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Fantasy in C minor K.396

This 1973 recording was made in Thaddeus Kozuch's home studio. 

Mozart Fantasy K.396

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Robert Muczynski

Robert Muczynski (1929 – 2010) was a Polish-American composer, born in Chicago.

In the 1960s he settled in Tucson where he joined the faculty of the University of Arizona as a composer in residence and chairman of the composition department.  He held both positions until his retirement in 1988.

More than fifty published compositions are in his catalog, and remain frequently

performed in recitals, as has much of his solo piano music.

Muczynski Preludes Opus 6

VIDEO: Muczynski Preludes Opus 6 (1929)

Kozuch & Muczynski - a musical friendship

Thaddeus Kozuch and Robert Muczynski were friends.  They met at DePaul University while Robert was studying music composition and piano.  Thaddeus Kozuch performed a number of Muczynski's works over the years, including these preludes, recorded in his home studio on March 26, 1986.  The preludes are titled:

1. Vivace  (at ~0:07)

2. Lento (at ~0:53)

3. Allegro giocoso (at ~2:03)

4. Allegretto meno mosso (at ~2:51)

5. Moderato (at ~4:00)

6. Allegro marcato (at ~5:00)

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Muczynski Suite Opus 13 (1960)

Thaddeus Kozuch gave one of the first-ever performances of this music.  The six movements are titled: 
1.Festival    2.Flight    3.Vision   4.Labyrinth   5.Phantom   6.Scherzo

This recording is from Thaddeus Kozuch's final DePaul University Faculty Recital in 1979. 

Muczynski Suite Opus 13

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Muczynski Sonata #3 Opus 35 (1974)

Thaddeus Kozuch gave the World and Chicago Premiers of the Muczynski Sonata #3.  

This recording is from Thaddeus Kozuch's DePaul University Faculty Recital in 1978. 

Muczynski Sonata #3 Opus 35

Ignacy Jan Paderewski

Jan Paderewski (1860 – 1941) was a Polish pianist, composer and statesman who was a spokesman for Polish independence. In 1919, he was the nation's prime minister and foreign minister during which he signed the Treaty of Versailles, which ended World War I.  Shortly after leaving office, Paderewski resumed his concert career to recoup his finances, and rarely visited the politically chaotic Poland thereafter, the last time being in 1924.

All of Paderewski's works evoke a romantic image of Poland. They incorporate references to Polish dances (polonaise, krakowiak, and mazurka).  His piano miniatures are especially familiar.

The Minuet in G major Opus 14 No. 1, written in the style of Mozart, became one of the most recognized piano tunes of all time.  A Thaddeus Kozuch 1947 recording of the Minuet may also be heard in the 78rpm disc "Concert Miniature" on this website.

Thaddeus Kozuch's encore performance of the Cracovienne was given at his Moraine Valley Community College recital in the summer of 1986.  The exact concert date is not known.

Paderewski Cracovienne

Ignacy Jan Paderewski

This lovely nocturne was very dear to Thaddeus Kozuch.

Thaddeus Kozuch's encore performance of the Nocturne was given following his performance of the Polish Fantasy on Original Themes for piano and orchestra, also by Paderewski.  The performance in the mid-1970's was made with the Elkhart Symphony Orchestra in Elkhart Indiana.  The exact concert date is not known.

Paderewski Nocturne Opus 16-4

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Francis Poulenc

This little Pastorale was an "interesting" and "charming" oddity to Thaddeus Kozuch.

Francis Poulenc (1899—1963) was a composer who made an important contribution to French music in the decades after World War I.

This is Thaddeus Kozuch's 1972 DePaul faculty recital performance of the Poulenc Pastorale.

Poulenc Pastorale

Here is a recording of Prokofiev's "Diabolical Suggestion", exhilarating in its raw terror.  Prokofiev’s Suggestion Diabolique is the ghoulishly demonic final movement of the 1908 Four Pieces for Piano Opus 4. 

This is Thaddeus Kozuch's 1980 home studio recording.

Prokofiev Diabolical Suggestion

Thaddeus Kozuch often ended his recitals with this Prokofiev crowd-pleaser, the March from The Love for Three Oranges.

Here is an encore performance from Thaddeus Kozuch's 1986 Moraine Valley Community College recital.

Prokofiev March

Prokofiev's Sonata #6 is a Thaddeus Kozuch "tour de force" performance.

Thaddeus Kozuch performed several of Prokofiev's Piano Sonatas.

This is Thaddeus Kozuch's 1974 DePaul faculty recital performance of the 6th Sonata.

Prokofiev Sonata #6 (1974 recital)

For an earlier 1947 and equally fabulous recording of this Prokofiev sonata (see below).

This is an early 1947 studio disc of the same Prokofiev 6th Sonata.  It illustrates the consistency of Thaddeus Kozuch's keyboard virtuosity.

Prokofiev Sonata #6 (78rpm studio disc)

This earlier 1947 recording  may sound "old" but the performance is brilliant.

Here is the Prokofiev Piano Sonata #7, composed in 1942.

This is Thaddeus Kozuch's 1970 studio recording.

Prokofiev Sonata #7

The middle movement requires very subtle pedal action near its conclusion, and the final movement is a hair-raising technical display.

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Thaddeus Kozuch ended this recital with several encores, including the powerful Rachmaninov Etude-tableau Opus 39-5 in E♭ minor (1916-17).

AUDIO NOTE:  The audio quality of the 1973 DePaul recital recordings is very poor because it was taped by a technician friend of the family with improper settings.  As such, the recordings have much distortion and have lost their stereo presence quality.  We have edited these 1973 recordings as best we can.

Here is an encore performance from Thaddeus Kozuch's 1973 DePaul University Faculty Recital.

Rachmaninov Etude Tableau

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Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov

Flight of the Bumblebee

Nikolai Andreyevich Rimsky-Korsakov (1844–1908) was a Russian composer of operas, orchestral, and smaller-scale works.  A master of orchestration, he is considered the main architect of the so-called Russian style of music.  Excerpts and suites from his operas are popular as purely orchestral works and in countless arrangements and transcriptions.  The best-known of these excerpts is "Flight of the Bumblebee" from The Tale of Tsar Saltan, made famous in a piano version by composer Sergei Rachmaninoff

This is Thaddeus Kozuch's 1970 studio recording of Flight of the Bumblebee.

Flight of the Bumblebee

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