On the 31st of July 1891, in the flat of Mr. Józef Smolarek, a church organist from Pniewy, took place the founders meeting of the Polish Singers Circle „the Lyra”. It was under very sad auspices of the ravaging prussian „Kulturkampf” – struggle for cultural supremacy. Before the meeting the founders issued an address to the youth of Pniewy. Along other economic institutions The Singers Circle was intended as an element of struggle to preserve polishness – our traditional and cultural wealth. And it did become such an element.
As soon as 27th September 1891 in Pniewy during the first public performance polish folksongs were presented.
On the occasion of the fifth anniversary of its foundation a Pniewy artisan Mr. Andrzej Gliszczyński made a banner for the Circle – a lyra carved in wood – from which its name came.
In the years of the third partition of Poland as well as during the period between the world wars the Singers Circle ran comprehensive cultural activities. They gave concerts, lectures, performed stage plays. During the period between the wars “the Lyra” was one of the most lively and vital points of cultural life in Pniewy.
As soon as 1945, in spite of grim memories of war the Circle revived its activities. During the post-war period “the Lyra” went through many turns of fate. However, it survived to our days owing to hard work and persistence of the whole team. The praise goes mainly to the late Mr. Jan Frąckowiak, who was the conductor of the choir in the years 1931-1988.
During 100 years of its existence the Circle won many prizes at singers days events that have been organized without interruption ever since the partition of Poland.
In the years 1989-1997 the choir toured with concerts Germany, Holland, Belgium, France, Latvia, Lithuania and Belarus and Ukraine.
It took part in numerous festivals and contests at home. It won twice the award for the best amateur choir of Wielkopolska Greater Poland at a music contest „Wielkopolskie Dni Muzyki” – the Greater Poland Days of Music in nearby Duszniki.
„The LYRA”became part of our town tradition – hopefully it will still last for many more years.