Welcoming Letters of
Message from Minister Zbigniew Rau to participants of the ninth edition of the Krzyżowa-Music Chamber Music Festival
Ladies and Gentlemen,
It is my great pleasure to accept once again the honorary patronage of the International Chamber Music Festival „Krzyżowa-Music. Music for Europe”. The festival’s ninth edition this summer takes place thanks to the cooperation of the Freya von Moltke Foundation for the New Kreisau, the Kreisau-Initiative, and the Krzyżowa Foundation for Mutual Understanding in Europe.
Krzyżowa, formerly Kreisau, is a Silesian town that developed over centuries under many rulers. Today, it is a symbol of Polish-German reconciliation, as relations between our two countries are a barometer of relations in Europe. It is a place where the fates of nations have collided more than once, showing how our shared past, present and future are inextricably linked.
The key to Polish-German reconciliation is open, honest dialogue, even on the most difficult topics, allowing us to build cooperation based on trust and friendship. In recent years our societies have faced numerous challenges, ranging from the COVID-19 pandemic and economic hardship to the threat posed by Russia’s brutal and unprovoked aggression against Ukraine. Poles and Germans, as NATO allies and EU partners, will successfully rise to meet present and future challenges, together with other nations in our transatlantic community.
Reconciliation is a difficult process based on understanding mutual sensitivities, respect for one’s partner, and good will. Words can sometimes divide people, but music always brings them together. The “Krzyżowa-Music. Music for Europe” festival not only gives the public a chance to enjoy art directly, but it also offers young and talented musicians the opportunity to learn from each other and broaden their knowledge through workshops with senior artists.
This year’s ensemble of performers is impressive and includes musicians from Brazil, Chile, France, Georgia, Israel, South Korea, Luxembourg, Germany, Poland, the United States, the United Kingdom, and many other countries. This demonstrates that the festival’s impact transcends Europe and is truly international, showing how music bridges divides and brings together people from different cultures, backgrounds and generations. In this way, the festival also reinforces the Krzyżowa Foundation’s basic message: that nations can and must coexist peacefully.
This is the power of the free world, which is winning the battle against totalitarianisms thanks to the freedom of expression it upholds, as well as through its deeply rooted democratic values and respect for human rights. Russia’s aggression against Ukraine is a war against these values. That is why we, together with our German partners, support Ukraine in its fight for freedom, sovereignty and territorial integrity. Thanks to initiatives such as this chamber music festival, we are acting together to strengthen universal values.
I would like to express my delight and satisfaction with Krzyżowa’s success as a symbolic centre for international meetings, youth exchanges, and cultural events. I wish you an unforgettable experience at this year’s edition of the International Chamber Music Festival.
To all activists, partners, and supporters of the Krzyżowa Foundation for Mutual Understanding in Europe, I would like to extend my gratitude for their hard work towards international understanding, reconciliation, and dialogue.
Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland
Warsaw, 14th May 2023