39th Stage Songs Review took place in Wroclaw on 16-25 March, 2018. Even more diverse, boldly linking tradition and avant-garde – this is the only festival in the world dedicated to the art of song interpretation.
The 40th edition will take place on 22-31 March 2019.
Camille – the Parisian star of “experimental pop” has accepted the invitation to this year’s Review. On the Big Stage of the Capitol Musical Theater, the artist will sing songs from her latest album “OUÏ” – a dazzling mosaic of folk songs, hymns, ballads, lullabies and a capella vocal. This is „chanson francaise” in a delightfully eccentric edition.
The most anticipated concerts of the festival are of course the Finale and the Gala. The Gala Concert, devoted to the work of Wojciech Młynarski who died last year, is directed by Agnieszka Glińska. – Of the nearly three thousand songs that he left us, we chose the ones that most profoundly speak about our world, today, here and now, even though they were written in – seemingly – gone times. Together with Jan Młynarski, who is the musical director of the concert, and with the most oustanding cast, we invite you to this meeting to experience the late songwriter’s presence among us – said Ms Glińska.
The Finale concert was directed this year by Ewa Kaim, actress of the National Old Theater and lecturer at the Krakow’s National Academy of Theatre Arts. The first part of the concert is the Finale of the Song Interpretation Contest, emotions related to the selection of winners by the jury, journalists and the public. In the second part, composed of poems by Polish poets and songs by Maanam, Kult, Rezerwat, Siekiera, we will see, among others, Katarzyna Nosowska, Krzysztof Globisz and Jerzy Trela.
These two concerts also pointed to two distinct leads in the program: one of them was a reference to the past and tradition. It may be a return to the roots, as A Filetta band from Corsica in the traditional songs, or Adam Strug & Kwadrofonik with “People’s Requiem”; a deceptive paraphrase, as in the Komuna Warszawa‘s play “Cezary goes to war” with the songs by Moniuszko, the first in of the history of festival swinging dance-soiree in the pre-war style (Jazzband Młynarski-Masecki and Natty Congeroo), or the remembrance of Edith Piaf in the play by Jean Cocteau (“Beautiful insensitive” of the Polonia Theater with Natalia Sikora) – closer or further, we looked back and take from the past as much good inspiration as possibile.
The second lead was present in the Finale concert, Needcompany’s “The Blind Poet” and in almost all the Off Stream performances: the question about our attitude toward otherness. About the issues of identity, gender, religion, faith, habits, fear of strangers, about what defines our humanity, it might be taken poetically or literally, performed with punk rage or with lyrical whisper – but the importance of the question remains unchanged.
It was also worth paying attention to the premieres: “Flower Power” directed by Jerzy Bielunas, the most famous hits of the children-flower age and poems by Jacek Podsiadło with music by Mateusz Pospieszalski, the concert of Katarzyna Groniec with the material from her new album “Ach!”, and among accompanying events – L.U.C and his music for the film “Good L.U.C.K “.
According to the tradition, Marcin Januszkiewicz, the winner of the last year’s Golden Toucan was singing at the festival.
A strong complement to the program were daily concerts at the Festival Club, which our underground Restaurant Stage turns into. Such bands as Variété, Drekoty, Gang Śródmieście, Czerwone Świnie and Legitymacje played here during the festival.