Polina Medyulyanova is a multifaceted composer whose creativity covers a wide range of musical genres, from vocal and instrumental miniatures to monumental symphonic and oratorical works. Her unique and attractive musical style, based on the interweaving of elements inspired by many different sources, including Gregorian chant and traditional music of the Middle East and Central Asia, expresses highly individual philosophical concepts, and has generated considerable interest from public and musical researchers alike.
Polina Medyulyanova’s music have been performed in festivals in the USA, Asia and Europe, such as Gaudeamus Music Week (2003-4, 2008), Ilkhom XI (2000-2005), East Meets West (Turin, 2003-4 and 2010), World Sun Songs (Latvia, 2008), the World Choral Symposium (Copenhagen, 2008), Maroon Setting (Alaska, 2008), New Paths in Music (New York City, 2010) and Music for Christmas (2006 and 2011), which included a performance in the Pontifical Institute of Sacred Music.
Her works have been broadcast by BBC3, Netherlands Radio, KTOO FM Alaska, Deutschlandrundfunk, Latvijas Radio Klasika and the TV and Broadcasting Company of Uzbekistan. Many of her works are recorded under the direction of her father, Viktor Medyulyanov, who is principal conductor of the Chamber Orchestra of the Ministry of Cultural and Sport Affairs of Uzbekistan.
Polina Medyulyanova’s Refractions won Second Prize in the Fanny Mendelssohn Competition (Germany, 2006), and she received Honorable Mention in the Gaudeamus Competition (Netherlands, 2003, for Ave Maris Stella), and the Golden Hanukah Competition (Russia, 2005, for Hitgalut/Revelatio).
Her ability to write sympathetically and idiomatically for the voice and a large range of musical instruments has led to fruitful collaborations with many solo performers and ensembles, including the following:
Elizabeth Wilson and the Xenia Quartet (Italy)
The John-Edward Kelly Saxophone Quartet (USA/Germany)
Nicolas Prost and Saxiana Trio (France)
The Carducci Quartet (Ireland)
Franz Vitzthum (Germany)
Iveta Apkalna (Latvia/Germany)
Janika Bagranskaya (Uzbekistan),
Najmetdin Matchanov (Uzbekistan),
Rustam Karimov (Uzbekistan),
Abduvasid Toshpulatov (Uzbekistan)
Doreen Curran (Ireland)
Deidre O`Leary (Ireland)
Nieuw Ensemble (Netherlands)
Ensemble Zerafin (Netherlands)
Delta Saxophone Quartet (UK)
Flute quartet Image (Italy)
Frank Abbinanti (USA)
Nora Mulder (Netherlands)
Raaf Hekkema (Netherlands)
DUO Boris Schoenleber and Sigrid Wiedemann (Germany)
Jan Schulte-Bunert and Clair-Obscure Saxophone Quartet (Germany)
Student choir of the State Conservatory of Uzbekistan
Choir Kamer… (Latvia)
Chamber orchestra of the TV and Broadcasting Company of Uzbekistan
Orchestra Concertante (Germany)
New Paths in Music Orchestra (USA)
Holland Symphonia (Netherlands).
Polina Medyulyanova was born in Uzbekistan into a family with a long musical tradition. She inherited her passion for folk music and her interest in folk instruments from her grandfather, Boris Giyenko, one of the founders of the Uzbek School of Composition, with whom she studied music theory.
She started piano lessons at the age of four with Leah Schwarz, a student of Heinrich Neuhaus, and wrote her first composition at the age of eight. After studies in composition with Dmitry Yanov-Yanovsky, and in piano, music history and theory at the Uspensky Academic Musical Lyceum in Tashkent between 1982 and 1992, she joined the composition class of Felix Yanov-Yanovsky at the State Conservatory of Uzbekistan, graduating in 1997. Her final exam project, the ballet Abyss, was premiered in the Ilhom Theatre, Tashkent. Her post-graduate studies at the same institute culminated in a Magnificat for mezzo-soprano, female choir and string orchestra, premiered in the Tashkent Catholic Church.
During her study years, she won many prizes in national competitions, including First Prize in the Republican Competition for Young Composers in 1985, Second Prize in the the same competition for the best chamber music work in 1996, and Third Prize in the same competition in 1992 and 1995, and Third Prize in the High School Competition of Young Composers in 1994, as well as a letter missive for participation in the plenum of the Union of Composers of Uzbekistan dedicated to the work of young composers in 1992.
One of the spheres in which Polina Medyulyanova has found fulfillment is teaching. She has been teaching composition and orchestration for many years in Tashkent at the Khamza College of Music and the Uspensky Academic Lyceum, where her pupils vary in age between six and thirty-six. Many of her students have won awards in international competitions for young composers, and have gone on to study at colleges in Uzbekistan, Europe and USA.
She gets the Honorable Letter for a teacher’s work in Uzbekistan 1999 and 2007, and in Russia from jury of Chrystal Camertone Competition of young composers Russia 2007.
Scholarships from the Mariann-Steegmann Foundation, (Zurich), the Laudate Cantate Foundation (Bremen) and the Sweelinck Foundation (Amsterdam), enabled her to enroll in a Master Program in 2005-7 in the Composition Department of the Amsterdam Conservatory under Wim Hendricks and Fabio Nieder. For the final examination, she presented a program of her sacred music, including two organ pieces (Shepping and Refractions) and Chapter I from The Gospel of St. John for singers, chamber ensemble and organ at St. Bavo Kerk, Haarlem. During her studies, she did elective courses in organ with Jacques van Oortmerssen and conducting with Sam ten Velden, which enabled her to participate in the final examination as conductor and organist. At the same time she attended piano and chamber music lessons in the Netherlands and Germany with Rudolf Jansen, Alexander Malter, Semjon Skigin and Michael Denhoff.
Instrumental music has a special place in Polina Medyulyanova’s oeuvre. She has made a particularly close study of her favorite instruments, the piano, organ and chang, a Uzbek stringed percussion instrument, on which she performs, and which she has studied under the famous Uzbek chang player Abduvasid Toshpulatov.
In Amsterdam in 2006, she founded two active duos, one with singer Antje Siefert (Germany), and the other with violinist and composer Tania Sikelianou (Greece). Both ensembles are active in performing classical and modern music. As a pianist and accompanist she is specially focused on German Romantic music, mainly works of Robert and Clara Schumann. Both duos specialize in thematic recitals, which have taken them to the Rilke Foundation (Sierra, 2006), the Italian Institute of Culture (Amsterdam, 2009), the Schumann House (Bonn, 2009 and 2010), and Trinity Church (Bonn, 2011).
In 2008-2009, P.M. collaborated with Italian singer Carla Regina, with whom she gave a benefit concert in the Chapel of the University of Amsterdam in 2009, and also participated in several opera projects in Het Fijnhout Theater ( Amsterdam) and Het Klooster School (Woerden).
Since 2011, Polina Medyulyanova has been collaborating with German singer Dorothea Kares.