Playing Chopin benches
Image © Walking Poand | Deutsch
This is a touristic overview of the benches. We have refrained from a detailed description because everything worth knowing could be accommodated here.
Type of attraction
In the touristic area?
How to get?
Sit on one of the fifteen Chopin benches, press the button and enjoy one of Frédéric Chopin’s masterpieces for 30 seconds. On the bench there is an explanation in Polish and English why the bench is in front of that building or object. You can also scan the QR code, which will take you to the audio guide. Next to the text, there is a map of where the next benches are located.
The Warsaw Tourist Office is responsible for the maintenance of the benches.
The benches at a glance
1. Saxon Garden: southwest corner of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier: The garden is where little Chopin spent his free time when the family lived in the Saxon Palace (this was the site of the Warsaw Lyceum at the time).
2. Saxon Palace: In 1810 the family moved to the Saxon Palace because the father was employed as a teacher at the Warsaw Lyceum, which rented numerous rooms in the Palace.
3. Kazimierz Palace: In 1817 the Warsaw Lyceum, which until then had been based in the Saxon Palace, was moved to the Kazimierz Palace. The university is founded next door. The building is now the seat of the Rectorate of the University of Warsaw. At that time it was customary for the teaching staff to live in the immediate vicinity of the schools.
4. Czapski Palace: The Chopin family moved into the side wing of the Czapski Palace in 1827. The 17-year-old Frédéric Chopin was given his own room with a piano. The palace is now the seat of the Academy of Fine Arts (art college). The main gate is located vis-a-vis the main entrance of the University of Warsaw.
5. Visitant Church: In Chopin’s time, Sunday masses were held in this church for the students of the Warsaw Lyceum, which was located in Kazimierz Palace. Frédéric was given the special task of playing the organ.
6. Radziwill Palace (now the Presidential Palace): On 24 February 1818, 8-year-old Frédéric Chopin played his first public concert here.
7. Warsaw Conservatory (no longer exists): The building stood on the east side of Castle Square, near the bell tower of St. Anne’s Church. Chopin studied “composition” here.
8. Miodowa Street: The social life of the city’s wealthy was concentrated in this street. Among them were young artists such as Frédéric Chopin, who lingered almost daily in one of the cafés. The Honoratka restaurant continues the tradition of remembrance.
9 Krasinski Square: On this square stood the building of the National Theatre, where Frédéric Chopin played his concerto in F minor in March 1830. He also performed his last concert here in Warsaw in October 1830 before leaving for Paris. Today the square is home to the Warsaw Uprising Memorial.
10 Kozia Street: This narrow alley runs parallel to Krakowskie Przedmiescie Street and connected Miodowa Street with Krakowskie Przedmiescie Street. The passage near Castle Square did not exist at that time. We know that Chopin often used this passage. He also spent a lot of time here in the café “U Brzezinskiej”. Even today, the street is a nice alternative to the often overcrowded Royal Route.
11. Wessel Palace: This is where Frédéric Chopin’s journey to Vienna and Paris began on 2 November 1830. Destination: world fame. Today it is a courthouse.
12. Holy Cross Church: Here rests the heart of Chopin.
13. Zamoyski Palace: Isabella, Chopin’s sister, lived in this building and kept her brother’s memorabilia. In 1863, an assassination attempt was made on the Tsar’s deputy from the building. In return, the tenants of the palace were thrown out and their belongings destroyed, including a piano by Frédéric Chopin.
14. Ostrogsky Palace: home of the Chopin Museum. Next to it is the Chopin Institute and the Frédéric Chopin Academy of Music.
15. Chopin Monument in Lazienki Park: The most famous monument to the piano virtuoso in the world. Here, when there is no pandemic, free Chopin concerts are played in the open air.