Persons related to Chopin Persons related to Chopin

Józef Michał Chomiński

Józef Michał Chomiński

Józef Michał Chomiński

*24 VIII 1906 Ostrów k. Przemyśla, †20 II 1994 Falenica

Józef Michał Chomiński, Polish musicologist. He studied at Lviv Conservatory (composition and conducting) and John Casimir University in Lviv (musicology under Adolf Chybiński). From 1949 he taught in the School (later Institute) of Musicology of Warsaw University. In the years 1951-68 he also worked at the State Institute of Art (since 1959 the Institute of Art of the Polish Academy of Sciences) and from 1956 to 1971 was editor-in-chief of the quarterly Muzyka. His impressive scholarly output covers works on music history from the Middle Ages to contemporary times. Among his publications (partly with his wife, Krystyna Wilkowska-Chomińska) are the monumental Formy muzyczne [Musical forms] (5 vols. Kraków 1954-84), Historia harmonii i kontrapunktu [History of harmony and counterpoint] (3 vols. 1958-1990) and Historia muzyki powszechnej [History of music] (2 vols. 1989-90). He trained several generations of Polish musicologists.

Chomiński's Chopinological works are characterised by an holistic treatment of the musical work, typical of this scholar, involving such aspects as the analysis of texture and colouring, often overlooked in earlier musicological research, and the examination of interdependencies between the various elements in a work. In his first published book on Chopin's music, employing his own creatively modified version of the Erpf-Riemann method, he carried out an analysis of the Preludes, demonstrating the cyclical character of Op. 28 and drawing attention to such aspects as the common motivic material integrating the work. In his monograph of the Chopin sonatas, he defended the C minor Sonata, pointing out its logical construction and unity of expression, characteristic of Chopin's sonatas, and also the Cello Sonata, which he regarded as an important stage in the later development of this form. Taking issue with Hugo Leichtentritt, among others, he also saw the Funeral March as a key to the interpretation of the B flat minor Sonata. In other studies, he dealt with texture and harmony in Chopin (showing their mutual influence) and the problem of the periodisation of his oeuvre. He made use of these studies in his book on Chopin, which represents a more popular and synthesising approach to the composer's life and work.


 

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