Atom String Quartet is one of the most intriguing string quartets in the world, and also one of best Polish jazz bands. The group combines the capabilities of a string quartet (i.e. two violins, viola and cello) with improvisation in its broad sense. The set of instruments of a chamber music ensemble, which is most classic and firmly established in music tradition, enables the artists to search for new sound and formal achievements. It is difficult to define, in an explicit way, the music style of the group. Its music output, besides jazz, shows sources of inspiration coming from Polish folk, music of various regions of the world, and also contemporary and classical music.
The quartet was established in Warsaw in 2010, and is created by the violinists: Dawid Lubowicz and Mateusz Smoczyński, the violist – Michał Zaborski and cellist – Krzysztof Lenczowski. All of them graduated from Warsaw Frederic Chopin University of Music. Since winning the Grand Prix of the 13th Bielska Zadymka Jazz Festival in 2011, the band constantly performs at the greatest music festivals of the world, such as: Berliner Jazztage, Jazz Baltica, Leipziger Jazztage, Cairo Jazz Festival, Katara European Jazz Festival, Festival Veranos de la Villa Madrid, Gaume Jazz Festival, Manchester Jazz Festival, Jazzycolors Festival Paris, Salzburger Festspiele, Jazz Jamboree and Solidarity of Arts. Atom String Quartet is also the first Polish group that played twice at the European jazz fair jazzahead! in Bremen (2015 and 2018).
The group recorded four original records: “Fade In” – which received the Polish music award “Fryderyk” for Jazz Debut of the Year (2011), “Places” (2012) – which got “Fryderyk” for Album of the Year – Jazz (2012) and “AtomSPHERE”, which was nominated to “Fryderyk” for Jazz Album of the Year (2015). All records were released by Kayax. In 2017 the band released its fourth album containing compositions of the renowned Polish jazz violinist – Zbigniew Seifert with interpretations of the quartet’s musicians. Zbigniew Seifert Foundation is the publisher of the album. The album was nominated to “Fryderyk 2017” for Jazz Album of the Year.
The cooperation between ASQ and NFM Leopoldinum Orchestra took special shape. It resulted in two albums: ”Made in Poland”, with compositions of Karol Szymanowski, Grażyna Bacewicz and Mikołaj Górecki as well as Krzysztof Lenczowski (”Iława” and ”Namysłowiak”) and also Dawid Lubowicz (”Ballad on the Death of Janosik”); the other album ”Supernova” contains the Quartet musicians’ premiere composition, written especially on this occassion, and a piece by Hanna Kulenty-Majoor: ”Concerto Rosso for string quartet and string orchestra” – dedicated to both bands. The two albums were awarded ”Fryderyk”: ”Made in Poland” (2017) in the cathegory Album of the Year – symphonic and concert music, and ”Supernova” (2018) in the cathegory Album of the Year – contemporary music.
The band’s discography also contains significant live concert albums with special projects, i.e.: Leszek Możdżer and Friends “Live in Berlin Philharmonic III”, Grzech Piotrowski World Orchestra “Live in Gdańsk”, String Big Band “Live in Trójka”, and Dorota Miśkiewicz “Piano.pl”. The musicians of Atom String Quartet are constantly invited to other artists’ recording sessions, e.g. Zakopower (“Drugie pół”), Kayah (“Transoriental Orchestra” and “Gdy pada śnieg”), Natalia Kukulska (“Ósmy plan”), Cezariusz Gadzina (“The Fifth Element”), Rafał Grząka (“Atom Accordion Quintet”), Grażyna Auguścik (“Inspired by Lutosławski”), Tomasz Wendt (“Behind The Strings”).
Atom String Quartet received many awards, i.e. : “Grand Prix of Music Lovers Society” in the category New Hope of Music Lovers (2010) and Band of the Year (2016), “Gold Fiddle” at the 15th Polish Radio Folk Festival New Tradition (2012) and “Mateusz Trójki” (2015) in the category Jazz Music – Event. Since the beginning of Atom String Quartet’s activity its musicians gain high ranks in the survey “Jazz Top” of “Jazz Forum” magazine, including several times the first rank in the category Acoustic Band.
In 2017/2018 season Atom String Quartet was the artist-in-residence in Mieczysław Karłowicz Philharmonic in Szczecin.
The quartet cooperated with such artists as: Branford Marsalis, Bobby McFerrin, Gil Goldstein, Vladislav “Adzik” Sendecki, Mino Cinelu, Paolo Fresu, Leszek Możdżer, Lars Danielsson, Zohar Fresco, Jerzy Maksymiuk, André Ochodlo, Urszula Dudziak, Anna Maria Jopek, Marek Moś, Natalia Kukulska, Kayah, Aga Zaryan, Janusz Olejniczak, Krzesimir Dębski, Adam Sztaba, Grzech Piotrowski, Krzysztof Herdzin, Andrzej Smolik, and bands, i.e.: AUKSO Tychy Chamber Orchestra, Leopoldinum Orchestra, Sinfonia Varsovia Orchestra, Sinfonietta Cracovia, Radom Chamber Orchestra, Szczecin Chamber Orchestra, Elbląg Chamber Orchestra, Grzech Piotrowski World Orchestra, Sinfonia Viva, Sebastian Karpiel- Bułecka Highlanders Band.
Transl. Anna Lubowicz
Dawid Lubowicz received awards at several festivals and contests. Recently he won: 4thPrize in Crossover Composition Award 2015, 3rdprize in The First International Zbigniew Seifert Jazz Violin Competition 2014 and also Special Prize awarded by Krzysztof Penderecki European Centre for Music.
He has been the member of the following bands: Opium, alTango, Lubowicz Jazz Quartet, East Wall Jazz Quartet, Bester Quartet and Atom String Quartet.
As an artist he also is a composer and arranger. For many years he has been cooperating with, e.g.: Atom String Quartet, Roma Musical Theatre in Warsaw, Polish National Theatre, The Old Theatre in Lublin, Opera Nova in Bydgoszcz, Musical Theatre of D. Baduszkowa in Gdynia, The Musical Theatre in Poznań. With his brother he is the co-author of music for the newest Roma Musical Theatre’s title “The Pilots”.
His CD “Inside” was released in May 2018; it is his first album as a leader/soloist.
He recorded pieces of Bartłomiej Gliniak music with Krzysztof Herdzin trio to the film “NN” by Feliks Falk. He collaborated with musicians and ensembles such as: Krzysztof Jakowicz, Stefan Kamasa, Janusz Olejniczak, Krzysztof Jabłoński, Piotr Pławner, Rafał Kwiatkowski, Jakub Jakowicz, Trio Chausson, Prazak Quartet, Prima Vista String Quartet. He is a member of Sinfonia Varsovia Orchestra and Radom Chamber Orchestra, where he acts as the leader of the violas group.
Krzysztof Lenczowski – born in 1986 in Krakow, is a graduate of the Fryderyk Chopin Music University in Warsaw in the cello class of prof. Tomasz Strahl and Rafał Kwiatkowski. From April 2008 to November 2009, he was a member of the Polish Orchestra Sinfonia Iuventus, and from February 2009 to January 2015 he was part of the Warsaw Cellonet Group conducted by prof. Andrzej Bauer. He also plays the guitar – he graduated from the Post-Secondary College of Jazz. H. Majewski in Warsaw in the class of prof. Piotr Lemański.
Lenczowski, as a member of his own bands, as well as a session musician, recorded over 50 albums, including two original albums – “Internal Melody” (the first Polish jazz record signed with the cellist’s name, which in 2016 was awarded with Fryderyk in the “Jazz Phonographic Debut of the Year” category), and “Rzeczy osobiste” (released in July 2018, the album being a studio record of a solo recital). Between the years 2014 – 2018, he won five times the “Jazz Top” – Jazz Forum Magazine plebiscite in the category “others
instruments”. Since 2010, the Atom String Quartet – the leading Polish jazz band and one of the most interesting string quartets in the world – remains the basic artistic activity of the artist.