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).


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

Friday, March 5, 2021

Celebrating Women's Month with Artistic Mother and Daughter - Krystyna and Katarzyna Sadej, Saturday March 27, 2021 at 6pm on Zoom

Sunshield by Krystyna Sadej

March is the Women's Month and we are celebrating with two wonderful women, a mother artist and her daughter singer, Krystyna and Katarzyna Sadej. Our event will take place on Zoom, virtually, and to request a link email  The interview and artistic presentation is scheduled for Saturday, March 27, 2021 at 6 pm. 

Video recording of the event: 

Moment in  Time by Krystyna Sadej, with the author.


Krystyna Sadej from Canada is an accomplished contemporary tapestry artist whose unique experimental work incorporates a dynamic range of textures, designs, colours, and materials. Her use of recycled materials transcends art activism, creating beauty out of environmental waste.  Krystyna’s works of woven art have been exhibited in Asia, Europe, Canada, and the US and her work is found in collections around the world.

Galaxy, recycled by Krystyna Sadej

She is a laureate of numerous prizes and awards including the Silver Award at the From Lausanne to Beijing Biennal, (China), Recognition Award for Artistic Creativity - Ottawa Art Society, (Canada), Excellence Award at the Fibre Art Biennial (Nangtong, China), People Choice Award – Fiber Art Symposium, Kowary, Poland, Prima Design Award  - Concorso Internazionale di Fiber Art (Parma, Italy), Juror’s Choice Award at AOE’s “Selections” exhibition (Ottawa, Ontario) and  Honourable Mention at Juried Art Exhibit - Cumberland City Hall, (Orleans, Ontario).

Poster with Layers of Dreams by Krystyna Sadej

Krystyna is the founder of Harmony and Woven Bridges fiber art groups, and she curated many of the shows for them. She is a member of the Canadian Tapestry Network and Canadian Artists' Representation/Le Front des Artistes Canadiens. She holds various private and group workshops at her studio in Navan, Ontario, Canada.


Mezzo-Soprano Katarzyna Sadej was born in Wrocław, Poland. Her international, eclectic career spans concert, opera, chamber music, oratorio, film, recital and voice over performance. Katarzyna has also performed numerous world premieres and has had over a dozen new works composed especially for her. Upcoming and recent highlights include a performance as “Our Lady of the Kitchen” in the 2020 feature film documentary of the same name; the title role of Carmen in Toronto, Canada; her debut with Los Angeles’ Jacaranda concert series as the mezzo-soprano soloist in Veronika Krausas’ Le Theatre du Soleil; a recital tour of Atlantic Canada alongside pianist Daniel Wnukowski; her Chinese debut at Opera Chengdu as Giannetta in Donizetti’s L’Elisir D’Amore; recitals of Schumann’s “Frauenliebe und Leben” and songs of Brahms with Le Salon de Musiques in Los Angeles; and, a release of a recording of all the rare 33 “Derwid” songs by Witold Lutosławski. 

Recent opera performances include her debut with conductor Alexander Shelley as Cherubino in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, with the National Arts Center Orchestra in Ottawa, Canada; her L.A. Opera debut with conductor James Conlon as the Page of Herodias in Strauss’ Salome, her SOPAC Ottawa debut as Le Prince Charmant in Massenet’s Cendrillon, and the title role of Bizet’s Carmen in the Palm Springs Opera Guild annual gala. In oratorio, she recently made her Walt Disney Concert Hall debut with the Pacific American Chorale, singing the alto solo in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, and she debuted with the Chicago Philharmonic as the alto soloist in Wojciech Kilar’s Missa Pro Pace. 

Katarzyna Sadej and Barbara Bochenek perform for the Modjeska Club, Oct 2018.

Other notable highlights include solo appearances at Carnegie Hall, Le Salon de Musiques (Los Angeles), Industry Opera, Festival Mozaic, the National Theater in Taipei, the Nuits Blanches Festival of Toronto, San Diego Opera, the Ravinia Festival, the 2012 London Olympics, the Ojai International Music Festival, the Montenegrin National Theater, the Lviv (Ukraine) and Banatul (Romania) Philharmonics, the Ojai International Music Festival, the Music Biennale Zagreb, the Bard Summerscape Music Festival, the Cartagena International Music Festival, Saskatoon Opera, the Berkshire Bach Society, and Harvard University, among other notable venues. 

Katarzyna Sadej and Barbara Bochenek with the Board of Modjeska Club and event guests.

Katarzyna previously appeared for the Modjeska Club in a recital of historic Polish songs, celebrating the 100th anniversary of Poland's regained independence, in October 2018 in Beverly Hills. Her voice and musicality astounded the packed audience and we are very pleased to welcome her back.

Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Modjeska Club Presents Actress and Author Beata Pozniak, Saturday, February 27, 2021 at 7 pm


The Modjeska Club is pleased to present actress and author Beata Pozniak on Saturday, February 27, 2021, at 7 pm via Zoom.  The program will include video and a live performance, as well as interview by Maja Trochimczyk and Elizabeth Kanski. The meeting room information will be distributed to guests and members of the Club via email. 


Beata Poźniak, an actress, voice over artist, activist, painter and poet. She narrated the #1 bestseller, “The Winter Palace: A Novel of Catherine the Great”, a 19 hour audiobook for Random House, where she made use of her European background in bringing to life the 78 characters and their colorful accents.   After embodying one of the most intriguing women in history, she read another 19 hour story of the “Empress of the Night: A Novel of Catherine the Great”.  This was followed by a teen romance/adventure/sci-fi thriller, “The Illuminae Files”, by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, which won an AUDIE Award.  After that, she co-narrated “The Tsar of Love and Techno” by Anthony Maara which was selected in the Top 5 Best Audiobooks of the year by The Washington Post.  “Drive Your Plow Over the Bones of the Dead”, the finalist for the Man Booker International Prize by a NOBEL Prize winner in Literature, Olga Tokarczuk read by Beata, which earned her an EARPHONES Award for Best Performance and interpretation. 

Also, recently she narrated and produced the European Homer Award winning book, “Libretto for the Desert” poetry dedicated to the victims of genocide and war for which she received the 2019 International Maria Konopnicka Award. And was nominated for the 2019 Voice Arts Award. For ‘The Light in Hidden Places” by Scholastic, she received an 2020 Earphones Award and a 2020 Voice Arts Award nomination in the Outstanding Audiobook Narration Category . For performing LIVE at The HAMMER Museum Wislawa Szymborska’s poetry, she was nominated for a Voice Arts Award 

Beata won the 2020 Voice Arts Award in the "Outstanding Video Game Character - Best Performance" Category for voicing Skarlet, the Blood Queen  In the almost 30 years of the Mortal Kombat franchise, Beata is the first actor to receive such a prestigious honor for voicing one of the characters.

  •  “Beata Pozniak is the Empress of Audiobooks." Hollywood Today 
  • “Narrator Beata Poźniak is a master of the many accents.”  AudioFile Magazine  
  • “Beata Poźniak is the first non-native English speaking narrator hired by the largest publisher in the world – Random House…” The Hollywood Times

On screen she is remembered as Gary Oldman’s on-screen wife, Marina Oswald in Oliver Stone’s eight times Oscar nominated film “JFK” and the first female President of the World in the hit SCI-FI series “Babylon 5”.  On “Mad About You” played Helen Hunt’s and Paul Reiser’s maid, then Irene, a revolutionary overthrowing the Russian government in George Lucas’s “Young Indiana Jones: Russian Revolution 1917”, and a double agent working for the CIA and Mossad on the hit TV series “JAG” .

 Recently she played a cameo in a feature based on true facts about 1930’s genocide Holodomor - “Mr. Jones” – she plays a historical figure, a journalist that gets deported from Soviet Union for reporting to the west. She played Beata, an actress a WW2 survivor in “All These Voices” for which it won a student OSCAR. On “Melrose Place” she played Dr. Fielding a single mom marrying a gay character, who becomes a father to her child . She also narrated documentaries such as, “The Officer’s Wife” about the mass murder of Polish officers in the Katyn forrest and co-narrated “Freedom from Despair”, a film about communism, which won several Awards and received an honorable mention in the US Congress. As a co-producer, she is proud to be associated with "An Unknown Country” which received a nomination for EMMY Award for Best Documentary.

An Earphones Award Winner and a Voice Arts Award Winner – “this is a very special honor for me particularly that not long ago it would have been unthinkable to cast a female voice over actress and narrator for whom English was a second language. These voice awards are proof that in the immortal words of Bob Dylan, “The times they are a-changin’.”.    

Beata has directed multi award winning experimental film poems. “People on the Bridge”  is inspired by Hiroshige Utagawa ukiyo - art piece and a poem written by Nobel Prize winner Wislawa Szymborska.  “Mnemosyne – International Women’s Day” is based on a poem and a painting that Pozniak created . The work depicts a community of all races of the world in a female form. It evokes the achievements of women along their struggle for peace and equality in the face of discrimination and war. 

Pozniak has also written and directed experimental stage plays based on poetry. Among them are “Immigration and the American Experience”, “Poeticus Umbilicus” or “We and They”.  The later and “The Return of Umbilicus” was selected for the Peter Sellars’s International Theatre Festival. As a poet, in 2019 she was invited by the Yale Club to read her work. Her poems have been translated into Armenian, Greek, Korean and Polish. Last year, her poems were published in Swansea “The Seventh Quarry Poetry”  and also in Bengali – Bilingual Poetry Magazine “Shabdaguchha”. This year her poetry is included in “Musings During a Time of Pandemic - A Wold Anthology of Poems on COVID-19” and “I Can’t Breathe: A Poetic Anthology of Fresh Air” a compilation of poems that focuses on racism, colonialism, slavery, freedom, justice and human rights. Beata is a human rights activist, and introduced the first bill in the history of US Congress to recognize officially International Women’s Day in the United States. 

For several years Beata served and serves as one of the Judges for the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences EMMY Awards. She is a classically trained actress and holds a Masters of Fine Arts Degree in Film and Drama and for several years served on the faculty at USC - Masters Degree Program. 

More info:

Videos to enjoy:

1) Overview, Grammy Foundation Induction:

2) Mortal Kombat's Scarlet:

3) Szymborska at Hammer Museum:

4) Kinga Rusin Interview: (in Polish)

5) Intl. Women's Day Art:

6) Best Voiceover Award:

Thursday, January 28, 2021

Dr. Iwona D. Korga Presents the Pilsudski Institute of America, Sunday, January 31,2021 at 4 pm on Zoom

Pilsudski Institute in America, photo Marek Zielinski
Video from the Event:

Helena Modjeska Art and Culture Club is honored to invite members and friends of the Cclub to a lecture and presentation in the Zoom format on Sunday, January 31, 2021 at 4 pm. 

Dr. Iwona D. Korga President and Executive Director of the Pilsudski Institute will appear in the program illustrated with video and slides:

Instytut Piłsudskiego w Ameryce - historia, ludzie i działalność
The Piłsudski Institute in America - history, people and activity

The presentation will be in Polish.

We will send invitations to members and guests via email. If someone uses a name in Zoom that is different from their own name (iPhoneuser, phone number, Admin, etc.), please send the information by e-mail to the 


President and Executive Director of the Józef Piłsudski Institute in America, historian, researcher of the Polish community. Dr. Korga comes from Krakow and has lived in New York since 1991. She has been associated with the Piłsudski Institute since 1994, first as a librarian and archivist, then as deputy diretor, executive director since 2005, and finally the president since 2016.

A graduate of MA studies in the field of history (1991) of the Pedagogical University in Krakow, she received the doctor of humanities degree from the same university  in 2004. In New York in 2008, she completed a Master's degree in Information Science and Library Science at Queens College (CUNY). She also worked as Polish teacher in high school classes at the Polish Saturday School at the parish of St. Cyril and Methodius in Brooklyn (from 2014), and, in the years 1995-2001, at the School of Polish Culture and Language St. John Paul II in Maspeth, NY.

She actively participates in scholarly conferences in the United States and Europe, organizes and conducts educational programs, workshops and history lessons for students of Polish and American schools as part of the Polish-English bilingual program. Dr. Korga is the creator and co-author of the educational portal of the Piłsudski Institute entitled This portal conducts training for teachers in Polish history.

Dr. Korga is the author of the book (2011) entitled Poland is Fighting! The propaganda policy of the Polish government-in-exile towards the American society 1939-1945. [Polska Walczy ! Polityka propagandowa rządu polskiego na uchodźstwie wobec społeczeństwa amerykańskiego 1939-1945] and of many popular historical articles in the Polish press in the USA and in scholarly periodicals.

In the years 2004-2018 she was a member of the board of the Polish American Historical Association, in the years 2016-2018 she served as the Second Vice President. Since 2018, he has been a member of the board of directors of the Polish & Slavic Federal Credit Union.

Recipient of the following honors from the government of Poland: the Gold Cross of Merit, the Silver Medal for Merit to Culture - Gloria Artis, the Medal of the National Education Commission and, in 2018, the Officer's Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland.