Composers / Witold Lutosławski / Persons catalog

Bogusław Schaeffer

Bogusław Schaeffer (b. 1929) studied violin and music theory in Opole from 1946-49. Then, from 1949-1953, he studied composition with Artur Malawski at the State Higher School of Music (now Academy of Music) in Krakow. At the same time, in 1949, he began studying musicology under Zdzisław Jachimecki at Krakow's Jagiellonian University. He wrote an extensive thesis on Witold Lutosławski in 1953. He continued his musical education in 1959 with Luigi Nono.

After finishing his studies, he not only composed, but also continued his scholarly work in musicology. During the years 1952-57, he worked in the music section of Polish Radio in Krakow, and in 1953, as deputy to the editor-in-chief, at the main Polish music publishing house, Polskie Wydawnictwo Muzyczne. In 1957, he was deputy to the editor-in-chief of the music magazine "Ruch Muzyczny", and in 1954-8, as a lecturer at the Institute of Musicology at Krakow's Jagiellonian University. Beginning in 1957, he concentrated on composition. Beginning in 1963, he was a lecturer in composition at the Academy of Music in Krakow. He also taught courses in contemporary composition in Salzburg, York and Middelburg. In 1965, he began cooperating with the Experimental Studio (Studio Eksperymentalne) of Polish Radio in Warsaw, during which time he wrote his electronic compositions. During the years 1967-1973, he was the editor-in-chief of the periodical "Forum Musicum" (sixteen issues appeared). In 1970, he received his doctorate at the University of Warsaw. Since 1985, he has also been a professor of composition at the Hochschule für Musik und darstellende Kunst "Mozarteum" in Salzburg. He belongs to the artistic association known as the Krakow Group.

Since 1955, Bogusław Schaeffer has also been active as a playwright. By 1994, he had written 29 plays, which were translated into sixteen languages. Since 1969, there have been approximately 60 concerts devoted exclusively to his works, including concerts in Oslo, Amsterdam, Princeton, Mexico City, Salzburg, Stambuł, Berlin and Vienna. He received many awards at composition competitions: in 1959, he won prizes at the Grzegorz Fitelberg Competition for his "Monosonata" for six violin quartets (1959) and "Quattro movimenti" for piano and orchestra (1957), in 1962 - at the Artur Malawski Competition for his "Musica ipsa" for orchestra of Low-pitched Instruments (1962) and "Four Pieces for String Trio" (1962), and in 1964 at the Grzegorz Fitelberg Competition for "Little Symphony (Scultura)" (1960) and "Collage and Form" for Eight Jazzmen and Orchestra (1963). In 1971, he was awarded a prize from the Minister of Culture and Art, and in 1977, received an award from the Union of Polish Composers and of the city of Krakow, and in 1998, one from the Alfred Jurzykowski Foundation in New York. In 1987, he received an award at the Festival of Contemporary Art in Wrocław for his dramatic works. In 1995, he was made an honorary member of the Polish Association of Contemporary Music (the Polish section of the ISCM/SIMC). In 1999, the International Academic Symposium was held at the Jagiellonian University, which was dedicated to his work as composer, playwright and graphic artist, in conjunction with a concert of his works and performances of his plays.

Boguslaw Schaeffer has written more than a dozen books on contemporary music, including "Almanach polskich kompozytorow współczesnych" ("Alamanac of Polish Contemporary Composers"), "Nowa Muzyka: Problemy wspolczesnej techniki kompozytorskiej" ("New Music: Problems in Compositional Technique in Contemporary Music"), "Maly informator muzyki XX wieku" ("Small Handbook of Twentieth-Century Music").