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Archive for the ‘Polonia’ Category

After months of planning and collaborating, we’re excited to finally tell you about an exhibition we have put together along with the Polish Consulate in Toronto and the Film Museum in Łódź.

On September 1st, 2011 the cinematic world of Krzysztof Kieślowski (director of such masterpieces as Oscar nominated the Three Colours Trilogy, Decalogue and The Double Life of Véronique) is coming to Toronto.

Marking the 70th anniversary of his birth and the 15th anniversary of his death, the Film Museum in Łódź along with the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Toronto and YouNxt proudly present the North American premiere of Kieślowski in Posters: The Films of Krzysztof Kieślowski in World Film Posters.

The collection consists of film posters from countries such as: Spain, Italy, Israel, Japan, the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Poland. Its travelled the world and in September will debut in Canada during the Toronto International Film Festival.

On loan from the Film Museum in Łódź for a limited engagement in the epicenter of Toronto’s film festival action, the exhibition will be on display at the Steam Whistle Gallery from September 1-10 and subsequently at the Metro Hall Rotunda from September 12-17. Admission is free.

Anyone with an appreciation for stunning classic and retro movie posters is invited to view the exhibition and attend the opening reception on Wednesday, August 31 from 7pm – 11pm at Steam Whistle Gallery.

Complete details are available on our EVENTS PAGE

Hope to see you all at the OPENING RECEPTION!!!

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PHOTO: Gladstone Hotel

On Tuesday, July 26 (that would be today) Toronto’s Gladstone Hotel will host a fundraiser for an art instillation called THE HAPPINESS PROJECT: IN THE HOUSE.

The instillation is an extension of the music album The Happiness Project by Charles Spearin who plays for the famed indie collective Broken Social Scene.

Interested in learning about people’s definition of ‘happiness’ Charles interviewed his neighbours and then took their spoken words and wrote music to accompany their responses. The resulting compositions are moving, insightful, inspirational and they eared a Juno music award.

For The Happiness Project: In the House local artists are enlisted to interpret songs from the album and are challenged to weave their own experience of the songs, as well as their own definition of happiness, into the works.

Each artists’ installation becomes a unique expression which also includes an interactive element.

The exhibit has already been hosted in Montreal and Kingston to critical acclaim.

The Happiness Project : In the House presented by Artist Bloc and Apple Crisp Festival in Kingston, Canada in March of 2010.

The Happiness Project at POP Montreal

It will make its Toronto debut on October 1st, 2011 as part of Scotiabank‘s Nuit Blanche.

The project is curated by Artist Bloc, a Toronto artists collective which was co-founded by Agi Gutkowska.

With their Gladstone Hotel fundraiser, Artist Bloc is aiming to raise funds for the Toronto exhibition and promises that the night will be filled with live music by bands and DJs.

More information is available on the Artist Bloc website.

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Anja Rubik and Sasha Knezevic (not actual wedding photo)

Love is in the air!

This past weekend Polish bombshell/supermodel Anja Rubik married her model fiancé Sasha Knezevic.

Anja Rubik and Sasha Knezevic in Majorca PHOTO: Modelinia Blog

From the looks of it, it was a model wedding (too easy 🙂 ). The couple tied the knot on the Spanish island of Majorca.

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Sasha (a former professional basketball player for club Varese in Italy, was born in Serbia but raised in Vienna) and Anja (recently named the most in-demand model) fashion god Karl Lagerfeld’s go-to-girl, got engaged after seeing the opera Dance of the Vampires directed by Roman Polanski (I am guessing that they are big fans of True Blood).  

An emerging fashion power couple of sorts, the two are the creative brains behind the Austrian fashion and lifestyle mag 25 Magazine

Check out the two love birds in action on Polish morning show Dzien Dobry TVN ( Good Morning TVN. )

And here’s Sasha at a Quebec based fashion shoot for Canadian fashion house RW&CO. ft

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“No human community can exist without culture.”

This is the wisdom shared by Vaclav Havel.

Vaclav, a former playwright and elected first president of the Czech Republic, shared this bit of insight as part of the Wisdom project.

Wisdom is the work of 34 year old New York based photographer Andrew Zuckerman who completed the project in 2008.

Inspired by the idea that one of the greatest gifts a generation can give to the next is wisdom gained from experience, the project consists of a collection of 50 photographs/interviews that capture the wisdom of legendary leaders and visionaries, over the age of sixty-five, from the worlds of politics, science, sports and the arts.

Wisdom exists in the form of a book of portraits, a film and a travelling exhibition.

The latter (the exhibition’s Canadian premiere) is on display at Toronto’s elegant Brookfield Place (formerly BCE Place) until August 5th, 2011.

Each copy of the book comes with a download code for a 60-minute film comprised of interviews from the project.

Among the global personalities featured are people such as Actor/Director (and all around Dirty Harry) Clint Eastwood, Diplomat and Nobel Peace Prize winner Henry Kissinger, first woman to become United States Secretary of State Madeline Albright and Actor Robert Redford.

There are also two notable characters as far as Poland and Canada are concerned. The first is Zbigniew Brzezinski, Warsaw born, McGill University educated, former United States National Security Advisor to President Jimmy Carter.

The second, is world renowned architect Frank Gehry who was born in Toronto and hails from Polish Jewish ancestry.

Wisdom is an inspiring and rewarding exhibition. If you’re in need of a gust of in your sails make sure to check it out. Best of all, it’s free!

And if you’re looking to combine the show with a nice dinner – we recommend either Ki  (Modern Japanese) or the eclectic Marché which are just steps away.

Enjoy your dose of wisdom!

But before you dig in, check out this trailer for the film…

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Photo: Jensen Gifford

There is popular music and unforgettable music. O&AL belong in the latter category.

An acronym for Olenka and the Autumn Lovers, O&AL is a London, Ontario band fronted by singer/songwriter Olenka Krakus and members Sara Froese, Evan Brodie, Christian Hegele, Simon Larochette,  Jeff Moon and Kelly Wallraff.

Influenced by her Polish roots and Canadian upbringing, Olenka delivers songs that resonate with passion. The songs don’t just play for you, they speak to you. And many of them relate specifically to her Polish heritage, especially her memories of Communist Poland and the country’s folklore.

Olenka Krakus Photo: Rob Nelson

Supported by a mix of instruments such as the cello, violin, accordion, trumpet, saxophone, lap steel, mandolin and glockenspiel the music resonates with an eclectic mix of traditional Eastern European ballads and North American country and folk tunes.

It’s a sound reminiscent of Arcade Fire, Cat Power, Tom Waits and Gogol Bordello but which manages to exist entirely on its own.

When Olenka and her band recently played at Toronto’s Gladstone hotel (as part of the NXNE festival) the crowd gave them a rousing ovation. And rightfully so.

Here is a taste…

It’s the sort of music that you can listen to over and over again and with every listen it creates a deeper impression.

The band’s newest album And Now We Sing is packed with memorable songs. It’s really worth checking out.

"And Now We Sing" album cover by Patrick Schmidt

"Motel Blues" lyrics

The band is also set to play a string of shows later this summer and fall so, if you get an opportunity, make sure to go. The truly great thing about small concert gigs is that they are so intimate and the bands always give it all they’ve got.

In the meantime you can listen to some of the tunes online on the CBC Radio 3 website.

And have a look at this interview that we conducted with Olenka during her NXNE show.

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Ontario Minister of Revenue Sophia Aggelonitis and Ontario PC Finance Critic Norm Miller with members of YouNxt and the Canada-Poland Chamber of Commerce.

Recently YouNxt along with the Canada-Poland Chamber of Commerce hosted their annual Garden Reception in the beautiful garden of the Polish Consulate in Toronto. The location overlooks the city skyline from across Lake Ontario and is really one of the most magnificent Consular spots in the country. If you’ve never visited the Consulate, we highly recommend it.

Toronto skyline as seen from the garden of the Polish Consulate

With Chopin’s music providing the soundtrack nearly one hundred business leaders, entrepreneurs and young professionals mixed and mingled to make some fruitful connections.

We were also very fortunate to be joined by some very distinguished guests and speakers including Ontario Minister of Revenue, the Honourable Sophia Aggelonitis, Ontario PC Finance Critic Norm Miller, Senior Trade Commissioner of the Republic of Poland Wlodzimierz Leszczynski, the President of the European Union Chamber of Commerce in Toronto Christian Frayssignes and “Canada’s Sales Coach” Tom Stoyan.

On hand was also Vice-Consul Wojciech Dziegiel to pass along greetings from our host the Consul General Marek Ciesielczuk.

Minister Sophia Aggelonitis

Ontario PC Finance Critic Norm Miller

Vice-Consul Wojciech Dziegiel

"Canada's Sales Coach" Tom Stoyan

Director of YouNxt Filip Terlecki

The aim of the Garden Reception is to provide business leaders and young professionals with the opportunity to meet and hear from Government Officials and to network with leaders and entrepreneurs from various industries. The event always attracts a diverse professional crowd including those breaking ground in social media, business and arts & culture.

Many thanks to Peter Calak from the Gravity Bureau for snapping the great photos. And, most importantly, thanks to you for delighting us with your presence.

The Gravity Bureau Inc. crew

Greetings from Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty

Greeting from Ontario Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak

If you didn’t have an opportunity to attend but would like to next year, please drop us an email at younxt@gmail.com in order to find out how you can be part of the event.

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Anna Cyzon at the premiere of Textuality

Finding love in the digital age can get very complicated. With BlackBerrys, iPhones and Androids who really has the  time to have a meaningful face-to-face conversation. And maintaining all those relationships can be a full-time juggling act.

Enter Textuality – a romantic comedy about two people trying to get into a relationship while attempting to first get out of the multiple relationships they are managing through their BlackBerrys.

The film stars Sex and the City hunk Jason Lewis, Will & Grace’s Eric McCormack and Carly Pope (who you’ll recognize from the controversial indie hit Young People F’ucking.)   

It hit the screens a few weeks ago and is probably out on video if you care to check it out. And if you’ve already seen it – let us know what you thought.

Also making an appearance is singer Anna Cyzon (a former correspondent for CTV’s eTalk and a host for MTV Canada) who last year was the runner-up in the Polish pre-selections for the prestigious Eurovision Song Contest.

We asked Anna about her involvement in the film…

YouNxt: How did you become involved in the film?

Anna: My agent sent me the script. I initially read for the role of Dani (Carly Pope’s best friend in the film) but I was so busy with Eurovision that I didn’t have time to prep my lines, so…Erin it was!

YouNxt: Tell us a bit about your character.

Anna: Erin is the girl that breaks Jason Lewis’ heart in the film. They have this perfect relationship, he proposes, and then she ditches him at the altar. That pretty much sets up the whole film. After that he becomes a player and well…you’ll have to see the rest of the flick to find out what happens.

YouNxt: What did you learn by working with experienced actors like Eric McCormack, Jason Lewis and Carly Pope?

Anna: Acting is fun but it is not as easy as it seems. Experienced actors like Carly and Eric put a lot of time into their craft, and they really dig deep. I have a long way to go if film is something I want to do more of down the road.

YouNxt: So, is acting something you’d like to pursue in the future?

Anna: Definitely but not until I release a few records, win a couple of Grammys and tour the world once or twice. I’ve got a lot to get out of my system first. Music is my first passion and until I’m fully satisfied that I’ve reached my full potential in that realm, the acting will have to wait. But I’m sure I’ll dabble here and there if the right opportunity arises.

Sex and the City's Jason Lewis

YouNxt: Texting – a relationship maker or relationship killer?

Anna: People misread intention all the time. And it’s so easy to misinterpret tone. I think that when it comes to relationships, texting is like communication breakdown 101. I mean, I can’t count how many times I’ve argued with guys over text. It’s so amateur. Like why not just pick up the phone and call! I think we often hide behind text.

Will & Grace’s Eric McCormack with Carly Pope

YouNxt: What projects are you working on now?

Anna: Currently I’m focused on putting out my first record in Europe. In the meantime I’m back in the studio writing material for my second album. There’s a lot of work to do.

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