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Photo © Morten Krogvold
Although undoubtedly one the of most important composers of the twentieth century, Lutosławski was relatively unknown outside Poland until the 1960s. His Symphony No 1 was banned during the Stalinist era, the consequence of which was that he developed a fresh, tonal style, such as in the
Concerto for Orchestra
. From the 1950s,, he adopted serialism and aleatoric techniques as the state loosened its grip on artistic creativity. The improvement of East-West relations brought him numerous international commissions and major awards. He never lost his creative genius, completing one of his greatest works, his Symphony No 4, just shortly before he died.