Genre : Contemporary Classical

Catalogue: Phasma-Music 036

UPC: 660989085902

recording: Grzegorz Stec

editing: Grzegorz Stec

mastering: Grzegorz Stec

recorded in January and March, 2021

graphic design: Michail Travlos

cover photo: Krystyna i Pawel Liszewscy (

production management: Iwona Glinka

front cover: Digital Art by Michail Travlos

premiere: April 1, 2022.


PAWEL KOTLA, conductor

2014 Grammy Award winner, the Kalisz Philharmonic Orchestra under Pawel Kotla, presents the new album CALISIA 21. The outstanding album includes 9 world premiere recordings by 9 contemporary composers.

This is a second instalment of the “Calisia” CD series recorded by the Kalisz Philharmonic Orchestra, or, more precisely, the orchestra’s string section conducted impeccably by their artistic director, Maestro Paweł Kotla. Based in Poland’s oldest city, Kalisz, whose origins go back to Roman times, the orchestra won the Grammy Award in 2014 and has established itself as one of the country’s most sought-after ensembles of this sort. What sets both the orchestra and Maestro Kotla apart from the dozens, if not hundreds, of similar groups around the world, is their ongoing commitment to the music of our time, which they perform on a regular basis - an exemplary approach indeed. Add to it the sheer class of the musicians, their obvious enthusiasm for and understanding of even the most demanding modern works, always combined with and inspired by Maestro Kotla’s high calibre conducting – and you have a recipe for success! This particular album features ten works by nine contemporary composers. Three of these compositions stand out naturally due to their scoring for organ and strings. These are the lovely, virtuosic, neoclassical “Suite for Organ and Strings” by Neil Stipp, as well as two sombre, brief compositions by the organ soloist himself, Krzysztof Niegowski, “Melancholia” and “Temptation”. If in performing his own works Niegowski demonstrates serious lyrical sensitivity, he really shows his mettle in the Stipp; the playing being effortlessly assured yet sensitive. The rest of the collection is varied in weight and length with the beautiful “Languere” by Paolo Geminiani being the most challenging piece. All these works, including Nikos Athanassakis’s smartly Bartókian “Palinodia”, Sonia Ballarin’s puckish “Gille Perpetuum”, Scott Brickman’s intense “Boginka” (Polish for “goddess” or “fairy”), Jacob Elkin’s relentless “Amber Waves”, Anicia Kohler’s broadly lyrical “Every Year” and Claudio Passilongo’s yearning “Adagio” merit attention, most of them written in familiar idioms, which even the most conservative listener may enjoy without reservation. The recording is top notch, has transparency and depth, and the somewhat minimalistic design is quite attractive. All in all, it is a commendable effort by Phasma Music. (© Piotr Grella-Mozejko)

Product details

Nikos Athanassakis

01. Palinodia [05:30]

Sonia Ballarin

02. Gille Perpetuum [05:34]

Scott Brickman

03. Boginka [09:02]

Neil Stipp

Suite for Organ and Strings

04. I Allegro con brio [07:16]

05. II Passacaglia [03:16]

06. III Gigue [02:00]

07. IV Rondo [03:04]

Krzysztof Niegowski, organ

Jacob Elkin

08. Amber Waves [05:53]

Paolo Geminiani

09. Languere [07:28]

Anicia Kohler

10. Every Year [06:40]

Claudio Passilongo

11. Adagio [04:19]

Krzysztof Niegowski

Two Works for Organ and Strings

12. Melancholia [02:27]

13. Temptation [03:12]

Krzysztof Niegowski, organ

Total time: [64:28]