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Polish Talent 2009, produced by Radio Chicago, will be the second exhibition of talents and skills of Polish American Youths from the Chicagoland area; a demographic consisting of over two million people.  The aim of the event is to discover Polonia’s talents, showcase them to a wide audience, and reward the outstanding. This event is the largest showcase of Polish Youth Talent outside of Poland, and is thus the mostly widely covered media event of its kind.

The first Polish Talent Show, of 2008, for which tryouts started in May and went on till October 2008, saw many hundreds participants, not counting their family and friends, from various dance, martial art, singing, acting, sports, magic, musical and more backgrounds.  

Dziennik Zwiazkowy - Polish Daily writes the follwing about Polish Talent 2008: “Polish Talent 2008, which took place on October 26 2008 at Guerrin Prepatory High School in River Grove, was an unexpected sensation during this year’s Polish Heritage Month.  It was not only an engaging and interesting spectacle, but an unusually entertaining and educational one.  This we owe not only to the organizers, but also the parents and teachers of the mostly adolescent performers.  Thanks to the initiative of the producers and hosts of Radio Chicago WPNA 1490 AM, Chicago’s Polish society could show off their best, and to this time hidden, side displaying talents and skills off all sorts.  The organizers of the event put forth a monumental effort in screening over 400 contestants from May to October 2008, of which 200 made it to the finals.  The performers, ranging from age 6 to 80, sang, danced, played instruments, performed acrobatics, sports, stunts, recited stories and more. The 1st place, and a prize of $500, went to 18 year-old piano virtuoso, Bartek Ciężobka—student of the Ignacy Jan Pedarewski Music School and Glenbrook East High School in Lombard.  He took first place with a skillful and beautiful rendition of „Fantastic Krakowiak,” by Ignacy Pedarewski. The event, hosted by Slawomir Bielawiec and Waldemar Lada, delivered artistic value, emotions  many experiences to the audience filling the expansive Guerin Prep Auditorium.   Jan Stach, the eldest participant, surprised the judges and audience with rare grass, leaf and comb playing skills.  There was also an exotic flare with the performance of an ancient Hindu dance by Joanna Sielewicz. Karina Kumas thrilled the audience with a professional interpretation of the known song titled, „Okularnicy.” The teenage rockband, „Circular Soul,” pleased the crowd with a cult classic, „When I was a little boy,” by the Blackouts. There was a lot of dynamic dance.  The dance group JUMP put on a very well choreographed show with excellent outfits and attitude.  A huge group of young violinists dubbed the Happy Fidlers put together a great performace of synchronized instrumentation, dance and costumes.  These are just a couple of examples of the rich Polish Talent Chicago program from 2008.  We will not forget about the emotions and performances this event inspired for some time to come; especially the moment all the performers joined the hosts on stage at the end of the finals for a celebration during the farewell song „So Much Sun in Our City,” by Dorota Animuckiej-Kozlowski. 

This year’s auditions began in early January 2009, and the finals will take place on October 2009.  The finalists from all categories will perform before a live audience at the Guerin Prep Auditorium at 8001 W. Belmont Ave, River Grove IL 60171.  The event is expected to generate an huge audience and list many performers.  

Radio Chicago will be seeking sponsorship from its long time supporters, including Jewel Osco.  A major advertising campaign will run in unison with the run up to, and the competition itself.    

Polish Media outlets Dziennik Zwiazkowy and Polki w Świecie helped in publicizing this event and Jewel Osco deserves the most credit for bringing Polish Talent Chicago to life as its main sponsor.




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sponsors 2009 edition:


Handzel And Associates


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Polish-American Music School in Chicago







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