Karol Mikuli (music) / Denise Maurer (piano)
The Polish composer, pianist and pedagogue Karol Mikuli (1819–1897) is one of the musicians from Bukovina who achieved recognition beyond the borders of their homeland. Born in Czernowitz, he came from a Polish family with Armenian roots and initially studied medicine in Vienna before moving to Paris in 1844 to study piano with Frédéric Chopin (1810–1849) and composition with Henri Reber (1807–1880). Later he also became Chopin’s personal assistant. 
Due to the revolution of 1848 Mikuli had to return to his homeland. After making a name for himself as a piano virtuoso in France, Austria, Romania, and Russia, he became director of the music society in
deu. Lemberg, pol. Lwów, eng. Lviv, rus. Lwow, rus. Львов, yid. Lemberg, yid. לעמבערג, ukr. Львів, ukr. L'viv

Lviv (German: Lemberg, Ukrainian: Львів, Polish: Lwów) is a city in western Ukraine in the oblast of the same name. With nearly 730,000 inhabitants (2015), Lviv is one of the largest cities in Ukraine. The city was part of Poland and Austria-Hungary for a long time.

Due to the war in Ukraine, it is possible that this information is no longer up to date.

(today Львів, Lviv/Ukraine) in 1858, which was then part of the Habsburg Monarchy. He lived here until his death, becoming a highly respected musical figure. Mikuli mainly composed piano works, but also chamber and vocal music. Among his students were the composer Ciprian Porumbescu (1853–1883), as well as the important pianists Moritz Rosental (1862–1946) and Raoul Koczalski (1885–1948). Mikuli’s achievements as editor of the first complete edition of the works of his teacher Chopin are significant in music history.
The piano piece featured here, the Mazurka in f-minor, op. 4 was composed by Karol Mikuli in 1860. The mazurka is a ballroom dance in ¾ time originating in Poland. The name comes from the historical countryside of
deu. Masowien, pol. Mazowsze

The historical landscape of Mazovia lies around Warsaw on the Vistula and Bug rivers. Initially part of Piast Poland in the Middle Ages, from the 12th century it was a duchy temporarily connected to Poland only as a fiefdom. In the 16th century Mazovia was reincorporated into the kingdom and divided into three voivodeships. There is also a voivodeship of Mazovia in today's Poland.

(Polish: Mazowsze) located around
deu. Warschau, eng. Warsaw

Warsaw is the capital of Poland and also the largest city in the country (population in 2022: 1,861,975). It is located in the Mazovian Voivodeship on Poland's longest river, the Vistula. Warsaw first became the capital of the Polish-Lithuanian noble republic at the end of the 16th century, replacing Krakow, which had previously been the Polish capital. During the partitions of Poland-Lithuania, Warsaw was occupied several times and finally became part of the Prussian province of South Prussia for eleven years. From 1807 to 1815 the city was the capital of the Duchy of Warsaw, a short-lived Napoleonic satellite state; in the annexation of the Kingdom of Poland under Russian suzerainty (the so-called Congress Poland). It was not until the establishment of the Second Polish Republic after the end of World War I that Warsaw was again the capital of an independent Polish state.

At the beginning of World War II, Warsaw was conquered and occupied by the Wehrmacht only after intense fighting and a siege lasting several weeks. Even then, a five-digit number of inhabitants were killed and parts of the city, known not least for its numerous baroque palaces and parks, were already severely damaged. In the course of the subsequent oppression, persecution and murder of the Polish and Jewish population, by far the largest Jewish ghetto under German occupation was established in the form of the Warsaw Ghetto, which served as a collection camp for several hundred thousand people from the city, the surrounding area and even occupied foreign countries, and was also the starting point for deportation to labor and extermination camps.

As a result of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising from April 18, 1943 and its suppression in early May 1943, the ghetto area was systematically destroyed and its last inhabitants deported and murdered. This was followed in the summer of 1944 by the Warsaw Uprising against the German occupation, which lasted two months and resulted in the deaths of almost two hundred thousand Poles, and after its suppression the rest of Warsaw was also systematically destroyed by German units.

In the post-war period, many historic buildings and downtown areas, including the Warsaw Royal Castle and the Old Town, were rebuilt - a process that continues to this day.

(Polish: Warszawa). Poland's national anthem, Mazurek Dąbrowskiego, is also a mazurka. Through Frédéric Chopin, who composed 57 mazurkas himself, the folk dance found its way into art music. Chopin elevated the mazurka to a character piece in which folkloric and lyric elements are interwoven. Emotional and dance-like echoes also dominate Mikuli’s mazurka, and the influence of Chopin as a role model is unmistakable in the music.
Denise Maurer is currently completing her Master's degree in "Klavier" (piano) at the Leopold Mozart Center in Augsburg. Together with the singer Mia Jakob, she has on several occasions provided the musical framework for events organized by the Bukovina Institute in Augsburg. Maurer graduated from the University of Music in Munich with a bachelor's degree in artistic-pedagogical piano and a master's degree in music journalism. In addition to her pedagogical and artistic activities, she is a freelance journalist for the Neue Musikzeitung as well as BR-Klassik.
English translation: William Connor