001 EN baner 2021

"Hear my song – sing along
Any little song that you know
Everything that's small has to grow.
California sunlight, sweet Calcutta rain
Honolulu starbright – the song remains the same..."

"Pieśni mej posłuchaj – ze mną zaśpiewaj
Choćby małą pieśń, którą znasz
Wszystko co małe jest, urośnie.
W Kalifornii słońce, czy w Kalkucie słodki deszcz
W Honolulu jasne gwiazdy – pieśń niezmienną jest..."

Translation: Wojciech Toporowski

            ”FACE THE MUSIC BRZEG 2019”


26 years ago, encouraging young people and children to learn English, we organized the English Song Festival in Brzeg, which involved local primary and secondary schools. Within three years, this inter-school song contest turned into a festival of the national scale .

Honorary Patronage of the Festival was assumed by Embassy of Australia, Embassy of Ireland, Consulate of the United States and John Macgregor,the Ambassador of Great Britain in Poland himself, Minister of the National Education, Governor of Opole Province, Marshal of the Opole Province. The Honorary Patronage of the eighth edition of the English Song Festival was assumed by Prof. Jerzy Buzek –the Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland.

Two honours awarded to the FPA indicate the significance of the event i.e., “Civic Courage and a special contribution to the welfare the Republic of Poland” under “Pro Publico Bono” contest of the best Civic Initiative of the Decade of III Republic of Poland under patronage of the Prime Minister, which we received from the hands of Jan Nowak – Jeziorański.

The director and creator Festival, WojciechToporowski, festival’s director and creator was awarded and recognized by Opole Province mass-media by receiving in 2000 a prestigious award GOLD FASTENER in the category of the promotion of the Opole Province. In 2013 he received the Award of Marshal of the Opole Province „OpoliensiArte Laureato” – for his achievements in the field of artistic works and culture dissemination and protection.

The winners include: AlicjaBachleda – Curuś, Sasha ( a singer of Jet Set, a band which represented Poland at Eurovision Festival in 2007), Baron and Afromental, Monika Urlik, DominikaGawęda, Kamil Bednarek and GeorginiaTarasiuk.

Our entertainment category”Senior” is also highly popular. We invite people who are well-known in the area of science, politics, business, sport and film. In this way we want to show teenagers that it is worth learning English. In previous editions of the Festival we hosted: Janusz Korwin–Mikke, Filip Łobodziński, Prof. SławomirNicieja – Vice Chancellor of University of Opole, Piotr Gembarowski, Krzysztof Luft. As festival guests JohnPorter Band, Robert Kasprzycki, EdytaBartosiewicz, Iron Horse, a band from Scotland and The Doors of Perception, band from Germany all presented their recitals.

Jury of the Festival, apart from Elżbieta Skrętkowska, included: Timothy Sandurski - Consul of the United States, Simon Thomas – Secretary of British Embassy, Paweł Kukiz, Mariusz Kiljan, Dominika Kurdziel, JarosławWasik, Edward Spyrka and John Porter.

We often participate in charity, entertainment and civic campaigns.

In June, 1999, we were invited by „Estrada Stołeczna” to organize a concert of our laureates as a part of the festival “Warszawa Dzieciom - Warsaw for Children” on the Warsaw Castle Grounds. In 2000, our laureates took part in Yellow and Blue Ball in Opole, a celebration of Opole Province Defence. In the same year, thanks to the co-operation with British Embassy in Warsaw, we released the CD of VI ESF (FPA) Gala Concert in Brzeg. For young citizens of Brzeg, we organized a few charity concerts: Marcin Daniec, Cabaret ”Koń Polski”, “Kiepscy” family from Polsat Channel, ”Tercet Egzotyczny” band and “Centrala 57” band. For citizens of the Opole Province who suffered from flood, we organized a concert of the member of FPA jury – Paweł Kukiz and his band „Piersi”.

At present undoubted features of the festival include educational aspects -learning the English language through singing, learning about culture of English-speaking countries, pedagogical aspects – management of free time, social supportive values – prevention of contemporary world dangers (alcoholism, drug addiction, violence – additional events); artistic values – contact of Festival participants with music, song, well-known artists – stars and jury of the Festival.

So, the Festival is a great fun. Brzeg becomes the capital of English song and at the same time the Festival is young people’s holiday.

6 years ago we celebrated our anniversary – XX FPA in Brzeg and because of that we organized a concert of Blue Cafe band. Its singer Dominika Gawęda, the winner of VII and IX FPA received „ Face the music” statuette in Brzeg. Our statuette is a sculpture made of bronze, designed by Paweł Szcześniak, and presents a Polish willow which, in its upper branches turns into a stave with a clef. Annually, it is awarded to the laureates of Grand Prix Festival and the laureates of previous editions who deserved it in a special way. In 2013, this kind of statuette was awarded to Baron of Afromental.

On the occasion of our anniversary, we released Festival monograph „Face the Music XX FPA 2013 Brzeg” presenting the history of our project.

5 years ago, for the first time, we presented our laureates to bigger audience – citizens of Lower Silesia in Poland because the third day of the XXI Festival was held in theatre auditorium of Impart in Wrocław. Our star of the evening was „The Doors of Perception”, a German-Canadian band ( http://doorslive.wordpress.com ), the best in Europe „tribute band to the Doors”. The band, which played over 400 concerts in Europe and opened the concerts of bands like Wishbone Ash, Ten Years After, Barclay James Harvest or Canned Heat.

Moreover, we got patronage of European Capital of Culture – ESK Wrocław 2016.

In October 2014 John Paul Jones – a bassist of Led Zeppelin band, was awarded „Face the Music” statuette. Led Zeppelin group is with us from the beginning with the lyrics „The song remains the same”.

"Hear my song – sing along
Any little song that you know
Everything that's small has to grow.
California sunlight, sweet Calcutta rain
Honolulu starbright – the song remains the same..."

It is the main motto of our Festival.

Wojciech Toporowski, Festival director, while giving the statuette to the artist said:

„You even do not know how much we owe you, you were for us- teens growing up in the 70’s – like a light in a tunnel; you gave us hope for freedom. You had an enormous influence not only for our musical taste but also for our characters and our personalities”.

The artist, when asked to give precious remarks for the future Festival participants, said: “Work hard, practice a lot, and surely you will deserve, like me, this statuette”.

3 years ago our star was Z-STAR( http://www.zstarmusic.com/music/ ) with England-based, phenomenal singer, lyricist, guitarist, producer Zee Gachette. Z-STAR played many concerts in our country, for example the concert with Nigel Kennedy at WOODSTOCK and concerts with Janek Śmietana. Her music can be heard in Ugly Betty, Californication, CSI Miami, Entourage. Concerts of this wonderful band are full of energy. In their music we can hear the influence of many talented artists like: Jimmy Hendrix, Pj Harvey or Led Zeppelin. Even Jimmy Page described them as: „The Power of Nature”. Now, the artist completes her work on her third album „16 TONS OF LOVE”.

So, FACE THE MUSIC and see what this year is going to bring….


FPA distinctions

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