Archive for January, 2007

Legacy of Adam Grant

Friday, January 5th, 2007

The tragedy of great artists, says Peggy Grant, is that they live only during the time that they work, and when they pass away, their creation dies with them if they have no one to pass on their way of seeing the world.  She never wanted this fate to befall her husband, Adam Grant, and therefore she continues his work in her own special way identifying with his creation, presenting it to the world by traveling to various Polish centers to talk about Adam Grant’s life and art.  He has remained alive in this way and by her side.

We were fortunate to have been visited by Mrs. Grant in the Cleveland Polish American Cultural Center on January 5, to hear her speak about Adam Grant and view his work in a slide show presentation.
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Talents of Polonia

Friday, January 5th, 2007

Several weeks ago, on December 10, 2006, I had a great pleasure to attend a concert “When Stars Collide” at E.J. Thomas Hall in Akron, Ohio.  I decided to spend this beautiful Sunday afternoon by going to the concert at E.J. Thomas Hall for two reasons: I needed to relax in the middle of my difficult exam session, and most importantly, I wanted to hear a young, very promising musician of the Polish origin.

Konrad Binienda (17), a senior at Firestone High School in Akron, appeared as a soloist with the Akron Symphony in the world premiere of his own composition Piano Concerto in e-minor.  When asked before the performance what was his inspiration for writing this concerto, he replied that he began working on this composition just after the departure of John Paul II.  The death of “the Polish national hero,” as he put it, inspired him to write this very beautiful music.  I am writing “beautiful” because this is the only word that comes to mind as appropriate to describe my experience. In this music I heard Zygmunt tolls from Wawel Hills, birds singing over Polish meadows, and all my nostalgia for Poland, albeit I would never be able to paint it with sound like Konrad painted it.  A more experienced ear could easily discern Chopin’s motives woven into the structure of the concerto.  Konrad himself remarked that Chopin has been his icon.
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Mozart’s Idyll

Friday, January 5th, 2007

It’s difficult to mention the titles of all of Mozarts’ works that have become known through the repertory of the Opera Circle. So I will content myself with mentioning only numbers: Bastien and Bastienne is the seventh premiere of a Mozart opera by the Polish troupe based in Cleveland.

Mozart created twenty scenic-vocal works, which, considering his short life, barely 35 years, was a great achievement. He composed his first opera at the age of 10. Bastien and Bastienne was created when this talented child was only twelve years old. (more…)

The Beginnings of Polish Mathematics

Friday, January 5th, 2007

Is it possible that our country, a land of great poets, writers, and poets, can also be one of the centers of world mathematics? Of course, thanks to the great mathematician, and astronomer, Nicolas Copernicus (1473-1543).

Were there others like him? And, by the way, what else can be discovered in the history of mathematics? We start with a few names from the distant past. Some of the young Poles studying at Italian, Austrian, or French universities in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries returned to Poland; others went from court to court practicing more applied notions of mathematics. Examples, writes R. Duda, include Witelon of Śląsk (ca.1230-ca. 1280) and Marcin Bylica (ca. 1434-1493; he spent almost his entire adult life in Italy and Hungary, as a professor at universities in Bologna and in Buda, or also as court astrologer to Roman cardinals and Hungarian kings). As we know, Copernicus, after studying at Italian universities, returned to Poland and created his greatw works in Frombork. (more…)