Rendezvous with Motherland

All polonaises by Oginski are collected on one disk for the first time
Music historians and amateurs have already named the event a landmark. A new disk by Michal Kleofas Oginski saw the light in Minsk. It could have been a regular event if not for one decisive circumstance: the disk contains all the 24 polonaises composed by the famous compatriot. First time ever!

240 years have passed since Michal Kleofas Oginski was born, but his legacy still retains a lot of secrets. The last unknown polonaise by Oginski was found only several years ago by his descendant Ivo Zaluski (by the way, he plays all the music on the disc) in a European archive. The CD project to collect all polonaises by Oginski was initiated by the National Commission for UNESCO Affairs.

“It is a continuation of our project to restore Oginski’s estate”, says commission chairperson Vladimir Schastnyi. “UNESCO has recently allocated money to correct the estate restoration project (it was launched over 20 years ago). We are cautious optimists and hope that by the 250th birthday of Michal Kleofas Oginski, which will be marked in 2015, the restoration work in his estate will be finished”.

The disk was published by a private company while a commercial bank funded the publishing. It is comforting to know that the best art patronage traditions laid down a century and a half ago survived to live in early 21st century.

The next project in the line will be a disk “Oginskis Dynasty Music”, which will collect music composed by Oginski’s descendants. And, of course, works by Oginski himself.

“Michal Kleofas Oginski is a personality born in the Belarusian land to leave a glowing footmark in destinies of various countries”, says musicologist and scholar Svetlana Nemogay. “His legacy has yet to be explored, both literature and music. I think there will be very many art revelations…”

by Svetlana Litskevich
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