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May, 2004 - Nr. 5


The Editor
Meiner Mutter
Vorsicht Satire!
Rachel Seilern
Zurich Connection
A World of Contrast
Dear Mom
KW & Beyond
The Ritchie Boys
Hansa Club's 40th
Anniversary Celebration
Unter dem Motto
Concordia Choir Concert
A lose-lose Ending?
At the CKWR Studio
Toronto has the Sound
Youth Culture
Dick reports...
Sybille reports
Ham Se det jehört?
Health Newsletter
German Heavyweights
Tafelmusik in Parry Sound
Harbourfront Centre Events
Nature's Perfect Gems
Support for Shaw Festival
MoMA in Berlin
Brothers Grimm Movie
Lessons from Dresden
Frauenkirche nears Completion
Lufthansa News
"Radio Goethe"
Rudolf Stussi Exhibition
Biography - A Game
Snow Sport Show
Schumi Continues Sweep
Germany against Canada
Travel 'Smart'
Building Bridges
Most Contented Germans
Population Dwindling

Dick reports...


Dick Altermann at his computer

Choirs Galore

…at the Danube-Swabian Club. Wonderful choirs and powerful voices got together for an evening of fun and spirited entertainment, hosted by the German Harmonie Choir.

Manfred Petz in actionAfter a welcoming address by President Rosl Schwabe and a welcome song by all the choirs, the Harmonie Choir, under the direction of Manfred Petz – who also served as master of ceremonies – sang the first set of four spring-oriented songs, followed by Alan Williams and the Hansa Choir, under Wolf Schepp, with treasured old tunes.

Hilde Schulz plus Heide and Fred entertained with solo performances afterwards.

Under the direction of Manfred Petz

Then it was the Edelweiss Choir’s turn to take the stage, also under the direction of Manfred Petz, with three songs including a "Jodler" followed with a solo by Alan Wiliams.

Ingeborg Scholz: "Ich bin die Christel von der Post..."Ingeborg Scholz did a wonderful "Christl von der Post" (Vogelhändler) that garnered rich applauseGuenther Rausch: "Ach, ich hab' sie ja nur...". No less entertaining was Günther Rausch with his interpretation of one of Carl Millöcker’s "Bettelstudent" solos (Ach ich hab’ sie ja nur…).

"Komm mit nach Varasdin..."He later in the evening teamed up with Ingeborg Scholz for a double act with "Komm mit nach Varasdin" from C. Zeller’s ‘Gräfin Mariza’.

Then it was the turn of the Heidelberg-Rheingold Singers from St. Catherines under the direction of Lucille Vogel with four songs that included ‘Gory (sorry Glory) Halleluja’, with German text and an invitation for the audience to participate. Great presentation!

Männerchor Harfentöne

After the break the audience was invited to sing a number of songs before resuming the programmed activities with the Male Choir Harfentöne from Toronto, under the direction of Horst Hartmann, with their wonderfully strong voices.

Johanna as...Then came another humorous interlude with Johanna – The Great Italian Diva ...the great Italian divaand her loyal companion "Caruso Placido the 5th & ¾" – with ‘Il Barko’ ("Il Bacchio").


To conclude this colourful evening the "Mass-Choir" took to the stage under the direction of M. Petz, W. Schepp and L. Vogel with three more renditions of well-loved melodies.

Assembly of the mass choir

Linda Marcinkus at the pianoKudos also to the two wonderful pianists, Otti Bauer and Linda Marcinkus, who accompanied the choirs when required.


Making magicA great evening and sincerely appreciated by the audience that filled the great hall.



Easter Fest at Downey’s

Welcome to Downey'sThis annual event at Downey’s Farm Market on Heart Lake Road in Brampton was planned a week earlier this year and the weather could have been better. Several days of rain did much to drench the ground, which made parking a bit of a problem.

What a big bunny!This inclement weather may have discouraged some of the parents from visiting the market place, this year. But then the wine boutique was open, offering all of their Gold and Silver Medal ‘price-winning’ fruit wines for tasting and eventually purchasing some for consumption during the Easter holidays.

But being a little muddy did not discourage the – mostly rubber-booted - kids from going out into the wet field searching for their share of plastic eggs and to then turn them in at the collection station where they were exchanged for a small basket filled with chocolate eggs. Photo OP with the Easter bunnyAs usual a big white rabbit was in attendance and provided a disarming photo opportunity and chance of taking the memory of this event home for the future. Many of the children took advantage of the "Face Painting" offered in the Ice Cream Parlour by a couple of ‘bunnies’, and soon there were a whole new bunch of ‘bunnies" running around, visiting all the other kid-oriented amusement opportunities such as decorating eggs, puppet show, hot chocolates and donuts, Steve Bunny's helpersBaker’s magic – on the first weekend – and the "Smudge Fundays" on the second weekend - with better weather, wagon rides and other activities provided by Ruth and John Downey, their family and staff.

The market opens again on April 26 and features Asparagus and Rhubarb as this year’s earliest fresh ‘produce’ contributions to your ‘gourmet’ kitchen. For additional information visit Downey’s website at: www.downeysfarm.on.ca and their ads in this paper to stay well informed throughout the year.

Kinderfest at the Hansa Haus

Scott Siegner welcomes dancers and guestsThis was a wonderful and very colourful event, hosted by the Weiss-Blau Bayern Junior Schuhplattler group. About 100 youngsters had shown up and about 70 of them participated in the mutual entertainment. (I counted 73 kids in the ‘Polonaise’ at the end of the afternoon).

S.T.V. Weiss-Blau Bayern

The Weiss-Blau Bayern Juniors

The entertainment started with the very junior ‘Schuhplattler’ and some traditional dances.

The golden youth from the Shiamak Davar's workshops

Followed by Shiamak Davar’s Indo-Jazz & Bollywood Dancers, complete with traditional Indian music and fantastic golden costumes that outshone anything else on the floor this afternoon.

The Loreley Youth Dancers

K.G. Loreley Youth Dancers

The K.G. Loreley Dance Guard

The K.G. Loreley Dance Guard

The Loreley Show Dance


Next in line were the Loreley Youth Dancers, from Oshawa in their new black ‘Garde’ uniforms followed by their older peers who entertained with a traditional ‘Guard Dance’. Did I mention colourful, yet? They also performed a ‘Show dance’ later in the afternoon to a theme from the musical "Mama Mia", which is currently running in Toronto.

The Enzian Schuhplattler from Kitchener


Irish Dancing

Representing the Grant School of Irish Dancing

The Enzian Schuhplattler Verein, Kitchener performed next and was followed by three young ladies – and one boy – from the Grant School of Irish Dancing. This was awesome! I have never seen feet move that fast on anyone – while the rest of the body was held rigidly still. I think it is needless to mention that they received roaring applause by the audience, not just for the wonderful costumes, but also essentially for these flawlessly executed performances.

The Croatian Parish Folklore Group "Marjan"

The Croation bandThe Croation dancers





The Croatian Parish Folklore Group "Marjan" – complete with their own live band – sang and performed traditional folk dances. The four musicians, a Base fiddle, two guitars and a small mandolin- that almost sounded like a Banjo, were a joy to listen to and greatly appreciated by the spectators.

On the side you find......those eager to participate





Fascinated spectatorsThe Weiss-Blau Bayern Juniors concluded these series of wonderful performances.

Then came the part of the afternoon the kids had been patiently waiting for – especially those that had been here in previous years.

 The Piñata!

The entertainment captivatesThe children were placed in a large circle on the floor with the Piñata hanging in the centre overhead. Henry Lopez selected one of the youngsters, handed out a long stick, blindfolded him or her and pointed the kid to the target. This was repeated, alternating between boys and girls for quite some time before finally one of them managed to strike the piñata and release some of the candy therein. This resulted in a mad scramble over the floor. But since this wasn’t the end of, it the game continued for quite a while yet with every so often a few pieces of candy falling out starting the scramble again. The kids just loved it. A final ‘coup de grace’ ended the first round and the little ones made room for the juniors, who had the same trials and tribulations. It really was great fun – but not just for the kids, the adults enjoyed it at least as much as their offspring.

The Polonaise

The ‘Tombola’ raffle with almost 200 prices was one of the largest I have seen in along time, always appreciated by the guests, and always a great fund-raiser.

Kindertrachtenfest at the Danube-Swabians

All pictures were supplied by the Szauter Family.
We thank them for their support.

It was the 45th time that this occasion was staged by the "Donauschwaben" in a festive atmosphere. Sponsored by the Ladies Auxiliary the children were treated to hot dogs, juice and ice cream – some came back for ‘seconds’. Rachel Seilern – this year’s "Miss Donauschwaben" – and dance teachers Birgit Kahr, Anita Halverson, Heidi Müller and Carrie Turman accompanied the children when they marched into the hall, with Mike Nemeth providing the musical accompaniment.

Ingrid Szauter accompanies & conducts the Danube Swabian youth

The young ones sang a selection of German folk songs under the direction of Ingrid Szauter, accompanied by Rachel on the guitar.

The intricate "Maibaum" danceAfter an introduction by Birgit Kahr, Brigitte Wecker, the clubs president and Mrs. Lena Forstner, president of the Ladies Auxiliary, welcomed the guests and thanked the teachers for their efforts and the parents for bringing the children to the club for dance rehearsals.

A dance circleThe children in those wonderful "Trachten" (costumes) that originated in the old country many years ago, performed a number of dances that they had been practicing during the year – to the great delight of the audience.

Folklore in their traditional costumes (Trachten)Special guests this year were the Kitchener ‘Schwaben’ Dancers and their teacher Sheri Lotrijan, accompanied by Dieter Hanke, vice president of the club, and his wife. Mrs. Kahr presented each of the children from Kitchener with a lapel pin, from the Toronto ‘Kinder’ Group as a souvenir of this event.

Ready for their next performanceThe raffle for the precious, traditionally costumed doll was won - to be shared - by Melanie and Kirsten Hehn.


The performers are now spectatorsLet’s face it, those children are not only Canada’s future but also the future of the club itself and its survival. A fact that those involved should never forget!

Kinder & Junior Manöverball in Kitchener

Unfortunately I couldn’t make it to Kitchener this year but I have the results anyway, for those that also missed it. First the "Kinder" category:

Originality - Blau-Weiss, Sarnia.

Show Dance – 1st place and ‘Wandertrophy’: Blau-Weiss, Sarnia / 2nd Narragonia, Brantford / 3rd Narrenzunft, Kitchener / 4th Narrhalla 58, Hamilton.

Tanzmariechen Solo – 1st place and ‘Wandertrophy’: Narragonia, Brantford / 2nd Blau-Weiss, Sarnia / 3rd Narrenzunft, Kitchener.

Garde Dance – and ‘Wandertrophy’: Narragonia, Brantford / 2nd Blau-Weiss, Sarnia / 3rd Narrenzunft, Kitchener / 4th Narrhalla 58, Hamilton.

Now the Juniors:

Originality – Blau-Weiss, Sarnia.

Show Dance – 1st place and Wandertrophy: Narragonia, Brantford /2nd Treuer Husar, Mississauga / 3rd Blau-Weiss, Sarnia / 4th Narrenzunft, Kitchener.

Tanzmariechen Solo – 1st place: Blau-Weiss, Sarnia / 2nd & 3rd – (tie) Treuer Husar, Mississauga & Narragonia, Brantford / 4th Narrenzunft, Kitchener.

Garde Dance – 1st place and Wandertrophy: Narragonia, Brantford / 2nd Treuer Husar, Mississauga / 3rd Blau-Weiss, Sarnia / 4th Narrenzunft, Kitchener.

Kudos to the girls! No comment necessary from me this time, but my sincerest thanks go out to my source, which sent me the results.

The next ‘Carneval’ event – out of the regular season this time - to look forward to, will be the first "Prinzenball", hosted by the BDKK at the Holiday Inn in Burlington, on the 15th of this month. Ex-Royals and reigning royals from all over were invited to attend, and entertainment will be arriving from Germany as well. Alaaf, Helau and Ahoi,

as always,

Dick Altermann

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