About the author
JOANNA OKOŃ – violinist
Welcome to my website, which aims to present the violin works created by women. It includes biographies of the composers, lists of pieces with solo or chamber violins, sheet music and my recordings with musicians participating in the project. It is my wish for this website to be alive and develop. I will be grateful for any ideas, suggestions for new composers, works, inspirations. I create it for both violinists and musicians who want to delve into women’s repertoire, as well as for music lovers getting to know new unknown spaces.
Realized under the scholarship of the Minister of Culture, National Heritage and Sport.
An artist from a family with many years of musical traditions. She performed on concert stages from an early age, playing with her mother – pianist Alina Jasielska-Okoń. A graduate of the Academy of Music. Fryderyk Chopin in Warsaw (master’s studies in the class of Prof. Janusz Kucharski and post-graduate studies under the supervision of Prof. Jan Stanienda). Winner of the 1st prize at the Auditions for Young Violinists in Warsaw (1991) and the 6th prize at the National Violin Competition in Elbląg (1993). In 2012, she completed an artistic internship in the class of prof. Konstanty Andrzej Kulka. She perfected the craftsmanship and musical sensitivity, among others. at the famous violinist Marina Jaszwili and at the International Orchestral Course in Attergau (Austria) conducted by the Vienna Philharmonic, where for several summer seasons she worked under the supervision of such conductors as sir. Neville Marriner, Fabio Luisi, Shandor Vegh, Leopold Hager and Heinrich Schiff.
She has performed twice at the Karol Szymanowski,s International Music Festival in Zakopane and the International Festival of Contemporary Music in Kobe (Japan). She took part in the musical project “Myths” organized by Jeunesses Musicales and presented at the Mały Theater in Warsaw and the St.Witkacy in Zakopane. She has collaborated with such famous music groups as: “Warszawscy Soliści Concerto Avenna” under the direction of Andrzej Mysiński and Sinfonia Varsovia, which she has been collaborating with until now. With the Sinfonia Varsovia orchestra she has participated in renowned festivals, incl. Yehudi Menuhin Festival in Gstaad, Montreux, La Roque d’Antheron, Aix-en-Provence, Schleswig-Holstein and many others, working with conductors such as Lorin Maazel, Charles Dutoit, Valery Gergiev, Emmanuel Krivine, Andres Mustonen, Krzysztof Penderecki, Marc Minkowski, Jerzy Semkow, Jerzy Maksymiuk, Grzegorz Nowak. During the concerts, she was accompanied by, among others, soloists such as Martha Argerich, Boris Berezovsky, Renaud Capuçon, Augustin Dumay, James Galway, Nigel Kennedy, Misha Maisky, Anne-Sophie Mutter, Maria João Pires, Ivo Pogorelic, Piotr Anderszewski or Rafał Blechacz. In June 2018, as a member of the Pan-Ton quartet, she performed with David Krakauer at the International Jewish Music Festival in Krakow, performing the “Dybbuk” quintet by composer Vlad Marhulets, specially written for this occasion.
An important place in the artist’s activity is occupied by educational concerts organized by the National Philharmonic. Joanna Okoń is also a teacher at the Complex of State Music Schools No. 1 in Warsaw. In 2014, the artist, together with the pianist Natalia Zubko and cellist Anna Wróbel, recorded an album with chamber works by Henryk Melcer, released by the Acte-Prealable label. Since then, the artist has been actively looking for undiscovered works by composers associated with Poland, the result of which was the release of a CD in 2018 with Katarzyna Glensk entitled “Polish Impressions”, with premiere recordings of works by, among others Wacław Niemczyk, Stanisław Lipski and Adam Wieniawski. This material, already as a concert program entitled “Polish Landscapes” together with Katarzyna Glensk was successfully presented, among others at Carnegie Hall and Shanghai East China Normal University. The author of the project brings back the memory of forgotten Polish composers and their intimate pieces that were lost “in the last, dusty drawer” and turned out to be real musical gems.
Henryk Melcer – Chamber Works
The album contains all chamber works by Henryk Melcer – the beautiful “Piano Trio in G minor”, which won the Grand Prix at the Artur Rubinstein Composers’ Competition in Berlin in 1895, the outstanding, four-movement Sonata Gdur and the charming Dumka, which is a paraphrase of a song by Stanisław Moniuszko.
The recording was made byoutstandingly talented artists of the young generation:
- Natalya Zubko – piano
- Joanna Okoń – violin
- Anna Wróbel – violoncella
Publisher: Acte Préalable, AP0333, Copyright (R)2014, (C)2014
Polish Impressions: Early 20th Century Violin Music
Eleven composers whose works make up the program of the album “Polish Impressions: Early 20th Century Violin Music”, do not belong to one stylistic group. Certain common features of their oeuvre – clearly rooted in the nineteenth-century tradition, musical language that does not claim any claims to revolutionary rebellions or avant-garde gestures – do not, however, dominate individual diversity. The album includes premiere recordings of such composers as Wacław Niemczyk, Stanisław Lipski, Adam Wieniawski, or Alfred Mistowski.
- Joanna Okoń – violin
- Katarzyna Glensk – piano