Mary Lou T. Wyrobek
At the annual Board Meeting of the Central Administration of the PSAA held in June in Buffalo, the Board received updates of the activities of the Districts and discussed various topics for the well-being of the organization. Our financial condition remains stable thanks to our annual fundraiser, the payment of dues, the profit realized by the 51st International Convention and the oversight of Fran Cirbus, our treasurer. Mary Lou Wyrobek reported that the Presentation Event for the winner of the Hlond Trophy held in Edmonton, Alberta for the Polonia Choir Society of Edmonton in April was a wonderful celebration thanks to the efforts of the Choir and especially its President, Ela Ostapowicz. It was recommended that such a presentation be regularly scheduled for the top-scoring Choir. A plaque and photo were presented and the Mixed Choir Travelling Trophy and Convention Trophy were on display at this semi-public event which included choir members, local dignitaries and the media. It was another opportunity to promote the PSAA.
At the Convention, we approved the awarding of an annual grant to a choir for a collaborative program, preferably engaging youth, which promotes Polish song and culture. Please see below for applying for next year’s grant. A grant has been awarded to the Symfonia Choir in Hamilton who is working on a program involving three young performers as well as Symfonia and a potential new choir for the PSAA, Cantabile, for a program celebrating Poland’s Independence. The Buffalo choirs may also be involved.
In addition, we will be contacting delegates from the Convention for a potential change to the By-Laws regarding membership to more than one choir. An email and mail vote is forthcoming. Fran Cirbus took the Hlond trophy to the local public television’s version of Antiques Roadshow, but was not able to get any significant information from the appraisers present. We will continue to pursue obtaining an appraisal on the trophy. As our news page indicates, Cardinal Hlond was recently name “Venerable” by the Vatican, a step closer to beatification.
The Kapitula present met and other members were polled with a proposal which was approved to grant Honorary Memberships to JoAnn Falletta, Director of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, and Daniel Hart, Executive Director of the Orchestra. The Orchestra recently travelled to Poland for concert performances at the invitation of Maestro and Madame Krzysztof and Elzbieta Penderecki. They were well received and are planning a concert program in this upcoming season celebrating the 100th anniversary of Poland’s Independence. Maestro Penderecki conducted the Philharmonic in December of 2016 and the orchestra has included programming of Polish composers and performers. The Chopin Singing Society will be dedicating its 119th Annual Concert to JoAnn Falletta, at which time the Honorary Membership will be presented. Mr. Hart’s membership will be presented at a brunch celebrated prior to the above-mentioned 100th anniversary Concert on October 28th.
In addition, District IX presented a candidate for the Leokadja Dombroska/PSAA Scholarship, Haley Brunstad, whose maternal grandparents came to the Buffalo area after WWII. Please see her biography on the Scholarship page. We hope you find her to be as worthy a recipient as the Board did!
We reviewed the various resolutions from the last Convention and found that progress is being made. One resolution was to keep members informed of activities. To that end, we have updated our website and encourage choirs to give us information about their events to put on the News page. Of course, we will continue with the Newsletter. We are grateful to Districts VII and IX for submitting articles and photos to the Polish American Journal which is distributed nationally.
Tickets for the upcoming January Lottery were distributed via the District Presidents. We are very grateful for the wonderful participation last year and encourage the same or better for next year. Two choirs received a $100 discount on their annual dues for selling 50 tickets or more: Kalina Singing Society and Jutrzenka Singing Society. The same incentive is in place for this year. District IV was not represented at the meeting, so we will be forwarding their tickets. Honorary Members will also be receiving their tickets in August or September.
We discussed the next Convention to be held in Buffalo. A decision was made to make music available in two waves: Music for the Mass and Concert will be made available via the website (Music Sheets Page) and via email, before the end of this year. Competition numbers will be made available by March or April of 2019. The concert is likely to include performances by the top choir in each category, performances of the mandated Competition piece by the combined choruses of male, female and mixed choirs, and a program for the entire combined chorus. We may include performances by our scholarship winners if that can be arranged. Once again, much of the work of the Committees will be done prior to the Convention, so Committee assignments will be completed by next May. The audit committee is a standing committee, as is the Constitution and By Laws Committeee.
Board Members present: Officers: Maria Lesniak, Mary Lou Wyrobek, Gary Bienkowski, Adrianne Kusmierczyk, Frances Cirbus, District Representatives: Joseph and Christine Wesolowski, Bozena Madej, Doubrava Krautschnieder (her sister Daniella was a guest), and Ursula Walker.
At the 51st International Convention, the following proposal was made and approved: The PSAA Central Administration will provide a grant of $1000 annually to a choir to prepare a collaborative program which engages people, preferably young people, with Polish song in the native tongue or in translation.
To this end, please forward a brief synopsis of a program you are planning for the upcoming fiscal year (May 1, 2019-April 30, 2020) in which there is collaboration with outside Polish or non-Polish group(s) involving Polish song. This may be something you are already involved in doing. The synopsis should outline the goal and budget of the program, who you are collaborating with, who your target audience is, and the numbers you expect. We do require that the request be presented in English for ease of the Central Administration. The winner of the grant will be determined by the Central Administration and its Board Members by June 30, 2019. Monies will be sent after the event is completed and a report on numbers participating and in attendance, as well as a flyer or postcard that you prepared to advertise the event. Photos would also be appreciated. The grant is not contingent upon the success of the event, but simply to insure that the event actually took place.
DEADLINE IS APRIL 30, 2019 AND EACH YEAR FOLLOWING.
SUBMIT REQUEST TO MARY LOU WYROBEK,
20 BROOKFIELD LANE #4, CHEEKTOWAGA, NY 14227 OR email@example.com