January 24, 1924, Warszawa – May 27, 1993, Washington, D.C.
Andrzej Wasowski was born in Warsaw, Poland in 1924. His father's family owned estates in Podolia and sugar refineries and mining interests in Silesia. His mother, Princess Maria Glinska Wasowska was professor of piano at the Warsaw Conservatory. She, in her turn, had studied piano with Richard Baumeister, a pupil of Franz Liszt. Andrzej began his piano studies with his mother at the age of four. In 1931 he was admitted to the Warsaw Conservatory where he studied with Margerita Trombini-Kazuro, who had studied with one of Liszt's disciples, Giovanni Sgambati. He graduated from the conservatory in 1939 with one of its highest awards, the Grand Prix d'Interpretation.
Lwow, where he was living, was overrun by the Russian army in 1939. On hearing him play, they packed him off to give concerts in the Soviet Union where he performed 186 times, giving up to nine concerts in a three-day period. While in the Soviet Union, he studied with Konstantin
Igumnov in Moscow.
He returned to his native city in 1942. He was permitted to give concerts to benefit war relief organisations, but was not permitted to play Polish music. Since the Nazis forbade performance of Polish music, Wasowski played clandestinely in basements for handfuls of Poles who risked their lives to hear Chopin. When he refused to play concerts for the Nazis, he was put to work in a slave battalion.
After the Second World War, all of his family's possessions were seized by the communists, and the 26-year-old Wasowski became a stateless refugee. He placed third in the 1951
Marguerite Long International Piano Competition in Paris and second in the 1952 Busoni International Piano Competition in Bolzano. He toured western Europe extensively in the late 1940s and 1950s. By the mid-1950s he played in Venezuela eventually becoming a citizen of that country. In 1956 he married Countess Maria Grocholska in Cannes. He continued to tour extensively in Europe, South and Latin America including Mexico. He returned to his native Poland for a series of concerts in 1959 and 1960. His U.S. debut was in New York's Carnegie Hall in 1965. In the fall of 1967, he took up a teaching post at Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma. His letters of references included a handwritten note from Leopold Stokowski. Mr. Wasowski's family joined him from France in September 1969. During breaks from the school year he travelled back to Europe, South America and throughout the United States to perform. On January 7, 1981, Wasowski played Chopin's complete mazurkas in Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall. William Zakariasen of the New York Daily News in his review described it as "one of the most revelatory Chopin recitals heard in decades." In 1983 he settled in Washington D.C. where he played at the Terrace Theater of the Kennedy Center numerous times. He died in Washington, D.C.