Annual Christmas Party at the Hansa Haus
It seemed bigger than in previous years. More visitors – more children – more gifts – more cookies and Christmas cake "Stollen" on the tables, with coffee or tea, of course.
The children were kept busy colouring or doing some handicrafts on tables set up especially for those activities, while the Hansa Band (Albert Dittgen and his accordion) provided the background music.
One of the highlights was the contribution by eight-year-old Brittnie Spriel, the granddaughter of one of the choir members.
As the choir sang - with the audience participating – more and more children assembled on the floor in front of the stage, watching the choir. I think a number of them were quietly securing an advantageous spot for themselves for the arrival of Santa Claus, but I have never seen that many at previous parties.
Finally Santa arrived with an Elf and lots of presents. He sat on his throne-like chair and immediately started calling the children’s names to come up for presents. There were around 35 children registered by club members but I think they had brought reinforcements along. Some of the presents were larger than the children getting them and all were delighted and happy with this advance contribution to the coming festivities.
Presents from Santa
St. Niklas was a sailor…
…that is what Fiete Münzner was trying to make us believe at the Hansa Haus recently. I don’t think too many in the well-filled hall believed him – despite the song about Niklas.
Of course this was not the first time that Fiete Münzner – this merchant of memories - and his sidekick Uta Carina performed at the Hansa Haus in Brampton, but this time his repertoire had changed a bit. Some of the old familiar songs of the sea remained, about the loneliness, the longing to be back home, the girls that are left behind and so on - and not to forget ‘The Reeperbahn’ – and the pubs all the way up to the Große Freiheit.
One of the Ladies I talked to during the break said "He reminds me of Hans Albers, whom I was madly in love with, when I was younger – and if I close my eyes when he sings, wonderful memories reappear and I feel young again!"
Well, this "Kapitän der guten Laune" – ‘The Captain of grand ambiance’- did resemble the old movie star Hans Albers somewhat – others in the audience remarked on this as well, while some of them were reminded of Curd Jürgens
Fiete is a very personable entertainer who hails from Cuxhaven, immediately had contact with the audience. His humorous stand-up comedy and humorous tales – interspersed with songs - often involved the audience and were pretty strong stuff. If translated none of our Canadian friends would laugh. German humour is different from others.
Uta Carina, the charming young lady whom he shared the stage with, also captured the audience right at the start. Her voice reminded a little of famous singers in the past, especially when she did Marlene Dietrich’s "Fesche Lola", or Lale Andersen’s "Lili Marleen", or Ilse Werner’s "Wir machen Musik".
Just as an aside, there are exceptions: Johannes Heesters – famous as Count Danilo Danilovitsch in Lehàrs operetta "The Merry Widow" – a role he played 1600 times - is now 103 years old, almost blind, is still singing, and lives at Lake Starnberg, near Munich.
Since this concert was themed "Christmas on the high seas", some seasonal songs – such as "Alle Jahre wieder" were offered and the audience invited to participate. Most of them did so quite enthusiastically and not always in the same key – but it is the spirit that counts and the festive mood it creates.
A few days earlier the artists had performed at the Danube Swabian Club, Club
Heidelberg in St. Catharines, and the Concordia Club in Kitchener to equally grateful and responsive audiences, I was told.
Kudos must unquestionably go to Joe Lindlau who flawlessly doubled as DJ and ‘Kapellmeister’ for the artists to ensure a perfectly timed performance. Joe and his wife Monika are also the owners of ‘Colonel Clarke’s Country Inn’, near Tobermory on the Bruce Peninsula. Check his comprehensive website.
Wishing everyone a happy and successful New Year, I remain
Comments to: email@example.com
Send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
questions or comments about this web site.