Saturday, September 11, 2021

Club Meeting in Huntington Beach moved to 6 November - Konrad Wilk on the Tradition of Polish Revolutionary



 We invite you to a meeting prepared and conducted by one of our members. Mr. Konrad Tademar Wilk will give a richly illustrated lecture (in Polish) entitled "The Tradition of the Polish Revolutionary" on Saturday, the 6th of November 2021, 6PM at the Alliance League of Huntington Beach, 8071 Slater Avenue, Huntington Beach, CA. 92647.  

RSVP to 

The program will include a lecture about the heroic Poles fighting for the country’s independence against invaders & occupiers, i.e. the rulers & armed forces of Russia, Germany and the Soviet Union. 

Tadeusz Kosciuszko monument in Warsaw

The history of the uprisings means the years 1795, 1830-31, 1848, 1863-4, 1944, and the post-war desperate struggle of the Cursed Soldiers. We have invited Mr. Wilk to share his thoughts on the forgotten pages of Polish history. The program continues his commemoration of the 80th anniversary of the start of WWII & the 75th anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising in 2019 in Santa Monica, as well as a presentation about the Cursed Soldiers that he gave with Margo Schulz (initiator of this project) in the Polish Church in Los Angeles, March 2021.

 Konrad Tademar Wilk was born in Los Angeles and his family comes from Lwów and Warsaw. He spent his early childhood in Poland, where he was particularly influenced by the rise of Solidarity and his family traditions. The grandparents, Dr. and Mr. Burakowski, are on the list of Righteous Among the Nations in Yad Vashem for saving 36 Jews during the German occupation. 

After returning to the US, Mr. Wilk studied philosophy and literature at Los Angeles City College, and graduated from UCLA. He has published many sonnets and poems, mainly on historical and philosophical topics, and has repeatedly presented his poetry on stages in Los Angeles.  A board member of the California State Poetry Society and California Quarterly editor, in 1991, he founded The Witching Hour poetry group, which has been meeting continuously for over 20 years. In addition, he is a founding member of the Pecan Pie organization, dealing with the preparation and promotion of artistic events and stage performances.

Please provide the buffet with drinks and desserts. Buffet dinner and good company will be available! The meeting is free for Club members and guests will pay $ 20 per person. RSVP to Beata Czajkowska. We look forward to seeing you at the first in-person meeting since March 2020.

Monument to Jan Kilinski in the Old Town, Warsaw

Monument to Polish Patriots murdered by Gestapo of German occupiers
in 1939-1944 in Warsaw

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

50th Anniversary Ball of the Modjeska Club, 10.10.21 at 5pm, University Club of Pasadena


The Board of Directors of the Modjeska Club 
is  honored to request your company at the


Sunday ● 10 October 2021 ● 5-10 pm ● University Club 
of Pasadena, 175 N. Oakland Ave. ● Pasadena, CA 91101

  • ● Cocktails (5-6pm) Gala Dinner (6-7:30pm) 
  • ● Diplomas for the Club from the City, County and State of California (6:45pm) 
  • ● Presentation of the Helena Modjeska Prizes 2021 for Jan Englert & Beata Poźniak (7pm)
  • ● Chopin’s Music by Wojciech Kocyan (7:15pm)
  • ● The 50-Year Polonaise (7:30pm) 
  • ● 2 ½ Hours of Dancing 
  • ● Champagne, Wine, & Cash Bar 
  • ● Evening attire required (Black tie)

Seating is limited. Please order your tickets early.
To 9 September 2021: $90 per person for members, $120 for guests. 
From 10 September 2021: $120 for Club members, $140 for guests.
Donations for the tickets of our distinguished guests are welcome.

Paypal:, plus $5 per ticket for transaction costs. 

Checks issued to “Helena Modjeska Art and Culture Club” 
should be mailed to: Maja Trochimczyk, President, 
8644 Le Berthon St. Sunland CA 91040, 
along with a reply card specifying “chicken or salmon” 
for the main course, and donations for VIP guest tickets.  

More information: 

A book about the history of the Club will be available for review or purchase, so there are no speeches or presentations planned on this topic. Album 50-lecia Klubu Kultury im. Heleny Modrzejewskiej (in Polish) may be pre-ordered for $100; hard-cover, large volume (380 pp.), with color photos. 

Free download of PDF version: 

More information in Polish: 

Poster, program and invitation design by Elzbieta Czajkowska


Sunday, July 4, 2021

Happy Independence Day 2021!

 Happy Independence Day!

We call it the "4th of July" but it really is Independence Day. A celebration of freedom, joy and truth. A holiday of individual and national sovereignty, a celebration of human rights. . . As immigrants from Poland in America, we enjoy the freedoms that we lacked in the past in the Polish People’s Republic (PRL) with a puppet government controlled by communists in Moscow – freedom of speech, faith, assembly, the right to build your own life, pursue your own happiness, create your own companies, publish your own ideas ...

Our founders, the Founding Fathers, won these freedoms in the American Revolution, in which Polish heroes – Tadeusz Kościuszko and Kazimierz Pulaski – also took part. The model of the American republic inspired Julian Ursyn Niemcewicz, who came to America as Kościuszko's secretary in 1796, straight from a Russian prison, released by the Tsar after two years behind bars, after the fall the Kościuszko Insurrection. They liked equality; having no aristocracy to rule over a country built by everyone's hard work. They didn't approve of slavery. Kosciuszko even designated his estate to buy out slaves and grant them freedom.

Niemcewicz decided to take the American model as an example for the patriotic education of the nation after the fall of the country and its partitions. Out of this idea emerged the Historic Chants, describing the history of Poland's national heroes, with music and illustrations. The great ladies of the Czartoryski family, including Countess Chodkiewicz describing the heroic deeds of General Karol Chodkiewicz in the 17th century, participated in the preparation of this 19th-century hit (over 30 editions).

We had among us in the Helena Modjeska Art and Culture Club, a great-great-great-great-granddaughter of the great general, Ewa Chodkiewicz-Świder, an excellent artist. Like her, we are the continuators of the great patriotic tradition of Poland, but also of the great patriotic tradition of the USA, our second homeland.

All the best wishes to our members, guests, and friends on the occasion of Independence Day!

Dr Maja Trochimczyk, President

Wednesday, June 30, 2021

50th Anniversary Ball on Sunday, 10 October 2021, 5 pm, University Club of Pasadena


50th Anniversary Ball
of the Helena Modjeska Art & Culture Club in Los Angeles
Sunday ● 10 October 2021 ● 5-10 pm  
University Club of Pasadena 
175 N Oakland Ave, Pasadena, CA 91101

In the program ● a Gala Dinner ● Diplomas for the Club from the City, County and State of California ● Presentation of the Helena Modjeska Prizes 2021 for Jan Englert and Beata Poźniak ● Chopin’s Music ● Sto Lat na Wesoło ● The 50-Year Polonaise ● Two hours of dancing ● Champagne, wine, & cash bar ● Evening attire required (Black tie)


Seating is limited. Please order your tickets early.

To 9 September 2021: $90 per person for members, $120 for guests. 
From 10 September 2021: $120 for Club members, $140 for guests.

Paypal:, plus $5 per ticket for transaction costs. 

Mail: Checks issued to “Helena Modjeska Art and Culture Club” should be mailed to: Maja Trochimczyk, President, 8644 Le Berthon St. Sunland CA 91040.  

More information:

We just published our 50th anniversary Album, in Polish only, for FREE PDF DOWNLOAD from Moonrise Press Website:

Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Polish Musicians in California: Tomasz Golka and Mikolaj Stroinski, May 22, 2021, at 12 noon on Zoom

Video ze spotkania w YouTube:

Helena Modjeska Art and Culture Club is pleased to present two eminent Polish musicians whose careers skyrocketed in California. On Saturday, 22 May 2021 at 12 noon (early in the day due to time difference with Poland), Tomasz Golka, Polish violinist and conductor, the Music Director of the Riverside Philharmonic and Mikolaj Stroinski, prize-winning Polish composer of music for films and games, will talk about their musical passions, careers, and plans for the future. Both distinguished guests will play musical excerpts and videos as part of their presentations.  The audience will be able to ask questions and participate in the fascinating and lively discussion. The invitation to this event on Zoom will be emailed to Modjeska Club's members and guests. 


conductor • composer • violinist

Since winning 1st Prize at the 2003 Eduardo Mata International Conducting Competition, conductor and composer Tomasz Golka has appeared with orchestras in North and South America and Europe to great critical acclaim.

As guest conductor, he has appeared with the symphony orchestras of Seattle, Fort Worth, Buffalo, Spoleto Festival USA, Warsaw Philharmonic, Baden-Baden Philharmonic, Sinfonia Varsovia, as well as numerous orchestras throughout Mexico, including those in Xalapa, Mérida, Queretaro, Guadalajara, Boca del Río, Guanajuato, Puebla, Aguascalientes, Chihuahua, Juarez, Monterrey, Saltillo, and the OFUNAM in Mexico City, as well as Puerto Rico Symphony in San Juan and in Concepción (Chile), where he was Principal Guest Conductor. He has collaborated with some of the world’s top soloists, including Susan Graham, Alisa Weilerstein, Gary Hoffman, Inon Barnatan, Miriam Fried, Yuval Yaron, Joseph Swensen, and his pianist-brother Adam Golka.

Past positions include Chief Conductor of Colombia National Symphony in Bogotá as well as Music Director of the Lubbock Symphony. He is currently in his 11th season as Music Director of Riverside Philharmonic, a virtuoso orchestra made up of the top studio musicians in Hollywood, and will become Artistic Director of Village Concerts in the 2021-22 season.

Golka has served as Cover Conductor for Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and the Cleveland Orchestra. He was a semi-finalist in the 2010 Solti International Conducting Competition and the 2005 Malko International Conducting competition, where he conducted the Frankfurt Radio Symphony and the Danish Radio Symphony, respectively.

A composer of both film and concert works, he was named Composer-in-residence of the 2018 Boulder International Chamber Music Competition, which commissioned his piece “True Green.” He composed scores for the films “Shaking Cup” (2019), “The Dare” (2018), and the web series “Pagan Holidays” (2019). His concert works have been performed by the symphony orchestras of California, El Paso, Williamsport, Boca del Río, and the Suffolk County Festival Orchestra.

As violinist he appears as chamber musician and soloist throughout North America. In the past few seasons, he has appeared as soloist with the Lake Charles Symphony, the Chamber Orchestra at St. Matthews, and Riverside Philharmonic.

As a conducting fellow at the 2006 Tanglewood Music Festival, Golka conducted a historic performance of Stravinsky's Soldier's Tale with legendary composers Milton Babbitt, Elliott Carter, and John Harbison as narrators – a recording that is now available through the Boston Symphony. He has also recorded Ciranda das sete notas by Heitor Villa-Lobos for Melo Records. He was also a fellow at the Aspen Music Festival in 2002 and has conducted in masterclasses for such esteemed conductors as David Zinman, Yuri Temirkanov, and Daniel Lewis.

Born in Warsaw, Poland in 1975, Golka’s family emigrated to Mexico in 1980 and to the United States in 1982. His conducting teachers were David Effron at Indiana University and Gustav Meier at the Peabody Conservatory. He has a Certificate in Film Scoring from the prestigious UCLA Extension Film Scoring Program where he was the recipient of the coveted BMI/Jerry Goldsmith Film Scoring Scholarship. He also holds Bachelor's and Master's degrees in violin performance from Rice University, where his teachers were Sergiu Luca and Kenneth Goldsmith. His other violin teachers included Tadeusz Wronski and Marina Yashvili. He is fluent in Polish, English, and Spanish.


The Golka Brothers Play Kreisler:

The Riverside Philharmonic:

The Riverside Philharmonic YouTube Channel:

Spring Concert, April 2021:

J.S. Bach's Birthday Concert, March 2021:


Mikolai Stroinski was born in Nairobi. He lived in Warsaw (where he grew up), Katowice (where he graduated from the Karol Szymanowski Academy of Music), Boston (where he graduated from the Berklee College of Music) and, ultimately,  made Los Angeles his home where he writes and produces music in his own studio.

Mikolai Stroinski started working in California by creating music for television networks such as CBS, NBC, FOX, the Discovery Channel, the History Channel, HBO and many others. The list of projects  includes the following television series: Bez Tajemnic [US version: In Treatment] (directed by A. Holland, W. Smarzowski, M. Lechki, K. Adamik, A. Kazejak, J. Borcuch, A. Glińska and produced by HBO), Paradoks [Original Polish production: Paradox] (directed by B. Lankosz and G. Zgliński, I. Brejdygant) and Zbrodnia [Polish version of a Swedish tv series: Crime] (directed by G. Zgliński and S. Fabicki). He also composed music for the documentary about Helena Modjeska (Modjeska - Woman Triumphant), directed by Barbara Myszynska and premiered by the Modjeska Club in 2009 

Mikolai Stroinski is mostly known for composing music for video games. In addition to The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt and Witcher3: Blood and Wine (CDPR), he has created the soundtrack for the following games, among others: Gwent: The Witcher Card Game (CDPR), League of Legends (Riot Games), Age Of Empires 4 (Relic Entertainment/Microsoft), The Vanishing of Ethan Carter (The Astronauts), Sniper: Ghost Warrior Contracts (CI Games), and more.  His work also includes very unique productions such as the music for the opening ceremony of Hannover Messe 2017.

His work covers most musical genres. He strives to incorporate the variety ensuing from them in my compositions while searching for an original sound. "The purpose of my music is to enhance the attractiveness of commercial projects (trailers, action movies, animation) by magnifying the stimuli communicated to their audience. I very much appreciate productions in which music can add a deeper layer to the content. For music helps express emotions that cannot be conveyed through video or dialogue. It contributes to making images and their underlying content multi-dimensional where music can take the audience on an intriguing journey."

He has won numerous awards including Playstation Best Soundtrack, Best Video Game Album (at, IGN Award, Best Audio Award at Global Game Awards, 3x Digital Dragon Award, Society of Composers' And Lyricists' Award, an Outstanding Pole Award, Game Audio Network Guild Award and many more.



Bee Simulator:

Witcher 3:

Witcher 3 Blood and Wine:

HBO In Treatment (Bez Tajemnic)

Vanishing Of Ethan Carter:

And tons of other stuff:


Friday, April 16, 2021

Polish History Lecture by Prof. John Radzilowski, May 8, 2021 on Zoom

Link to Video of the Zoom Lecture:

 To celebrate Poland's national holiday in May 2021, the Modjeska Club is pleased to present a Zoom lecture on "Law vs. Justice? Claims to Plundered Art and Cultural Treasures from Poland, East-central Europe, and Beyondby Prof. John Radzilowski, Ph.D., professor of history at University of Alaska Southeast. The lecture will be in English and take place on May 8, 2021 at 7 pm in the evening (Saturday).  Club members and guests will receive an invitation by email. If you would like to be invited, send email to

Prof. Radzilowski holds a Ph.D., 1999, Arizona State University, specializing in Modern U.S. History, Russia/Eastern Europe, and Public History. He also received Certificate in Scholarly Publishing, 1994, from the Arizona State University; and BA, 1989, in History from the Southwest Minnesota State University.

He has taught history, art history and geography at UAS on the Ketchikan campus since 2007. Prior to moving to Alaska, he taught history courses at University of St. Thomas, Hamline University, and Anoka-Ramsey College in Minnesota. He also served as assistant project director at Center for Nations in Transition, at the Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota where he helped design and administer USAID and State Department-sponsored training programs for business, economics, and political science faculty and NGO leaders in Ukraine and east central Europe. In 2018, As Fulbright Scholar, he gave a series of public lectures to commemorate the centennial of U.S.–Polish diplomatic relations sponsored by the U.S. Embassy, Warsaw, Poland, Cultural Affairs Section. 

Prof. Radzilowski's research and teaching interests are wide-ranging and diverse: immigration and ethnicity, military history, war and genocide, the impact of technology on the history and geography of the Great Plains and Midwest, local and regional studies, and the history of Poland, Russia, Ukraine and central and eastern Europe. In addition to 13 books and numerous edited volumes, Prof. Radzilowski  published 37 research articles in peer-reviewed journals and books; as well as review essays, encyclopedia articles, book reviews, and many other articles. 

Prof. Radzilowski's awards include Mieczysław Haiman Medal for sustained achievement in research, awarded by the Polish American Historical Association; Oskar Halecki Prize for outstanding book or historical monograph, awarded by the Polish American Historical Association for Poles in Minnesota, 2005/06. In 1998 he was awarded Krzyż Kawalerski Orderu Zasługi (Cavalier’s Cross of the Order of Merit) by President of the Republic of Poland. His many research prizes include two Joseph Swastek Prizes for best article in Polish American Studies (1995 and1992); he also received numerous teaching awards. 


  • 2020 Poles in Illinois, co-authored with Ann Gunkel. (Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press).
  • 2017 Frantic 7: The American Effort to Aid the Warsaw Uprising and the Origins of the Cold War, co-authored with Jerzy Szcześniak. (Philadelphia & Oxford: Casemate).
  • 2007 Travellers History of Poland (Gloucester, U.K.: Arris Books & Boston: Interlink); second U.S. edition, 2012.
  • 2007 Ukrainians in North America (Philadelphia: Chelsea House/Facts on File). 
  • 2006 Minnesota. On the Road History Series. (Boston: Interlink).
  • 2005 Poles in Minnesota (St. Paul: Minnesota Historical Society Press).
  • 2003 The Eagle and the Cross: A History of the Polish Roman Catholic Union of America, 1873–2000 (New York: Columbia University Press/East European Monographs).
  • 2002 Polish Immigrants, 1890–1920 with Rosemary Wallner. Coming to America Series. (Mankato, Minn.: Blue Earth Books).
  • 1999 Community of Strangers: Change, Turnover, Turbulence and the Transformation of a Midwestern Country Town co-authored with Joseph Amato (Marshall: Crossings Press).
  • 1997 Prairie Town: A History of Marshall, Minnesota, 1872–1997 (Marshall: Lyon County Historical Society).
  • 1996 To Call It Home: The New Immigrants of Southwestern Minnesota, co-authored with Joseph Amato, et al. (Marshall: Crossings Press).
  • 1995 Bells Over the Prairie: 125 Years of Holy Trinity Catholic Church, New Ulm, Minnesota (New Ulm: Cathedral Parish).
  • 1992/95 Out on the Wind: Poles and Danes in Lincoln County, Minnesota, 1880–1905 (Marshall, Minn.: Crossings Press, 2nd edition 1995).


  • 2014 American Immigration: An Encyclopedia of Political, Social, and Cultural Change, 2d rev. ed., editor w/James Ciment (New York: Cengage).
  • 2003 Spanish Carlism and Polish Nationalism: The Borderlands of Europe in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, edited with M. J. Chodakiewicz (New York and Charlottesville: Leopolis Press).
  • 2003 Poland’s Transformation: A Work in Progress, edited with M. J. Chodakiewicz and D. Tołczyk (Charlottesville: Leopolis Press and the Miller Center of Public Affairs, University of Virginia).



Video of Maja Trochimczyk's "Lady with an Ermine" in Paris, 2015

Friday, April 2, 2021

Happy Easter 2021 and Club Update

Ladies and Gentlemen,

We wish everyone health, happiness, prosperity, good cheer, good humor and joy on the occasion of Easter 2021. This holiday is an opportunity for spending time with family and social gatherings, sharing treats and good news. May there be as many of them as possible!

We also extend our belated wishes to those of you who celebrated the Passover last week and to those who are participating in other spring festivals. Not all Poles celebrate Easter.

At the same time, we would like to inform you that the Club elections have been postponed to the next year by the decision of the Past Presidents Council, i.e. the Club's Election Committee, as Edward Piłatowicz, chairman of the Council, writes in the attached letter. The Council asked the current Board of Directors to continue working for another year.

We accepted this challenge; although our work is currently very difficult, especially when programs are presented in the Zoom format. It is much better to meet in person, than to watch the computer screen. Different energy! It is too bad that such hard times have come to pass; but the future of the club must still be built.

Dr Elżbieta Trybus agreed to replace Dr Witold Sokołowski as Vice President, who tragically died in November 2019. To honor his memory, we have left the position of the Vice President vacant all year long. Now it is time to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the club. We thank Ela for agreeing to continue working on the board; previously she was our Secretary.

We are planning the celebration of the 50th anniversary for Saturday, October 9, 2021 and we count on organizational and information assistance. Mark your calendars!

We will continue our work with the following Board of Directors: Dr Maja Trochimczyk, President; Dr Elżbieta Trybś, Vice President; Maria Kubal, Treasurer; Barbara Nowicka, Secretary; Ewa Barsam, Social Affairs Director; Chris Justin, Technical Director; and Directors: Beata Czajkowska, Elżbieta Przybyła, Anna Sadowska, and Syl Vès.

Happy Easter!

Maja Trochimczyk, President of the Club

On behalf of the Board of Directors