Dazzling Polish Performance at Classix Festival

On February 21st, the audience at Classix Festival, an event held in Iași, Romania, had a mesmerizing experience at the Jewish Concert. The public embraced the extraordinary performance of the two Polish artists: violinist Patrycja Błaszak and cellist Marek Bienkunski.

Classix is a classical music festival held in Iași, Romania, which premiered in 2020 with its first edition. It took place between February 16 and 22, and comprised 7 concerts, 3 educational dialogues dedicated to the creative industries and 2 business panels. Over 20 international artists performed on the stages of the festival, while the concerts were held in unconventional settings. 

The Jewish Concert was the 5th one organized within the activities of the festival. In a dark opening, on the evening of February 21st, the organizers welcomed the audience with two works by contemporary Israeli composers Amit Weiner and Noubar Aslanyan, in premiere Romanian audition. Amit Weiner – Anagram no. 1 (Parallel fifths in the dark) for solo piano was performed by Romanian artist Daniel Dascălu, and the composition of Noubar Aslanyan, Elegy for clarinet was performed by Daniel Paicu, also a Romanian artist based in Iași.

The recital continued with Dmitri Șostakovici – Piano Trio no. 2 in mi minor, op. 67 in the interpretation of the pianist Daniel Dascălu, of the Polish violinist Patrycja Błaszak and the cellist Marek Bienkunski, with Sergei Prokofiev – Overture on Jewish themes, opus 37bis in the interpretation of: Daniel Dascălu (piano), Daniel Paicu (clarinet), Patrycja Błaszak (violin), Tudor Bolnavu (violin), Ana Larisa Iordache (viola) and Marek Bienkunski (cello). The concert closed with Dmitri Șostakovici – String Quartet no. 8 in the minor, opposite 110, with interpreters: Patrycja Błaszak, Tudor Bolnavu, Ana Larisa Iordache and Marek Bienkunski.

Ovation and applause were absolutely natural, as the whole performance was perceived as the most beautiful interpretation of the works in the past decade in the Moldavian landscape. 

Marek Bienkunski is a cellist educated with distinctions in Poland (Feliks Nowowiejski Academy of Music) and Norway (Norwegian Academy of Music). Active as a chamber musician, soloist and keen cello teacher, he is regularly cooperating with orchestras like Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, Norwegian Radio Orchestra, Trondheim Symphony Orchestra, The Göteborg Opera Orchestra, Ensemble Allegria and many more. He is a recipient of many scholarships and awards, such as: scholar to the European Chamber Music Academy, Witold Lutoslawski Society Scholarship, Oslo Quartet Series, Feliks Nowowiejski Academy Headmasters Scholarship.

Patrycja Blaszak (b. 1992 in Poland) is a classical violinist with the background from Polish and Norwegian music academies. She is a laureate with the second prize in Young Musicians Competition in Barletta (2012) and special award recipient in Chamber Music Competition in Bydgoszcz (2015). During the seasons 2016-2018, Patrycja held a scholarship in Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, where she has collaborated with many renowned conductors, such as Vasily Petrenko, Herbert Blomsted and Manfred Honeck. In 2017, she was granted a summer scholarship at NYU in New York and a nomination to European Chamber Music Academy in Vienna. She was an artist in residence at the 9 Hills Festival in Poland in 2018 and triple recipient of the district of Chelmno scholarship for talented youth.