Music at the 59th Krakow Film Festival

The Rolling Stones, Kate Nash and Kurt Cobain on the big screen, Bester Quartet, Mikołaj Trzaska, Voo Voo and Maciej Maleńczuk on stage. Although the Krakow Film Festival is a celebration of cinema, there is no lack of music thanks to screenings in the open air, concerts and a show with live music.

Sounds of music

Outdoor screenings of the “Sounds of Music” section is a permanent element of the festival, which attracts viewers thirsty for good music, outstanding cinema and beautiful natural circumstances every year. From Monday to Friday, under the starry sky, with a view of the Wawel Castle, the audience will have a chance to watch musical documentaries, presented in the past at DocFilmMusic competition and recognized by the viewers and jurors.

Cinema on the Wawel Hill will open on Monday the movie “Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck”, the first family-authorized documentary about the leader Nirvana, who lived too fast and died too young. The creators of the film found the souvenirs of Cobain, trying to face his legend.

Another film “Redemption Song”, planned for Tuesday evening, is the history of a prison in the capital of Jamaica, in which the program of resocialization through music was implemented. Here, the criminals of various caliber are becoming creators, contractors and reggae producers.

On Wednesday, the audience will have the opportunity to see a portrait of the restless artist Shahin Najafi, who has to hide and often change his appearance, but still does not stop playing. The Ayatollahs have issued a fatwa for insulting Islam for the hero of the movie “When God Sleeps”, which is why his life is in constant danger.

Thursday is the day of screening for last year’s winner of the Golden Hejnah “Ryuichi Sakamoto: Coda”. The film about the author of music for Bertolucci’s films, and more recently to “The Revenant”, is a portrait of not only a musical experimenter, but also a man struggling with a serious illness.

“Maksymiuk. Concert For Two “, which will close the cycle “Sounds of Music” on Friday evening, is a film portrait of the conductor, pianist and composer Jerzy Maksymiuk and his wife Ewa – always supporting and inspiring  his work.

The partner of the “Sounds of Music” section is PGE Energia Ciepła, and the media partner of Radio Kraków. Admission to the shows is free.

KFF in concert

On Wednesday, during the traditional festival Night in Kazimierz, the iconic Alchemia club will feature the Bester Quartet, a phenomenon on the global music market, combining elements of classical, jazz, avant-garde and contemporary chamber music. The group consists of four outstanding instrumentalists, educated classical musicians and jazz. This formation is the new face of the legendary The Cracow Klezmer Band.

Voo Voo concert with the guest appearance by Maciej Maleńczuk in Kijów. Center on Thursday will mark the 70th birthday of Wytwórnia Filmów Dokumentalnych i Fabularnych. Voo Voo is one of the most original bands on the Polish rock scene, that successfully combined rock with jazz and folk from different regions of the world in their music. The group was founded in 1985 in Warsaw by Wojciech Waglewski. The band, which has recently released a new album, will present the most important works from the entire period of their artistic activity during the Krakow Film Festival. Maciej Maleńczuk, a multi-award winning vocalist, guitarist, saxophonist, poet, media personality, and film and theater actor will accompany them on the stage. He is one of the most charismatic and at the same time controversial, artists of the turn of the Century.

On Saturday, the closing ceremony at the Kijów.Centrum festival will include a performance by a highly praised and popular Polish saxophonist, bass clarinetist and film music composer – Mikołaj Trzaska. The artist, who grew up with the yass background and later became the leading figure in the national improvisation scene, he will also be a judge at the DocFilmMusic competition.

Stones in Krakow

A special event will be a screening of a documentary about The Rolling Stones – “Crossfire Hurricane” and a meeting with the director Brett Morgen, which will be led by the editor-in-chief of “Presto Filmowe” magazine Maja Baczyńska. Brett Morgen is called the “crazy scientist” of documentary. A director, screenwriter and producer, nominated for an Oscar in 1999 for the documentary “On the Ropes”, he has won many film awards. Brett Morgen will be the chairman of the jury of the DocFilmMusic competition during this edition of the festival and he himself is the recipient of the prize in this section, the Golden Heynal, which he received for the film “Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck”.

The “Crossfire Hurricane” documentary was made to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Rolling Stones. Archival materials and conversations with band members reveal the charismatic personality of the musicians. Maja Baczyńska will talk to the director about musical documentaries that allow the viewers to touch the legend, discover the secrets hidden behind the sounds and see more than you can hear.

Silent cinema with live music

Fundacja Dla Kina – the organizer of the Silent Film Festival – invites you to the Pod Baranami Cinema for screenings of slapstick comedies with the accompaniment of Professor Lesław Lica – pianist, clarinetist, saxophonist, arranger and composer. The favorite taper of Krakow will play live for the long-recognized, outstanding short films with excellent comedians of the silent cinema era. Starring: Buster Keaton, Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle and Harold Lloyd. The show, which will take place on June 1st, is a prelude to 20th Jubilee Festival of the Silent Film.

Night of video clips

The festival selection of music videos prepared by Jan Chołoniewski maintains its traditional, reliable formula – on Friday evening, the viewers will have the opportunity to see original, remarkably aesthetic or fabulously produced music videos released over the last year. The author likes electronic and experimental forms, but also tries to please the audience focused on entertainment. The marathon of this important genre, which is still paving the new routes of pop culture, will take place on Friday, May 31 in the Małopolska Garden of Arts.

DocFilmMusic competition

One cannot forget that music at the KFF is also the DocFilmMusic competition section. Every year, the films presented in this section surprise you with a diversity of sounds and genres. Stories of world-class celebrities such as Miles Davis, Kate Nash, Aurora, Die Toten Hosen and Steven Tyler meet with stories about anonymous heroes. The largest scenes in the world are confronted with home recording studios and sample rooms in small cultural centers. It will be the same during the 59th Krakow Focal Festival.

Listen to the festival:

TIDAL playlist

Spotify playlist