Pylyp Kozytsky

Born: October 23, 1893 – Letychivka, Kyiv Governate
Died: April 27, 1960 – Kyiv, Ukraine

 

A few facts about Pylyp Kozytsky

 

  • Kozytsky studied at the Kyiv Theological Academy and the Kyiv Conservatory where his teachers included Reinhold Glière.  He went on to teach at the Conservatory and the Lysenko Institute.
  • He was a founding member of the Leontovych Music Society which advocated the development of Ukrainian music as well as strong music education and research.  He played a crucial role in establishing a network of music schools throughout Ukraine.
  • His work often draws upon Ukrainian folk music, and he had strong ties to the national school of Ukrainian classical music, established by Mykola Lysenko.
  • His catalogue includes operas, orchestral suites, chamber works, church and choral music and adaptations of folk melodies.

 

 

Souvenirs d’enfance

Composed:  Circa 1913
Premiered:  Circa 1913
Instrumentation:  piano, oboe, flute, clarinet, cello

Performance Time:  6 minutes

  1. “Grandma rocks the baby” – Jolene XXXX – oboe
  2. “Child asks Grandma for a story” – Morgan Saulnier – flute
  3. “Grandma remembers the past” – Karem Simon – clarinet
  4. “Grandma is dozing off; the child is already sleeping” – Natalie Williams Calhoun – cello

 

There are many well-known works entitled Souvenir d’enfance (Memories of childhood) in music, literature, and art however Kozytsky’s small suite for solo piano is largely unrecognized even in the world of classical music. We asked Mark Shapiro, our Music Director, to tell us a bit about the piece and the arrangement the Symphony will be presenting.

 

When we at the PEISO decided to make today’s event a Concert for Ukraine, I spent a fascinating weekend going through troves of Ukrainian classical works that I found on the internet. This rich repertoire includes fiery showstoppers and cozy genre pieces for the home. As soon as I looked at Pylyp Kozytsky’s piano cycle “Souvenirs d’enfance” — written when the composer was just 20 — I thought how beautiful they would be, and how impactful on this occasion, if their lilting melodies could be played by different PEISO soloists, keeping the harmonies and textures of the original piano accompaniment.  Each of the four movements is like a painting, showing a phase of a loving relationship between a grandmother and her grandchild.

 

Unfortunately, there are no recordings available of this piece.

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