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Reflections on the Warsaw Cross Culture Festival

  |   Warsaw

Vocal Chords recordist Robert Hope shares his experience from the Warsaw Cross Culture Festival 

Having never been to Warsaw, the Cross Culture Festival in the Polish capital proved to be the perfect occasion to begin my part of the journey to uncover the phenomenon of the voice, and to explore a new city.  
Over four days with the help of  the Artistic Director of the festival and world famous multi-instrumentalist Maria Pomianowska, and Maciej Szajkowski, a member of outstanding Polish folk group Warsaw Village Band, I was able to capture a host of beautiful performances and intriguing interviews with artists from South Africa, Cape Verde, Brazil and Eastern Europe.


Taking place under the shadow of the imposing Palace of Culture and Science (a “gift from the Soviet people to the Polish nation”), and at the stunning Museum of the History of Polish Jews, my introduction to music that I had never before been exposed to in person was a humbling one.

Warsaw Cross Culture Festival - Kapela Maliszow

Kapela Maliszow – photo by A. Oleksiak

Acts such as the family folk band Kapela Maliszów, the singer of which is an eleven year old girl, left an indelible mark upon the sold out audience, as well as myself. Her ethereal voice displayed a maturity and untampered beauty that I do not think I have previously encountered with an artist of that age. Additionally, having the honour of receiving a private performance at the home of one of Poland’s most influential and beloved musicians Maria Pomianowska is something that will live long in memory.
Overall, this week was an inspiring introduction to my part of the adventure recording for this significant series.

Robert Hope