I don't think it has yet been played in Alaska. The only work of his I have heard here was his String Quartet, performed in Anchorage several years ago by the Kronos Quartet, in one of their two Anchorage appearances.
My favorite quote from him is this advice to a young composer:
If you can live without music for two or three days, then don't write – it might be better to spend the time with a girl or with a beer.At the time he wrote his Third Symphony, he was in turmoil, as the underground and open efforts toward democracy in Poland were being thwarted by the communist government and their Soviet allies. Here's a description of the year before and three years after composition of the Third:
Around this time, Górecki came to believe the Polish Communist authorities were interfering too much in the activities of academy, and described them as "little dogs always yapping". As a senior administrator but not a member of the Party, he was in almost perpetual conflict with the authorities in his efforts to protect his school, staff and students from undue political influence.Largely because of some of his expansive, Brucknerian musical canvases and his adoration of Catholic iconography, he has been linked to the Holy Minimalists, along with American composer Allen Hovhaness, Estonian composer Arvo Pärt and Russian composer Sofia Gubaidulina.
In 1979 he resigned from his post in protest at the government's refusal to allow Pope John Paul II to visit Katowice and formed a local branch of the "Catholic Intellectuals Club"; an organisation devoted to the struggle against the Communist Party.
Here is a performance of the middle movement of his 3rd Symphony. The words were taken by Górecki from the wall of a former Gestapo headquarters in the Polish highland city of Zakopane. The inscription reads:
"O Mamo nie płacz nie—Niebios Przeczysta Królowo Ty zawsze wspieraj mnie" (Oh Mamma do not cry—Immaculate Queen of Heaven support me always)This performance was at Auschwitz, one of the few live performances allowed there, as part of HOLOCAUST - A Music Memorial Film from Auschwitz. The soprano is Isabel Bayrakdaraian, the Sinfonietta Cracovia is conducted by John Axelrod: