Krzysztof Meyer was born on August 11th, 1943 in Cracow. From the age of five he studied the piano and from 1954 theory and composition with Stanistaw Wiechowicz. After graduating from the Chopin State Secondary School of Music in Cracow Meyer continued his studies at the College of Music in Cracow, graduating with distinction in composition (in the class of Krzysztof Penderecki in 1965) and in theory a year later. In 1964, 1966, and 1968 he studied with Nadia Boulanger in France for several months.
From 1965 to 1967 Meyer performed as pianist with the "MW2 Ensemble", giving concerts of contemporary music both in Poland and in many other European countries. He also played his own solo and chamber music compositions.
From 1966 to 1987 Krzysztof Meyer taught at the State College of Music (now Academy of Music) in Cracow and was Dean of the Department of Music Theory from 1972 to 1975. Since 1987 he has been professor of composition at the Hochschule für Musik in Cologne and a frequent lecturer on the subject of contemporary music in many countries, including Russia, Germany, Austria, Brazil and Japan. Between 1985 and 1989 he was President of the Polish Com-posers' Union.
Krzysztof Meyer is the winner of numerous awards, such as the First Prize at the Competition for Young Composers in France (1966), the Aaron Copland Scholarship (1966), the First Prize for Symphony No. 3 at Fitelberg Competition (1968), the Grand Prix at the Prince Pierre de Monaco International Composers' Competition for his opera Cyberiada (1970). He received the special award of the Tribune Internationale des Compositeurs UNESCO in Paris for String Quartet No. 2 and String Quartet No. 3 in 1970 and 1976. He is also a laureate of the Ministry of Culture Award (1973 and 1975), the First Prize winner of the Karol Szymanowski Competition in Warsaw for Symphony No. 4 (1974) and the recipient of a Special Medal bestowed by the Government of Brazil for his String Quartet No. 4 and Concerto retro (1975 and 1977). Among other distinguished prizes that Krzysztof Meyer has received are the Gottfried-von-Herder-Preis (Vienna, 1984), the Annual Award of the Polish Composers' Union (Warsaw, 1992), the A. Jurzykowski Award (New York, 1993) and the Johann-Stamitz-Preis (Mannheim, 1996). Krzysztof Meyer is a member of the Freie Akademie der Künste in Mannheim.
Meyer's compositions have been performed all over the world at international festivals of contemporary music, such as the Warsaw Autumn, Musički Biennale Zagreb, Holland Festival, Musikprotokoll-Graz, Aldeburgh Festival, Schleswig-Holstein, Lucerne Festival, and among others. Some of his works were commissioned by or composed for the most eminent soloists (Lyric Triptych for Peter Pears, the Flute Concerto for Aurèle Nicolet, the Concerto da camera per oboe for Lothar Faber, the Pezzo capriccioso for Heinz Holliger, the Violoncello Sonata for David Geringas, CantiAmadei for Ivan Monighetti, the 2nd Violin Concerto for Dmitri Sitkovetsky). Meyer's Symphony No. 1 was one of the three obligatory contemporary compositions at the International Course for Conductors in Monaco directed by Igor Markevich in 1971, as was his Hommage à Johannes Brahms at the Conductors' Competition in Dublin in 1999.
Komponist: Krzysztof Meyer