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Jan Kiepura and his Festival

Jan Kiepura (1902-1966) - Polish singer, a great tenor, actor, who enjoyed the greatest international fame and popularity among Polish singers of the period between the wars. For the first time on stage opera he occurred in 1924 at the Warsaw Opera in a lot of highlander in famous Polish opera "Halka".

He has performed at major opera houses in the world: the Vienna State Opera, Lviv, Berlin, Paris, La Scala in Milan, the Royal Albert Hall, as well as New York's Metropolitan Opera. He appeared in 39 films, including "For you I sing," "Princess of czardas", "bohemian charm," "Night Song", "I love all women." Together with his wife, Hungarian singer Marta Eggerth, played on Broadway in F. Lehar’s "The Merry Widow".

Despite the great fame Jan Kiepura, used to say about himself that he is "a simple boy from Sosnowiec." In the person of John Kiepura coincided with such features as: a unique voice, great musicality, perseverance and the remarkable grace and a dashing smile. While living abroad, at every step he emphasized his nationality. He sang A number of concerts for charity, including shares to raise money to support the construction of the building of the National Museum or for the National Defence Fund before the outbreak of World War II.

Film career, which Jan Kiepura began in 1930 with the film " Naples a city of singing" made him even more popular and won the hearts of the wider audience. Surrounded by the crowd he sang in the streets, stadiums, balcony hotel "Bristol" or on the roof of the car. In this way, he disagreed with the " opera elites," which alleged that his way of being on stage and move beyond the walls of the theater is truly wasting a career already started. Kiepura John loved his audience, and his audience loved him back showing spontaneous enthusiasm whenever he appeared.

Jan Kiepura sang many hits like: Rudolf Aria from Act I, "La Boheme", Aria of Don Jose in Act II of the opera "Carmen" Aria from Act I Radames opera "Aida," "Signorina," "O Marie, to Marie" 'O sole mio "," Ninon, oh smile "," Brunettes, blondes”.

Jan Kiepura built in Krynica the most luxurious hotel - villa Patrie ( Fatherland) for the money he earned on the world scene in the thirties. Patria had been the only Polish home of Jan Kiepura. The artist, however, was rarely here, which resulted from work outside the home country, but when he could, he used to come for a few days to Krynica, and there he spent time with his family. Then the crowds waited for his shows, and Jan Kiepura sang at the promenade or from the balcony of Patria. The last stay in Krynica occurred in the autumn of 1958..

Jan Kiepura died suddenly from a heart attack in Harrison, New York. According to the artist's last wish, his ashes were brought to the country and deposited in Warsaw’s Powązki.

European Festival of Jan Kiepura

Since 1967 in Krynica The European Festival of Jan Kiepura is held (formerly: Arias and Songs Festival of Jan Kiepura).

The first festival was organized by Stefan Półchłopek, who was the founder and secretary of the Committee for the Development of Krynica. Concerts were held on the promenade and the theater hall of the Old Spa House, and performed with singers of international renown, including: Delfina Ambroziak, Krystyna Szczepanska, Wieslaw Ochman, Andrzej Hiolski, Roman Wegrzyn. In later years also came Krynica: Barbara Nieman, Hanna Rumowska Pola Lipinska, Czeslawa Fijalkowska. Concerts were conducted by Jerzy Waldorff, George Katlewicz, Wojciech Dzieduszycki.

Festival was accompanied by competitions for music school graduates, as well as amateurs.

Since 1984, thanks to Boguslaw Kaczynski, the Festival has become a cultural event with a greater range. Each year, outstanding artists sing at the Main Fountain Festival audience could watch the performances: Opera Slaska, Opera Operetta from Kraków, the Grand Theatre in Lódź, Wroclaw and Gliwice Operetta, Musical Theatre in Lodz, etc.

Famous Polish State Folk Song and Dance Ensemble “Mazowsze” led by Mira Zimińska-Sygietyńska and “Silesia” led by Stanislaus Hadyna performed here.


Through the Festival in August each year Krynica is filled with musical audience from around the world. The festival includes the presentation of great works of opera, operetta, ballet and theater stage productions as well as the promenade concerts. At the core, at the Main Pump Room, in a theater hall, the ballroom of the Old Spa House for two weeks, you can participate in the great world of music with amazing array of singers, musicians, dancers and other celebrities.

For two weeks, thanks to European Festival of Jan Kiepura Krynica is the most musical town in Poland.