Nowowiejski, Feliks (1877–1946)

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Composer, conductor, organist and music teacher. He was born 1877 at Barczewo in Varmia. He was taught music in Święta-Lipka, and his tertiary studies took him to Berlin. In 1909 to 1914, he was artistic director of the Krakow Music Society.

In 1919, Nowowiejski settled down in Poznań where he lectured in 1920–1927 at the local Conservatory, also displaying his skills as a composer and concert-giving artist. He has established and managed several choirs in Poznań and conducted joint choirs at events such as singing reunions.

Nowowiejski’s activities included appearances as conductor at symphony concerts and chairing juries of music contests at home and abroad. In the Nazi occupation years, he remained in hiding in Krakow and eventually returned to Poznań in 1945. Nowowiejski practised almost all forms of instrumental music. Remarkable among his compositions are the oratorios Powrót syna marnotrawnego [The Return of the Prodigal Son] (1901), Quo vadis (1903) and Znalezienie Św. Krzyża [The Finding of the Holy Cross] (1905); a number of orchestral and organ symphonies; symphonic poems; overtures; instrumental and organ concerti; and, several chamber and choral pieces as well as songs. Among the latter, worth a mention is the tune of the Rota [The Oath] song, composed for the 1910 Grunwald (Tannenberg) battle anniversary celebration held in Krakow, with the lyrics by Maria Konopnicka. Nowowiejski’s output also includes ballet music and the opera Legenda Bałtyku [The Legend of the Baltic Sea] (1924).
He died in Poznań in 1946 and was buried at the Crypt of the Distinguished of St. Adalbert’s church.

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