Rowicki, Witold , Polish conductor and composer; b. Taganrog, Russia, Feb. 26, 1914; d. Warsaw, Oct. 1, 1989. He studied violin with Malawski and composition with Piotrowski and Wallek-Walewski at the Kraków Cons. (graduated as a violinist, 1938); then studied with Rudolf Hindemith, the brother of Paul Hindemith (1942—44). Although he made his conducting debut in 1933, he pursued a career as a violinist until the end of World War II. In 1945 he helped organize the Polish Radio Sym. Orch. in Katowice, which he conducted until 1950; then in 1950 he reorganized the Warsaw Phil., which he conducted until 1955, at which time he opened the orch.’s new home and oversaw the renaming of the orch. as the National Phil, before resigning his post. From 1958 to 1977 he was again the conductor of the National Phil.; then was chief conductor of the Bamberg Sym. Orch. (1982–85). He became widely known for his promotion of contemporary Polish music. He wrote syms., other orch. works, chamber music, and songs.
L. Terpilowski, W. R. (Kraków, 1961).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire