College Marks Unofficial Start of Christmas Season

RMCC Band Upholds Tradition of Musical Excellence and Fun

Article and Photos by 25366 Mike Shewfelt

The RMCC Band held its annual Christmas Concert this past Friday night. This event, which together with the Winter Ball marks the unofficial start to the Christmas season at the College, was well attended by members of the community, Cadets, and College Staff. Those coming to the Concert had high expectations for the event, and the Band, under the leadership of WO Catherine Norris, did not disappoint.

The Brass and Reed section of the Band, under the direction of the Cadet Wing Band Officer 25591 Britany Bourgeois, got the audience into the Christmas mood with Holiday classics like “Sleigh Ride” and “Hallelujah,” and then proceeded to round out the first half of the Concert with a memorable rendition of Dr. Suess’s “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.” This performance had the audience in stitches, and made soloist 25747 Richard Gonzo an instant celebrity at the College.

The Stage Band kept things going after a short intermission with “Just a Gigolo/I Ain’t Got Nobody,” “Colour My World,” and “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” The Choir followed, and they covered range of music, performing both “‘Twas in the Moon of Wintertime,” considered to the be the first Canadian Christmas carol, and Freddie Mercury’s “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

The kids in the audience (as well as the kids at heart) got a treat when Santa Claus took time out of his busy Christmas preparations to make a short stop at the Concert. He came with presents for the kids, and even gave one to BGen Eric Tremblay, College Commandant (he got a plastic model artillery piece kit). The audience rounded out the evening by joining in on the signing of traditional Christmas carols, including “Jingle Bells,” “Mon Beau Sapin,” “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer,” and “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.”

The success of the evening was evident on the faces of the audience as they left the Concert, as well as in the $1450 cheque presented to Mr. John DiPaolo, VP Operations for the United Way of Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington (all proceeds from the event went to the United Way). Congratulations to the Band on another successful Christmas Concert!

CKWS Television was also there: CKWS – RMCC Concert – short video

Highlights from the concert (click to enlarge):

____________________________________

Winter Ball Surpasses Expectations

Article by 26659 OCdt (I) Danielle Andela

Photos by 25366 Mike Shewfelt 

The ball gowns swished, the ice sculptures gleamed and the RMCC Winter Ball was under way! After months of preparation and planning, the field house of the Kingston Military Community Sports Centre was transformed from a place intended for a hard workout to an elegant and beautiful dining hall.

Last night (Sat, 17 Nov), the Winter Ball took place with the attendance of hundreds of Officer Cadets from the College as well as their dates. The Winter Ball is, by far, the largest and most exciting social event of the year. It began as a tool to teach gentlemen Cadets proper dining etiquette, and has evolved into much, much more over the years. It is tradition for the male RMC Officer Cadets to employ humorous tactics to acquire dates from the nearby Queens University. These tactics range from storming Queens en mass to setting up booths with hot drinks and applications.

Walking through the doors of the KMCSC, the first thing to be noticed was the ball-goers in various dress, ranging from the Scarlet military dress to tuxedos and of course the lovely ladies in their gowns. Once inside the field house the immediate focus was the New York Winter theme. The scenery included elements like windows from a New York street side along with a taxicab and New York skyline for taking photos. Strands of lights hanging from the ceiling made the illusion of a starry sky and festive Christmas trees set the mood. Dinner was served buffet style and there were choices of many foods from beef roast and chicken to shrimp served in giant ice swan sculptures. The dessert consisted of several assorted cupcakes and cheesecakes in any flavour you could desire.

The night was one to remember not only with regards to the food, but also with the great conversation as friends wined and dined. There was also music from the RMCC Pipe Band and several performances by the Highland Dancers. Upon the conclusion of dinner, a formal dance period began. It was a unique opportunity to try out waltzing, as it is a form of dance not often practiced by youth today. At midnight, the Commandant retired for the evening and it was time to let loose.

The informal dancing commenced with the playing of “Dancing Queen” by ABBA. This prompted the quick removal of the scarlet tunics that Officer Cadets are required to wear for the dinner. The dance music really kicked as the party began. Partners in arm, the participants danced until the late hours of the night until the last song “Don’t Stop Believing” by Journey played and everyone made their way to their beds.

The RMCC Winter Ball especially lived up to all the First Years’ expectations (they having never attended before). It contained many elements, from formal dancing and dining to a party that raised the roof of the field house. It was an unforgettable night that was well spent with friends and people who have become important to the Officer Cadets since their arrival at the Royal Military College of Canada.

More photos from the ball (click to enlarge):