Monday, September 22, 2008

La Foulerie de Pièces at Le Moulin de Guette ès Lièvres

Saturday, 25 September.

Here is one link to the longest video and then you can watch the others!

Check out the musicians!

What a great evening.

And here are some more pictures of a
September to Remember!

Finally here is a copy of a press release I wrote in 2006 concerning "La Foulerie de Pièces." Just a little information on the origin of this event!


Participate in Traditional French Bread Making and Breton Dance and Heritage
La Foulerie de Pièces—“Stompin’ at the Grist Mill”

St. Caradec, France, June 28, 2006 – Make bread with Breton hosts at the enchanting 17th century Guette ès Lièvres grist mill in the morning and then dance the night away in a marvelously convivial atmosphere on September 16, 2006 in the heart of Brittany.

A unique event that showcases the traditions of the past, when the French gathered together annually to stomp down the earthen floors of their bread mills, “la foulerie de pièces” represents a centuries-old French custom. Bread was truly the staff of life in centuries past and when learning about the history of this grist mill and community oven, the place of bread in French life and history becomes crystal clear. Apart from their crops and the weather, nothing—with the exception of the Church—was more important for villagers and peasants than the community mill and oven, where both bread and meals were prepared. Millers and bakers were honored everywhere in France…and even had special dispensation from attending church! Villagers always came together in the fall to refurbish the mills for the winter and the new year.

In Brittany, they danced on freshly prepared dirt mixed with bales of wheat and moistened to prepare the floor for the next year’s use. (This also took place in French homes, some of which to this day retain their earthen floors.) Certain Breton dances were developed for this specific purpose, and they will be among the dances participants in this unique evening will learn.

After a day of bread making (described in detail at and a community dinner (prepared in the community oven at Le Vieux Bourg—where the day’s bread is baked), Breton musicians will set up on the millstone at le Moulin de Guette ès Lièvres and begin to play and to teach traditional Breton dances. A wonderful French expression, “se serrer les coudes”—to clasp each other’s elbows literally and to help one another figuratively—comes from the dance as that is exactly what the dancers do! Bretons are renowned for their hospitality, clasping each other’s elbows tightly in their towns and villages, and their marvelous sense of community that is expressed in the joy of the dance. The organizers of this event, which takes place during a weekend dedicated to European heritage, welcome all who wish to experience this delightful evening. Its purpose is to bring people of all nationalities together at the mill to promote a sense of belonging and to encourage conversation and shared experiences.

Les Chantous d’Loudia, l’Amicale Laïque de Plouguenast-Gausson, and l’Echo de Gouet are the sponsors of « La Foulerie de Pièces » in Plouguenast, Côtes d’Armor, France.

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