Maksymiuk was born in Grodno, Second Polish Republic (now Belarus). He studied violin, piano, conducting and composition at the Warsaw Conservatory where his teachers included Piotr Perkowski (composition), Jerzy Lefeld (piano) and Boguslaw Madey (conducting). In 1964 he won first prize in the Paderewski Piano Competition; in 1973 he won an award of the Polish prime minister for his work with youth.
Conducting soon became his principal career, working with symphonic orchestras, mainly the radio orchestra with which he made several recordings. From 1970 to 1972 he was on the staff of the Warsaw Grand Theatre, conducting several operas. In 1972 he formed the Polish Chamber Orchestra, which soon became a renowned group around the world. It made its British debut in 1977 and toured all over the world. Between 1975 and 1977 Jerzy Maksymiuk also held the post of Principal Conductor of the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra in Katowice. In 1993, he became principal conductor of the Krakow Philharmonic.
From 1983-1993, Maksymiuk was Chief Conductor of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra (BBC SSO), with which he appeared each season at the Henry Wood Promenade Concerts in London. Together, they made many overseas tours, and he became the BBC SSO's Conductor Laureate. In Britain, Maksymiuk has also conducted the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, the BBC Philharmonic, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, the London Symphony Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra and The Philharmonia. In addition he has conducted many other orchestras in Europe, the USA and Japan, Australia and Israel.
Among premieres given by Maksymiuk are A Mind of Winter by George Benjamin in 1981, Still Movement by Harrison Birtwhistle in 1984, The Confession of Isobel Gowdie by James Macmillan in 1990, as well as works by Krzysztof Meyer, Paul Patterson and Kazimierz Sikorski.
In April 1990 he was awarded the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Letters by Strathclyde University.
- Alain Pâris. Dictionnaire des interprètes et de l'interpretation musicale au XX siècle. Éditions Robert Laffont, Paris, 1995 (p650 ).
- John Rockwell (1993-03-01). "Cracow Philharmonic As an Orchestra In Painful Transition". New York Times. Retrieved 2009-02-10.
- "Concerto for Two". 24 September 2018.
Media related to Jerzy Maksymiuk at Wikimedia Commons
Karl Anton Rickenbacher
| Principal Conductor, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra