Monthly Archives: April 2013

‘Amerika — dr?mmarnas land’ (America – Land of Dreams), a recently published book by Klas Bergman, former correspondent for Dagens Nyheter

“Amerika — dr?mmarnas land” (America – Land of Dreams) – a recently published book by Klas Bergman, former Washington correspondent of the leading Swedish daily newspaper Dagens Nyheter

KLAS BERGMAN, Dagens Nyheter’s former Washington correspondent and a former foreign correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor, has made America his home for many years. From his student days in California in the 1960s to the World Bank in Washington, DC., and as communications director at the United Nations and Stanford and Yale Universities, he has spent much of his career in the U.S. Bergman is now a freelance journalist and writer living in Silver Spring, Md.

BERGMAN wrote “Amerika – dr?mmarnas land” (America – Land of Dreams) based on his years of experience in the U.S. It was published last fall by Carlsson Bokf?rlag in Sweden. He is now busy translating the book into English.

“AMERIKA – dr?mmarnas land” is a personal account about how America has changed and developed starting with the turbulent ’60s with the civil rights movement and the Vietnam War, through the years of the “Reagan Revolution,” the “war on terror” during the George W. Bush years, until now when the country has its first African-American president, Barack Obama.
It is about how boyhood dreams in Stockholm, Sweden came true and about how those dreams in the years that followed have been both bruised and strengthened. Bergman says that it is important to remember that America is a big country, and that there are many Americas, and that everyone should be wary of generalizations.

BERGMAN has promoted his book with several appearances with Swedish-American audiences, at events sponsored by SWEA and SACU in Washington, D.C., and in Minnesota, at Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter and at the American Swedish Institute in Minneapolis.

HE MIGHT BE returning soon to Minnesota for research on his next book, which does not have a title yet but will be about Scandinavian and American politics.


Arts for the Aging (AFTA) celebrated 25 years with an elegant reception – ‘Celebrating Artful Living’ — at the Embassy of Finland on Thursday evening, April 25

AFTA's "Celebrating Artful Living" reception in WashingtonAFTA Founder Lolo Sarnoff and Ambassador Ritva Koukku-Ronde of Finland

AMBASSADOR Ritva Koukko-Ronde of Finland welcomed many guests to an elegant evening reception at the Embassy of Finland on Embassy Row in Washington on Thursday evening, April 25 in celebration of the 25th Anniversary of the acclaimed Arts for the Aging (AFTA). The reception was titled “Celebrating Artful Living.”

AFTA's "Celebrating Artful Living" reception in WashingtonChair of the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities Judith Terra, AFTA Chair Susan Rosenbaum, WUSA Channel 9′s JC Hayward, and former Congresswoman Connie Morella (Rep.-Md.)

AMBASSADOR Koukko-Ronde, WUSA Channel 9′s JC Hayward, Chair of the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanitites Judith Terra, AFTA Chair Susan Rosenbaum and AFTA Executive Director Janine Tursini all brought remarks for the program of the celebratory gathering. The highlight of the evening was the performance by the Silver Singers from the Family Matters Asian Pacific Senior Services Center in Washington, D.C.’s Chinatown. They were accompanied by AFTA teaching artist Anthony Hyatt who has been working with the singers over the last 10 years.

AFTA's "Celebrating Artful Living" reception in WashingtonAFTA Founder Lolo Sarnoff and Rhoda Septilici

AFTA ( was founded 25 years ago by Lolo Sarnoff. It is today the Washington area’s leading arts service organization dedicated to combating isolation and spreading joy to seniors through frequent participation in the arts. AFTA is celebrating its 25th anniversary through a series of special events to raise awareness about the AFTA mission. Event proceeds will help ensure that AFTA remains a vital community resource, expands new programs and continues to meet the growing demand for its services.

AFTA’s 25th Anniversary Co-chairs are renowned artist and WETA commentator Bill Dunlap and WUSA Channel 9′s JC Hayward.

AFTA's "Celebrating Artful Living" reception in WashingtonThe Silver Singers with Teaching Artist Anthony Hyatt performed during the evening.

AFTA's "Celebrating Artful Living" reception in WashingtonAmbassador Ritva Koukko-Ronde was the featured speaker.

AFTA's "Celebrating Artful Living" reception in WashingtonWUSA Channel 9′s JC Hayward addresses the many guests.

AFTA's "Celebrating Artful Living" reception in WashingtonChair of the D.C. Commission on Arts and Humanities Judith Terra speaks during the event.

K. Ann-Margret Westin of the International Monetary Fund spoke at a SACU luncheon

SACU luncheon in WashingtonSwedish-American Cultural Union (SACU) chair Nils Bruzelius, K. Ann-Margret Westin, Assistant to the Director, Monetary and Capital Markets Department, IMF; and her husband S?ren Karlsson

K. ANN-MARGRET WESTIN, who is Assistant to the Director of Monetary and Capital Markets Department at the International Monetary Fund (IMF), spoke about the IMF and its work at the SACU (Swedish-American Cultural Union) luncheon in Washington on Wednesday, April 24.

“THE IMF was founded in 1944 and its objective is to promote global economic and financial stability,” she said. Ms. Westin talked about the causes of the financial crisis in 2008 and what the IMF has done to address the crisis, which led to 30 million jobs lost and 64 million people thrown into extreme poverty.

“COOPERATION avoided a second great depression through G20, fiscal stimulus and IMF lending,” she said.

SHE ALSO talked briefly about the eurocrisis and Sweden, citing that country’s good, solid fiscal position, its low public debt at 37 percent of GDP, and its vulnerability with very high private debt and the large banking system.

THE IMF is an organization of 188 countries and with a staff of 2,500 employees. It works to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world.

Book Hill’s ‘French Market’ celebrated in Georgetown in Washington on Friday and Saturday, April 19th and April 20th

Book Hill's French MarketPerformance and painting during the French Market

ON FRIDAY, April 19th and Saturday, April 20th The Georgetown Business Improvement District’s (BID) held its traditional “French Market.” This annual event — Book Hill’s signature European open air market and sidewalk sale – as always drew a big crowd.

Book Hill's French Market

Sweden’s Minister for Migration Tobias Billstr?m opened the exhibition ‘United Stockholms of America’ at House of Sweden in Washington, D.C. on Sunday, April 21

United Stockholms of AmericaSweden’s Minister for Migration Tobias Billstr?m speaks at the opening.

THE exhibition “United Stockholms of America” was opened by Sweden’s Minister for Migration Tobias Billstr?m at House of Sweden in Washington on Sunday afternoon, April 21.

THE UNITED STATES is home to more than four million Americans with roots in Sweden. Hundreds of towns have Swedish names in North America, and eight of these places are named Stockholm. Through his beautiful photography, Charlie Bennett shares a glimpse into the Stockholms in America. Mr. Billstr?m spoke at the opening about the exhibition and the history.

HOUSE of Sweden is located at 2900 K Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20007. For more information:

2013 Bertelsmann Foundation Annual Reception in Washington held on Wednesday, April 17

2013 Bertelsmann Foundation Annual ReceptionAart De Gues, who is the Bertelsmann Stiftung’s chairman and CEO, was the featured speaker.

ON THE OCCASION of the fifth annual Bertelsmann Foundation conference, “System Upgrade: Time for a Global Economic Re-Boot,” the foundation held its annual reception in Washington on Wednesday, April 17, at the National Portrait Gallery.

2013 Bertelsmann Foundation Annual Reception2013 Bertelsmann Foundation annual reception in Washington, D.C. was held at the National Portrait Gallery on Wednesday, April 17.

THE ANNUAL CONFERENCE was held in cooperation with Financial Times the following day, April 18, at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center. The focus was economic growth through innovation, global financial governance and the eurozone crisis. Among the featured speakers were Dutch Minister of Finance and Eurogroup Chairman Jeroen Dijsselbloem, French Minister of the Economy and Finances Pierre Moscovici, Swedish Minister for Finance Anders Borg, Turkish Deputy Prime Minister for Economic and Financial Affairs Ali Babacan, U.S. Congressman Keith Ellison (D-MN), U.S. Congresswoman Colleen Hanabusa (D-HI), former U.S. Federal Reserve Board of Governors Chairman Paul Volcker, former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty, and Good360 Chairman and former HP CEO Carly Fiorina.

2013 Bertelsmann Foundation Annual ReceptionAnnette Heuser, executive director and founder of the Washington, D.C. office of the Bertelsmann Foundation, speaks at the Annual Reception.

Dr. Ann-Margret Westin of the International Monetary Fund will speak at a SACU Luncheon in Washington on Wednesday, April 24

“THE IMF’s Role in the Global Economy – and How Is Sweden Doing?” will be the topic when Dr. Ann-Margret Westin of the International Monetary Fund speaks at a SACU (Swedish-American Cultural Union) luncheon in Washington on Wednesday, April 24.

DR. WESTIN, who is the assistant to the IMF director in the Monetary and Capital Markets Department, will discuss the role of the IMF in global financial and economic affairs generally and, more specifically, in stabilizing the current economic turmoil in Europe. She will also touch on Sweden’s economic situation. Dr. Westin, who has a Ph.D. from Yale, has a broad perspective on Europe’s economy, having previously worked as the IMF’s representative to Albania and taught economics at the School of Advanced International Studies in Bologna, Italy from 1999 to 2001.

THE SACU luncheon, which starts at 12 noon and concludes at 2 p.m., will be held at the Pier Seven Restaurant in the Channel Inn, 650 Water Street, S.W. on the District’s Southwest waterfront. Member cost is $25, non-members $29. Parking is available in the Channel Inn parking garage (validation is available). For non-drivers, the Waterfront Station of the Metro Green Line. For reservations contact: by Monday, April 22.

Citizens Association of Georgetown (CAG) won the Iron Chef Contest at Capella Washington, D.C.

Iron Chef ContestExecutive Chef Jakob Esko and General Manager Alex Obertop of Capella Washington, D.C., and The Georgetowner Publisher Sonya Bernhardt during the ceremony awarding prizes for the winners of the Iron Chef Contest.

THE CITIZENS Association of Georgetown (CAG) won first prize in the Georgetown Iron Chef Contest, which was held as part of a welcome reception at the newly inaugurated hotel Capella Washington D.C.’s The Grill Room on Monday evening, April 8. The other competing teams were Georgetown Business Improvement District (BID) and Georgetown Business Association (GBA). The evening also included a tasting of The Rye Bar’s American Whiskey collection paired with dishes by The Grill Room chef, Swedish-born Jakob Esko.

Iron Chef ContestMolly Quigley of 1789 Restaurant; Bo B?rje Jonsson, The Bank of Georgetown; and Cecilia Browning, General Manager of the House of Sweden

Iron Chef ContestExecutive Chef Jakob Esko oversees the cooking procedures of one of the teams.

Iron Chef ContestThe winning CAG team

Iron Chef ContestThe GBA team

Iron Chef ContestIron Chef Contest and Welcome Reception at Capella Washington, D.C.
View from Capella Washington, D.C.

FotoDC Opening Night Reception for the exhibition ‘Spring in Focus’ at the Pepco Edison Place Gallery in Washington

Exhibition Opening night reception at Pepco Edison Place Gallery

THE OPENING night reception for the exhibition “Spring in Focus – A Showcase of Cherry Blossom & Unique Washington Photography” was held at Pepco Edison Place Gallery in downtown Washington, D.C. on Thursday evening, April 4. The group show featured work by Bob Epstein and Randy Santos and TIMELESS Collection by Ron Blunt as well as Cherry Blossom and Spirit of DC Photo Contest Favorites. The exhibition is part of FotoDC, which will select new favorites to be hung each week through April 26.

Exhibition Artwork of Cherry Blossoms shown at Pepco Edison Place Gallery as a part of FotoDC.

THEE ARE also two photo contests - “Cherry Blossom Photo Contest” and “Spirit of DC Photo Contest” and deadline is April, 18. To enter:

Exhibition Opening night reception at Pepco Edison Place Gallery

Exhibition Exhibition “Spring in Focus.”

The film ‘Play’ by award-winning Swedish director Ruben ?tlund will open the European Film Festival Disappearing Act V in New York on Wednesday, April 10

SCREENING OF the award-winning film “Play” by Swedish director Ruben ?tlund will mark the opening of the New York-based European Film Festival Disappearing Act V at the IFC Center on Wednesday, April 10. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with the filmmaker.

THE PLAY IS about bullying and is based on what happened in central Gothenburg, Sweden, when a group of 12- to 14-year old boys robbed other children on about 40 occasions between 2006 and 2008. The thieves used a scheme called the brother trick, involving advanced role-play and gang rhetoric rather than physical violence.

RUBEN ?TLUND, who was born in 1974, has completed three features: “The Guitar Mongoloid” (2004); “Involuntary” (2008); and “Play” (2011). The film Play is 118 minutes long.

THE CONSULATE GENERAL of Sweden co-presents the screening and following Q&A.

THE IFC Center is located at 323 6th Avenue. Tickets are $12-15, and $10 for members.

DISAPPEARING ACT V presents 24 contemporary films from 24 European countries. The festival, which runs from April 10-21 is organized by the Czech Center, European Union National Institutes for Culture and other European partners. For more information:

THERE WILL ALSO be other Swedish film screenings and events in New York during the month of April. This is a part of the Foreign Ministry’s efforts to promote Swedish film. The moving exhibition program Nordic Outbreak is co-presented by the Consulate, as well as a showing of “Simon and the Oaks” by Lisa Ohlin at the Westchester Jewish Film Festival. For more information:–sys/.

THE SCANDINAVIA HOUSE film series – New Nordic Cinema - will also show the films “The Importance of Tying Your Own Shoes” and “The Crown Jewels,” and Tribeca Film Festival will screen the short films “Eating Lunch” by Sanna Lenken and “Lunatic” by Aasa Ersmark.

FOR MORE information:–sys/.