Jerzy Kaplanek has been a member of the Penderecki String Quartet since 1987. With the quartet, and also as a soloist and chamber musician, he performs throughout Europe, Asia, and North and South America. His discography includes a dozen CD’s with the Penderecki Quartet, and Schoenberg’s Pierrot Lunaire with the Blue Rider Ensemble. His chamber music partners have been pianists Vladimir Feltsman, Lev Natochenny, Jamie Parker, Janina Fialkowska, Francine Kay, cellist Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi, clarinetist James Campbell, and others. He is frequently heard on CBC Radio and in the fall of 1997 was featured soloist at a concert held in the Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, as a tribute to Karol Szymanowski.
Jerzy Kaplanek was born in Poland in 1965. His music education started at the age of six on piano; at the age of ten he began his violin studies. In 1984, he received a Bachelor of Music degree at the Conservatory in Bytom, Poland. He graduated with a Masters Degree in Arts from the Karol Szymanowski Academy of Music, where he studied with Janusz Skramlik, Stanislaw Lewandowski, and Aureli Blaszczok.
In 1987, Mr. Kaplanek left Poland to continue his music education in the United States. In 1987-88 he was assistant to Efim Boico of the Fine Arts Quartet at the Chamber Music Institute in Milwaukee. In 1989-90, he was a student of Sylvia Rosenberg in New York City. In 1990-91 he studied at the University of Maryland, where his teachers included Daniel Heifetz, the Guarneri String Quartet and its violinists, Arnold Steinhardt and John Dalley. Pursuing his interest in Baroque performance practice, Mr. Kaplanek has also worked with the Custodian of Period Instruments at the Smithsonian Museum, Jaap Schroeder.
Jerzy Kaplanek is presently an associate professor at Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, where he teaches violin and chamber music. He plays a copy of the “Kreisler”, Joseph Guarnerius del Gesù 1733, made by Luiz B. Bellini (New York 1997).