12 May 2022

Shaping the sound in wondrous ways - musician spotlight with Maciej Kułakowski

By Lark Music

An award-winning cellist and representative of the Young Classical Artists Trust, Maciej has performed cello across Europe and learned from some of the world’s most famous cellists. Here, he discusses growing up in a musical family and why his musical instrument is his passion.

What do you love about your cello?

Mainly, I love the variety of colours and the different ways of getting the sound. The bow is like this incredible extension of the arm for me, which feels like a painter holding the brush or a writer holding a pen. Playing cello is really like painting or writing something. You can modulate the sound and shape it in the most wondrous ways in any moment you want – it’s really magic.

If you were to learn another instrument, what would you choose?

Well, I always loved to play piano and I wish that I could play it much better – usually my hands just don’t follow what’s happening in the brain and that’s really frustrating! I also played a lot of bass guitar back in school so I could totally see myself learning the double bass. My next step is to learn some percussive instruments and the guitar to use them for my compositions.

“In the best moments, playing is simply my passion.”

What person inspires you the most?

All the people that I meet along the way are very inspiring to me – musicians and friends, teachers, family etc. Every day we learn something from the people that we see and hear, even sometimes without realising! Especially in the era of internet and social media, we have a rare chance to experience people from all over the world doing all kinds of things.

Lately I was very inspired by Bach masterclasses by J. Guihen Queyras and my big musical hero is Pat Metheny, who is always very inspiring to me. For some time now I’ve also been inspired by Leonardo da Vinci and his works.

Do you play professionally?

In the best moments, playing is simply my passion.

Do you have a favourite venue that you have performed at?

Once I played at a hospice for people with cancer – the amount of attention and appreciation from them was just heartbreaking.

Also playing Bach Suite at St Florian Church in Cracow during the Penderecki Festival was an absolutely timeless experience.

What song did you first learn to play?

When I was around four or five years old, I remember improvising on just the black keys (pentatonic scale) on the piano – it sounded glorious to me (and always sounded right whatever key I would press!).

Do you come from a musical family?

Yes! Many of my family members play music professionally and I grew up in a very musical environment. I remember when I was around four years old, I was convinced that all the people on earth play some kind of instrument.

Want to find out more about Maciej or connect?

Facebook: @MaciejKulakowskiMusic
Instagram: @maciejkulakowski1996
Youtube: Maciej Ku?akowski

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