Category Archives: Blog

Generous Sponsors Help Cutie Circle Amass 50 Ukulele Kits to Start Public Lending Collection at the Fraser Valley Regional Library

ukes

Do you know that starting in October, music lovers from Port Coquitlam to Boston Bar can partake in the joy of ukulele by borrowing the world’s happiest instrument from their local library?

That’s right! Fifty cheerful ukuleles complete with digital tuners and gig bags contributed by Cutie Circle, Empire Music, King’s Music, Ohana Music and our good friend, Linda Thiessen, are coming to the 25 branches of the Fraser Valley Regional Library (FVRL) Uke ’n Play Collection (FVRL’s media release). The generous sponsors are committed to bringing music to the people and supported this project right from the start! The dream of putting one uke in every home is getting one step closer to reality!

Thanks to the friendly ukulele players at the Terry Fox Library (who disguised themselves as smiley librarians) in Port Coquitlam, the Cuties and FVRL collaboration was formed in February!

Library

Serving a population of 700,000, the FVRL will add the joy of making music to its offerings. In its typical library fashion, the FVRL will include ukulele instruction books to the lot and assemble them nicely into carrying bags to round out the 50 ukulele kits!

The ukulele lending collection includes a variety of styles and colours to suit different tastes and levels of playfulness. From the standard figure-eight shaped brown soprano ukuleles, to their red glossy cousins, to the huggable pineapple cuties, to the thin-line arched back travel-size ukes decorated with abalone and pearl inlays, there is a ukulele to appeal to every aspiring ukester!

Here’s a sample of the fun collection.

uke02

Ukulele #02

uke23

Ukulele #23

uke38

Ukulele #38

uke50

Ukulele #50

What’s more? The strings of each uke have been carefully stretched by members of the Cutie Circle. In fact, the Cuties have lovingly strummed a handful of happy tunes into the tummy of each and every uke to get the instruments well on their way to meeting their new friends in the Lower Mainland and the Fraser Valley. The hope of the Cuties is, of course, that all the people the ukes will touch can then build on these happy vibes and spread the music to their friends and families.

The Cuties also had a farewell party for the ukes to give these babies a grand send-off.

Courtesy of Jerry S.

Courtesy of Jerry S.

The official launch of the lending collection will take place at five of the FVRL locations:

Uke ’n Play launch events will be held at five FVRL locations. Please contact the library for more details.

The ukuleles will be in your neighbourhood in October!

Are you ready?!

Cutie Circle’s 2016 – 2017 Calendar

Cuties’ Song Circle Dates for the 2016 – 2017 Season

Cutie Circle’s Regular Meeting Dates

We’ll be meeting from 2:00pm to 4:00pm on the following dates.
June 5, 2016 ** (moved forward)
July 10, 2016  (We will *not* be having a song circle this month as we will be holding a concert by Kimo Hussey and Zanuck Lindsey.)
August 14, 2016
September 11, 2016
October 16, 2016 ** (moved back for Thanksgiving)
November 13, 2016
December 18, 2016 ** (moved back due to room availability)
Starting time: 1:30pm
January 8, 2017
February 19, 2017 ** (moved back for Family Day)
March 12, 2017
April 9, 2017
May 14, 2017
June 11, 2017

Complete Event Calendar

Venue Location – Address, Directions and Facility Map

The Evergreen Cultural Centre’s address is 1205 Pinetree Way, Coquitlam, BC.

We’ll be meeting in the Rehearsal Hall at the Evergreen Cultural Centre. As in the past, we will have free parking on Sundays and evenings. Here is a map of how to find the way to the Evergreen Cultural Centre and the Rehearsal Hall and Studio Theatre. This road map will help guide you to the ECC entrance. With the SkyTrain construction, it is the only way to the back lot.

Evergreen Cultural Centre Map

Directions

TransCanada Route

From Hwy# 1 take exit 44 (at Cape Horn) and travel north or Hwy# 7 or 7A.

Barnet Route

From Barnet Hwy travel east through Port Moody, (along St Johns Street), and Coquitlam (along Barnet Hwy). Turn north (left) on Pinetree Way. The Evergreen Cultural Centre is located on the northeast corner of Guildford and Pinetree Way, four traffic lights north of the Coquitlam Shopping Centre.

Parking

North Lot (Studio Theatre)

Travelling northbound on Pinetree Way, turn right at the traffic control signal at Town Centre Boulevard. Travelling southbound on Pinetree Way, turn left at the traffic control signal at Town Centre Boulevard.

South Lot (Rehearsal Hall)

Access travelling westbound on Guildford Way. Please note there is no vehicle access from the main parking lot or from the eastbound lanes on Guildford Way.

Evergreen-Parking-Map-June-2014-FINAL

Wheelchair Access

Evergreen Cultural Centre is an entirely wheelchair accessible facility. There are three wheelchair parking spaces next to the drop off area and in close proximity to the centre.

Facility Map

Once you arrive at the Evergreen Cultural Centre, refer to this Facility Map for finding the parking lot, the ramps, the Rehearsal Hall and the Studio Theatre. (Click the image below for a larger version.) The doors to the facility will be opened 15 minutes before our meeting time.

Evergreen Cultural Centre Facility Map

Cutie Circle’s NEW Location and 2015 – 2016 Calendar

The Cutie Circle has found a brand new home! Beginning June 2015, the Cuties will be meeting at the Evergreen Cultural Centre (ECC), just across the street from its first home, the Pinetree Community Centre, in Coquitlam. The new venue is a beautiful facility with good acoustics and offers free parking on Sundays and evenings. This move will give the Cuties a chance to meet even during the summer months (as the nearby venues including the Pinetree Community Centre and Glen Pine Pavillion, are closed on Sundays during the summer). We thank the folks at the ECC for finding us a stable set of dates for the 2015 to 2016 season. We’ll miss the friendly crew at Pinetree for their helpful and enthusiastic service for the past year!

Cuties’ Song Circle Dates for the 2015 – 2016 Season

Cutie Circle’s Regular Meeting Dates

We’ll be meeting from 2:00pm to 4:00pm on the following dates.
June 21, 2015 ** (moved back to accommodate Paul’s schedule)
July 12, 2015  (We will *not* be having a song circle this month as we will be holding the “It’s All About Ukulele” concert and workshop by Kimo Hussey and Zanuck Lindsey.)
August 9, 2015
September 13, 2015
October 4, 2015 ** (moved ahead for Thanksgiving)
November 8, 2015
December 6, 2015 ** (moved ahead for X’mas)
January 10, 2016
February 14, 2016
March 13, 2016
April 3, 2016** (moved ahead due to an out-of-town funeral)
May 1, 2016 ** (moved ahead for Mother’s Day)
June 5, 2016 ** (moved ahead due to room availability)

Complete Event Calendar

New Location – Address, Directions and Facility Map

The Evergreen Cultural Centre’s address is 1205 Pinetree Way, Coquitlam, BC.

We’ll be meeting in the Rehearsal Hall at the Evergreen Cultural Centre. As in the past, we will have free parking on Sundays and evenings. Here is a map of how to find the way to the Evergreen Cultural Centre and the Rehearsal Hall and Studio Theatre. This road map will help guide you to the ECC entrance. With the SkyTrain construction, it is the only way to the back lot.

Evergreen Cultural Centre Map

Directions

TransCanada Route

From Hwy# 1 take exit 44 (at Cape Horn) and travel north or Hwy# 7 or 7A.

Barnet Route

From Barnet Hwy travel east through Port Moody, (along St Johns Street), and Coquitlam (along Barnet Hwy). Turn north (left) on Pinetree Way. The Evergreen Cultural Centre is located on the northeast corner of Guildford and Pinetree Way, four traffic lights north of the Coquitlam Shopping Centre.

Parking

North Lot (Studio Theatre)

Travelling northbound on Pinetree Way, turn right at the traffic control signal at Town Centre Boulevard. Travelling southbound on Pinetree Way, turn left at the traffic control signal at Town Centre Boulevard.

South Lot (Rehearsal Hall)

Access travelling westbound on Guildford Way. Please note there is no vehicle access from the main parking lot or from the eastbound lanes on Guildford Way.

Evergreen-Parking-Map-June-2014-FINAL

Wheelchair Access

Evergreen Cultural Centre is an entirely wheelchair accessible facility. There are three wheelchair parking spaces next to the drop off area and in close proximity to the centre.

Facility Map

Once you arrive at the Evergreen Cultural Centre, refer to this Facility Map for finding the parking lot, the ramps, the Rehearsal Hall and the Studio Theatre. (Click the image below for a larger version.) The doors to the facility will be opened 15 minutes before our meeting time.

Evergreen Cultural Centre Facility Map

The Cuties’ Winter in Review

Cuties' March meeting

Cuties’ March meeting

Winter can be loads of fun. Just look at what the Cuties have been up to the past three months! At our March meeting, Brian was the first up to perform another amusing tune, The Invalids, with his custom uke. It was a good educational moment when we all realized what one can do with creativity and the many possibilities that are out there for ukuleles! At the sight of the cool uke, the smiles on both Brian and Paul, our in-house expert luthier, were bright, shiny and priceless!

Brian impresses us with his custom uke (complete with a pick-up) before his performance

Brian impresses us with his custom uke (complete with a pick-up) before his performance

Kiwi gave us his first performance at the Cutie Circle. His sizzling hot rendition of Santana’s Europa garnered him a much-deserved standing ovation from the Cuties!

Kiwi wows the crowd with Europa

Kiwi wows the crowd with Europa

Paul rounded the performance time with a sweet refreshing song, Latch, performed in his usual gentle and soothing style! Last but not least, Pat baked us a delicious load of chocolatey goodness that kept us strumming with gusto throughout the two hours! Thanks, Pat!

Paul performs Latch for the Cuties

Paul performs Latch for the Cuties

The Cuties did a few things differently in February. With the sponsorship of Coquitlam’s Glen Pine Pavilion and help of Litmus Films, we held a free premiere of the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain‘s documentary film, “The Ukes in America“.  The turnout was great and the space was fabulous.

UOGB Film Premiere at Glen Pine Pavilion

UOGB Film Premiere at Glen Pine Pavilion

It was followed by a sold-out Hawaiian Ukulele Workshop with Gary Cyr that afternoon. Gary patiently guided us through some rather challenging jazzy chord progressions! Gary Cyr Just look at how many dots are on each of the chord charts (below)! These chords do sound groovy! We had fun dressing up in Alohawear and donning colourful leis! If you missed or enjoyed this workshop, check out his All New Hawaiian Ukulele Song Workshop in June!

Gary shares some of the jazzy Hawaiian chords

Gary shares some of the jazzy Hawaiian chords

A few Cuties performed for the W.H.O. (Women Helping Others) at the W.H.O.’s Valentine’s Day-themed meeting. Lorraine gave an entertaining lesson on how to do the hula! As it turned out, the participant who volunteered for the demo was a talented and quick-learning student! We may be able to form a hula troupe before too long!

Lorraine teaches the Hula at the WHO meeting

Lorraine teaches the Hula at the WHO meeting

The Friendly WHO Members

The Friendly WHO Members

Cuties performing for the WHO At our January meeting, we had a big crowd with lots of snacks, thanks to all the Cuties! Many Cuties performed as well.

Photo Credit: Jerry Santa Cruz

Photo Credit: Jerry Santa Cruz

Brian and Gill got up and performed My Get Up and Go has Got Up and Went to a cheering crowd.

Gill and Brian spiritedly performed “My Get Up and Go has Got Up and Went”

Brenda and Jen enjoyed each other’s company by doing Enjoy Yourself together.

Brenda and Jen

Brenda and Jen did “Enjoy Yourself” together

Jerry truly gave us a treat by singing the romantic song, Gift (originally sung by Singto Numchok).

Jerry sang a sweet-to-the core song, “Gift”.

Paul and Luisa gave us the nostalgic Act Naturally and Paul, by popular demand, did a lovely solo of Kiss a Girl!

Paul

Paul checked his handheld device before performing a lovely solo of “Kiss a Girl”

A big thank-you goes to Paul for enthusiastically leading us and to all the Cuties who helped with the set-up, take-down and clean-up! It is much appreciated.

It’s All About Ukulele – Concert and Workshop Tour by Hawaiian Masters Kimo Hussey and Zanuck Lindsey

kimo_poster_r

This July, we will be welcoming world-renowned ukulele masters, Kimo Hussey and Zanuck Lindsey, from Hawaii. They will be having a BC Tour of concerts and workshops entitled, “It’s All About Ukulele,” which will include rare duet ukulele performances. The ukulele workshops will be co-taught by Kimo and Zanuck who have years of teaching experience. Be sure to take this opportunity to learn from two experts under one roof! A discounted price of $35 is offered to all registering in both the concert ($20) and the workshop ($20). This tour is sponsored by Arbutus Music in Nanaimo and the Cutie Circle. Eventbrite - It's All About Ukulele: Kimo Hussey & Zanuck Lindsey's BC Tour

Biography

Kimo Hussey is a much-sought after performer and teacher, traveling extensively to ukulele festivals and workshops around the world. He has recorded two solo ukulele CDs, “Eminent Ukulele” and “Low G” (from iTunes), and has participated in several other composite ukulele CDs (including Legends of the Ukulele, Island Style Ukulele 2) . He is an author of the multiple award-winning Hawaiian songbook,”He Mele Aloha” which has sold millions of copies around the world and has been translated into other languages. He will be presenting a five-day “Ukulele Forever” workshop at Hollyhock on Cortes Island this July.

Read the exclusive artist interview of Kimo by Ukulele Mike.

Zanuck Lindsey has been a professional musician, bandleader, teacher, composer, producer, and contractor for 30+ years. He has traveled extensively, performing internationally. A few highlights include performances at the Hollywood Bowl, Carnegie Hall, Irvine Meadows, Shoreline Amphitheater, Aloha Stadium and the Oneness Center in Golden City, India to mention a few.

Enjoy the duo’s performance of Blue Lei with a kiku and a ukulele

Concert

Date: Saturday, July 11, 2015

Time: 7:00pm (Doors open at 6:30pm)

Location: Evergreen Cultural Centre, Studio Theatre, 1205 Pinetree Way, Coquitlam

Parking: Free

Cost: $20

Workshop

Date: Sunday, July 12, 2015 Time: 2:00pm – 4:00pm

Location: Evergreen Cultural Centre, Rehearsal Hall, 1205 Pinetree Way, Coquitlam

Parking: Free

Cost: $20

Map:

Local Accommodations

Directions and Parking

Visit Evergreen Cultural Centre’s Find Us page.

Registration Form

To pay with credit card, Eventbrite - It's All About Ukulele: Kimo Hussey & Zanuck Lindsey's BC Tour. To register and pay cash at the door, please complete the following form:

Emo and Ukulele — What Dreams are Made Of

Another Tale of a Ukulele Adventure

A Cutie’s simple wish of being in a photo with her all-time favourite comedian and all-time favourite instrument turned out better than her wildest dreams.

Emo and Ukulele

Jen was beyond elated with her favourite comedian and instrument all in one shot.

Emo Philips, the amazing comedy legend, graciously brought out his teal recorder after the photo and humoured Jen to a kanikapila of her all-time favourite ukulele song, Somewhere Over the Rainbow.

Emo, Recorder and Ukulele

The first in Vancouver (maybe?) duet involving two underdogs of musical instruments took place at Yuk Yuk’s tonight in front of a live off-stage audience.

When Jen laughed herself into stitches and fell to the ground on one knee in the middle of their song, Emo quipped that she was just like Jimi Hendrix except that Jimi would save that for the end of his act.

Emo and Recorder

The ukulele player disappeared from view as she laughed too hard and was on her way to the floor.

Jen could only credit this memorable encounter to the ukulele’s awesome ability of attracting compassionate, funny people together with the ultimate goal of generating laughter and happiness. The unbelievable impromptu duet erased the gut-wrenching pain that had plagued Jen all day and left her with a semi-permanent grin as she entered dreamland tonight. Laughter is truly the best medicine. Congratulations on a fantastic show tonight, Emo! Thank you for your humanity and all the best to your comedy tour.

Sunday Fun with Ukes in Hand

Photo Credit: Judy Williams

What did 30-some people do on a warm sunny afternoon last Sunday? Well, they stayed indoors, were air-conditioned, and played their hearts out on their ukuleles, of course!

Gary and Ron

We are tremendously grateful for the enthusiastic turnout at our first circle meeting. The room was packed with Cuties of all ages! Our thanks go first and foremost to Gary and Ron for their musicianship and leadership! They even brought along hardware to round out the performance, too! We also thank Braden, Gladie and Jacqueline for volunteering, and the Pinetree staff, Mike and Sue for having the room ready for us.

Derek - first Cutie performer

As for Cutie talents, Derek will always be known as the very first Cutie to ever strum and sing at our performance time! He was the brave one and picked out a song with under 15 minutes notice! Good job with “Down on the Corner”!

Brenda

Up next was Brenda, an avid songwriter and activist, who shared her song, “Old Home Place,” with much gusto.

Brian and Mike

We were then graced with the song, “On the Road Again” by our friends, Brian and Mike, who drove a long way to attend and wow the crowd. Mike played his harmonica and uke in addition to singing! What a treat for us.

Ron

Finally, Ron played a special edition of “One Toke Over the Line” just for the Cuties. Hmm, but what did he mean by “What happened in Port Townsend stays in Port Townsend”? I guess we’ll never know.

Cuties Group Sept 14

Last but not least, we thank all the Cuties for playing music together and for having fun.

Gladie

For the next meeting, we are also happy to announce that we will have some music stands on site for use during the circle.

See you next month!