Goat Spirits – a concert by Mikołaj Trzaska (FestivALT 2022)

Goat Spirits – a concert by Mikołaj Trzaska (FestivALT 2022)

GOAT SPIRITS is a natural continuation of Trzaska’s musical exploration of Jewish memory in the context of authentic and contemporary expressions of Polish-Jewish identity.

The title refers to an ancient Szczebrzeszyn tale describing animals grazed by a Jewish shepherd, who are enchanted guides between two worlds, and have knowledge about the secret passage connecting Szczebrzeszyn with Jerusalem. The tale was translated and popularized by Tomasz Pańczyk, a researcher of the history of Szczebrzeszyn Jews.

From the very beginning Trzaska, who is a frequent visitor in the region, dreamt of playing in the building of the 12th century Szczebrzeszyn synagogue. He managed to secretly perform his first solo concert on a hot August evening with the participation of a small audience. He immediately felt the magic and acoustic possibilities of this place, “that night the sound spread soft and silver, while playing I felt in a dream”, recalls the musician. After a few months, he decided to return to record his latest album there.

Before his arrival, he prepared a list of compositions, hoping to recreate the secret summer mood. But as it usually happens, it was impossible to return to the same place. So he decided to give up and wait, after some time the music appeared like a spiritual guide in his head, as if listening to the walls of these walls was something like talking with ghosts.

Tickets: 60 PLN
To buy online tickets, click here.

This event is a part of FestivALT 2022!

MIKOŁAJ TRZASKA – Saxophonist, bass clarinetist, and film score composer, grew out of yass – a socio-artistic movement that brazenly challenged the rigidity of the institutionalized mainstream Polish jazz environment during the 80ies and 90ies of the last century. Free from any specific doctrine and open to all forms of artistic expression, they successfully impacted the jazz scene in the country.

Trzaska was the co-founder of the most important yass group – the celebrated Miłość ensemble that lasted, off and on, from 1988 to 2002, and the equally creative Łoskot, founded in 1993. Although the impetus of yass faded away many years ago, his status remained and he went on to become one of the main leaders of the Polish scene, but also working with the top tier of international improvisors. After the yass period he recorded a few concentrated quieter albums with the renowned Oleś brothers bass/drum duo. He has also accompanied poets such as Marcin Świetlicki and Jurii Andrukhovych and created musical–literary projects with the renowned Polish writer/journalist/critic Andrzej Stasiuk.

Today, he works with many groups, including his own international trio Volumen, Ken Vandermark’s Resonance Ensemble, Magic with Joe McPhee, or the unique trio Shofar with Raphael Rogiński and Macio Moretti that explores unique new improvisational perspectives on traditional Jewish music. He has also established himself as a major award-winning film music composer, working with the director Wojciech Smarzowski. But his main focus of self-realization is grounded in radical free jazz: he travels the world cooperating with some of the world’s major improvisors such as Peter Brötzmann, Joe McPhee, or Ken Vandermark.

The project was carried out in cooperation with Allianz Kulturstiftung.