panufnik lullabye

Andrzej Panufnik // Lullaby (Kołysanka)

Panufnik’s combo of fragile, swaying melody and elastic quarter tones makes for a wonderfully sinister, or at least nauseous, lullaby. Strange then, perhaps, that the song was inspired by a nighttime stroll across London’s Waterloo Bridge. It’s very hard to not hit repeat on this one.

Fans of this should investigate Adrian Thomas’s excellent On Polish Music blog, where you can find analysis of the Polish avant-garde scene, as well as translations of old concert programmes and other gems found in Krakow junk shops. Thomas writes, “even though his rarely played Lullaby uses a Polish folk-tune, its artfully layered texture has a detached, refined quality that did not fit comfortably with the advancing Communist demands of down-to-earth socialist realism.” You can see a programme from the piece’s 1947 premiere below…

panufnik lullabye

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