Wiktoria Szubelak, guitarist

Who or what inspired you to take up the guitar pursue a career in music?

Apparently I was interested in anything musical very early in my childhood, I loved singing and dancing! There wasn’t much music (especially classical music) in my immediate family. My father used to play the guitar and sing rock songs, so maybe that was one of the reasons I started with classical guitar. But to be honest, I didn’t know then what I am signed for.

Who or what have been the most important influences on your musical life and career

My family, all of my teachers (especially Marco Socías), who inspires me in many different ways and nowadays all the musicians I come in contact with, I play with, and as well my dance teachers too (as I just started to learn latin dances). We are the sum of all our experiences.

What have been the greatest challenges of your career so far?

Not to let external pressures and the wrong reasons (for making music) get in the way of my love for music and playing the guitar. And it is incredibly challenging to balance private life with career.

Which performance/recordings are you most proud of?

There are performances I will never forget, for example “Fantasia para un gentilhombre” with Teresa Carreño Youth Orchestra in Caracas, unforgettable moment, with all the passion and energy coming from young people!

Which particular works do you think you play best?

I am the wrong person to answear this question! You should ask the audience!

I would say, that Spanish repertoire 20th century is very close to my heart, I love to play pieces by Albeniz, Torroba, Mompou

Do you have a favourite concert venue to perform in and why?

There are many beautiful and magical concert venues in the world, but it all depends on acoustic, my feelings about that particular concert, audience and the quality of the performance. I love smaller halls with an almost intimate connection with the audience, where you don’t have to use any amplification, just the natural sound of the guitar, your emotions transmitting right into people seated close to you. It’s all about sharing something special. 

What do you consider to be the most important ideas and concepts to impart to aspiring musicians?

Be honest with yourself and listen to your inner voice!

Where would you like to be in 10 years’ time?

Right where I am now – practicing, working, cooking for my friends, dancing salsa and enjoying life!
Wiktoria Szubelak is one of the most talented young Polish classical guitarists.

She debuted at the age of 16, played with Maestro Wojciech Rajski and the Polish Radio Orchestra at the Witold Lutoslawski Concert Studio in Warsaw as one of the finalist of the Polish edition of the Eurovision Contest for Young Musicians.

In 2015 Wiktoria played „Fantasia para un gentilhombre” by Joaquin Rodrigo with Sinfonica Juvenil Terresa Carreño under the direction of Cesar Ivan Lara in Caracas, celebrating European Day and 40th Anniversary of El Sistema.

Wiktoria played concerts in Europe and South America, including: IV Festival Internacional de Guitarra „GuitarFestPeru” in Lima, II Festival Internacional de Guitarra en La Ciudad Blanca in Sucre, IV Festival Internacional „Cuerdas al Aire” in Lima, XV Festival International de Guitare Lambesc 2015.

Wiktoria Szubelak is a graduate from the Chopin’s University of Music in Warsaw which she finished in 2011. At the moment she is a PhD student at the Music Academy in Lodz and postgraduate student at Musikene in San Sebastian.

During her musical education Wiktoria Szubelak has participated in numerous courses and masterclasses of famous guitar virtuosos such as Carlo Marchione, Pavel Steidl, Marco Socias, Thomas Müller-Pering, Marcin Dylla, Lukasz Kuropaczewski, Tomasz Zawierucha.

Wiktoria is prize winner of several classical guitar competitions (as a soloist and chamber player) including first prizes in Gdansk and Gryfice Trzebiatow.

She has been honoured multiple times with prestigious awards and scholarships for artistic achievement, such as Polish Minister of Culture Scholarship, the City of Wroclaw Scholarship, the City of Warsaw Scholarship, The National Herritage Scholarship.

Varied repertoire of Wiktoria Szubelak includes music of different periods and styles (such as J.S. Bach, M. Giuliani, M.M. Ponce, A. Piazzolla, L. Brouwer, A. Tansman, J. Rodrigo, I. Albeniz, R. Dyens) and also concerts for guitar and orchestra (Rodrigo, Ponce, Vivaldi). 

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