The Heart of Europe
Johann Joseph Fux - Marcin Mielczewski - Heinrich Isaac von Biber - Mikołaj Zieleński - Wojciech Bobowski - Caspar Klosemann

The Heart of Europe

Il Giardino d'Amore

Label: Ëvoe Music
Format: CD
Barcode: 5905279916043
Catalog number: EVOE 004
Releasedate: 03-11-17
- The music of this CD is centred on the very lively musical society in Poland in XVIIth Century
- The wide range of music styles is an atout both for understanding the taste of the period and for a pleasant fruition by the listener
- The CD is recorded by Il Giardino d’Amore orchestra and choir in cooperation with Tempus and Trombastic Ensembles.

The Heart of Europe - Corona Regni Poloniae - 1500 - 1750 is a new CD lanced by Ëvoe Records.

Main goal of this album is to present rare music of Central Europe during 250 years of late Renaissance and Baroque era, especially focusing on the cultural exchange between Ottoman Turkey and Occidental Europe. In this context Poland (in latin Corona Regni Poloniae) is presented as The Heart of Europe being culturally linked with those different worlds. The topic of the CD concentrates around the date of the biggest battles between christianity and islam which took place in Vienna in 1683.

Fascinating personality and key person in this story is Wojciech Bobowski - (in Turkey called Ali Ufki ) who represented both cultures and connected their music. The other interesting composers appearing in this album are Johannes de Lublin, Gorczycki, Zielenski, Mielczewski, Klosseman. You can listen also to great Battalia by Biber, and Turcaria by Fux in new exciting arrangements with much bigger instrumentation. The salt and pepper of this CD is of course instruments typical for ottoman culture such as ney or santur.

The CD is recorded by Il Giardino d’Amore orchestra and choir in cooperation with Tempus and Trombastic Ensembles.
The diversity of genres and the compositions of the CD is a great advantage blending smoothly sacred and secular music with popular and court dances.

We would like to encourage our listeners to explore more about this fascinating music and history. We hope that curiosity will bring new discoveries and new presentations soon. The CD is an incredible adventure for the musicologists, music lovers, and great fun for the whole families with young members, especially enjoying the dynamic rhythms, and original colorful melodies of past times and kingdoms.

Il Giardino d'Amore comes from italian name, and means "Garden of Love". The inspiration for its creation was one of the frescoes by Giotto, and the cantata of Alessandro Scarlatti with the same title „Il Giardino d’Amore.”

The orchestra was founded in 2012 during the J.S.Bacha Festival in Krakow. At that time, Stefan Plewniak was also invited to cooperate with the orchestra of Jordi Savall - Le Concert des Nations in Barcelona, where he met an excellent harpsichordist Marco Vitale. This cooperation proved to be very fruitful for the Il Giardino d'Amore and its further development.

In the years 2012 and 2013, the ensemble performed at festivals such as the Bach Festival in Vienna, Utrecht at Oude Musik Festival, Tartini Festival in Piran, Festival of Early Music in New York. In autumn 2013 years the orchestra held its first tour in the US and Canada.

In 2014 the group performed in the prestigious Mozarteum concert hall in Salzburg, as well as was invited to the festival in Oslo in Norway, and took a second tour in the USA performing in Carnegie Hall New York, as well as in California, where its members led a masterclass at the Universities of Los Angeles and San Diego.

In the first period, the orchestra performed the music of italian opera, sacred music and instrumental repertoire. Years 2013 - 2018 are dedicated to French music. This fascination started by recording of the CD with french cantatas in 2013, was developed later by presentation of the opera ballet by J.Ph.Rameau - Les Indes Galantes in 2015 and 2016, and it will continue in 2018 by performance of another opera by Rameau - Naïs. 2016 was dedicated to large projects with Polish sacred, and dance music. 2016 tour in US was dedicted entirely to the promotion of this music. The new CD "Corona Regni POLONIAE - The Heart of Europe” with a monumental music of Zieleński, Gorczycki and Mielczewski, will be released in the winter / spring 2017.

2016 was also decidated to the music of Mozart, and Tchaikovsky. Orchestra was exploring magic world of classical and romantic masters.

The orchestra has recorded 4 CDs: Musica del Sole ; Amor Amor Sacro Profano ; Cantate et Les Petits Macarons ; The Heart of Europe which are released by Evoe Records label .

Artists forming Il Giardino d'Amore are very passionate, young and the stirring musicians from Poland, Italy, France and Spain.


musical leader / violin solo

Stefan Plewniak received his initial violin training in is hometown, Krakow, where he studied with professor Barbara Śliwicka-Wysocka at the Krakow Academy of Music. He continued his studies under professor Robert Szreder at Maastricht Conservatory in the Netherlands and professor F.rancois Fernandez at Conservatoire National Superieur de Musique et de Danse in Paris.

His interest in playing the baroque violin was sparked during collaboration with Les Gôuts Reunis ensemble in the Netherlands. Subsequently, he has performed in many significant ensembles and orchestras, such as

Cappella Cracoviensis, Warsaw Polish Radio Orchestra, Krakow Philharmonic, Kammeroper Köln and Amsterdam Symphony Orchestra. He has participated in numerous music festivals: Baroque Musique Festival d'Auvergne, Wildwood Festival, UM Maastricht Festival and Baroque Musique Festival d'Auberville, as well as Bach Festivals and Oude Muzik Festival Utrecht.

He collaborated with many renowned ensembles as a concertmaster, including Contrasto Armonico in the Hague, Marguerite Louise Ensemble in Paris and Orchestra 1756 in Salzburg. He also performed with other major orchestras in Europe such as William Christie's Les Arts Florissants in Paris and Jordi Savall's Le Concert des Nations in Barcelona.

He is the founder and leader of the ensemble in Paris, Il Giardino d'Amore orchestra in Vienna/ Krakow and Cappella dell’Ospedale della Pietà. Stefan Plewniak was supported by the Meyer Foundation, Gouvernement Francais and Société Générale de Paris. Since 2013 he recorded CD’s with Jordi Savall & Le Concert des Nations, Marco Vitale & Contrasto Armonico, as well as with his orchestras Il Giardino d'Amore and Cappella dell’Ospedale della Pieta.

He performed as a soloist and leader in many important festivals and venues, among others the Oude Muzik Festival (Utrecht), Bach Festival (Vienna), Tartini Festival (Pirano), Styriarte Festival (Graz), Early Music Celebration (New York), Mozarteum Salzburg and Carnegie Hall. Stefan Plewniak regularly presents Masterclasses in Oslo, Norway as well as at the University of South California in L.A. and San Diego, Roosevelt University Chicago.

He is specializing in the opera and ballet repertoire from baroque era to 19th century repertoire.