Ignacy Jan Paderewski

NYC Hotel | Ignacy Jan Paderewski

Ignacy Jan Paderewski

From Pianist to Prime Minister

Ignacy Jan Paderewski was born in 1860 in what was then Poland, now Ukraine. 

In the course of his lifetime, he came to be known as a “Modern Immortal” by his contemporaries. Paderewski’s achievements are impressively varied. He was a gifted pianist and composer, studying at the Music Institute of Warsaw, and premiering his first publish exhibition in 1879. 

Paderewski married Helena Górska in 1899 and soon after purchased a house in Switzerland where they lived until 1940.

In addition to giving concerts, speeches, and lecture-recitals around Europe and North America, the next few decades saw Paderewski getting involved in agriculture and raising millions of dollars in aid for Poland. He then signed the Versailles Treaty as Poland’s representative in 1918, and in 1919 he became the first Prime Minister of the once again independent Poland. But music was still in Paderewski’s heart, and in 1922, he resigned all of his political posts to return to international concert tours.

While playing at venues like Carnegie Hall and Madison Square Garden, Paderewski frequently stayed the hotel during his time in New York City. Though he died in New York in 1941 and received a state burial at Arlington National Cemetery, his body was returned to Poland in 1992 to the Royal Crypt of the Warsaw Cathedral.

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