Areas that distinguish the Warsaw Piano Workshop from other instrumental music courses are program and organization. These two areas are closely related. Organization of the Workshop arises from its supreme ideological foundation formed by basic program guidelines. These guidelines – what is described in the REPERTOIRE chapter – envisage three sets of three lessons with three lecturers for every participant. It means that all together a participant gets 9 lessons with three lecturers; three lessons with every lecturer. Each participant should bring to the Workshop at least three pieces of repertoire. Each of these pieces is going to be worked on with different lecturer. Such solution prevents interference of another teacher than appointed to a piece interpretation. The task of scheduling nine lessons conducted by three teachers, devoted to at least three pieces of separately worked on repertoire, requires not only appropriate repertoire assignments, but also precise scheduling of a few hours of intensive practice and at least 40 minutes warm up just before lesson. Implementation of such assumptions and requirements create a serious logistic problems that have to be solved in organizing process independently for each year. The demanding process is able to start only after all participants’ applications for particular Workshop are received, what makes it even more difficult. It’s taken care of by the Organizing Manager and is supervised by the Workshop Director.
Precision of scheduling lessons and practice can be observed in archive materials presented in under-menu of Organization: LESSONS and PRACTICE.
Every participant has three lecturers (teachers) assigned from the Workshop Facuty. Decisions regarding lecturer assignment belong exclusively to the Workshop Director and create one of main fields of his responsibility. When making these decisions Director always takes eventual requests of participants’ regular teachers into consideration, as well as comply with eventual participants wishes. The list containing lecturer assignment is printed at the main information table in the school and published on the web site (under ORGANIZATION) just before Workshop Opening.
The second official language of the Workshop beside Polish is English. Principally participants from outside Poland are assigned to English speaking lecturers. In other cases an English interpreter, who also is a pianist, is provided. Since 2015 the Workshop plans to employ a Chinese-Polish interpreter.
There is a repertoire box in the On-Line Application form, however giving the repertoire details in advance, while sending application, is not obligatory. We make it optional due to experience that shows many questions and changes introduced to that field.
Repertoire assignment, what means – deciding which lecturer works on which piece – is a main, organizational part of the Workshop’s Opening Ceremony. Each participant is asked to talk to the whole Faculty about his repertoire brought to the Workshop. The Director presents three lecturers, who are assigned to work with the participant and opens discussion about which of them works on which of presented pieces. In case there is more than three pieces – the whole presented repertoire is always assigned to lecturers.
The next day the precise list of Repertoire Assignments is printed on the information desk at the school as well as published on the web site under REPERTOIRE, where also the archive assignment files can be observed (starting from 11th Workshop in 2010).
LESSONS & PRACTICE
The Frederic Chopin State School of Music in Warsaw is equipped with excellent Kawai pianos. It guarantees at least 4 hours of daily practice for participants of high school and university level and at least two hours of practice for the primary school level. In individual exceptions caused by concert or competition needs of practice – time can be extended up to even 6 or more hours a day.
Workshop Organizers attach particular importance, apart of active participation in classes which are daily scheduled, to numerous participants’ attendance as observers of different classes. This idea constitues the main reason, why REPERTOIRE is published. Together with daily plans of lessons it should create very clear source of information – which composition, by which participant and lecturer and in which class is presently played. Observation of other participants’ classes do not entail additional costs and is included in the participation fee.
The lessons schedule is created accordingly to lecturers’ assignment and provides the rotation scheme. Rotation is based on fair use of quality instruments. The lessons schedule is printed on the information desk at the school as well as published on the web site under LESSONS. In the ARCHIVE the previous lessons’ schedule files can be observed (starting from 11th Workshop in 2010).
The same rule applies to practice schedule. Daily practice is precisely arranged in several 40-minutes long sessions in one or two different studios a day. As mentioned before – the separate session of 40 minutes worm-up practice is scheduled just before each lesson in venue where lesson takes place. Participants from Warsaw also get the warm-up practice before their lesson, however – having their own pianos in the city – they don’t get other practice time during Workshop.
The whole practice plan is also printed on the information desk of the school as well as published on the web site under PRACTICE. In the ARCHIVE the previous practice plan files can be observed (starting from 11th Workshop in 2010).
The Warsaw Piano Workshop provides accommodation to its participants. The cost is included in the participation fee. Participants are accommodated in the Students’ Dormitory located in just 10 minutes walking distance from the main venue at Bednarska Street. The accommodation provided in the Dormitory is convenient, but very simple, therefore participants requiring a higher standard are able to use nearby hotels. In such cases they cover the cost by themselves, while their workshop participation fee will be reduced by $100. Participants having lessons or practice in the second venue at Polczynska Street will mostly have a school’s mini-bus service available. All guardians and accompanying persons can be accommodated with participants at the Dormitory. The fee for such accommodation is $330 for the whole course.
MEALS DURING WORKSHOP
There is a buffet situated in the main venue at Bednarska Street, serving tasty meals. Price of meals is not included into participation fee, however is not high – lunch approximatelly $5. Additionally on the place hot and cold drinks, sweets etc. Lunch breaks are coordinated with plans of classes and practice to maximize comfort of participant’s work at the Workshop.
CONCERTS, LECTURES, FREE DAY
Due to very intensive schedule of the Workshop not many side concerts are arranged. In the end of the course, during the Closing Ceremony the Final Concert takes place, however the participation in that concert is not obligatory. The list of performers is being formed as participants interested in performing express their will and suggest the repertoire to the Organizing Manager. Usually the performance time is not longer than 10 minutes per participant. Performance in the Final Concert can present a piece worked on in the Workshop or a piece brought especially for that occasion.
There are also possibilities to perform in some other venues, including even performances with orchestra. Employing orchestra (the Warsaw Camerata) is based on individual, private agreement, requires an additional organizing effort and involves considerable, additional cost. Such a performance with Warsaw Camerata was arranged for two young pianists from China during the 11th Workshop in 2010; pictures from that event can be seen on the web site under PHOTOS/PHOTOGRAPHIC ARCHIVE.
After completing two sets of three lessons, the seventh day of the Workshop is basically free (called a Free Day). There is no practice and no lessons scheduled on that day, however both venues are open for practice. Every year in the afternoon of that day some educational events are arranged. In 16th Workshop 2015 there will be a lecture given by renowned Polish pianist Karol Radziwonowicz, the President of Polish Piano Teachers Association EPTA-Poland. The topic: Ways of memorizing piano pieces (August 19, 2015; the lecture included in the fee). During a free day also some other attractions, like for the instance a tour to the Chopin Birthplace in Żelazowa Wola and Brochów Church, can be arranged. The cost of such events is not included in the Workshop fee.
APPLICATIONS & FEES
Applications should be made On-Line from the APPLICATION button at our web site till June 30th.
Confirmation of enrollment will be sent to participants by e-mail till July 10th.
The fee for participants of age under 16 is $750; for participants age 16 and older is $1000.
The fee should be wired by bank transfer to the account given in the bottom of the On-Line Application Form, shortly after receive acknowledgement of enrollment by email, not later than till July 20th.