Nina Kossman
Nina Kossman

December 20th - a creative evening was held in restaurant Uncle Vanya for poet, translator and artist Nina Kossman. The author's Russian and English texts were beautifully illustrated by bright works of art. Nina Kossman was born in Moscow and emigrated to America in 1972. She published several collections of poems; Interruptions (Moscow, 1990), Behind the Border (Harper Collins, 1994 and 1996), The Right Hand of Sleep (Philadelphia, 1998), Gods and Mortals (Oxford University Press, 2001). The poetry, prose and their translations were published in the United States, Canada, Spain, Holland and Japan. Plays based off the texts were staged on off-off-Broadway theatres in New York City. Translations of poems by Marina Tsvetaeva were put together into two books, In the Innermost Hour of the Soul and Poem of the End.

The second half of the evening held performances by Yevgeniy Brady, Sofia Yuzefpolskaya-Tsilosani, Yelena Kushnerova, Anna Nina Kovalenko, Ilya Bronstein and others.

Dmitry Garanin, Gennady Katsov
Dmitry Garanin, Gennady Katsov

December 18th - we celebrated the anniversary of our partnership with the National Writers Union by staging a pre-New Year literary program which had performances by Gennady Katsov and Dmitry Garanin.

Gennady Katsov; poet and journalist, author of eight books of poetry, award winner by the journal Children of Ra, nominee of the Russian Award, Voloshinsky Award and Moscow Count award. Dmitry Garanin; poet and physicist, author of many scientific articles and several books of poetry, executive editor of the Pushkin Society of America's bulletin.

The program held a discussion in which the speakers answered questions, and offered autographed books for sale. An encore was requested so some of the poets recited more of their pieces. In concluding the program, Tatyana Sheremeteva revealed to all those present our plans to hold a conference in the Russian language sector, and the potential upcoming opportunity of our joining the American Writers Union.

December 14th - the "St. Petersburg" bookstore, located on 5th Avenue in Manhattan, held a presentation of Tatyana Sheremeteva's novel Life is Easy. As per tradition, readers asked the author questions, purchased the book and received autographs. This time, however, an event of literature turned into one of action with the introduction of a play based on the author's books. The small production included Pushkin Society of America president Victoria Kurchenko and the Board of Directors - of which Tatyana is a part - and they voiced their hopes that this kind of interactive literary theatre could join together the reader and writer platforms.


Some of the impromptu role's dialogues were read by Vladimir Andreyev and Victoria Valie.

December 4th. The Pushkin Society in America hosted a one of a kind event  – "An Art Cabaret Auction", conducted in both Russian and English languages. The Society hopes that its  newly launched program An Art and  Music Salon, from now on will gather and entertain its loyal and new art and music enthusiasts on a regular basis.

During the opening ceremony, special guest Patrick Lewis, Outreach Coordinator at Office Letitia James Public Advocate for the City of New York, congratulated Victoria Kurchenko, President of the Pushkin Society in America and its members on their tireless efforts to "give voice  through the arts" to Russian speaking community of the greater New York area and expressed hope for future collaboration.

This event, titled "A Cabaret of Art, Chocolate and Wine" took the audiences on  a captivating journey of trivia and history of Chocolate around the world and was led through lecture and music by a musician/cross over singer Larissa Grabois.

Viktoria Kurchenko, Patrik Lewis
Viktoria Kurchenko, Patrik Lewis
Olga Potap, Patrik Lewis, Larissa Grabois
Olga Potap, Patrik Lewis, Larissa Grabois

Larissa, who is 24 and sings in 10 languages, entertained and  surprised the guests with her rich and ear pleasing voice, wide vocal range as well as her artistically engaging and elegant stage  manner. While cruising through history of chocolate Larissa, a member of Pushkin Society since 2013, sang selections in 5 languages which ranged from classical Russian romances and soprano Italian arias to Latin, French and Hebrew covers, as well as low key American jazz standards.

During the art auction, painter Yelena Lezhen, sparked audience  interest  with her work "Chocolate Kingdom" and to everyone's awe, her painting was instantly purchased. The conceptually interesting art works by Yelena Golovanova-Starenko, Marina Bozin and Evgeni Tonevitsky, members of the Pushkin Society Artists's Guild, provoked audience discussion and several were  purchased at the end of the auction.

November 29th. The Cabinet on Russian-speaking immigrant concerns under the NYC Public Advocate - the first-ever such unit under any government agency in USA. We are proud to start the second year in this highly intensive and honorable pro bono job of de facto managing our Cabinet as we work on how to break the barriers to funding for our nonprofits, to representation for our immigrant community leadership in key institutions, and to economic opportunities for our highly skilled and educated immigrant professionals.

Many thanks  to  Public Advocate Letitia (Tish) James and her extraordinary staff for giving our group this unique opportunity. And thank you to all our amazing team members from Russian-speaking Community Council of Manhattan and the Bronx, Pushkin Society in America, Russian American Cultural Center, Lodyjensky Immigration Archive Center of Russian and Ukrainian Culture, and others for their commitment, team spirit, and hard work.

November 20th - In bilateral cooperation, the Union of Writers of America (National Writers Union) and the Pushkin Society officially opened their Autumn/Winter season. Tatyana Sheremeteva, writer and curator of the project, presented the head of the New York office of the Union of Writers of America Alex Feytz. In her presentation she thanked everyone for their successful work and wished then all luck in their further joint initiatives. Society president Victoria Kurchenko, member of the Union Writers of America, this time operated as an author of her own texts.

October 29th - Nina Zaretsky, author of a documentary on Yevgeny Yevtushenko, during a meeting with him, presented him with a medal on contribution to the development of Russian culture reports in the United States on behalf of the Pushkin Society. Yevgeny Yevtushenko has been associated with teaching work since 1991.She presented poems, stories and fragments of her transcription of 'One Thousand and One Nights' - a monument to medieval literature - to the assessment of the audience. Alexander Dranov introduced the listeners to the creations of Don Aminado and read excerpts out of Dina Rubina's works. The evening's musical program was prepared by Anna Lerner; her violin performance included pieces by Vivaldi, Albinoni, Mendelssohn and Shostakovich.

He spent many years giving lessons to Russian Literature students of the University of Tulsa, in the state of Oklahoma, and held open lectures which drew numerous admirers in Queens College, a City University of New York. The assemblies of Y. A. Yevtushenko had always touched on a wide range of historical and political problems, answering questions about modern Russia. Yevgeniy Aleksandrovich expressed words of gratitude addressed to the Pushkin Society and wished it further success in its future endeavors.

Portrait of Marjorie Post
Portrait of Marjorie Post

October 16th - Representatives of the Pushkin Society in America welcomed its guests in Washington D.C. The day began with a visit to the unique Hillwood museum, the history of which is intertwined by invisible threads with the archival heritage of Russian emigration; the mistress of the estate and the creator of the collection of art works by Marjorie Post was friends with and danced at the balls of Count A. A. Obolensky, the first president of the Nobility Circle who was present at the birth of the Pushkin Society of America in the 1930s.


Later on at 4pm the salon of one of the most beautiful mansions in the U.S. called Russia House (no actual relation to modern Russia) was opened. The guests were entertained by performances of Pushkin Society Vice President and bard Boris Borukaev,; poet and master of humorous sketches Alexander Dolinov; and artists Marina Kashirskaya, Yevgeniy Tonevsky and Leo Genkin who presented their works to the assessment of the audience. The paintings gracefully fit in with the interior of the living room adorned with a fireplace and colorful illuminations of crystal goblets.

The Pushkin Book Festival, also taking place that day, surprised the guests with their unexpected arrival. The program was extended by artist, writer and winner of the 'Russian Award' Valery Bochkov; festival organizer and Russian language tutor of bilingual children Natalia Kolodin; and children's poet Masha Rupasova, who traveled from Canada specially to attend the festival. Journalist Marina Logunova gifted the Pushkin Society with a personally done still life of sunflowers. The work of art was immediately purchased by Yelena Fix, the act marking the beginning of a new stage in the life of the literary and artistic salon, which now has its own bilingual catalogue.

Yelena Yakovich
Yelena Yakovich

October 10th - The Ninth Independent Russian Documentary Film Festival in New York

The Ninth Festival took place at the Anthology Film Archives, DCTV, and Brooklyn Public Library.

For best film from a special selection went from the Pushkin Society in America – Special Medal to film The Mystery of Mandelstam’s Archive. The Story of Sonia Bogatyreva, film director Yelena Yakovich (Russia).

Victoria Kurchenko and  Letitia James
Victoria Kurchenko and Letitia James

May 17th - a meeting "Talk to Tish" of the Public Defenders City of New York (vice mayor) Letitia James with the representatives of the Russian diaspora was held for the first time. Along with officials Timothy Tapia and Jessica Reynoso, the discussion had been prepared by the cabinet of Russian-speaking immigrants which consisted of; Dimitri Glinski, Regina Khidekel, Victoria Kurchenko, Natalia Mizuri, Natalia Piller, Victor Levin and Alexander Egudin. Deputy Mark Treyger participated in the meeting with Leticia James. The discussion consisted of employment issues that former Soviet Union era specialists faced within the system of urban management, and the transport as well as construction of coastal areas funded by cultural initiatives.

Letitia James marked a new stage of cooperation between the various organizations, agencies and authorities by meeting with the chief lawyer of the city. Her actions were very well received by all attendants of the meeting, and to commemorate that historical event, President of the Pushkin Society of America/LIAC Victoria Kurchenko gifted Letitia James a book about Pushkin.

May 15th - the Odessa Fraternity of New York held a book fair. A special prize for the exhibition of F.A. Shargorod's 'Odessa - Poetry Enclosure' photo album was presented to the Pushkin Society of America. A book of poems by Boris Borukaev, most of which depicts the nature of his native city of Odessa, was also noted by the organizers. The program of performances consisted of Russian-speaking poets and writers; Emil Draitser, Inna Bogachinskaya, Bella Ezersky, Yuiry Bunchik, Vadim Yarmolinez, Pavel Lembersky, Anna Nemerovsky, Edward Amchislavky, publisher Ilya Levkov and many others. Thanks to the efforts of Valeriy Savinkin, head of the fraternity, fans of the book were able to communicate with each other and meet the author.

April 25th. The City Hall in New York hosted a meeting of the Cabinet of the Russian-speaking representatives: Regina and Roman Khidekel, Victoria Kurchenko, Boris Borukaev, Natalia Mizuri, Natalia Piller, Victor Levin and Alexander Egudin with the Director of Public relations Timothy Tapia and coordinator Jessica Reynoso. They discussed issues of preparation of official meeting of New York Public Counsel (Deputy Mayor)  Letitia James with the Russian Americans' Diaspora. The planned format will include the answers to the questions of the participants of the meeting. Regina Khidekel and Victoria Kurchenko offered to host a small exhibition of paintings and a book fair.

April 17th. The Writers Union of America held a performance of bard Mark Belitsky and parody master Alexey Berezin. The concert was called 'Jokingly and Seriously', and included original songs and humorous poems, that attracted the attention of a special technique of verbal creativity. The evening was officiated by Yuzef Salaam and Tatyana Sheremeteva.

Yevgeny Tonevitsky
Yevgeny Tonevitsky

Artist and gallery curator Yevgeny Tonevitsky supplemented the satirical theme with a series of his own caricatures. Artists Inna Budovsky and Zinaida and Savelia Kelebeyev supported the overall lyrical mood. All major painters spoke of themselves and demonstrated their compositions.

Victoria Kurchenko made the announcement that after a 50 year the Pushkin Society will resume its publishing work, and presented the book of Alexei Berezin, the revelation of which turned out to be a surprise for the author.

Anne Carson
Anne Carson

April 6th. A special program called 'Jazz Through Culture' was held, the edition dedicated to the 50th year of the Anna Akhmatova memorial. The host of the evening, Yulia Khramtsova, presented the artists participating in the exhibition: Helga Landauer, Zinaida and Savelia Kelebeyev, Inna Kaplun, Yevgeny Tonevitsky and Marina Bozina. The "open mic" was launched with a performance of the guest of honor Anne Carson, who spoke of what life was like in New York for Viktor Gorenko, brother of Anna Akhmatova, whose memorial was held in the Brooklyn Cathedral of the Holy Trinity in 1966. Familiarity with Anna and further work with her family archives was possible due to the efforts of Larissa Pliss.

Elena Kuschnerova
Elena Kuschnerova

The poetry readings were begun with Akhmatova's poem 'Pushkin'. Classic, famous lines were read and translated into English by Elena Pozin. Poets Aleksandr Dolinov and Rita Balmina also read their poems which were dedicated to the Silver Age. A mini concert of classical pieces was played by pianist Elena Kuschnerova and created a unique atmosphere in the club. Her masterful performance captivated the audience, and its musicological digression organically joined the literary parts of the evening with the artistic ones.


The first half of the program was concluded by a showing of a Helga Landauer documentary about Anna Akhmatova. After an intermission a Jazz sextet played under the conduction of Valery Ponomarev.

March 20th, In the Midwood central library of Brooklyn, the Pushkin Society of America held a program of Russian and Ukrainian emigration archives named by Lodijensky as the 'Voice of Tragedy'. The purpose of it was for the organizers to attempt the philosophical and artistic comprehension of the dramatic art.

Before the audience were: People's Artist of the Ukrainian Academy of Arts writer-author Mikhail Turovsky and Victoria Kurchenko-Sizova, who presented a play in verse called 'Maydaniona'. The main idea under discussion was that "tragedy" is one of the more ancient problems of theoretical aesthetics, and aroused much interest from the audience.


Commentary was presented by: journalist Vitaly Orlov, former public writer Semyon Pechersky, writer Tamara Asenkova and scientist Yuriy Magarshak. The evening was concluded with a showing of a movie about the existence of human suffering that is revealed in the paintings of Mikhail Turovsky.

March 2nd. In conjuction with Elegant New York magazine, an opening of the Spring season of 'Jazz Through Culture' was held in club Zinc. The photo exhibition was attended by; Sergey Kovalevsky, Tatiana Borodina, Katerina Grigorieva and Dina Raketa. The photographs on display were divided into two themes: 'New York' and 'Colors of Nature'.

Dina Raketa
Dina Raketa
Sergey Kovalevsky
Sergey Kovalevsky
Elena Starenko
Elena Starenko

Short "open mic" presentations were given by: Elena Starenko, a guest from California,  and Yulia Khramtsova. Sofiya Yuzefpolskaya-Tsiloslani, Matthew DeTroi and Ilya Levitin prepared a poetic musical composition specially for the event.

Tatiana Borodina and Edward Amchislavsky
Tatiana Borodina and Edward Amchislavsky

After an intermission a documentary was shown about the great theatrical figure Michael Chekov, who completed his career path in the U.S. It is worth noting that some of that time Michael Chekov lived in the famous city of Churaevka, which was the established home of Russian emigration writer G. D. Grebenshikov.

Pavel Grushko
Pavel Grushko

February 27th - At the National Writers Union hosted an evening Pavel Grushko - poet, playwrighter, translator of classical and modern literatures of Spain and Latin America, Portugal and Brazil, the UK and the US.
The program was opened by the American poet Garrett Robinson who welcomed Pushkin Society in America as a partner, he talked about the writers' association, and invited everyone to watch his Broadway's show Letters to Zoey.

Garrett Robinson
Garrett Robinson

There was an exhibition of artists as well. Marina Kashirskaya prepared for the audience firework of the bright colors that harmonized with video lectures. Mark Polyakov presented his fantastic gallery of portraits of the classics of Russian literature in Harlem background scenery. Elena Starenko exhibited a series of illustrations for books, expand on the wall in the form of this attempted scrolls.

 Marina Kashirskaya
Marina Kashirskaya
Elena Starenko
Elena Starenko
Mark Polyakov
Mark Polyakov

Pavel Grushko read his poetry, translations, biographies and shared interesting landmarks - details of the creation of the libretto "The Star and Death of Joaquin Murieta" dramatic cantata based on Pablo Neruda. There were questions and answers, together with photographs of the master, then refreshments and discussion on the sidelines. VIDEO

February 13th - The fifth annual conference of the National Union of Writers of America (NWU). As partners and members of the Union, representatives of the Pushkin society  took part in it for the first time. The work was practical, all participants were professionals of the book industry and university professors acquainted with modern process of creating books. One of the first greetings by Susan Davies, head of sales (Co-Chair for the NWU's Book Division), was dedicated to the protection of copyrights. Troy Johnson, founder and webmaster of the literary club-agency in his video presentation showed the importance of interaction between authors and social networks, gave advice to promote literary content pages in Facebook. 


Then all participants were divided into groups and continued dialogues in thematic sections. Every 30 minutes a new session was started, consisting of discussions, exchange of information and the master-class specialist.

February 3rd. Аt Club Zinc an unusual meeting of the representatives of all the waves of Russian emigration took place. S. L. Hollerbach presented the second wave. He opened the evening and expressed his gratitude to the director of the film about his work El Earthburn, shared his memories of life in New York and the work in his art studio.

The presentation of Edward Schogolev's photo exhibition dedicated to the street musicians and underground artists, conceptually coincided with the  esthetic vision of Hollerbach who often portrayed on his canvases vagabonds, merchants, seeking to convey the breath of the streets and the city itself. Then, at the "open microphone" Polina Pechersky, Gennady Rusakov, Silva Ryabichev recited their poems:, as well as poets from the "jazz experience": Rudolf Fuhrmann, Elena Grachev, Alexander Dolinov.


Pre-screening of the film "The Naked Truth," which went on literary topics, pleased with the professional work of El (Elena Rodina) - she made a closing statement and answered questions of the audience and journalists. Valery Ponomarev, the representative of the third wave; actor Peter von Berg; S.L Hollerbach and V.D. Gashurova, artist, for the first time sat together in Manhattan bar, justifying the name of "Jazz through the culture."

January 6th. Club Zinc held a literary Orthodox Christmas Eve event, continuing a series of programs for "The World Through Culture". We spoke of Christian traditions and watched documentaries about the unique Elli - an exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, on the history of the New Year's holiday in the Soviet Union; we read poetry and exchanged books and opinions.

Artist, writer and radio journalist Aneta Meiman, whose art was exhibited on that evening, read her story, and answered questions about working with canvas, one of which was dedicated to the Mother of God. For contributing to the "understanding and unraveling of the literary process", Aneta Meiman was awarded a diploma and a medal of the Writers' Union of Russia, given to her during that evening on behalf of the party leaders of Moscow's colleagues.

Poets Alexander Dolinov and Galina Czikovich performed some of their pieces. Ilya Levkov, publisher, introduced everyone to the newly published memoirs of Delvig that were released in "Liberty". Open mic was also granted to other guests.


Irina Petruk prepared an authentic Slavic dish, the tasting of which was guided by a Pushkin hostess, who explained the meaning behind the ritual to the American guests.


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WE ARE 82! / НАМ 82 года!

Presidents of the Pushkin Society

1. Boris Brasol, founder      (1935 -1963)

2. Gregory Mesniaeff          (1963 -1967)

3. Semen Bogolubov         (1967 -1971)

4. Serge Woyciechowski     (1971 - 1973)

5. Nadezhda Baklanova      (1973 - 1995)

6. Catherine Lodyjensky     (1995 - 2009)

7. Victoria Kurchenko     ( 2009 - present)