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April, 2007 - Nr. 4




The Editor
Return of Spring
Hoffnung im Frühling
Der Osterspaziergang
Let Us Be Lovers
Paul Bernhard Berghorn
An Austrian Delight
K-W & Beyond
Musings of a "Schulleiter"
The Club
Herwig Wandschneider
50th Treaties of Rome
Dick reports...
Sybille reports
Ham Se det jehört?
Alicier Arts Concert
The Merry Widow
Mooredale Concert Season Concludes
CanStage Presents
Orchestra Toronto
Backstage Toronto 2007
Kristine Bogyo
Living Arts Centre
Deborah Voigt, soprano
Combat Climate Change
Glass Sky Bridge

German Club Celebrations

   It is always interesting to go to a German Canadian Club, much more so than some people would suspect. By doing so it becomes apparent how much we have integrated into the Canadian scene, while trying to hold on to our heritage. We can see that the older people did not always manage to keep the heritage interest in their offspring going, yet the ethnic content is still a much wanted and needed element, only fewer and fewer of the original immigrants are turning up due to old age. The dancers on the dance floor became a bit more sedate, and vigorous movement is often supplied only by the entertainment hired for the evening.

Some Clubs manage to balance the age population nicely, such as the Loreley Club of Oshawa, which has a good show of several generations participating in the clubs activities. Concordia Club Kitchener also holds its own with a nice cross section of different age groups. Perhaps that is also due to the fact that this region has an association of organisations of German heritage that cooperate and support each other, which includes the German School Concordia. This is something sorely missing in other areas. Thus no one can learn from others how they manage to stay active and viable with newer and younger membership. There are no new initiatives overall that are inclusive of the various organisations, or so it appears. The ties are all very loose and non-committal.

A festively decorated hall
A festively decorated hall
The many visitors

At fundraiser galas such as the one that took place recently at the Danube Swabian Club in Scarborough, we can see mostly the members of the board and their families and friends, namely the foundation of the organisation. The young offspring, children and the grandchildren, who would be old enough to attend, have integrated so much into Canadian society, they are not visible to the casual observer. They are still around, but not often and mainly only if they have a function for themselves or big family gatherings like Easter brunch.

Having said that (this is a continued concern with all the clubs) it has to be pointed out that this gala was a full success, with the attending guest and also for the club, which did indeed raise quite a few dollars to keep things going. President Henry Betsch introduces the new chefThe newly re-elected president Henry Betsch was a good and jovial host, visiting with everyone and posing tireless for photos. The evening had started with a cocktail hour upstairs in the upper lounge and continued in the big hall with a very good dinner, served French style. For the first time in a long while someone in the kitchen was using spices and other aroma enhancing condiments with much courage! Hallelujah! The menu was delicious and started with a mixed green salad and fabulous Raspberry Vinaigrette. The Filet Mignon that followed was the tenderest one I have had in a long time. It was accompanied by an interesting array of vegetables and potatoes.

The Raspberry Mousse Swirl with fresh berries was superb. People were asking for seconds, including myself! A bit Mark DuBois introduces players & programlater there was coffee and cake, but first we were treated to some truly Viennese musical fare, starting with Mark DuBois singing from "Das Land des Laechelns/ Land of Smiles" by Franz Lehar "Immmer nur Laecheln". Corinne LynchThis operetta’s Chinese theme also gave the evening its Corinne Lynch & Mark DuBoisattractive décor with red Chinese lanterns and symbols all over the hall. Later he also sang "Wer hat die Liebe uns ins Herz gesenkt" as a duet with lovely Corinne Lynch, soprano. She also sang "Heimat" for us, but in English.

Mark DuBois's "Dein ist mein ganzes Herz"... ...receives a standing ovation
Mark DuBois's "Dein ist mein ganzes Herz"... ...receives a standing ovation

When Mark DuBois delivered " Dein ist mein ganzes Herz" the audience went quite wild with applaus. Mr. Dubois had many a story to tell about Richard Tauber and Lehar and the museum in Vienna, where he had an opportunity to play the Piano and sing, just like Richard Tauber and Lehar had done.

The Viva Dance Performers

In-between the 4 arias sung the Viva Dance performers delighted with a Viennese Dance and a Chinese Ribbon Dance. This added tremendously to the success of the evening.

Chinese Ribbon Dance

In fact, this shorter form of presentation is much preferred by this audience, that does not want to sit for many hours just listening, but wants to dance.

Andy Mora, Lena Forstner, Margret Mikelait, Maria & Mark DuBois & Corrine Lynch
Andy Mora, Lena Forstner, Margret Mikelait,
Maria & Mark DuBois & Corrine Lynch

And dance they did, but not before generous Mark DuBois delivered a bonus performance of an Irish Prayer, because it was St. Patrick’s Day after all.

Dancing into the Night

Erika & Alfred Rohr and Henry Betsch (standing)It was truly grand seeing some of the staunchest supporters of this part of our community again, including Heidi and Reiner of George Jewellers. They were dancing up a storm after the concert together with Heidi’s brother and his wife. Ulli Jeschke and his wife also frequented the dance floor to the sounds of the Variation Band. Since I have given up dancing we left them to it.

President’s Ball Kitchener

President Werner SchlüterI can hardly wait in spring for our invitation to the Concordia Club’s Presidents Ball, and an invitation one has to have or else there is now way to get in. This popular event is an annual get-together to swear in the new board of directors and its president, which was of course, again, the very able Werner Schlüter.

Introductions of the Celebreties
Introductions of the Celebreties

Mayor Carl ZehrThe list of dignitaries is very long and includes always members of local and provincial politicians such as the popular Mayor Carl Zehr, Kitchener, Mayor Brenda Halloran, Waterloo,and Elizabeth Witmer, MPP. There were all the club presidents past and present and those of the other many German organisations.

M.C. Ulrike SchmidtThe Master of Ceremonies this evening was not Sarah Allmendinger; she is currently studying "down-under" in Australia and was replaced by Ulrike Schmidt, who we know from the Concordia Choir and as one of the angels at the Christkindl Market. She did a fine job welcoming everyone after the reception and a sumptuous dinner by a yet another new chef, Andreas, from the north of Germany. After the ample meal ending with a delicious desert she announced the official part of the ceremonies.

Rewards for Work Well Done


Werner Schlüter was only too happy to welcome everyone after he and his board had been sworn in. He especially took delight in acknowledging the many volunteers, the young people who came out in quite great numbers looking fabulous in the formal wear, and in thanking members for their contributions to the wellbeing of the club. In this capacity plaques and gifts are given away. Good byes from the board were said to Heidi Eby, Nick Osbelt, Fred Trautrim and Harry Vogt.

Swearing of the Board of Directors
Swearing in of the Board of Directors

This year again the German School Concordia was presented with a cheque, which is much needed.

The organizing committee under Rita Allmendinger was thanked, as was the MC and flowers were given to the unsuspecting ladies.

Guests and Dignitaries

Hermann & Christel Schütz The poet and the politician
Hermann & Christel Schütz The poet and the politician
Sonja Kroisenbrunner & Dietmar Biselli Dr. Ulrich Frisse & Toni Bergmeier
Sonja Kroisenbrunner &
Dietmar Biselli
Dr. Ulrich Frisse &
Toni Bergmeier

The Concordia Choir sang to the delight of all and the Ballroom dance group performed what they had practised in the past year to much applause; and the teachers showed their talent with some very fine and creative show dancing.

The Concordia Choir temporarily under new direction The Concordia Choir
The Concordia Choir temporarily under new direction The Concordia Choir

Ballroom Dancing
and their instructors

Ready to dance

The Euro Connection

Erika & Werner SchlüterThe evening ended for us with Werner and his wife opening the dance floor and us getting on to the long drive back to Toronto. Well, it was long the last time, when we for some inexplicable reason were rerouted and it took over 4 hours to get home. This time it took only 55 minutes.

Remember Struwwelpeter?

The same nice folks that brought you Struwwelpeter 2000 in German and English are now presenting more Wilhelm Bush with the adventures of Max and Moritz, in, you guessed it, German and English, with the original illustrations. Struwwelpeter is now also available as a CD in English. If you are interested in ordering any of these let us know. We are taking advance orders. Call us under 416-652-1332 or email us at to make arrangements for your copies of this great humorous classic.

In the meantime have a very happy Easter!

Until next time

Sybille Forster-Rentmeister


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