He started as a law student and then changed track and graduated in music aged 29. He studied composition and conducting, initially with the Stanislaw Moniuszko Opera and moving on to most of the prestigious Polish orchestras in turn. He established an international reputation with concerts all over the world. Two recordings deserve special mention, Raj i Peri by Robert Schumann and Krzysztof Penderecki’s St Luke Passion. He was a great champion of modern music, especially by Polish composers. His television programmes were particularly popular in this respect.
He wrote a number of books which our musical director says are wonderful. Sadly, a quick search through Amazon and Bookfinder.com would suggest that they are currently unavailable and even if you find them, they have not been translated into English (unless he wrote ‘Bistatic Radar Polarimetry – Theory & Principles!). Perhaps some ‘out of print’ translations are available through libraries.
Reading through other articles, I failed to find much more. What there is tells of a very warm, energetic and multi-talented man. A much loved teacher and champion of causes. A broadcaster and author, composer, conductor and politically active Music Union representative. As the Polish Music Centre puts it “A Renaissance figure”.
He wrote his poignant Canzona di Barocca in 1983 and it was our privilege to give its first Sheffield performance at the Broomhill festival on June 15th.
Afterthought. Looking through the list of Czyz’s publications, I was reminded of the Polish visitor who went to have his eyes checked at SpecSavers. The optometrist indicated the penultimate row on the reading chart c z w l b p d j z “Can you read that?” she asked. “Of course I can” he replied “He’s my uncle”.