On 4 November, during Zaduszki Jazzowe (Jazz All Souls’ Day), NOSPR in Katowice holds an extraordinary event. On one stage the audience will see distinguished jazzmen: Mateusz Smoczyński, Henryk Miśkiewicz, Sławomir Kurkiewicz, Michał Miśkiewicz and Joachim Kühn with NOSPR musicians under the baton of Alexander Humala. The concerto will be a great opportunity to listen to the premiere performance of Adam’s Apple violin concerto of Mateusz Smoczyński. In that very same evening the musicians will also play Zbigniew Seifert’s violin concerto and a concerto for improvising saxophone and symphony orchestra of Jan “Ptaszyn” Wróblewski.
“Adam’s Apple” is Mateusz Smoczyński’s first violin concerto. The author of the piece is an active jazz violinist, however, this composition is much closer to contemporary classical pieces rather than jazz. The audience will also be offered improvisation elements, but they, too, largely resemble classical music. The concerto consists of four parts performed attacca. Writing for himself, the composer was able to fully use his skills and experience, gained when playing various genres of music. In this piece we will find performance techniques hardly found in other violin concertos. An interesting fact is also that one of the parts is performed on a baritone violin, an instrument virtually unknown in Poland, offering pastel tones and a cello-resembling scale. The title of the piece, though not literally, make reference to Mateusz Smoczyński’s recent fascination with John Adams’ music. It was the music of this American “maximal minimalist” that inspired the Polish musician to write a violin concerto.