Cecylia Barczyk has achieved international recognition as a successful cellist, teacher, and humanitarian. She has given concerts, recitals, and master classes throughout Europe, Asia, North and South America and has appeared as a soloist with prominent orchestras including those of Amman, Baltimore, Beijing, Berlin, Boston, Berlin, Bucharest, Budapest, Jakarta, Leipzig, London, Moscow, New York, Prague, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, Seoul, Shanghai, Sofia, St. Petersburg, Taiwan, Tel Aviv, Tianjin, Tokyo, and Warsaw. She has frequently performed on radio and television and has recorded much of the standard and new cello literature – as well as works composed especially for her – on the Muza, ICRecords, Melodya, and CRS labels.
Barczyk began studying cello at a young age and soon drew the attention of great musicians. Among her mentors were Marian Międlar, Kazimierz Wilkomirski, Natalya Gutman, and Aldo Parisot. She studied at the Chopin Academy of Music (Warsaw), Moscow Conservatory of Music, and Yale School of Music receiving advanced degrees with highest honors. She won prizes in prestigious international music competitions including the Danczowski Cello Competition (Poznan), Pablo Casals Cello Competition (Budapest), Tchaikovsky Competition (Moscow), Aldo Parisot International Cello Competition (Brazil), J.S. Bach International Competition (Leipzig), Cassado International Cello Competition (Florence), and W.C. Byrd Young Artists Competition (Michigan).
Over the years, Barczyk has received numerous awards and honors for her musical and pedagogical achievements. The Maryland Chapter of the American String Teachers Association twice voted her “Teacher of the Year” (1995 and 2004). The Tianjin Conservatory of Music (China) bestowed on her the title “Distinguished Honorary Professor.” The International Friends of the Cello Association honored her with the “Award for Great Achievements in Cello Music.” The International Music Tribute to Paderewski Committee honored her with the “Paderewski Award for Contributions to Society and Culture.” The Minister of Culture of the Republic of Poland presented her with a medal of recognition for outstanding musical achievement.
Since 1983 she has been Professor of Cello and Chamber Music at Towson University, continuing her solo career while educating young cellists from virtually every part of the globe. Several of her students have received top prizes in national/international music competitions; Rafał Kwiatkowski was a first-prize winner of the Kumho International Competition in Helsinki and the Young Concert Artists Auditions of New York. She served as adjudicator of the Leonard Rose International Cello Competition, and a regular faculty member of advanced summer music courses in the USA and Europe. In 2003 she was appointed Artistic Director of the International Music Institute and Festival USA (www.imif.us).
In 1986 Barczyk founded the International Cello Festival at Towson University. The ICF has attracted attention for innovatively themed concerts, such as “Music for the Mind, Feet, and Soul,” “Music from Vietnam,” “Music from Iceland,” and “Music for Peace in the Middle East.” The 2006 festival included the world-premier of a composition by the American composer Jody Nagel for two cellos and string orchestra (performed together with her daughter, Frances Borowsky). Barczyk has also been among the organizers of the World Cello Congresses in St. Petersburg (1997) and Baltimore (2000).
Recent performances have taken Barczyk to China, Germany, Poland, Ukraine, and Lithuania.