Selected chamber music


Piotr Szewczyk

Bold City Contemporary Ensemble

Trio Solis




When approaching his latest chamber album BLISS POINT, Polish-born violinist and composer Piotr Szewczyk turned to a unique lens of inspiration – food science. His interpretation of a “bliss point” in the culinary sense embodies the technique’s saturation of a flavor just before the point of diminished potency. Of course, he trades in the contents of his spice cabinet in favor of diverse instrumental pairings, and in doing so, the composer explores the “saturation limits in the full spectrum of emotions, textures, and characters.” In doing so, Szewczyk is confident that the resulting collection of chamber works “covers the entire expressive range of my vocabulary and artistic sensitivity.”


Naturally, Szewczyk’s violin stylings are included in this spectrum, as he appears on nearly all the album’s compositions. He keeps true to his stated inspirations on BLISS POINT and exemplifies these goals on the title track. Accompanied by clarinet, cello, and piano, the violinist leads the quartet through a set of intertwined sections that starkly differ in their pacing. An ostinato bookend aids in structuring the piece, opening with a gentle pulsation and closing with tranquility after a midsection of contrasting instrumental textures.


Contrasting moods also appear on the album’s first two mixed ensemble pieces. The four short, ever-shifting movements of Twisted Dances are brought alive by oboe, violin, cello, and piano, and the scattered themes of Images from a Journey range from explorations of darkness to a similarly dance-inspired movement based on gypsy performers.


These ensembles are only a sample of Szewczyk’s use of contrast on the album, with a strong example arriving on Piano Trio No. 1’s bricolage of disparate movements. The composer cycles through passages of intense, rhythmic virtuosity; then meditative jazz piano obscured by melancholic tendencies; and lastly, an explosive finale with unbridled energy as its ignition.


His vibrant writing for strings echoes this trend as well, including the viscous, atonal sonorities of a string quartet in the octatonic scale on Half-Diminished Scherzo and the fury of a lively string trio on the appropriately titled Furioso.


These types of musical personification all exhibit the intense imagery of Szewczyk’s compositions. Even without knowing the title of Very Angry Birds, the way the violinist’s extended techniques glide over propulsive piano chords will prompt listeners to point their imaginations skyward. This tendency also holds true for the composer’s dialogue between instruments, such as the furious battle of violin and viola on Conundrum and the marital themes of Nimbus, which tests the polarity of wedding vows with passages full of both joy and bickering.




Hailed by Gramophone as a “violinist of exceptional finesse and flair” and a composer of “magical” works, Piotr Szewczyk is currently a member of the Jacksonville Symphony first violin section and violinist/composer-in-residence of the Bold City Contemporary Ensemble, both based in Florida


Szewczyk takes on both composer and performer roles on his latest album BLISS POINT, a collection of chamber works with diverse instrumentation and a penchant for exploring musical contrast


The album’s title comes from a culinary term for the satisfying saturation of a flavor, where adding any more would diminish its potency


He and his compositions have received numerous accolades, including an American Prize for his “organic, exhilarating, and fresh” music, which “makes one want to immediately hear it again”




Tracks 5, 10  - 15

recorded Aug 26, 2016 at Hendricks Baptist Church in Jacksonville FL


Tracks 6 - 8

recorded May 10, 2016 at St. Paul’s by-the-Sea Episcopal Church in Jacksonville Beach FL


Tracks 1 - 4, 9, 16 - 19

recorded September 2 & 3, 2016 at St. Paul’s by-the-Sea Episcopal Church in Jacksonville Beach FL


Recording Session Producer Piotr Szewczyk

Recording Session Engineer Jeff Alford

Editing and Mixing Jeff Alford with Piotr Szewczyk


Executive Producer Bob Lord

Executive A&R Sam Renshaw

A&R Chris Robinson

Audio Director Jeff LeRoy

Engineering Manager Lucas Paquette

Art & Production Director Brett Picknell

Graphic Design Emily Roulo

Marketing Scott Murphy



Release Date May 12,  2017

Catalog #: NV6093





TWISTED DANCES for Oboe, Violin, Cello, and Piano

Bold City Contemporary Ensemble (BCCE)  |  Scott Erickson oboe

Piotr Szewczyk violin  Brian Magnus cello  Galen Dean Peiskee, Jr. piano


I. Polytonal Polka

II. 12 “tone-al” Waltz

III. Jig with a Twist 

IV.  Effin’ Tarantella


CONUNDRUM for Violin and Viola

BCCE  |  Piotr Szewczyk violin  Jorge Pena viola



Trio Solis  |  Corinne Stillwell violin  Greg Sauer cello  Read Gainsford piano


I. Aggressive

II. Dark

III. Energetic



BCCE  |  Piotr Szewczyk violin I  Philip Pan violin II  Jorge Pena viola

Brian Magnus cello


IMAGES FROM A JOURNEY for Flute, Clarinet, Cello, and Piano

BCCE  |  Piotr Szewczyk conductor

Sarah-Jane Young flute/alto flute  Bojana Kragulj clarinet/bass clarinet

Betsy Federman cello  Ileana Fernandez piano


10  I. Through a Prism 

11  II. Moonlight Passacaglia

12  III. Night’s Embrace  

13  IV. Gypsy Ballroom 


14  FURIOSO for String Trio

BCCE  | Piotr Szewczyk violin  Jorge Pena viola  Betsy Federman cello


15  VERY ANGRY BIRDS for Violin and Piano

BCCE   | Piotr Szewczyk violin  Ileana Fernandez piano


16  NIMBUS for Two Violins

BCCE  |  Piotr Szewczyk violin I  Philip Pan violin II


BLISS POINT for Violin, Clarinet, Cello, and Piano

BCCE  |  Nathan Aspinall conductor

Piotr Szewczyk violin  Bojana Kragulj clarinet  Brian Magnus cello

Galen Dean Peiskee, Jr. piano


17  Part I

18  Part II

19  Part III






Piotr Szewczyk













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