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Dawe, Wendell. Wendell Dawe discusses old-time concerts in the Cupids, Newfoundland area.
Descriptive TitleDawe, Wendell. Wendell Dawe discusses old-time concerts in the Cupids, Newfoundland area.
CategoryMusic and song
Festive events and games
TopicEntertainment and recreation
Person as TopicDawe, Wendell
DescriptionWendell Dawe discusses old-time concerts in the Cupids, Newfoundland area.
InformantDawe, Wendell
Recording LocationCanada-Newfoundland and Labrador-Cupids
Extent10:49 minutes; 9.97 MB
Resource TypeAudio
CollectionIntangible Cultural Heritage Inventory - Performing Arts
TranscriptPeter Laracy: Good Day. Wendell Dawe: Good Day. PL: My name is Peter Laracyand today is Thursday, January 27th. I'm interviewing Wendell Dawe about old time concerts. This interview is being recorded at the Cupids Legacy Centre, in Cupids. Wendell, where are you from Wendell? WD: All my life in Cupids PL: Spent your whole life here have you? And who are you parents? WD: Roy Dawe and Rebecca Dawe. PL: and are they also from Cupids? WD: Yup. PL: Very good, so you have a long association with Cupids. WD: Sure. PL: Did you go to school there in Cupids? WD: Yes, in this building here actually. PL: in this very building we're in today, that's very good. When you think about going to school here and growing up in Cupids do you have memories of old time concerts that would take place here? WD: well actually just the school concerts, really. PL: Perhaps you could describe for me about some of the things that would happen at those concerts. WD: well of course back then there was three teachers here at the school and when we got to the middle grades, say grades four, five and six, that the most of the time that I can recall concerts, right? And we'd look forward to it every Christmas, Christmas concert. Oh course getting so much time off from the classroom to practice and all that. And the principal, the last three or four practices the principal would always be involved as well as the teacher to see that everything went properly and, as well as good done. And we took part in skits, recitations, things like that. Of course after (at?) the school concert then there would probably be Santa Clause would arrive. That would be exciting for us younger fellows then, right. PL: So you said the principal would be involved. What way would he be involved in the concert? WD: We they would more or less oversee the last two or three practices before the concert to make sure that the teacher- well it would be three- him and the middle teacher I called them and the primary teacher would be involved with the concert but he [the principal] would oversee the works. PL: and the principal's name, do you remember? WD: At that time, Arch Wells. PL: Arch Wells, okay-and the teachers who were involved in this...can you recall any of there names? WD: Yeah, one was Lillian Ivany, from Cupids and-oh I can't- [can't make out name] PL: you mentioned skits, so what exactly do you mean when you say a skit? Can you explain to me what a skit involves? WD: it was short play type thing, right?- But not necessarily comical. PL: Would there be more than one person involved? WD: Yeah, yeah, probably be about four or five. PL: Okay and how long would they usually last? WD: Probably about 10 minutes, 15 at the most. PL: Okay, would there be any singing in them? WD: not in the skit itself, but during the concert of course there'd be singing. PL: So that would be something separate? WD: Different, yup. PL: So what kind of singing, just explain to me what kind of- would it be individual singing or groups? WD: Yeah, well group singing, yup. They would open the concert with a group sings. I can't recall what the name of the things we'd sing, but the whole- everyone that was taking part in the concert would be on stage with the opening. And then again with the closing, of course. PL: You mean everybody in the whole school, or your class? WD: Just the ones that took part in the concert. PL: Oh so everybody wouldn't take part in the concert? WD: Oh no, well some didn't want to, right? PL: Oh, okay, so you had a choice? WD: Yup, yup. PL: Okay. WD: and then, of course, after the concert was over you'd end with the Ode to Newfoundland- that was always the... PL: So the Ode to Newfoundland would occur at the end of the concert? WD: Yup. PL: What about at the beginning? Was there anything special? WD: No, just the opening chorus of the concert, that's all. PL: And would you participate in the concert yourself Wendell? WD: I did, yup, at time, yup. PL: Do you have any particular memories of parts that you took in concerts? WD: [laughs] no I don't. PL: No? When you think about the concerts- I know you just kinda had a little bit of a smile on your face, are there any particular memories? Do you recall it being a pleasant experience- unpleasant experience? WD: It was fun, yeah. Probably too much fun sometimes... PL: What do you mean by that? WD: Get the teacher's dander up, probably be joking around so much we wouldn't be paying too much attention to what we were supposed to be doing, right? PL: So you took great joy in that? WD: And then you'd get a warning of course, next time you won't get no part in the concert [laughs] PL: and would you be one of the ones leading this? WD: No, no, no [all laugh] PL: You mentioned concerts in relationship to Christmas when you were talking earlier. Is that the only time the concerts would take place? WD: That I had part in, yes. But I remember like some older concerts that more of the older people would go to. It could have been in the auditorium of the school of the Orange Lodge. PL: Okay and the auditorium of this school we're sitting in here now? WD: Yup PL: and these weren't school concerts put off by school children, these were- WD: The first was- PL: Yes- WD: But the later ones I recall the adults doing the concerts, right? PL: Let's talk a little bit about the adult concerts for a moment. What do you remember about those in terms of some of the kinds of things that took place? WD: Oh well likely be some recitations right? PL: Do you remember- WD:...facing the barrel (?), floor, walk, [about 3 words inaudible] gave us another and all these type ones, right? PL: And do you remember who would have performed those? WD: Well one in particular would be Allan Dawe and another would be William Sparkland (Sparklin?) who owed the coffee shop. PL: And what was the name of that coffee shop? WD: The Cupids Coffee Shop. And there were different ones like Bob LeDrew (LeGrow?) played the guitar and sang, ones like that. PL: Any people, did any people sing other than Bob? WD: Oh yeah, yup, yup. Probably be a group of women take part- one singing, one playing the accordion, or whatever, right? PL: Where they good singers? WD: Oh yeah PL: Yes? Any particular individuals stick out in your memory? WD: Well Bob Legrow's the one that stands out in my memory; he used to do a lot of singing, right? Old country western type songs, right? PL: In terms of playing instruments, we often think about the fiddle and the accordion and their relationship to community concerts. [The following sentence is difficult to make out] Where there any people in the community [around the island?] and did they participate? WD: Not much in the fiddle, but the accordion, yup. But they at the community dances they had the fiddle and the accordion. PL: so the community dances, were they something that was held separate from the community concerts? WD: Yup PL: So they were separate entities all together? WD: The Anglican parish in Bernadette [sounds like Bernadette] used to out off the dances mostly. And of course all the young teenagers would be waiting for Friday night to come to go over to the dance. PL: But they had nothing to do with the concerts themselves? WD: No, nope. PL: So that's a separate topic, perhaps something we could explore another point in time. WD: Yup PL: You mentioned a little bit earlier too again about having time off, so the preparation for the school concerts, what would be done when? WD: when time come for practicing you'd probably be practicing five or six weeks ahead. So whenever in the afternoon, you got to practice for the concert. You'd probably get an hour off school early, right? PL: So practice was during school time? So was there any practice after school? WD: Yup. PL: So it was a combination of- WD: A combination of both, yup. PL: Again when you think back about concerts are there any particular sounds or smells that you can remember, associate with the concerts? WD: only the old Christmas tree, the smell of the old Christmas tree. PL: The smell of the tree, you could actually smell the tree? WD: Fir tree, of yeah. PL: so where would the tree come from? WD: oh probably some of the older boys in the school would go cut the tree and then everybody would take part in decorating the tree. PL: Very good. Wendell is there anything else that you'd like to share with us that comes to mind about concerts years ago? WD: Not really, not on concerts no. That's the only ones that really stick out in my mind is the Christmas concert and like I said, the community concerts sometimes they'd have, right, for the older people. PL: In terms of the community concerts, are they still held here in the community now? WD: Oh yeah, we do. The historical society does a variety concert every year, right? And that goes over well I must say, we sold out every time. PL: and in what way are the concerts that are held today similar to the concerts that would have been held in the community years ago? Are they the same, or different? WD: Well, really not. Probably more modern type music- like the accordion music and things like that and singing and that was all much the same- Newfoundland type music and vocal, right? PL: Are you involved in the concerts now? WD: Oh yeah. PL: In what way? WD: Oh I probably take part in a skit or do a recitation or something like that at the concert, right. Oh course I help organize the music end of the concert, right? PL: So you're involved in the organization of it? Well Wendell, thank you very much for participating in this interview today. I appreciate your sharing with me your memories about concerts in the community years ago. WD: No problem-anything else comes to my mind I'll pass it along to you. PL: Thanks very much. WD: Okay, thank you. [applause] [someone says "thank you sir"]
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