Born in 1937, Tomas Venclova is a Lithuanian scholar, poet, author and translator of literature. He was educated at Vilnius University and later at Tartu University. As an active participant in the dissident movement he was deprived of Soviet citizenship in 1977 and had to emigrate. Between 1977 and 1980 he lectured at University of California, Berkeley, where he became friends with the Polish poet Czesław Miłosz, who was a professor of Slavic Languages and Literature at the school, as well as the Russian poet Joseph Brodsky. He is currently a full professor at Yale University.
Į Lietuvą dabar dažnai važiuoju. Laimė, jau Lietuva buvo laisva, aš galėjau susitikti savo mamą. Išvažiuodamas maniau ir jinai manė, kad mes jau niekad nebepasimatysim, bet mes pasimatėm. Pasimatėm ir ne kartą matėmės, aš galėjau ją paremti, ir tuo labai irgi džiaugiuosi, kad ligi pat mamos mirties jinai gyveno normalų, taip sakant, nesunkų, nevargingą gyvenimą, kadangi galėjau jai padėti. Susidraugavo su mano žmona ir aš manau, kad jos paskutiniai gyvenimo metai buvo gana ramūs, gana gražūs.
I now go to Lithuania frequently. It’s fortunate that Lithuania became free. I was able to meet up with my mother. When I left I thought, and she thought, that we would never see each other again but we did see each other. We did see each other and more than once. I was able to support her and I am very happy about that, that right up to my mother’s death, she lived a normal, as it were, trouble-free, stress-free life because I was able to help her. She made a friend of my wife and I believe that the last years of her life were relatively peaceful, relatively pleasant.
Film director and documentary maker, Andrzej Wolski has made around 40 films since 1982 for French television, the BBC, TVP and other TV networks. He specializes in portraits and in historical films. Films that he has directed or written the screenplay for include Kultura, which he co-directed with Agnieszka Holland, and KOR which presents the history of the Worker’s Defence Committee as told by its members. Andrzej Wolski has received many awards for his work, including the UNESCO Grand Prix at the Festival du Film d’Art.