GIANT session and “Where to Go Next”

WP_20131215_13_58_32_ProOur last session brought 2013 out with a BANG! We had a giant session and we even had Christmas cookies.

This year we hosted a joint session, with the usual suspects plus a very large number of Anne Lederman‘s students, who played a variety of traditional styles. It was so much fun, it might become an annual tradition.

We were thrilled to welcome so many new players, and hope that some of them might come back for our regular French Canadian sessions.

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This is the last post of the year, and for this website. We will transition to the new website on January 1st, 2014.

On the right-hand side of the new website, click the Subscribe button, to sign up for an e-mail when the blog gets updated. For example, if you want a session reminder sent to your e-mail address, subscribe to the new blog. If you prefer, you can add an RSS feed to your feed reader.

At the top of the screen, the new events calendar lists the session dates, as well as dates and information about folk festivals, concerts, dances and other French Canadian events that WP_20131215_13_58_41_Prowe hear about. If you use an online calendar, click the Subscribe button at the bottom of the event listings to add all the events to your personal calendar (they auto-update). Or, you can add a single event to your calendar by clicking on the event itself and then clicking the Add to calendar button that appears under the map.   

And of course, we have moved Rob’s tune list to the new site, as well as the Resources section of this site.

As always, if you have any questions or problems, you can e-mail us at toquetrad(at)gmail.com.

We wish you a safe and a prosperous new year! The next session is confirmed for January 19, 2014.

Rob and Donna

Some fun

Wow, that was some dance, eh?  Thanks go out to our great caller, Jacynthe Guimond, and to the band: Richard Forest, Peter Jellard, Rob Rohr and Kate Murphy.

WP_20131116_20_29_22_ProAt one point, I counted NINE SETS! That’s a lot of people. Especially when they are shouting with the joy and enthusiasm that this particular crowd was exuding.

If you wanted to attend and missed it, or if you want to come again, we are holding another one on Saturday, April 19th in the same place.

The session the next morning was also well attended. We are delighted to welcome Conny, who has never been before, as well as David P. (it’s been a while!) and Jasmine — both of whom had been out all night dancing the night before!

Happy times.

Oh, P.S.: The new site is up, but we are still fiddling with the mail server. Once that’s fixed — so you can get automatic e-mail notifications — we’ll pop over there (and give you complete instructions on how to use it).  If you want RSS, you can go there now… I especially like the new format calendar.

Heads up! New website coming!

So we’ve been busy working on a new website. It will look very similar to this one, but it will move toquetrad.com (instead of hosted on WordPress.com).

We’ll let you know when we have finished and provide simple instructions on how to sign up for the blog, e-mail updates and the events calendar.

We are doing it for a few reasons (mostly ’cause it’s fun to set up a web server and a stand-alone implementation), one of which is a much-improved calendar of events.

Currently, we have a Gmail iCal calendar to which you can subscribe with your favourite calendaring software or app. When we cut over to the new server, you will be able to add items directly from the site to your calendar, either as a single event (like the dance) or as a series (like the sessions for 2014). We will send events from the site to the Gmail calendar.

You can still get RSS feed updates or sign up for an e-mail digest to automatically see new posts.

Session confirmed for Sunday, November 17 (and a warning)

Just a quick note to confirm that we are hosting the session at the Tranzac Club (292 Brunswick Ave) tomorrow from noon until 3 p.m.

WARNING: SANTA CLAUSE PARADE and HOLLY JOLLY 5K RUN!

The Santa Clause Parade starts at 12:30PM, but the Holly Jolly 5K Run starts at noon just east of Bathurst, and follows the parade route.  Some of you may recall needing to take drastic steps to cross Bloor St. due to the Santa Clause parade (which has also been known to wreak havoc with parking, drivers).

Warning: Parade route!

Warning: Parade route!

Suggestions

  • Leave earlier than usual.  Check out MyTTC.ca for travel times.
  • Consider taking the Spadina streetcar south one stop, which will get you onto the right side of Bloor.
  • Consider getting off a the Museum subway station and walking west from Bay to Brunswick. Museum station surfaces south of Bloor, and you may find the 15-minutes walk along Harbord (first street south of the station) more invigorating and civilized than trying to walk along Bloor.
  • If you are driving, come very early and come from the south.

When you do make it, there’ll be tunes and pints (or coffee).

These streets will be closed at the following times:

  • Bloor Street West: Ossington Avenue to Christie Street at 8 a.m.
  • Bloor Street West: Christie Street to Bathurst Street at 10 a.m.
  • Bloor Street West: Bathurst Street to Bay Street at 10:45 a.m.
  • Avenue Road: Davenport Road to College Street at 10:45 a.m.
  • University Avenue: College Street to Dundas Street at 11 a.m.
  • University Avenue: Dundas Street to Front Street at 11:15 a.m.
  • Wellington Street: University Avenue to Jarvis Street at 11:30 a.m.
  • Front Street: Bay Street to Jarvis Street at 11:45 a.m.

The parade starts at Bloor Street West and Christie Street and can be tracked on the following route:

  • Eastbound: Bloor Street West
  • Southbound: Queen’s Park Crescent East
  • Southbound: University Avenue
  • Eastbound: Wellington Street West
  • Eastbound: Front Street East, finishing at Jarvis Street

See you all tomorrow — or for the dance tonight!

Saturday, November 16: Québécois square dance

Québécois set dancing at the benefit for Centre d'inspiration jeunesse

Square sets, from one of our previous Québécois dances.

Edith is organising another Québecois square dance to raise funds for the Centre d’inspiration jeunesse in Haiti, which offers development initiatives for rural an remote youth in the Verrettes area of Haiti. This is the third one she is putting on, so if you’ve missed this rollicking good time, now’s your chance!

This time out, we are inviting a new caller, Jacynthe Guimond. We are keeping our fabulous house band: Richard Forest (fiddle), Rob Rohr (fiddle), Peter Jellard (accordion), Kate Murphy (piano).

Jacynthe will be calling mostly squares from Quebec, although she may also call some round or contra-style dances. Similar to Irish and other types of square dance, Quebec squares have some very distinctive figures.

Jacynthe Guimond

Caller Jacynth Guimond

To give you an idea of her calling style, we found a video with Jacynthe calling in Montreal. She calls in French on this video but, don’t worry: she is a bilingual caller. Jacynthe practices a wide range of traditional dancing, including step-dancing and calls regularly at the Wheel Club in Montreal.

As usual, there will also be a silent auction. You can call Edith at 416-796-6379 for more information or to donate items for the silent auction. Invite your friends using Edith’s Facebook event for the dance.

Round Dance at the benefit for Centre d'inspiration jeunesse

Round dance at a an earlier Quebecois dance.

Date: Saturday, November 16, 2013
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Venue: Dovercourt House, 805 Dovercourt Avenue just north of Bloor near Ossington (map)
Cost: $10 per person, though additional donations would be appreciated

We recommend that you bring a reusable cup or water bottle. You might just dance up a thirst!

We are certainly looking forward to this event, but if you can’t make it, you can still support this  worthwhile cause online.

Upcoming events: October and November

Laura Risk

Laura Risk

As almost always when we get together with this dynamic group of people for a session, we have some things to mention:

  • First off, a HUGE congratulations to Elizabeth on the birth of her first grandchild, Aurora, in Budapest, Hungary, last week.
  • Next, kudos to Joan for completing her first half-marathon today, with a blazing 3 hours and 27 minutes. Sadly, Ms. Weed was indisposed for today’s session.
  • Next weekend, there are several events of interest to Québécois music afficianados:
  • Sunday, November 3rd, the Brian Pickell Band is appearing at Claude Church for one of their memorable Parlour Concerts. Tickets now available online.
  • Saturday, November 9th, Dan Gorno is returning to Toronto to call a contradance at St. Barnabas featuring an exciting young band: Benoit Schryer-Lefebvre, Colin Savoie-Levac and Toronto’s own Eli Howard.
  • Saturday, November 16, Edith is organising another of her fabulous Québécois dances with Richard Forest, Peter Jellard, Rob Rohr and Kate Murphy. Dovercourt House, 7:30 pm. More information available on facebook.
Gemme Falquet

Pascal Gemme & Yann Falquet

That’s a lot of stuff in the next little while! We will post more details about the workshops next weekend, but if you want information sooner than that, please e-mail us at toqetrad@gmail.com.

Thanks,

Rob and Donna

Welcome back for the September session

I would like to remind everyone that the normal session schedule resumes at noon on Sunday with our June session at the Tranzac.

Next Session:

When:
Sunday, Jun 16th, 12:00 – 2:45PM

Where:
Tranzac Club, 292 Brunswick Ave, Toronto (map)

We look forward to seeing you there!