The authors received prizes for the best texts, the most interesting book about music, but also for outstanding achievements in the field of music criticism - on Wednesday, December 5, the awards of the Polish Music Critics’ Competition KROPKA were handed at the headquarters of The Polish Music Publishing House (PWM) in Warsaw.

For the fourth time, the awards of the Polish Music Critics’ Competition KROPKA, organized by the MEAKULTURA Foundation, were granted at the headquarters of the Polish Music Publishing House. The main co-organizer of the 4th edition of the Competition and the Grand Prix Founder is the Institute of Music and Dance.

During the gala, not only statutory prizes were awarded, but also a number of other awards, including the prize for the best book about music published in 2017 or an award for outstanding achievements in the field of music criticism. The statements of the laureates did not lack important for the whole community words, gestures of gratitude and signs of emotion.

Representatives of musical institutions emphasized the need to revive Polish music criticism (Director of the Institute of Music and Dance, Maksymilian Bylicki), but also a positive role of the competition, which every year captures the texts of talented authors (Daniel Cichy, Jury President and PWM Director-Editor-in-Chief).

Maksymilian Bylicki, photograph by Radosław Pasterski

Daniel Cichy, photograph by Radosław Pasterski

In this year's edition, the jury received nearly 200 texts devoted to various musical genres - from the classical music, through jazz to popular music. The jury of the competition consisted of: dr Daniel Cichy, dr hab. Joanna Maleszyńska, dr Anna Ignatowicz-Glińska, Agata Kwiecińska, dr hab. Mirosław Pęczak, Rafał Księżyk and Remigiusz Hanaj – Mazur. Following the example of previous editions, the individual prize was granted by Piotr Metz.

Grand Prix worth PLN 3000 funded by the Institute of Music and Dance went to Rafał Wawrzyńczyk, for the text Ciemne centrum (eng. Dark center, published in The author emphasized how the prize surprised him and remarked that his earlier literary passion led him to music. The Main Award worth PLN 2,500, funded by the Polish Society of Authors and Composers ZAiKS, were given to: Aleksander Przybylski (in the category article / feuilleton) for the text Melotypy (published in "Ruch Muzyczny") and Karolina Dąbek (in the category review / report) for the review Trans jesieni - zmierzch awangardy. Warszawska Jesień 2017 (eng. The trans of autumn – the twilight of Avant-Garde. Warsaw Autumn 2017, published in "Glissando"). Aleksander Przybylski thanked the jury for appreciating his text, which with a grain of salt sums up the types of concert audience. Karolina Dąbek reminded that she receives the prize for the second time in this competition - two years earlier she was awarded for her debut. The honorary mention for a debutant worth PLN 1500 funded by The Polish Music Publishing House (PWM) was handed by the PWM Director-Editor-in-Chief to Przemysław Górecki for an unpublished article Posłuchajmy, co tak gra. Sześć razy Maryla Rodowicz (eng. Let's hear what's playing. Six times Maryla Rodowicz).

Rafał Wawrzyńczyk, photograph by Radosław Pasterski

Aleksander Przybylski, photograph by Radosław Pasterski

Karolina Dąbek, photograph by Radosław Pasterski

Przemysław Górecki, photograph by Radosław Pasterski

The Special Award for the best text about Polish music published abroad was given to Dirk Wieschollek for the article Ego-Shooter mit Achillesferse (eng. Egotists with the Achilles heel, published in "Dissonance") about the work of Jagoda Szmytka. During the Gala, a fragment of his letter was read, in which the author emphasizes the constructive role of music criticism for contemporary art: Language will never replace the art - we read in a letter - unless it becomes art itself. It may, however, and this is the task of criticism, indicate disturbing phenomena in art, when this, with excessive complacency, exploiting recurring means of expression, is heading in a dangerous direction of ossification in the form of ordinary artistic craft.                                    

The competition also awarded extra-statutory prizes, including: The Fryderyk Chopin Institute Special Award worth PLN 1,500 for a text on classical music for Adam Wiedemann for the article Zachód słońca (eng. Sunset) and the Piotr Metz Individual Award for the text about popular music received by Olga Drenda for the text The future sound of Poland, accompanying the exhibition 140 uderzeń na minutę (eng. 140 beats per minute) at the Museum of Contemporary Art.

Adam Wiedemann, photograph by Radosław Pasterski

Piotr Metz, photograph by Radosław Pasterski

During the Gala, the names of winners of additional prizes were also announced. The Special Award of Polish Composers’ Union (Musicologist Section) for promoting music in radio and television was awarded to Anna Woźniakowska. For the second time the audience award was also granted - for the best book on music released in 2017. This time, from among the seven nominated publications, readers considered the best book Muzyka a nowe media. Polska twórczość elektroakustyczna przełomu XX i XXI wieku (eng. Music and new media. Polish electroacoustic works at the turn of the 20th and 21st centuries) by Andrzej Mądro. The prize of PLN 2000 was funded by the Management Board of the MEAKULTURA Foundation. The MEAKULTURA Foundation Award for outstanding achievements in the field of music criticism went to the hands of Kacper Miklaszewski, an expert on piano music, a music psychologist and a recognized pedagogue. The laureate himself emphasized that critics rarely expect distinctions or rewards for their actions, and yet appreciating their work is very important today.

Anna Woźniakowska, photograph by Radosław Pasterski

Andrzej Mądro, photograph by Radosław Pasterski

Kacper Miklaszewski, photograph by Radosław Pasterski

The fourth edition of KROPKA coincided with the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Polish Society of Authors and Composers ZAiKS and with the competition held under the motto: Citizens and Citizenesses of the World - migrations of Polish composers in the 21st century. On this occasion, an additional prize was awarded to Marta Wryk - the author of the text Autodyktaci, samodzielni, wierni sobie – portrety kompozytorek i kompozytorów polskich XXI wieku. The PLN 2,500 prize was funded by the Polish Society of Authors and Composers ZAiKS, and the awarded text will be published in a collective work published by the MEAKULTURA Foundation - Sto lat muzycznej emigracji. Kompozytorzy polscy za granicą (1918-2018) (eng. A hundred years of musical emigration. Polish composers abroad 1918-2018). The second prize of PLN 2,500 granted in the same competition went to Remigiusz Wojciechowski.

Grzegorz Piotrowski, Marta Wryk, photograph by Radosław Pasterski

A special, symbolic award was given to the mother of Polina Bielajewa - a young author whose text was submitted to the competition after her death. The honorary mention was given by representatives of the dean's authorities of Polina's home university, the Fryderyk Chopin University of Music (dr Anna Ignatowicz-Glińska and Prof. Sławek Adam Wróblewski).

There were musical accents at the Gala. The duo of Barbara Borowicz (clarinet) and Bartosz Sałdan (percussion) performed with great energy fragments of the Theme with variations No. 2 (in the version for clarinet and percussion) of the Serbian composer Ante Grgin, as well as improvisations on the competition's jingle. The whole ceremony was crowned by the Adam Bałdych's performance, that was full of virtuosity and subtlety.

The gala was hosted by Maciej Makowski.


Barbara Borowicz, Bartosz Sałdan, photograph by Radosław Pasterski


Adam Bałdych, photograph by Radosław Pasterski