Endnotes to biography

Notes to the Curriculum Vitae of Tadeusz Paciorkiewicz were compiled by his son Paweł Paciorkiewicz

Note 1. Józefa Paciorkiewicz died of influenza in 1920, at the age of 38.

Note 2. In February 1939, my father was called up to the 2 Measurements Division of the Cavalry Artillery that was stationed in Toruń in the forts of Rudak. He served in the so called sound platoon, the task of which was to carry out monitoring in order to locate the enemy’s positions. His very prankish mare was called Fortuna.

Note 3. After the II World War broke out, the 2 Measurements Division received orders to concentrate around Kowel. As the Red Army was approaching from the east, the orders were modified – the direction of concentration was changed to Włodawa. However, the 2 Measurements Division never reached Włodawa: the situation in the German and the Soviet fronts led to the dissolution of this formation. Some of the Division’s soldiers broke through to Romania, and some returned home.

Note 4. Professor Jan Bieniek also managed a high school choir in Płońsk where he commuted from Nasielsk. He was murdered by the Nazis.

Note 5. During the Nazi occupation, my father continued his artistic work. Together with the director Hanna Buterlewicz and the choreographer Krystyna Rokitnicka, he contributed to the staging of Leon Schiller‘s Pastoral under the supervision of the author himself.

Note 6. The Karol Szymanowski Music School in Płock, which my father established in February 1945, was a five year vocational school and a music education school with no specified duration of learning. The school also operated a music kindergarten, which however, was closed down after one year due to lack of funds and proper rooms. In 1949, the school was reorganised and expanded. It became a music high school. The organ and solo song groups were established at that time. The school also had two piano groups, one violin group, one accordion group and several other groups. It had a choir and an orchestra. Owing to the great enthusiasm and zeal of my father and the other pedagogues, the school soon became the centre of Płock’s musical life. With the school as its basis, the Folk Music Institute of the Mazovia District was established in June 1946. The Institute’s management board was composed of attorney Kazimierz Askanas, Director of the Pedagogical Senior High School J. Gadzik, President of “Wici” K. Dąbrowski, Dr. Stefania Kamińska and Tadeusz Paciorkiewicz, the Music School director. As the only professional musician in this group, my father was appointed Director of the Mazovia District by the Folk Music Institute’s management board. In 1947, my father and Faustyn Piasek established the District Music Information Bureau to meet the information and consulting needs of amateur choirs. The Information Bureau had its own library with an extensive collection of lay, church and folk songs. In 1948, my father co-organised the formation of the Płock Chamber Orchestra and the Mixed Choir. My father’s professional life in Płock was not limited to his pedagogical work at the School and the Folk Music Institute. He also managed the amateur choir of the Płock Music Society, performed as a concert organist (which included performances on the Polish Radio), worked as an organist at the Płock cathedral and composed his first music works.

Note 7. The jubilee concert on the occasion on the 50th anniversary of the Karol Szymanowski I and II Degree State Music School in Płock took place on February 25, 1995. I was with my father on that day. This interesting celebration was honoured by Ms. Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz, the then President of the National Bank of Poland, who attended the concert as the school’s graduate.

Note 8. All the time, my father had to cope with many problems, of which the most important one was the lack of funds to overhaul the school building (its walls were cracking) and to improve the standard of living at the students’ hostel. It happened frequently that he gave up his own salary to help the school. Obviously, this was not enough to solve these problems, because the scale of the school’s needs was much larger. In order to end the school’s financing difficulties, my father had tried to make the school state-owned. The city authorities kept postponing this decision, but finally they decided to make the school state-owned and on May 16, 1949 the school was officially taken over. Further co-operation with the city authorities was less successful. The communist authorities didn’t like the fact that the school taught an organ class and that my father combined the function of the school’s director with his job as an organist at the Płock cathedral. When they decided to move the school from the building it was occupying to a group of rooms at the local cinema, which were absolutely useless for a music school’s activities, my father decided to leave Płock. As an artist whose heart and soul were devoted to music, he did not want to keep struggling futilely with indifferent bureaucracy and to waste his time and nerves. When my father left, many other school activists and pedagogues did so, too. The school found itself in a crisis.

It is worth noting that the pedagogues and students of the school gave my father a great, solemn and touching goodbye. What remains of that celebration is the melody of the “Goodbye Cantata (Farewell Director)”, written by J.W. (we still don’t know who that was) and the “Toast for Male Choir”, written by Faustyn Piasek. Both songs were sung on that occasion. Below are the cantata lyrics:

Goodbye Cantata (Farewell Director)

Kształciles nasze umysły, śswietlaną głosiłes wieść,
Wdzięczności pełne serca niósł Ci dank i cześć.
Wiodłeś nas drogą cnoty w idealniejszy świat,
Za to Ci dziś składamy swych uczuć wdzięczny kwiat,
Za to Ci dziś składamy swych uczuć wdzięczny kwiat.

Hartu uczyłeś dusze, by charakterów stal,
Nie zgięła wraża siła, wśród burzy życia fal.
Dziś, kiedy już opuszczasz nas i nasz szkolny próg,
Niechaj Ci gwiazda świeci, niech Cię prowadzi Bóg,
Niechaj Ci gwiazda świeci, niech Cie prowadzi Bóg.

My father’s activity in Płock lasted for four and a half years only, but the people in the city and the surrounding area still remember it very well. In the 80s and the 90s, my father and I would frequently visit Płock and the Płock area and the older inhabitants would very often recognise my father in the street and greet him heartily.

Paweł Paciorkiewicz