagio, mit einem aufschäumenden Scherzo und einem forschen Finale. Großer Jubel.“
    Gabriele Luster, Münchner Merkur, Dezember 2009

    „Man ist ein wenig sensible in München, oder gar eigen, wenn es um Bruckners Symphonien geht, und jede fremde Lesart stößt erst einmal auf ein gewisses Quantum an Skepsis. Der enorme Beifall für Stanislaw Skrowaczewski und das Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks durfte deshalb als Anerkennung höchsten Grades gewertet werden, nicht nur als höfliches Schulterklopfen für den 86-jährigen Dirigenten und die Musiker. Dabei ist der Bruckner-Experte Skrowaczewski alles andere als ein Guru am Pult, der sein Publikum rückhaltlos in seinen Bann schlägt; er wirkt eher nüchtern, steht ganz in der Tradition früherer Kapellmeister.“

    „Dass das Konzept restlos aufging, war spätestens im zweiten Satz zu spüren, wo das beträchtliche handwerkliche Niveau der Aufführung und die für sich selbst sprechende Musik eine – fast naive – Direktheit an den Tag legten, die schlicht berührte. Das Stück stand da, wie es ist, ohne zusätzliche Schnörkel, mit Stärken und Schwächen, und deshalb mit jeder Menge Außenwirkung.“
    Johannes Rubner, Süddeutsche Zeitun, Dezember 2009

    Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbrücken Kaiserslautern / SKROWACZEWSKI; BEETHOVEN; BRAHMS
    „Dirigent Stanislaw Skrowaczewski hatte eine „Music for winds“ komponiert, deren üppiger romantischer Bläserbesetzung er drei Saxofone, Klavier, Celesta, Harfe und Schlagzeug zur Erweiterung der Farbpalette hinzugefügt hatte. Er empfindet sein Stück als resignative Reaktion auf den gegenwärtigen Verfall der „großen Kunst“ und der ihr nachfolgenden „Scheinkultur“. Ein tragisches Werk, charaktervoll instrumentiert, mit klangschönen Hoffnungs-Momenten, aber auch aggressivem Aufbegehren.

    „Makellos das Zusammenspiel mit dem Orchester, dessen Part von Skrowaczewski fein gewoben wurde. Auch die „Opernszene“ des Mittelsatzes war durchlichtet von klassischer Einheit und musikalischem Miteinander der Interpreten. Eine glänzende Aufführung, mit stürmischem Applaus bedacht.

    „Für Brahms' „Vierte“ muss der Dirigent die Dichte der Partitur in klangstarkes Passionato umsetzen, immer wieder die Glut entfachen bis kurz vor den Ausbruch des Vulkans. Skrowaczewski (86) war glutvoller Sachwalter: Dramatik in jeder Phase und dazu Tiefgründigkeit, gepaart mit bewundernswerter Partiturtreue. Das Orchester war in Hochform.“
    Saarbrücker Zeitung, Dezember 2009

    Dresden Philharmonic / BRUCKNER; SZYMANOWSKI
    “Hatte Stanislaw Skrowaczewski dem Solokonzert schon eine Partnerschaft geboten, die er ohne großen Aufwand mit großer Übersicht erreichte, so wurde mit Anton Bruckners 2. Sinfonie c-Moll deutlich, mit wie wenig sichtbaren Impulsen auch ein solcher „Brocken“ zu steuern ist. Welch Unterschied zu springenden, fuchtelnden, tänzelnden „Pultstars“! Dem Dirigenten verdanken wir eine Gesamtaufnahme der Bruckner-Sinfonien, was ihn zu Recht in die Reihe der Spezialisten stellt.

    Schnell ahnte man, welch intensive Probenarbeit zugrunde liegen musste, um den hohen Rang der Ausarbeitung zu präsentieren. So konnte Skrowaczewski mit wenigen Mitteln die Balance halten. Er ließ den Philharmonikern viel „Spiel“-Raum, was sie ihm mit großer musikalischer Hingabe dankten.

    Auch im aus vielen Bildern gefügten Finale wurde deutlich, dass wir es mit einem Dirigenten zu tun hatten, der es verstand, die mannigfaltigen Potenzen der Philharmoniker zu nutzen, sie in den Dienst einer stürmisch bejubelten Aufführung stellte.“
    Dresdner Neueste Nachrichten, November 2008

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