Monthly Archives: October 2011

Suspicious Package performs at a fundraiser for Saladbars2schools at the Embassy of Denmark

Elin Kylv?, Embassy of Norway; Pia Ulrikke Dahl, Embassy of Norway; Linda Tocchini-Valentini, Embassy of Sweden; ?sd? Hreinsd?tir, Embassy of Iceland; and Urd Milbury, Embassy of Norway.Elin Kylv?, Embassy of Norway; Pia Ulrikke Dahl, Embassy of Norway; Linda Tocchini-Valentini, Embassy of Sweden; ?sd? Hreinsd?tir, Embassy of Iceland; and Urd Milbury, Embassy of Norway.

THE POPULAR band Suspicious Package rocked the house at the Embassy of Denmark last week in a celebration of Nordic Food Day, entertaining people with their familiar classic tunes while guests jammed the food line to partake of the Danish delights for healthy living cooked up by Chef Trina Hahnemann.

The program started off with Ambassador Peter Taksoe-Jensen welcoming the crowd to his elegant chancery, and then Suspicious Package members Tim Burger, Bryan Greene, Josh Meyer, Tom Toles and the ever glamorous Christina Sevilla cranked it up, inspiring more than a few of the prim and proper Washington crowd to break into dance, burning up the few delectable calories they acquired eating the wonderful cuisine.

Proceeds from the evening went to Saladbars2schools.

Danish Ambassador Peter Taksoe-Jensen gives the welcome remarks. Danish Ambassador Peter Taksoe-Jensen gives the welcome remarks.

Suspicious Package performs at the event.Suspicious Package performs at the event.

Rhoda Septilici and Lieutenant Colonel Per Lyse Rasmussen, Embassy of DenmarkRhoda Septilici and Lieutenant Colonel Per Lyse Rasmussen, Embassy of Denmark

The group Suspicious PackageThe group Suspicious Package

Suspicious Package rocks Saladbars2schools at the Embassy of Denmark

EmbofDenmark.NativeAmMuseum.20111028 002.JPG

 

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Luxembourg Embassy Night in Washington with the International Correspondents Committee

Ambassador of Luxembourg Jean Paul Senninger (on the right) gave an informative speech about his country. To the left Myron Belkind of the International Correspondents Committee and former National Press Club President Donna Leinwand.Ambassador of Luxembourg Jean Paul Senninger (on the right) gave an informative speech about his country. To the left Myron Belkind of the International Correspondents Committee and former National Press Club President Donna Leinwand.

IT WAS ONE OF those classic Washington events on Wednesday evening, October 26, when Ambassador Jean Paul Senninger welcomed the National Press Club’s International Correspondents Committee to Luxembourg Embassy Night at the embassy’s beautiful chancery on Embassy Row.

AMBASSADOR Senninger gave an informative speech about Luxembourg, a pivotal nation of 500,000 inhabitants with the world’s highest per capita gross domestic product and a central role in the European Union and the euro currency zone. Additionally, he talked about its history, culture, tourism and business opportunities as well as relations with its relations with the United States. The speech was followed by a lively Q&A.

Myron Belkind of the International Correspondents Committee (on the right) gives the traditional National Press Club mug to Ambassador Jean Paul Senninger of Luxembourg. On the left is Keith Hill.Myron Belkind of the International Correspondents Committee (on the right) gives the traditional National Press Club mug to Ambassador Jean Paul Senninger of Luxembourg. On the left is Keith Hill.

Luxembourg Embassy NightLuxembourg Embassy Night

Prince Daniel of Sweden and Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs G?ran H?glund participate in health care seminar in Washington, D.C.

Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs G?ran H?glund and Prince Daniel of Sweden during a coffee break at the seminar at the House of Sweden on Tuesday morning.Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs G?ran H?glund and Prince Daniel of Sweden during a coffee break at the seminar at the House of Sweden on Tuesday morning.

“PROVIDERS PARTNERING with Patients” was the topic of a Tuesday morning, October 25, seminar that drew a big audience to the House of Sweden in Washington, D.C. Present were Prince Daniel of Sweden - his first official visit to the United States – as well as the Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs G?ran H?glund. After welcoming remarks by Swedish Ambassador Jonas Hafstr?m and an introduction by moderator Dr. Michael McGinnis, Senior Scholar and Executive Director at the Institute of Medicine, both Prince Daniel and G?ran H?glund addressed the seminar, talking about the importance of solving the many issues surrounding health care.

THE SEMINAR ADDRESSED disease prevention, leading a healthy lifestyle, and the role of health care providers. New initiatives and strategies in both Sweden and the United States we also presented. Unhealthy lifestyles such as tobacco-, alcohol- and drug use, unhealthy eating and lack of exercise were discussed extensively by the panel.

SWEDISH MINISTER for Health and Social Affairs G?ran H?glund talked about the need for comprehensive strategies and placing more responsibility on health care consumers. He also stated that people need access to the right information through electronic records and digital technology, and emphasized the importance of prevention in health care systems.

DR. ANAND K. PAREKH, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health, Science and Medicine, HHS, said that prevention makes up less than five percent of all health care spending. Yet he said, there is extensive criticism in the United States that government involvement in health care creates a “nanny-state.” He also noted some economists’ claims that “prevention doesn’t save money” and is a “soft science,” while the financial pressures on physicians’ practices leave them with little time to discuss prevention with their patients. He emphasized the need for a fundamental cultural shift in the U.S. – “to make it easy for individuals to be healthy.”

DR. LARS WEINEHALL, Professor at Ume?University in Sweden, added that 20 percent of the burden of disease is because of unhealthy lifestyles, and that 50 percent of women and 65 percent of men have at least one unhealthy lifestyle habit.

Prince Daniel of Sweden (to the right) arrives at the House of Sweden. To the left Swedish Ambassador to the United States Jonas Hafstr?m. Prince Daniel of Sweden (to the right) arrives at the House of Sweden. To the left Swedish Ambassador to the United States Jonas Hafstr?m.

OTHER SPEAKERS included Dr. Virginia Moyer, Chair, U.S. Preventive Services Task Force; Dr. Anders Tegnell, Head of Department, Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen); Dr. David Meyers, Director, AHRQ’s Center for Primary Care, Prevention, and Clinical Partnerships; Dr. Lars-Erik Holm, Director General, Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare; and Dr. Chesley Richards, Director, CDC’s Office of Prevention Through Healthcare and Office of the Associate Director for Policy

Prince Daniel and G?ran H?glund in conversations during a break. Prince Daniel and G?ran H?glund in conversations during a break.

THE SEMINAR was arranged by the Embassy of Sweden, the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen), in collaboration with the Department of Health and Human Services.

Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs G?ran H?glund in discussions during a break.Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs G?ran H?glund in discussions during a break.

Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs G?ran H?glund Speaks at Health Care Seminar at SAIS in Washington, D.C.

G?ran H?glund, Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs, during the seminar - G?ran H?glund, Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs, during the seminar – “Financial Tomorrow’s Health Care. Challenges and Solutions” — at SAIS on Monday evening.

A SEMINAR FOCUSING on “Financing Tomorrow’s Health Care. Challenges and Solutions” at the acclaimed Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) earlier this week brought together G?ran H?glund, the Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs; Harry C. McPherson, Jr., who served as counsel and special counsel to President Lyndon B. Johnson from 1965-1969; and Abdo S. Yazbeck, Lead Health Economist at the World Bank,. The moderator was Mark Plotkin, political commentator and analyst at WTOP Radio.

ACCORDING TO the panelists, the financing of health care works differently in various countries, but many of the challenges are similar. In fact, balancing rising costs with the health care needs of a growing older population seems to be a common issue. Mr. H?glund talked about the Swedish health care system, which is government financed. He said the goal, when it comes to financing, is how to “produce the best result for the lowest cost.”

Harry C. McPherson, Jr., who served as counsel and special counsel to President Lyndon B. Johnson from 1965-1969, and G?ran H?glund, Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs Harry C. McPherson, Jr., who served as counsel and special counsel to President Lyndon B. Johnson from 1965-1969, and G?ran H?glund, Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs, during a seminar at The Center for Transatlantic Relations, SAIS, on Monday evening.

MR. MCPHERSON TALKED about how President Lyndon Johnson managed to introduce Medicare and Medicaid, despite heavy resistance from the Republicans, a situation similar to President Obama’s problems to introduce health care reform.

MR. YAZBECK talked about the difficulties with a competitive insurance system. He stated that it “basically doesn’t work in health care.” The reason is the unwillingness to insure those who are likely to be sick. He thought that eventually a single payer system would pass in the U.S. — “because it has to” for financial reasons.

“THE ONE AREA where the U.S. is best in health care is for people over 65,” said Mr. Yazbeck. “Of course, this is the only population in the U.S. that is covered by a government single-payer health care system.”

THE SEMINAR WAS sponsored by SNS, the Swedish independent nonprofit organization dedicated to helping Swedish decision makers make informed decisions based on science and factual analysis, and The Center for Transatlantic Relations, a SAIS research center that engages opinion leaders on contemporary challenges facing Europe and North America.

GoranHagglund.SAIS.20111024 003.JPGHarry McPherson, who served as counsel and special counsel to President Lyndon B. Johnson from 1965-1969, and G?ran H?glund, Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs

Festive Moli?e Performance by the Picnic Theatre Company in Washington, D.C.

The cast after the performance - Christina Carlisi, Oliver Robinson, Clara Brillembourg, Kashuo Bennett, Christina Sevilla, Director Karim Chrobog, Omar Popal and Nova DalyThe cast after the performance – Christina Carlisi, Oliver Robinson, Clara Brillembourg, Kashuo Bennett, Christina Sevilla, Director Karim Chrobog, Omar Popal and Nova Daly

THE WASHINGTON-BASED Picnic Theatre Company performed their third production – Moli?e’s “The Misanthrope” - in the Belle Vue Room ballroom at Dumbarton House in Georgetown last week.

LE MISANTHROPE ou l’Atrabilaire amoureux is a 17th-century comedy of manners written by Moli?e. It was first performed on June 4, 1666, at the Th?tre du Palais-Royal in Paris by the King’s Players. It’s a wonderful farce with a timeless appeal that focuses on a lead character whose idealistic but clumsy blunt honesty with the people around him leads him to become a misanthrope.

Upama Khatri, Anais de Viel Castel and Shamein QadriUpama Khatri, Anais de Viel Castel and Shamein Qadri

THE PICNIC Theatre Company cast for “The Misanthrope” consisted of Kashuo Bennett (as Philinte), Clara Brillembourg (as Arsinoe), Christina Carlisi (as Eliante), Nova Daly (as Clintandre), Omar Popal (as Oronte), Oliver Robinson (as Alceste) and Christina Sevilla (as Celimene). The director is C. Karim Chrobog. The proceeds from the performances benefited Dumbarton House (http://dumbartonhouse.org/) and theatreWashington (http://www.helenhayes.org/). The after party was held at Caf?Bonaparte.

THE PICNIC Theatre Company (http://www.facebook.com/PicnicTheatre) was formed by Oli Robinson and Bruce MacPhail to develop site-specific party theatre. Since its founding in 2010, Picnic Theatre’s previous sold-out productions include Moli?e’s “The Hypochondriac,” “An Evening with Edgar Allan Poe,” and “An Evening with Anton Chekhov.”

George Chopivsky, Dave Vazzana and Paige SpeyerGeorge Chopivsky, Dave Vazzana and Paige Speyer

Christina Sevilla and Nova Daly during the performance.Christina Sevilla and Nova Daly during the performance.

Christina Carlisi, Oliver Robinson, Christina Sevilla, Omar Popal, C. Karim Chrobog, Nova Daly and Clara BrillembourgChristina Carlisi, Oliver Robinson, Christina Sevilla, Omar Popal, C. Karim Chrobog, Nova Daly and Clara Brillembourg

Exhibition with Michelle Peterson-Albandoz opens at Long View Gallery in Washington, D.C.

Artist Michelle Peterson-AlbandozArtist Michelle Peterson-Albandoz

ON THURSDAY EVENING, October 20th, an exhibition of works by artist Michelle Peterson-Albandoz opened at Long View Gallery in Washington, D.C.

MS. PETERSON-ALBANDOZ grew up surrounded by forests in both Connecticut and Puerto Rico, and found a connection to them that has lasted throughout her creative career. Having lived in Chicago for nearly 20 years, she has been surrounded by a constantly changing urban landscape, full of both destruction and construction. Historic but decrepit wood buildings were pulled down like trees in logging sites and their planks and beams were systematically dumped into landfills, rotting in piles. Her artwork has benefited from a visceral response to this waste. She began collecting heaps of the discarded wood and turning them into the basis of her artistic process today.

Untitled Hexagon Construction 1, 2 Untitled Hexagon Construction 1, 2

“WITH A MINIMALIST set of aesthetics, the viewer can meditate on the wood without being distracted by an imposed narrative. This allows the viewer to create their own personal relationship with the materials and at least for a moment, feel a deeper connection with nature. In this way, I hope to help shift the tides of our collective cultural awareness towards a more environmentally sensitive society,” says Michelle Peterson-Albandoz.

Long View Gallery is located at 1234 Ninth Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. Tel. 202-232-4788. For more information: www.longviewgallery.com.

Artwork by Michelle Peterson-AlbandozArtwork by Michelle Peterson-Albandoz

Art historian Karin Alexis discussed Swedish art at SACU Luncheon

Carl Ek and art historian Karin AlexisCarl Ek and art historian Karin Alexis

“SWEDISH ART AT the Residence of The Swedish Ambassador in Washington, D.C.” was the topic of an interesting speech by art historian Karin Alexis at a SACU (Swedish-American Cultural Union) luncheon in Washington on Thursday, October 20.

MS. ALEXIS discussed the impressive art collection at the residence, a Spanish Revival Style building in Northwest Washington, D.C. The mansion, which was purchased by Sweden in the 1950s, was built in 1923 and the architect was Arthur B. Eaton.

STARTING OFF with two pictures of Vikings and the House of Sweden, Ms. Alexis stated that Swedish art “didn’t catapult from Vikings to House of Sweden.” Ms. Alexis then gave a thorough account of the country’s art history.

AMONG THE artists who are represented at the ambassador’s residence are famous Swedish painters and sculptors such as Johan Sergel, Elias Martin – “a well-known father figure in Swedish painting,” Alfred Wahlberg, Anshelm Schultzberg, Bruno Liljefors, Prince Eugen and Carl Milles.

BUT MS. ALEXIS also talked about Swedish art and architecture in a broader context, and the development during the centuries, for example the introspection and nationalism that came during the first part of the 19th century. Among other things she mentioned that Bruno Liljefors still today is one of the great painters of wildlife, and that Anders Zorn probably is the most well-known Swedish painter abroad.

Intriguing Photo Exhibit with Finnish Photographer Miina Savolainen opens at the Embassy of Finland

Photographer Miina SavolainenPhotographer Miina Savolainen

“THE LOVELIEST Girl in The World” - the beloved Finnish exhibition by photographer Miina Savolainen and 10 girls from a children’s home – opened with a reception at the Embassy of Finland in Washington on Wednesday evening, October 19.

“THE LOVELIEST GIRL Girl in The World” is a story about becoming visible and accepting oneself. It is the award-winning photography project jointly undertaken by Savolainen and 10 girls from a children’s home that has taken almost a decade to complete. There is a fairytale quality of the photographs, which allows the girls to see themselves as strong and undamaged.

Finnish soprano Meri Siirala and Philippa Hughes of the Pink Line Project.Finnish soprano Meri Siirala and Philippa Hughes of the Pink Line Project.

Finnish Ambassador Ritva Koukku-Ronde, Marian Johnson and Peggy Orchowski SandsFinnish Ambassador Ritva Koukku-Ronde, Marian Johnson and Peggy Orchowski Sands

THE EXHIBITION – which is open Fridays to Sundays, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. — runs through November 13, 2011. Free entrance. The Embassy of Finland is located at 3301 Massachusetts Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C.

Gerry and Margaret SchuemanGerry and Margaret Schueman

Finnish soprano Meri Siirala and Adrian BryantFinnish soprano Meri Siirala and Adrian Bryant

Photography by Miina SavolainenPhotography by Miina Savolainen

Finnish Ambassador Ritva Koukku-Ronde introduces photographer Miina SavolainenPhotography by Miina SavolainenPhotography by Miina Savolainen

Photography by Miina SavolainenPhotography by Miina Savolainen

Photography by Miina SavolainenPhotography by Miina Savolainen

Intriguing Photo Exhibit with Finnish Photographer Miina Savolainen opens at the Embassy of FinlandIntriguing Photo Exhibit with Finnish Photographer Miina Savolainen opens at the Embassy of Finland

Art Exhibit ‘PAQARIY’ with Mercedes Cecilia opens at Embassy of Peru in Washington, D.C.

Artist Mercedes Cecilia, Stewart and Teresa SkubelArtist Mercedes Cecilia, Stewart and Teresa Skubel

“PAQARIY” – an exhibition with artwork by Peruvian artist Mercedes Cecilia – opened at the Embassy of Peru in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday evening, October 18.

PAQARIY IS THE artist’s series of large abstract paintings that can be viewed as a microscopic mirror of her inner life. “When I think of Peru, intense warmth fills my heart and colors appear inside a trapezoid shape, as if the Inca trapezoidal doorway frames my memory field,” she says.

BC EchoHawk, artist Mercedes Cecilia and Leonda LevchukBC EchoHawk, artist Mercedes Cecilia and Leonda Levchuk

MERCEDES CECILIA grew up in Piura and Lima. Later she lived in the Andean communities in Peru and Venezuela. She came to the United States in 1980 after winning a Scholarship to the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art. In 1986 she founded the community project “Art for All School.” She lives in Woodstock, New York.

SHE HAS RECEIVED several recognition awards for her art projects and her work can be found among public and private collections in the U.S., Canada, South America and Europe.

Artwork by Mercedes Cecilia: Artwork by Mercedes Cecilia: “Forsythia along the stream.”

MERCEDES CECILIA’S PAINTINGS for her children’s book were also on display. The pastel paintings radiate a sense of timeless innocence, and evoke the art of the artist’s childhood teachers: the artisans of retablos from Ayacucho and imagery from Cusco and Puno; and gourd carvers from Catacaos, Piura.

Artwork by Mercedes Cecilia (clockwise): Artwork by Mercedes Cecilia (clockwise): “Tinku” (“Meeting”), “Ollantaytamo,” “WaynaWayna,” and “Chayuq” (“Water well”).

Artwork by Mercedes Cecilia: Artwork by Mercedes Cecilia: “Qori Inti” (Golden Sun”).

The Embassy of Peru is located at 1700 Massachusetts Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C. Tel. 202-833-9860. The Art Gallery is open weekdays from 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

The Best Designer You Don’t Know…Yet

KIRSTEN ANTHONY KAPLAN is one of Washington’s rising talents in interior design. What makes her work noteworthy is what she brings to the table: an extensive background in construction, Board-room professionalism, and experience managing work teams. A natural talent for design (she cut her teeth in San Francisco designing for Silicon Valley moguls) and modern influence infuse her projects with elegance and energy. And on top of all that, she has an MBA from Yale.
Here’s a sampling of some of her recent projects:

Dining roomPhotography: Helen John Photography

THIS DINING ROOM was inspired by a painting of women harvesting wheat which was a creation of the client’s mother. The golden palette migrated from the painting to the wall color, the chair fabric and the floor covering, and the steel gray blues of the harvesters’ clothing found a home on the contrast chair backs. The light fixture is from Circa Lighting, a favorite resource.

Guest bathroomKids bathroomPhotography: Helen John Photography

THESE CHEVY CHASE bathrooms took on a whole new look without changing their tiny footprints. Floor tile consistent with the period of the house, white cabinetry, and Carrera marble combine to create inviting and clean bathrooms: one for the kids and one for guests.

Master bedroom Photography: Helen John Photography

A MASTER BEDROOM fit for relaxing gets a splash of color. Soothing white and sand tones echo throughout, evoking the beach this client is fond of. A gorgeous, rustic oyster shell mirror is highlighted by its juxtaposition with a high-gloss white lacquer desk and smooth leather chair.

Family room Photography: Helen John Photography

UPDATES AND bold color create an energetic family room with lots of seating for entertaining. With two young children and loads of friends, this client needed kid-friendly fabrics and refinement without formality. A glow-in-the-dark chart of the night sky is framed and reflected in the weathered wood mirrors.

For more information, visit www.hausinteriordesign.com.