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Poland’s violin virtuoso Wanda Wilkomirska dies at age 89

May 2, 2018

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — The director of a residence for retired Polish artists says violin virtuoso Wanda Wilkomirska, a one-time darling of the communist authorities who became a dissident, has died at age 89.

Anna Solnicka-Heller, director of the home for veteran artists, said Wilkomirska died Tuesday.

The daughter of violinist Alfred Wilkomirski, she played with two half-brothers as the Wilkomirski Trio before becoming a soloist with the Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra.

Wilkomirska performed with conductors such as Leonard Bernstein and Zubin Mehta. Her repertory was wide, but she specialized in Poland’s contemporary music.

She was married to a communist party official, journalist Mieczyslaw Rakowski, but became a supporter of dissident movements during the 1970s. Wilkomirska emigrated secretly after martial law was imposed in 1981.

She had lived in Germany and Australia, where she taught violin.

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