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25th Polish Radio's 'New Tradition' Folk Festival laureates unveiled

19.05.2024 10:32
Following two days of festival auditions at Polish Radio's Witold Lutosławski Concert Studio in Warsaw, where eleven competing acts presented their craft, the jury revealed the laureates list on Saturday evening.
Krzysztof Trebunia-Tutka - the host of Polish Radios New Tradition Folk Festival 2024.
Krzysztof Trebunia-Tutka - the host of Polish Radio's 'New Tradition' Folk Festival 2024.fot. Polskie Radio

Seventy-one acts applied to participate in the 2024 festival's contest on May 17th and 18th. Eleven of them were pre-selected by the jury and played their hearts out on stage throughout Friday and Saturday, trying to convince that it's them who deserve the Grand Prix - and a host of other accolades.

The festival jury included Joanna Słowińska (jury's chairwoman, singer and violinist, 'New Tradition' Grand Prix winner in 1999), Sylwia Błażej (musicologist and choreographer, National Center for Culture Poland), Piotr Kędziorek (chairman of Polish Radio 'Dwójka' and Polish Radio's Centre for Folk Culture), Marcin Kusy (music journalist, Polish Radio 'Jedynka'), Marcin 'Duże Pe' Matuszewski (musician, music journalist, Polish Radio 'Czwórka' and Polish Radio External Service), Maciej Szajkowski (music journalist, folk music promoter, musician), and Ewa Szczecińska (music journalist, Polish Radio 'Dwójka') - and decided to award the following prizes:

New Tradition 2024 Grand Prix
(funded by Poland's Minister of Culture and National Heritage)
- Suferi band, for performative perfectionism and successful futurization of Polish rural music - in ways attractive for the modern audiences, but preserving the original's magic.

New Tradition 2024 Second Prize
- Gary Gwadera, for his magnetic personality, musical imagination and unique combination of avant-garde with local folk roots.

New Tradition 2024 Third Prize
- Magda Kuraś Quintet, for captivating and perfectionist performance, instrumental erudition and expressing folk poetics in a modern language.

Złote Gęśle Award
(golden gusle - for exceptional instrumental mastery)
- Gary Gwadera, for virtuoso treatment of the traditional Polish mazurka rhythms with unusual instruments (drum set with 'ancient' Polish electronic drum module and effects).

Czesław Niemen's Special Award
(for exceptional and inventive conveying emotions through music)
- Daj Ognia band, for concept, spectacle, self-invention and stage expression.

The Fryderyk Chopin National Institute Award
- Sam Kowalski, for the original translation of traditional Polish folk rhythms of oberek into unusual instrumentation (guitalele) - and giving the Polish tradition a completely new face.

Polish Radio Channel One 'Jedynka' Award
- ГрайБери / HrayBery band, for instrumental virtuosity, thrilling onstage expression, remaining faithful to tradition and presenting a multicultural musical melting pot of Eastern-European Galicia (a historical and geographic region spanning what is now southeastern Poland and western Ukraine, which prior to WW2 included a significant Jewish minority as well).

Polish Radio Channel Two 'Dwójka' Award
- Zvanai band, for original arrangements, subtle references to folk sources and colourful use of dissonances.

Polish Radio Channel Four 'Czwórka' Award
- Suferi band, for seamlessly combining traditional folk music of Poland's rural areas with modern urban jazz.

Special Distinction
- Daj Ognia band, for the original selection of songs in terms of lyricism, an intriguingly modern sound achieved with ancient traditional instruments and high-level music craftsmanship.

Meanwhile, the listeners present at Polish Radio's Witold Lutosławski Concert Studio in Warsaw have decided that the band Napięcie received the Burza Braw (thunderous applause) Audience Award.

The annual Polish Radio's 'New Tradition' Folk Festival provides a platform for artists to showcase their interpretations of Polish folk music - and redefines how the local tradition may sound in the modern era, blending old melodies and songs with contemporary styles and interpretations.

Apart from the live performance competition part for the upcoming artists - numerous local and global stars of folk music are invited to perform, and Polish Radio's 'Folk Phonogram of the Year' award gala is held in the course of the festival.


Source: RCKL