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Faculty of Music

Prof John Rink (Photo Kuba Modzelewski / Fryderyk Chopin Institute)

On Sunday October 17 2021, at the Fryderyk Chopin Museum in Warsaw, a ceremony was held to award the Medal of Honour "Bene Merito" to Professor John Rink, an authority in the field of Fryderyk Chopin and a juror of the Chopin Competition. The event was attended by Arkady Rzegocki, the Head of the Foreign Service, the Director of the Fryderyk Chopin Institute, Artur Szklener, the jurors of the 18th Chopin Competition and respected guests from the world of culture.

The head of the Foreign Service, Arkady Rzegocki, gave a speech in which he referred to the achievements of Prof. Rink, and emphasized his invaluable contribution to the promotion of the music and legacy of the great Polish composer in the world. "Undoubtedly, the basis of Chopin's fame was his outstanding talent, sensitivity, virtuosity and musical innovation, which gave a new direction to European music. But fame also needs its promoters. After all, we know how many outstanding artists remain underappreciated in life and after death. That is why we need people like Professor Rink so much: committed, devoted and sincere in his love for Chopin", said the Head of the Foreign Service.

His speech also emphasized the extremely symbolic place where the ceremony took place - the Fryderyk Chopin Museum in Warsaw - and on a symbolic date - during the 18th Chopin Competition, and on the 172nd anniversary of Chopin's death.

In a speech following the award, Professor Rink expressed thanks for the distinction awarded to him and talked about his many years of ties with Poland.

John Rink is one of the world’s foremost authorities on the music of Fryderyk Chopin. He is a prize-winning author and widely respected expert on the manuscript and printed sources for Chopin’s works, on the performance history of the composer’s music over the past two centuries, on analysis of the repertoire, on editorial practices, and on aspects of critical reception. (source: NIFC)

The Bene Merito honorary distinction, established in 2009, is awarded by the Minister of Foreign Affairs in recognition of his contribution to activities strengthening Poland's position in the international arena.