Art critic Howard Reich is an ardent and articulate fan of jazz vocalist Grazyna Auguscik, who will perform for Minnesota fans at the forthcoming 2011 Twin Cities Polish Festival.
Writing in July 2010 Reich rhapsodized about Ms. Auguscik’s performance of the work of Poland’s national musician, Frederic Chopin:
The music world has been awash with 200th anniversary celebrations of Frederic Chopin’s birth, but surely none as free-wheeling as Sunday night’s marathon at the Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park. (Chicago Tribune, July 26, 2010, quoted online)
Reich goes on to “hazard a guess” about how the Master might have responded to Auguscik’s jazz interpretation of his work:
Chopin himself might have reveled in these sounds. His piano music, after all, bristles with the spirit of improvisation, as if the composer had sat down at the keyboard and instantaneously invented some of the most enduring works in the piano repertory. Most of Chopin’s preludes, etudes, and nocturnes unfold in utterly unpredictable ways, changing emotional tone at the drop of a sixteenth note—just like jazz. (Ibid)
To this lay person, Auguscik is becoming a YouTube superstar. Her several videos are not to be missed!
Auguscik is recipient of countless awards and testimonials for her vocal talents. Recently she was honored for yet another accomplishment. Now a Chicago resident who carries her unique talent throughout the nation and the world, Auguscik is the May 2011 recipient of the Polish Promotional Emblem Foundation award. The prestigious award recognizes “the achievements of Polish-born émigrés in the fields of business, culture, science and personality.”
The Twin Cities Polish Festival 2011 is set for Saturday, August 13 and Sunday, August 14, on the Mississippi Riverfront. For details on this fun- filled – and free – family event click here.