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Sacrum Profanum 2023



Łaźnia Nowa Theatre


Country Side

A combination more extreme than contemporary and country music? Impossible. There could be no better juxtaposition between the Sacrum and the Profanum. Nevertheless, Niels Rønsholdt managed to bring these worlds together in a seamless way that almost seems natural. Where does the popular culture end and where does the looking down begin? We are sure that wherever that is, Sacrum Profanum is not the place!


Country by Danish composer Niels Rønsholdt is a one–of–a–kind cello concerto in which the soloist simultaneously sings and plays the cello, holding his instrument both in a traditional way and on his lap like guitarists to pluck its strings. Accompanying the soloist, the instrumentalists of the New Music Orchestra also go beyond their traditional role and sing along with the musician. The visible inspirations with the country music traditions combined with musical sophistication make for an unusual combination. No part of the song is an arrangement or adaptation of original country tunes. Rønsholdt does not try to copy or imitate what country artists before him have already created, instead, he composed his music from scratch. In his lyrics, he made an attempt to explore the spirit and ideas of the genre. He took inspiration from traditional ballad lyrics to create a broader, coherent narrative throughout the series of 18 songs.


The unique, experimental but still melodic take on Celtic folk presented by Brìghde Chaimbeul will be a symbolic finale to the festival. She will play pieces from Carry Them with Us and perform part of the concert together with Kraków–based saxophonist and improviser Paulina Owczarek.


Brìghde Chaimbeul is a Scottish instrumentalist and composer who plays the bagpipes, hailing from the Isle of Skye and raised in Gaelic culture. Despite her young age of just 24, she is hardly a beginner on stage, and she managed to bring a rather unusual instrument into the spotlight of the alternative music world. Her music – experimental Celtic folk – is extremely pleasant to listen to, simple and melodic. She plays with drones, with folk motifs and stories that have been passed down for generations somewhere underneath. The Scot will play music from her latest album Carry Them with Us, which she recorded in collaboration with saxophonist Colin Stetson. She used the saxophone as one more pipe, musically expanding the scale of the bagpipes. At Sacrum Profanum, Chaimbeul will be joined by Kraków–based saxophonist and improviser Paulina Owczarek.

8:00 p.m.

Brìghde ChaimbeulCarry Them with Us for bagpipes (2023) 35 [Polish première]


Brìghde Chaimbeul – bagpipes

Paulina Owczarek – saxophone



9:00 p.m.

Niels RønsholdtCountry concerto for voice, cello and chamber orchestra in 18 songs (2019/2020) 60


Jakob Kullberg – vocals, cello

Annekei, Niels Rønsholdt – vocals

Jacek Olesik, Alicja Lizer–Molitorys, Jadwiga Czarkowska, Krzysztof Batog – vocals

New Music Orchestra

Szymon Bywalec – conductor



Venue: ???


Łaźnia Nowa Theatre

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One of the latest arrivals on the Kraków theatre scene, the Łaźnia Nowa (literally ‘the New Baths’) has operated at osiedle Szkolne in Nowa Huta since 2005. Besides theatre performances, it is a venue of concerts, meetings, happenings, and projects combining artistic and community-based activity, that frequently go beyond the space of the theatre. The Łaźnia Nowa is a member of the Trans Europe Halles international association gathering institutions operating in post-industrial spaces, and is...