Mission

Mission statement

The society aims to promote cultural interaction among the people of Vancouver, who come from a rich variety of ethnic backgrounds, and to emphasize the importance of music in our lives. We have chosen to name our Society after the Polish composer Frederic Chopin because of the universal appeal of his music and his world-wide reputation as one of the greatest composers for the keyboard.

Affiliations

The VCS is a member of the International Federation of Chopin Societies, based in Vienna. This connection puts us in touch with some fifty other Chopin Societies worldwide, creating exciting possibilities for inviting international musicians to Vancouver.

Structure

The Vancouver Chopin Society is a registered charity. All donations are tax deductible and will be acknowledged in VCS concert programs. Our activities are presented mainly through the assistance of volunteers. If you are interested in helping us as a volunteer, please call 604.871.4450

VCS History

The idea of founding the VCS came to Iko Bylicki’s mind in late 1996 when he heard about the ten-year-old prodigy, pianist Stanislaw Drzewiecki, the son of the famous Russian pianist, Tatiana Shebanova, who was married to the Polish pianist, Jaroslaw Drzewiecki. Presenting this family to a Vancouver audience seemed like a great idea; however, this required some organizational structure. It was natural to think about starting another Chopin society, since the International Federation of Chopin Societies, founded in Warsaw in 1985, was receiving quick recognition, and many new Chopin societies were popping up around the world.

Sharing this idea with other Polish enthusiasts resulted in The Vancouver Chopin Society being incorporated on April 22, 1997 under the Society Act of British Columbia with Tadeusz van Wollen as president, Eryk Sitkowiecki as artistic director, Iko Bylicki as vice-president, Malgorzata Burczycka as secretary, and Tadeusz Dukszta as treasurer. In the same year, the VCS officially became a member if the IFCS. However, the first concert did not occur until a year later, on April 19, 1998, in the Vancouver Playhouse. Teresa Bobrowska, our current secretary, joined us after that first concert.

Being able to continue and survive the very first seasons and build the foundation for the Society was possible because of the outstanding dedication of, among others, two ladies, Elizabeth Czetwertynski, an incredibly charming old lady who was able to bring around a hundred people for each concert since nobody could refuse her convincing power, and Dr. Maria Bleszynski, whose financial generosity rescued the Society from sinking a number of times.

The very first member of the Society was Masanao Morimura, the Japanese scientist, who retired in Canada in the nineties. He played piano very well and was extremely fond of Chopin’s music, and he was developing a web site about Chopin and writing a book. He passed away on May 27, 2012, a few days after he had renewed his subscription.

The first concerts were held in the Norman Rothstein Theatre, but in the second half of the 1999/2000 season, the board decided to move the concerts to the auditorium of the Vancouver Academy of Music. In 2006, the board decided to move the concerts to Magee Theatre, and since then, the concert series is presented in three venues, the Vancouver Playhouse, the Chan Centre, and the Magee Theatre.

Conductor Grzegorz Nowak became the VCS’s artistic director in 1999, holding the post through 2004. After Mr. Nowak left Canada, Lee Kum-Sing, respected piano teacher, worldwide, became the artistic director, and has remained so since.

And eighteen seasons after The Vancouver Chopin Society was inaugurated, three members, Malgorzata Burczycka, Teresa Bobrowska, and Iko Bylicki are still working on the board of the VCS, feeling privileged to be part of such a competent and dedicated board such as we have today.

Board

Our society is entirely run by wonderful and dedicated volunteers who donate their time, energy and talents to manage and direct society’s affairs.

  • Lee Kum-Sing – Artistic Director
  • Iko Bylicki – President
  • Henry Ewert – Vice-President
  • Teresa Bobrowska – Secretary
  • Jason Ng – Treasurer
  • Ori Kowarsky – Publicity Director
  • Malgorzata Burczycka – Director
  • Vince Cardella – Director
  • Patrick May – Director
  • Dawn Short – Honorary member of the Board
  • Niels Andersen – Honorary member of the Board

Please contact us at:

The Vancouver Chopin Society
# 400 – 601 West Broadway Avenue,
Vancouver, B.C. V5Z 4C2
Canada

Telephone: 604.871.4450
Fax: 604.321.4805
Email: info@chopinsociety.org

From the Artistic Director

The Vancouver Chopin Society is distinctive in its approach to featuring artists of the keyboard not by their famous names, but for their specialty in Chopin’s music and exceptional performances of classical repertoire. And with our unique international connections, particularly in the European countries, the Chopin Society has been able to bring to Vancouver audiences top Chopin interpreters such as Nelson Freire, Nelson Goerner, Rafal Blechacz, Ingrid Fliter, Jean-Efflam Bavouzet, Dina Yoffe, Juana Zayas, Wojciech Switala, Zbigniew Raubo, Janne Mertanen, Ingolf Wunder and Daniil Trifonov. These former Chopin Competition laureates and judges have won the highest possible critical acclaim worldwide for their recitals and recordings of the music of Chopin and other composers, though some are generally not so well-known in North America. In many cases the Chopin Society has introduced them first to Vancouver.

Consequently, the Vancouver Chopin Society has been able to bring the highest caliber of artists to Vancouver audiences of music lovers, teachers and music students at very affordable ticket prices.

Thanks to the support of our donors and audiences, we look forward to continuing this tradition in seasons to come.

From the President

It is our pleasure to welcome you here as we enter an exciting 19th season. It would not be possible without you!

We have established a great history of a yearly four-concert series that includes established artists, as well as rising talents.

Once again, we have for you a fantastic line up of four great pianists: Ewa Poblocka, known in musical circles as the first lady of the piano in Poland; Charles Richard-Hamelin, silver medalist at the 17th International Chopin Competition in Warsaw, the first Canadian ever to win a top prize in this prestigious Competition; Jean-Efflam Bavouzet, considered by many critics to be incomparable for his Debussy and Ravel interpretations; and Sergei Babayan, one of today’s top pianists.

We continue to maintain the lowest possible price for subscriptions. We are able to do this because our society is entirely run by wonderful and dedicated volunteers.

Together with your support, we look forward to many years ahead.

Member of IFCS

The VCS is a member of the International Federation of Chopin Societies, based in Vienna.
Members of the International Federation of Chopin Societies

Fundacion Frederic Chopin
Av. Puerredon 687
1425 Buenos Aires
ARGENTINA
Mr. Hector Citera – President

The Frederic Chopin of Victoria
1 Nevada Street
Nord Baldwyn
Victoria 3104
AUSTRALIA
Mrs. Irena Janus-Olchowik – President

Internationale Chopin-Gesellschaft in Wien
Biberstrasse 4
A-1010 Wien
AUSTRIA
Dr. Theodor Kanitzer – President
Chopin Gesellschaft in Vorarlberg
Sitz in Nenzing
Illstrasse 27/9
6710 Nenzing
AUSTRIA
Prof. Jacek Łukaszczyk – President

Frederyk Chopinstichting v.z.w.
Manchesterstraat 9
B-9000 Gent
BELGIUM
Mr. Willy Verhelst – President
Association Frederic Chopin – Karol Szymanowski
Roelandsheide 38
B-3080 Tervuren
BELGIUM
Mrs. Joanna Bruzdowicz – President

Sociedade Chopin do Brasil
rua Jaao Batista Leme de Silva, 135
Alto de Pinheiros
Sao Paolo
BRAZIL
Mrs. Glora Guerra – President

The Vancouver Chopin Society
# 400 – 601 West Broadway Avenue
Vancouver, BC V5Z 4C2
Canada
Mr. Iko Bylicki – President

Drustvo Fryderyk Chopin
Kosirnikova 81
Zagreb
CROATIA
Prof. Stjepan Radič – President

Sociedad Federico Chopin de la Habana
San Lazaro No.872 Apto.106
Ciudad de la Habana
C.P.10300 CUBA
Mrs. Nancy Casanova – President

Spoleenost Fryderyka Chopina KaSS
Hlavni Třida 47
353 01 Marianske Lazne
CZECH REPUBLIC
Prof. Ivan Klansky – President

Det Danske Chopinselskab
Carit Etlarsvej 4
DK-2840 Holte
DENMARK
Mrs. Elsebeth Brodersen
Vice-President

The London Chopin Society
44 Bassett Road
London, W10 6JL
England
ph. + 44 020 8960 4027
Lady Rose Cholmondeley – President & Co-Chairman

Association Lyonnaise Frédéric Chopin
6, rue Jean-Marie Chavant
69007 Lyon
FRANCE
Mrs. Denise Montibert – President
Société Chopin a Paris
23 Avenue Foch
75116 Paris
FRANCE
Mr. Antoine Paszkiewicz – President
Association des Amis de Nicolas Chopin
Marainville/ Madon
88130 France
Mr. Gabriel Ladaique – President
Societe Chopin a Nohant
Mairie de Nohant-Vic
36-400 Nohant – Vic
FRANCE
Mr. Adam Wibrowski – President

Chopin Gesellschaft in der BRD e.V.
Kasinostrasse 3
Kennedy-Haus
64293 Darmstadt 11
GERMANY
Prof. Maciej Lukaszczyk – President
Chopin-Gesellschaft Taunus e.V.
Kurmainzerstrasse 27
D-61440 Oberursel Hochtaunuskreis
GERMANY
Mrs. Ilse Schwarz-Schiller – President
Chopin-Gesellschaft Hannover
Hegelstrasse 2
D-3000 Hannover 61
GERMANY
Mrs. Beate Geiseler
President
Deutsche Chopin-Gesellschaft e.V.
Geschäftsstelle Cottbus
Wilhelm-Kütz-Strasse 16
D-03046 Cottbus
GERMANY
Mr. Bernd Weinreich
Chairman

Grupo Fryderyk Chopin
Organización para las Artes Francisco Marroquin
8a. calle 35-53 zona 10, El Prado
GUATEMALA
Mrs. Geraldina Baca-Spross – President

Associazione Musicale Internazionale F.Chopin
Viale A.Lincoln No. 143
81100 Caserta
ITALY
Mrs. Anna Maria Corduas – President
Associazione Internazionale F.Chopin
via del Florentini 21
80 133 Napoli
ITALY
Dr Leonardo Sardo – President
Associazione Culturale Fryderyk Chopin
Via Pierfranco Bonetti 88/90
00128 Roma

The Chopin Society in Israel
P.O.Box 410
Jerusalem
ISRAEL
Mr. Alexander Tamir – President

The Frederic Chopin Society of Japan
c/o Kawai Musical Inst. Mfg .Co. Ltd.
Zenriren Bldg. 1-36-4 Yoyogi Shibuya-ku
Tokyo 151
JAPAN
Prof. Hitoshi Kobayashi – President
Mr. Kimyo Sano – Secretary General
The Chopin Society of Korea
Montly “Musica di Pianoforte”
Suite # 606, Samku Bldg.
576-15 Sinsa-Dong, Kangnam-Ku
Seoul
KOREA
Prof. Jin-Woo Chung – President

Sociedad Cultural Frederico Chopin de Mexico
General Molinos de Campo No. 23
Mexico, D.F. C.P. 11850
MEXICO
Mrs. Maria Teresa Rodriquez – President
Mr. Leszek Zawadka- Executive President

Association Marocaine des Amis de Frederic Chopin
129, rue Oussama Ibnou Zaid
Casablanca
MOROCCO
Dr. Omar El Hajjami – President
Drustvo Fr. Sopen
Beograd, Zemin, Nemanjina 9
11000 NEW YUGOSLAV
Prof. Jokut Mihailovič – President

Philippine Chopin Society
Cultural Center of the Philippines
Roxas Blvd.
Metro Manila
PHILIPPINES

Polska Akademia Chopinowska
Stowarzyszenie Artystyczno-Naukowe
c/o Państwowa Szkola Muzyczna nr 2 im. F.Chopina
Bednarska 11
00-310 Warszawa
POLAND
Prof. Irena Poniatowska – President
Towarzystwo im.Fryderyka Chopina w Warszawie (TIFC)
Okólnik 1
00-368 Warszawa
Poland
Prof..Tadeusz Chmielewski – President
Mr.Albert Grudziński – General Director

Fryderyk Chopin Society in Moscow
Obuha str. 7 ap. 1
103062 Moscow
RUSSIA
Prof. Leonid Sidelnikov – President
Mr. Michail Aleksandrov – Director

Association Festivals Chopin de Valldemossa
Celda No 2 en la Cartuja de Valldemossa
07170 Valldemossa, Mallorca
SPAIN
Mrs. Rosa Capplonch Ferra – Chairwoman

Bernische Chopin-Gesellschaft
Worbstrasse 162
CH- 3073 Gümlingen
SWITZERLAND
Mr. Rolf Junker – President
Mrs. Silvia Mikhail-Reber – General Secretary

The Frederic Chopin Foundation of Taipei
# 447 6 Fl Jen Aird Sec. 4
Taipei
TAIWAN R.O.C.
Mrs. Annna Fujita – President

Bangkok Chopin Society
272 Soi Sri Nakorn
Linchee Rd.,Yannawa
Bangkok 10120
THAILAND
Mrs. Kamolvan Noot Punyashthiti – Hon. Secretary

Fryderyk Chopin Society of Texas
4610 Abner Drive
Corpus Christi, Texas 78411
USA
Prof. Nina Drath – President
The Frederic Chopin Society
P.O.Box 8131
Minneapolis, Minnesota 55408
USA
Mrs. Carolyn White – President
Western Chopin Society
7228 N 23rd St
V Phoenix AZ 85020-5614
USA
Mr. Tadeusz Zakrzewski – President
Chopin Association, Inc.
P.O.Box 41854
Tucson, AZ 85717
USA
Mrs. Halina Jasiak – President
The Chopin Association
4712 Southern Avenue, S.E.
Washington, D.C. 20019
USA
Mr. J.Nelson Logan – President
The Chopin Foundation of the United States, Inc.
1440 79th St. Causeway, Suite 117
Miami, Florida 33141
USA
Mrs. Blanka Rosenstiel – President
The Fryderyk Chopin Society of Connecticut
17 Broad Oak Drive
Ashford, CT 06278
USA
ph. (860) 429-4234
Mr. Slavomir Dobrzanski – Artistic Director

Club de Musique F.Chopin
Union des Compositeurs Vietnamiens
51, X Tran Hung Dao
Hanoi
VIETNAM
Prof. Nguyen Huu Tuan – President