Monday, December 17, 2018

Jadwiga Baranska Receives 2018 Modjeska Prize from Helena Modjeska Art and Culture Club

The Helena Modjeska Art and Culture Club presented the Helena Modjeska Prize 2018 to the distinguished Polish actress, Jadwiga Barańska on December 15, 2018.  The presentation took place at the McGroarty Arts Center in Tujunga CA (7570 McGroarty Terrace, Tujunga, CA 91042) during the annual Christmas Caroling party of the club, featuring soprano Teresa Kubiak and pianist Wojciech Kocyan in a mini-recital of Polish carols.

Jadwiga Barańska, actress and screenwriter, is a graduate of the Theater Academy in Łódź, Poland. A prominent actress with numerous leading parts in Warsaw theatres in plays from the classical and contemporary repertoires, she also played dozens of roles on Polish TV. Among the most important of her theater roles are Laura in The Glass Menagerie by T. Williams, Masha in The Three Sisters by A. Chekhov, Lavinia in Mourning Becomes Electra by O'Neil, and Joanna in Skylark by Anhouil.  Her two most important film roles are: Countess Cosel in the film of the same name (Countess Cosel) as well as the lead role of Barbara Niechcic in Nights and Days, an epic movie that was nominated for an Academy Award in 1976.

Maja Trochimczyk Presents the Award to Jadwiga Baranska

In 1977, the Polish actress starred in American film, The Widows’ Nest. In 1979, Jadwiga Barańska came to the U.S. with her family. Since 1993, she has worked as a screenwriter with the following credits: The Lady of the Camellias (1994, screenplay by Barańska, directed by Jerzy Antczak), as well as Path of Glory by Humphrey Cobb and Caesar and Pompey directed by Jerzy Antczak. In the award-winning film Chopin - Desire for Love, by Jerzy Antczak, Jadwiga Barańska shared the writer's credits, was an associate director, and starred as Justyna Chopin, Frédéric Chopin's mother.

Award presentation. L to R: Witold Sokolowski, VP, Jadwiga Baranska, Maja Trochimczyk, Ewa Barsam.

For her artistic achievements she received numerous Polish and international awards.  In 1975 Jadwiga. Barańska was the recipient of the Golden Cross of Achievement for 30 years of working in Polish cinema and Grand Prix for Barbara from Nights and Days from the Polish Feature Films Festival in Gdańsk.  In 1976 she was awarded Golden Grapes for Barbara at the Łagów Festival in Poland; Silver Bear (Grand Prix) from the 26th West Berlin Festival of Feature Films and Golden Apsara for Countess Cosel, at the first Festival of Feature Films at Phenom Phen. 

Jadwiga Baranska with son Michal and Maja Trochimczyk, October 20 Concert, Beverly Hills

The role of Barbara in Night and Days was also recognized by The First Degree Award from the Polish Radio and Television; The Golden Screen (the Polish  Emmy Award), the State Award of First Degree, and The Golden Nail of Season (the greatest personality, 1977). The next year she appeared on the list of 10 Best Actresses in the 35 years of Polish films. She also won the title of the Best Actress of the Year four times and was recognized by the Polish government with the Gold Gloria Artist medal for cultural achievements (Medal Zasłużony Kulturze Gloria Artis, 2008). In 1999, she was asked to make an imprint of her palm at the Promenade of Stars in Międzyzdroje, Poland.

The awards continued in this decade: Złota  Sowa  Polonii  (Polonia’s Golden Owl) for her film roles (2015),  Diamentowe  Lwy (Diamond Lions) for the best female role as Barbara  Niechcic  in the film  Nights and Days, at the 40th  Polish Film Festival in Gdynia (2015); and the title of the Mistrzyni Mowy  Polskiej  Vox  Populi (Mistress of the Polish Language - Popular Vote) bestowed in 2016.  In 2018, the film Night and Days (Noce i Dnie) has been voted the best Polish film of the past 100 years, by audiences in Poland. Dolnośląskie Centrum Filmowe:

At the December 15 event, Ms. Baranska not only graciously accepted the Modjeska Prize, but also made a personal donation (with her husband, famous film director Jerzy Antczak) to further the cause of promotion of Polish culture in Los Angeles.

Established in 2010, the Modjeska Prize honors the most eminent Polish actors and commemorates the patron of the Modjeska Club, actress Helena Modrzejewska (Modjeska, 1840-1909). Previous Modjeska Prize recipients include Jan Nowicki, Barbara Krafftówna and Anna Dymna.

The Award Presentation took place during the Annual Christmas Carols Party of the Club that also featured world-famous soprano Teresa Kubiak accompanied by equally famous pianist Wojciech Kocyan in a mini-recital of Christmas Carols, a holiday potluck of Polish cuisine and a sing-along of Polish carols.The event also included presentation of the newest members of the Modjeska Club admitted in the  previous six months, including actresses Aleksandra Kaniak and Katarzyna Smiechowicz Leconte with Dominik, pianist Wojciech Kocyan, publicists Syl Ves, Urszula Jaskolka Beaudoin, and young Polonia representatives Jolanta Budny, Marcin and Agnieszka Depinski, Sylwia Wilk, Bart Wojtyla and Izabella Lowtrip.

L to R: New Members with the President: Syl Wes, Urszula Jaskolka Beaudoin, Jolanta Budny, Wojciech Kocyan, Aleksandra Kaniak,Maja Trochimczyk, Katarzyna Smiechowicz, Agnieszka Depinska, Marcin Depinski with Adam, Sylwia Wilk and Izabella Lowtrip. 

Wojciech Kocyan and Teresa Kubiak perform carols.

Malgorzata Schulz, Maja Trochimczyk, singers Katarzyna Sadej and Teresa Kubiak

Best wishes for a healthy  and peaceful holiday season, and have a Happy New Year! 

From the Board of Directors of the Modjeska Club

L to R: Witold Sokolowski, Elzbieta Trybus, Ela Przybyla, Wanda Presburger, 
Consul Jaroslaw Lasinski, Ewa Barsam, Maja Trochimczyk, Chris Justin

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