Karol Maciej Szymanowski

Szymanowski was a Polish composer and pianist who lived from 1882 to 1937. He was born into a well off family and studied music with his father from 1889 until 1892 when he became a student at the Gustav Neuhaus Elisavetgrad School of Music. In 1901 he started as a student at the Conservatory in Warsaw. Many years later he would return as a director at the Conservatory from 1927 to 1930.

One of Poland’s most famous 20th century composers, he helped start the Company of Young Polish Composers (Young Poland) in 1905.  This small group promoted Polish music with the help of patron Władysław Lubomirski.

During his time as a director at the Conservatory, he was diagnosed with tuberculosis. He spent some time at sanatoriums in Austria and Switzerland in 1929 to recover before returning to the Conservatory and then taking a position at the Higher School of Music in Warsaw until 1932. He would return to a sanatorium in France for treatment again in 1936. Unfortunately this time the treatment was not enough and he passed in March of 1937.

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