October 2011

Polish Music Newsletter Vol. 17, no. 10


PMC News


Paderewski Festival In Paso Robles

November 10-13, 2011

Paso Robles, CA – The 2011 Paderewski Festival in Paso Robles celebrates the legacy of Ignacy Jan Paderewski with four days of concerts and special events featuring internationally renowned performers (including Leszek Możdżer, Eduard Kunz, and New West Guitar Group), young pianists from the Central Coast Region, master classes, wine tasting and a special lecture on Paderewski and California. The Festival will be held in several venues throughout Paso Robles, California, from November 10-13.

In the mid-1930s, Paderewski expressed a wish to establish free music education for talented youth in Paso Robles, a community where he owned large ranches with vineyards and almond groves. This year’s Festival will again honor Paderewski’s initiative to bring music to fellow Californians by making all concerts during the 2011 Paderewski Festival in Paso Robles free of charge.  However, as a nonprofit organization, the Paderewski Festival welcomes donations.

To accommodate the highest possible number of concertgoers, reservations are strongly suggested by going to the shop page of the Festival website, www.paderewskifest.com, e-mailing info@paderewskifest.com, or calling (805) 769-4622.  Otherwise, seating will be on a first-come basis.


2011 Paderewski Festival Event Calendar

THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 10, 2011:

Festival Opening Concert of Polish Music
Performers:           Cuesta College North County Campus Choir
Venue:                  Vina Robles Winery, 3700 Mill Road, Paso Robles
Time:                    6 p.m. no-host wine reception with concert to follow at 7 p.m.
Admission:            Free
Donations:            Paderewski Festival in Paso Robles

The 2011 Paderewski Festival will open with an evening of choral music performed by Cuesta College North County Chorus led by Cassandra Tarantino.  Waclaw z Szamotul, the most important composer of the Polish Renaissance and court composer to King Sigismund Augustus II, will be represented by his evocative song Daylight Declines. Feliks Nowowiejski’s rousing setting of Hymn of 1910, and a celebrated patriotic poem by Maria Konopnicka will follow.  Other items on the program include music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Rene Clausen and USC Thornton School of Music professor Morten Lauridsen.

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 11, 2011:

Master Class with Pianist Eduard Kunz
Venue:                   California Polytechnic Arts Center, Building 45, Room 218, San Luis Obispo
Time:                     2-4 p.m.
Admission:            Free

Polish Jazz Concert
Performer:            Leszek Możdżer
Venue:                 Cass Winery, 7350 Linne Road, Paso Robles
Time:                    6 p.m. no-host wine reception; 7 p.m.concert
Admission:            Free
Donations:            Paderewski Festival in Paso Robles

Widely acclaimed as one of the most brilliant and original jazz pianists today, Leszek Możdżer (at right) will present a solo program largely based on his recently-released album of film music and jazz compositions by Krzysztof Komeda (1931-1969). Komeda wrote soundtracks to several of Roman Polanski’s films, including Knife in the Water and Rosemary’s Baby. Signature tunes from these celebrated silver screen classics will receive a sparkling treatment from Mozdzer, whose virtuoso interpretations of Komeda’s music elicited high praise from music critics worldwide.

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 12, 2011:

Lecture:”Paderewski, Modjeska, and the California Environment”
Lecturer:                Kenneth H. Marcus, Ph.D.
Venue:                   Paso Robles Pioneer Museum, 2010 Riverside Road, Paso Robles
Time:                     11 a.m.
Admission:             Free
Donations:             Paderewski Festival in Paso Robles

Dr. Kenneth H. Marcus, Associate Professor of History and Director of the International Studies Institute at the University of LaVerne, is author of Musical Metropolis: Los Angeles and the Creation of a Music Culture, 1880-1940, published in 2004.

The 2011 Youth Piano Competition Winners’ Concert
Performers:           Winners of the 2011 Paderewski Youth Piano Competition
Venue:                   Paso Robles Inn, Ballroom, 1103 Spring Street, Paso Robles
Time:                     4:00 p.m.
Admission:            Free
Donations:            Paderewski Festival in Paso Robles

The 2011 Paderewski Festival Gala Concert
Performer:            Eduard Kunz
Venue:                  Paso Robles Inn, Ballroom, 1103 Spring Street, Paso Robles
Time:                    8 p.m.
Admission:            Free
Donations:            Paderewski Festival in Paso Robles

Prizewinner of 13 major international piano competitions, including First Prize at the 2010 Paderewski International Piano Competition in Bydgoszcz, Poland, pianist Eduard Kunz (at left) was named among “Tomorrow’s Ten Great Pianists” by BBC Music Magazine.  Born in Siberia in 1980, Kunz studied piano at the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow and at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, England.  He will present a program of romantic virtuoso works opening with selections from Paderewski’s miniatures, including the celebrated Menuet, Op. 14, followed by a selection of Chopin’s Nocturnes and Waltzes, and Ballade No. 1, Op. 23. In honor of the bicentennial of another great piano virtuoso, Franz Liszt, the second half of Kunz’s recital will present Liszt’s transcription of Bach’s Prelude and Fugue in A minor, the complete set of his Six Consolations and Hungarian Rhapsody No. 12.

SUNDAY,  NOVEMBER 13, 2011:

Historic Paderewski Vineyard & Estate Tour, Jazz Concert & Lunch (Fundraiser)
Tour Venue:         Epoch Estate Wines, 5414 Vineyard Drive, Paso Robles
Time:                   10 a.m.
Concert Venue:    Epoch Estate Wines Tasting Room, 7505 York Mountain Road, Templeton
Performers:          New West Guitar Group
Time:                   12 p.m. lunch with concert to follow at 1 p.m.
Admission:           Vineyard Tour, lunch with Epoch Estate Wines and concert: $125 per person; Lunch with Epoch Estate Wines and concert: $50 per person; Lunch only and concert: $35 per person; Concert only: Free

Featuring three young guitar virtuosos – Perry Smith, John Storie and Jeff Stein – the New West Guitar Group’s original music combines the foundation of jazz with elements of blues, rock and folk.  They will play pieces from their fourth and latest album Round Trip Ticket, released October 2011, which combines the different timbres of acoustic and electric guitar that is their signature sound.

A 2011 Friends of Paderewski VIP Pass, which includes the Sunday Epoch Estate Wines vineyard tour, lunch with wine and concert, plus preferred seating at the lecture and all performances, is available for $150 per person. Purchase at the Festival website shop page at www.paderewskifest.com, e-mailing info@paderewskifest.com or calling (805)769-4622.


Paderewski & The Paso Robles Paderewski Festival

In a short time we are going to my home in California.  When my tour is over, you (Polish composer, musicologist and close friend Henryk Opienski) and I will settle down to teach music to talented children.  In a few years, we should be able to start several good artists on careers that will be worthy of the names of Opienski and Paderewski. … Everything is to be free in our school (financed from Paderewski’s tours). … Good people have helped me all my life; then why should I not help others?  Good people had confidence in me; when I was discouraged, they gave me faith in myself.  This is what I will do for young musicians, and they in turn will enrich the hearts and spirits of people all over the world.

Ignacy Jan Paderewski, late 1930s

He was a wild-haired rock star, a world-famous pianist and composer who sold out concerts from Paris to Los Angeles.  He appeared twice on the cover of TIME magazine. He served as independent Poland’s first prime minister, befriended every American president from William McKinley to Franklin D. Roosevelt and hobnobbed with the crowned heads of Europe.                    

Sarah Linn, The Tribune, San Luis Obispo, November 6, 2008

Ignacy Jan Paderewski (1860-1941) was a virtuoso pianist, composer, statesman, humanitarian and orator. Although his bold political vision for a multi-ethnic and multi-cultural United States of Poland was never realized, his musical legacy continues to inspire generations of musicians all around the globe.

Paso Robles is proud of its most famous resident, Ignacy Jan Paderewski, who visited this Central California city on many occasions for 25 years between 1914 and 1939.  He stayed in the El Paso Hotel (now the Paso Robles Inn) and took cures in Paso Robles’ hot springs. He eventually bought nearly 3,000 acres of farmland in Paso Robles, Rancho San Ignacio and Rancho Santa Helena, where he planted wine grapes, almonds and a variety of fruit trees. In addition to his musical and political accomplishments, he also is remembered as a pioneer of vine cultivation and credited with bringing Zinfandel wine grapes to California.

To commemorate Paderewski’s association with Paso Robles, the Paderewski Festival was launched in 1991.  The festival was suspended temporarily from 2001 to 2006, when it was re-launched under the leadership of the Polish Music Center at the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music and Paso Roblans led by Steve Cass of Cass Winery and Joel Peterson, grandson of the Paderewski Festival’s founder Virginia Peterson.

A sister city agreement between Tarnów, Poland and Paso Robles, California, was signed in 2008 with the goal of establishing cultural, educational, personal and commercial exchanges between the two cities that share historical ties to Ignacy Jan Paderewski. The first such exchange program was held in June 2009, when three young pianists from California’s Central Coast—finalists from the 2007 and 2008 Paderewski Youth Piano Competitions in Paso Robles (pictured at left in Kraków)—participated in a series of piano workshops and master classes alongside three Polish students. The program was held at the manor house of Paderewski’s former estate, Kąśna Dolna, in the province of Tarnów. American and Polish students performed jointly in concerts in Kąśna Dolna and at the Jagiellonian University in Kraków. Wines from Paso Robles were featured in tastings during receptions following each of the youth concerts. In 2010, three Polish students came to Paso Robles for master classes, performances and U.S. cultural exchange, and in 2011 three students from California’s Central Coast returned to Poland, participating in a cultural exchange alongside piano students from the Tarnów region of Poland and the Zhytomyr region of the Ukraine, three areas that share historical ties to the personal life of Paderewski.   They were accompanied by an official delegation from Paso Robles who explored further cultural and economic ties with the region, and fundraising opportunities for the Paderewski Festival in Paso Robles and related projects.

Paderewski Festival in Paso Robles logoThe Paderewski Festival in Paso Robles is a non-profit organization that sponsors an annual series of concerts featuring internationally acclaimed artists, the Paderewski Youth Piano Competition and Exchange Program, and other Paderewski-themed events throughout the year. Visit www.paderewskifest.com to learn more.

[Source: Press release, Photo (Możdżer): Nikodem Krajewski]


News


Skrowaczewski Premiere

Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, composer and conductor, was one of the first donors to the PMC Manuscript Collection
Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, composer and conductor, was one of the first donors to the PMC Manuscript Collection

October 3, 2011, marks the eighty-eighth birthday of Stanisław Skrowaczewski, one of the world’s leading conductors whose career has spanned many decades and continents. Born in Lwów, Poland in 1923, he first studied piano and violin but settled on the conducting career after World War II, enjoying a succession of appointments as music director of Wrocław, Katowice, and Kraków Philharmonic Orchestras as well as the National Philharmonic Orchestra in Warsaw.

After studying composition in Paris with Nadia Boulanger and conducting with Paul Kletzki in the mid 1950s, Skrowaczewski won the Santa Cecilia Competition for Conductors in Rome in 1956 and was invited by Maestro George Szell to conduct the Cleveland Orchestra in 1958. Shortly thereafter, Skrowaczewski settled in the United States and his long association with the Minneapolis Symphony (later renamed the Minnesota Orchestra) began with his appointment as music director of this distinguished ensemble in 1960. After nearly two decades in Minneapolis, Skrowaczewski became conductor laureate of the orchestra and, throughout the 1980s and the 1990s was principal conductor of the Hallé Orchestra in Manchester, England.

During his concert-rich six decades of conducting, Stanisław Skrowaczewski has led almost all of the world’s most prestigious orchestras, including the Philadelphia, London, New York, Cincinnati, St. Louis, Pittsburgh, Saarbrücken, Concertgebouw, French National, Warsaw, Zuirich, and Nippon Symphony Orchestras, as well as Vienna State Opera, and the Metropolitan Opera orchestras, among others. Throughout his career, Skrowaczewski has recorded for Columbia Records, RCA, Chandos, Arte Nova, and Pickwick/Carlton labels. Particularly noted are his interpretations of the complete cycles of Bruckner and Beethoven Symphonies. During his tenure with the Minnesota Orchestra he recorded a complete cycle of Ravel’s symphonic music, and his Bruckner Ninth Symphony recording with that ensemble was nominated for the Grammy Award.

In addition to his busy performing schedule, Stanisław Skrowaczewski is also a noted composer, who started writing music as a teenager. His compositions were recognized with the Kennedy Center Friedheim Award (1976) and garnered two Pulitzer Prize for Music nominations (1997 and 1999). Maestro Skrowaczewski’s catalogue of compositions includes such works as Four Symphonies (1936; 1945; 1947; and 1954), Overture (1947), Music at Night (1951), Concerto for English horn and Orchestra (1969), Ricercari Nocturni (1976), Clarinet Concerto (1981), Violin Concerto (1985), Fanfare (1987), Triple Concerto (1991), Concerto for Orchestra (1999), Symphony (2003), and Music for Winds (2009). In addition to these large-scale works, Maestro Skrowaczewski’s catalogue also extends to chamber music, including: four string quartets; a string trio; Trio for Clarinet, Bassoon and Piano; six Piano Sonatas; and a cycle of three works entitled Fantasie for small ensembles of winds and strings.

This full and deeply fascinating life has finally been immortalized in Maestro Skrowaczewski’s first full-length biography, Seeking the Infinite – The Musical Life of Stanisław Skrowaczewski by Frederick Edward Harris Jr. The book is the product of a decade-long research effort and is based on hundreds of interviews with the Maestro. The author draws a very sympathetic and captivating portrait of the conductor, composer, and mountain climber, and shares some of Skrowaczewski’s personal and professional triumphs and tragedies. The foreword to the book—supplied by another prominent American composer and conductor, Gunther Schuller—gives an excellent introduction to Skrowaczewski’s truly unique position in the music world today.

Maestro Skrowaczewski’s ties to the Polish Music Center date back to 1984 when, following Wanda Wilk’s suggestion, he donated the manuscripts of three of his works to the Center’s manuscript collection: Violin Concerto, Op. 18 (1940); Symfonia na smyczki [Symphony for Strings], Op. 25 (1949); and Uwertura [Overture] (1954). Witold Lutosławski was the other initial donor and the scores from these two prominent Polish musicians became the foundation for one of the world’s most important repositories of manuscripts by modern Polish composers. Today the PMC collection holds over 100 manuscripts by such acknowledged masters as Bacewicz, Baird, Laks, Meyer, Penderecki, Ptaszyńska, Schaeffer and Tansman, among many others. The most recent additions include the archives of Sigismond and Luisa Stojowski and the newly discovered manuscripts of symphonic music by Henry Vars [Henryk Wars].

Maestro Skrowaczewski spent two weeks in residence on the USC campus in September of 2004, appearing in the Polish Music Center’s annual Paderewski Lecture as well as conducting rehearsals, workshops, and concerts, and meeting with the local Polish cultural organizations such as the Helena Modjeska Club of Los Angeles. At that time, the Polish Music Center received another priceless donation from the Maestro—two of his manuscripts, including Prelude-Fugue-Postlude for Orchestra and Music at Night (1949).

Maestro Skrowaczewski’s latest composition, Music for Winds—co-commissioned by Thornton School of Music at USC—will receive its World Premiere on Sunday, October 30, 2011 by the USC Thornton Wind Ensemble, directed by H. Robert Reynolds. The concert begins at 4:00 p.m. at Bovard Auditorium and the admission is free. Please come and celebrate Maestro Skrowaczewski’s birthday and the premiere of his latest composition!

Sunday, October 30, 2011 | 4:00 p.m.
Music for Winds – World Premiere
University of Southern California – Bovard Auditorium
Admission: FREE, Parking: $8
Info: web-app.usc.edu


Kilar Premieres

The latest composition of Wojciech Kilar, entitled Lumen, will have its World Premiere on October 5 in the European Parliament in Brussels. The performance commemorates the 400th birthday of Johannes Hevelius (1611-1687), a prominent astronomer who was also a councilman and mayor of the City of Gdańsk. Written for a cappella choir, the work uses selections from the Polish translation of Psalm 136 as text. Lumen was commissioned by the Polish Chamber Choir from Gdańsk and will be performed by the ensemble, led by Jan Łukaszewski—current director and brother of the ensembles’ founder, Ireneusz Łukaszewski. An exhibit on the life of Hevelius will accompany the concert.

Monday, October 5, 2011 | 5:00 p.m.
World Premiere of Kilar’s Lumen & Celebration of Johannes Hevelius
European Parliament – Paul-Henri Spaak building, Yehudi Menuhin space
Rue Wiertz 60, Brussels, Belgium

On Friday, October 14, the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra in Katowice (NOSPR) will inaugurate another artistic season with the World Premiere of Wojciech Kilar’s Piano Concerto No. 2, under the direction of Jacek Kasprzyk. The solo for the Concerto will be performed by Beata Bilińska, 1st prize winner at the Rina Sala Gallo Competition in Monza and finalist of the Feruccio Busoni Competition in Bolzano, Italy.

The Concerto is scored for piano, string orchestra, and percussion. Its four movements open with a meditative, slow introductory movement that imitates the tolling of funeral bells. The Concerto’s third movement is similarly somber in character. The second and fourth movements are very lively and dynamic, with highly effective use of Kilar’s favorite minimalist techniques—both in terms of repetitive melodic cells and rhythmic ostinato figures. The Concerto is about 22 minutes long and is published by PWM Editions.

Audiences in Katowice and listeners to Polish Radio Programme 2 will also have an opportunity to hear Franz Schubert’s Symphony No. 4 “Tragic” and the symphonic poem Tod und Verklärung [Death and Transfiguration] by Richard Strauss on the same program.

Friday, October 14, 2011 | 7:30 p.m.
World Premiere of Kilar’s Piano Concerto No. 2 & NOSPR Season Inauguration
Grzegorz Fitelberg Concert Hall
Plac Sejmu Śląskiego 2, 40-032 Katowice, Poland

[Sources: pwm.com.pl, nospr.org.pl]


Capella Protest In Kraków

Capella Cracoviensis, an ensemble devoted to performances of ancient music on historical instruments, has been gripped by a protest strike. The new artistic director, Jan Tomasz Adamus, requested personnel changes in the ensemble and demanded competitive auditions for those who wanted to remain in the group. Musicians who did not agree to audition were fired. Others picketed the Old Market Square and wore t-shirts to concerts with messages: Save Our Capella.

The musicians who were fired accused the new artistic director of insufficient professional qualifications. His reply to the press stressed that the new ensemble is not only better but more popular, with programs of masses by Bach, Mozart and Beethoven being well-received by the public.

[Source: rmfclassic.pl, muzyka.onet.pl]


Kurzak At LA Opera

Polish-born soprano Aleksandra Kurzak has made her debut at the Los Angeles Opera in the role of Fiordiligi in Mozart’s Cosi fan tutte. She recently made her La Scala debut as Gilda in Verdi’s Rigoletto. Her appearances for the 2011/12 season include the title role in Lucia di Lammermoor in Warsaw, Adina in L’Elisir d’Amore at the Vienna Staatsoper, Gretel in Hansel und Gretel at the Metropolitan Opera, Susanna in L’Elisir d’Amore at Covent Garden, La Scala and Vienna Staatsoper, and Violetta in La Traviata in Warsaw and at the Berlin Staatsoper.

Running throughout the second half of September, Cosi fan tutte has the following production dates in October: Sunday, 10/2 at 2:00 p.m.; Wednesday, 10/5 at 7:30 p.m.; and Saturday, 10/8 at 2:00 p.m.

[Sources: Press release, laopera.com]


Opera Circle – Król Roger

On October 28 and 30, Opera Circle presents Król Roger [King Roger] by Karol Szymanowski in Cleveland. The cast is comprised of: Krzysztof Biernacki, baritone (Roger II, King of Sicily); Dorota Sobieska, soprano (Roksana, his wife); Andrzej Stec, tenor (Shepherd); David Sadlier, tenor (Edrisi, Wiseman of the Orient); Ray Liddle, bass (Archbishop); and Laura Avdey, mezzo-soprano (Deaconess). The Opera Circle Orchestra will be led by Maestro Domenico Boyagian.

Left: Andrzej Stec, tenor, and Dorota Sobieska, soprano

Dr. Peter Laki of Bard College presents the following Introduction to this ground-breaking opera by the ‘father of modern Polish music’:

“My God is beautiful, like me”—sings a mysterious, charismatic, and irresistibly erotic character in Polish composer Karol Szymanowski’s 1926 opera King Roger. Vital issues of religion, sexuality, and politics commingle in this still-underappreciated masterpiece, which boldly asks the question as to whether a head of state may allow himself to follow his own desires or must abide by the rigid rules on which his kingdom is founded. The dilemma is an ancient one: the libretto, originally written by the eminent Polish poet Jarosław Iwaszkiewicz but thoroughly reworked by the composer (they were cousins), was freely based on Euripides’ tragedy The Bacchae. Yet it hardly needs to be stressed that the dilemma is also a very modern one, perhaps even more timely today than it was in the 1920s.

Szymanowski (1882-1937) was a contemporary of Stravinsky and Schoenberg, but followed a personal path that couldn’t have been more different from theirs. He was most strongly marked by two composers who had died in the 1910’s: Claude Debussy (1862-1918) and Alexander Scriabin (1872-1915). To the Frenchman’s impressionism and the Russian’s mysticism he added a great love for the Middle East and an intense poetic passion all his own. A master orchestrator, he conveys his message by means of a lush instrumental texture; in the opera, the role of the orchestra is perhaps even more important than that of the singers.

Roger, the title character, was Roger II (1095-1154), King of Sicily, who played an important role in establishing the Mediterranean island as one of the major political powers in medieval Europe. Yet we learn very little about his actual feats from the opera, which revolves almost entirely around Roger’s inner turmoil. There are two more important characters besides the King: his wife Roksana and the mysterious Shepherd who sings the above-quoted line about God. (Szymanowski originally planned to call the opera The Shepherd.) The Shepherd appears in the realm as a messenger from an unknown world, with hedonistic ideas that threaten to undermine the Christian kingdom. Roksana immediately falls for the Shepherd’s message, but Roger initially resists. What will he decide in the end?

The opera is in three acts that, in terms of their musical style and artistic inspiration, may be characterized as the Byzantine, the Oriental, and the Ancient Greek act, respectively. All three cultures were palpably present in Sicily, and when Szymanowski travelled there as a young man, he was able to see traces of all three in Roger’s magnificent palace in the city of Palermo. Opera Circle’s performance of King Roger, thus, will take us on a trip to the far away and long ago, but at the same time remind us of the timelessness of the issues addressed. Most importantly: the music is incredibly beautiful, unlike anything else you’ve heard before. King Roger is sure to prove an unforgettable theatrical experience.

October 28 & 30, 2011 | 7:30 p.m.
Opera Circle presents Król Roger
First Baptist Church of Greater Cleveland
3630 Fairmount Blvd. Shaker Heights, OH 44118
Information: call Opera Circle at 216 441 2822 or email tickets@operacircle.org

[Source: operacircle.org]


Pasażerka At ENO

Pasażerka [The Passenger]—the first opera by Polish composer Mieczysław Weinberg (1919-1996)—has had quite a successful rise since its World Premiere on July 21, 2010 during the Bregenzer Festpiele. The Festpiele was dedicated to the works of the composer and Pasażerka had an entire section of the journal Krytyka muzyczna (3/2010) dedicated to it in 2010 as well.

Currently in rotation at the prestigious English National Opera, Pasażerka will be performed on October 7, 13, 15, 22 and 25 at 7:30pm. The following description is provided by the ENO website:

An encounter between two women—one a former Auschwitz guard, the other a former prisoner—plunges them both back into the horrors of the Holocaust, pitting perpetrator against victim in a moral battle between guilt and denial, retribution and absolution.

Based upon a semi-autobiographical novel by Auschwitz survivor Zofia Posmysz, Polish composer Mieczysław Weinberg’s 1968 opera The Passenger was effectively banned in the USSR and only finally received its triumphant stage premiere at last year’s Bregenz Festival, 14 years after Weinberg’s death. Hailed as ‘a work that demands and deserves to be seen’ (Opera), this 20th century masterpiece, by a composer whose music has been characterised as ‘Shostakovich with a Jewish accent’, now comes to ENO in David Pountney’s shatteringly intense staging, conducted by Sir Richard Armstrong.

Read a review of the ENO production at www.classical-music.com.

[Source: eno.org, bregenzerfestspiele.com]


Music at 2011 Polish Film Fest in L.A.

The 12th Annual Polish Film Festival in Los Angeles will take place from October 11-21, 2011. The festival will open with Black Thursday by Antoni Krauze and a star-studded gala during which both Polish and American moviemakers will walk the red carpet at Hollywood’s legendary Egyptian Theatre. The gala kicks off an extravagant, ten-day-long celebration of Polish Cinema Most films are screened at the Laemmle’s Sunset 5, however events also take place at CSUN Cinematheque, the Amity Foundation and The Village at Sherman Oaks.

This year’s Festival features several special events with the musicians behind the films. First, on Friday, October 14 at 7:00 p.m., composer Paweł Mykietyn (pictured at left) will participate in a Q&A with Vincent Coppola and Patrick Nichelson following the screening of their film Essential Killing by Jerzy Skolimowski at the CSUN Cinematheque “Reel Dilemmas” Series in Northridge, CA. Then, on Tuesday October 18 at 9:00 p.m., Bartłomiej Gliniak will be present for the screening of Joanna by Feliks Falk, which