The Yukon set to music

There are times in life when everything seems to be going wrong and only a major change can revive the oxygen-starved flame inside us. That was how Pascal St-Laurent was feeling when he left Sherbrooke, Quebec.

There are times in life when everything seems to be going wrong and only a major change can revive the oxygen-starved flame inside us. That was how Pascal St-Laurent was feeling when he left Sherbrooke, Quebec, for a long trip.

The 29-year-old teacher set out with his bicycle, his snowboard, and most importantly his guitar as his only luggage. In his van, he planned to travel from one side of the Americas to the other.

His trip started and ended in the North. This is where the adventure of his life began.

“I met Vero (his partner and now the mother of their three adorable boys), and then I met Alain and Marie-Maude,” who with St-Laurent form the core of Soir de Semaine, one of the longest-together music groups in the Yukon.

“The Yukon is full of artists who earn a living doing something else. Yukoners love listening to music and being entertained, so musicians have plenty of opportunities to perform, record albums and improve,” explains St-Laurent.

To earn a living, the teacher went back to the classroom where he has gradually become a specialist in the intensive French school programs. At night, he turns back into the guitarist of Soir de Semaine and along with his friends hosts the legendary parties that invariably result when the group takes the stage.

“Here, musicians share, collaborate and help each other,” he says, and this contributes to a culture of openness that can be felt in public places and at the many festivals. But the Yukon is small, so Soir de Semaine tries not to wear out its welcome. The members of the group always try to find something new to offer the public.

During the many shows that make up the cultural programming in the Yukon each year, you might have a chance to meet St-Laurent.

If you don’t see him on stage, he could well be backstage, as he is very generous with his time, helping other artists develop their careers.

If you stop at a campsite in the summer, keep your ears open and explore the surroundings. A little off to the side, there might be a gathering of 20 or so people singing around the campfire. Chances are St-Laurent is the guitarist for this impromptu show.

And if you are really lucky, maybe you will meet the other members of Soir de Semaine. Now, that would be a party!

This article is excerpted from the third edition of a tourism brochure created by Association franco-yukonnaise (AFY). You can get a copy of the brochure (in French) at the Centre de la francophonie in Whitehorse or at the tourism information centre in your community.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The City of Whitehorse’s projected deficit could be $100,000 more than originally predicted earlier this year. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
City deficit could be just over $640,000 this year

Third quarter financial reports presented to council

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley speaks during a COVID-19 press conference in Whitehorse on Oct. 30. Masks became mandatory in the Yukon for anyone five years old and older as of Dec. 1 while in public spaces. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
As mask law comes into effect, premier says $500 fines will be last resort

The territory currently has 17 active cases of COVID-19

Crystal Schick/Yukon News file
Ranj Pillai, minister of economic development, during a press conference on April 1.
Government rejects ATAC mining road proposal north of Keno City

Concerns from the First Nation of Na-Cho Nyäk Dun were cited as the main reason for the decision

asdf
WYATT’S WORLD

Wyatt’s World for Dec. 2, 2020

Whitehorse and Carcross will be among seven northern communities to have unlimited internet options beginning Dec. 1. (Yukon News file)
Unlimited internet for some available Dec. 1

Whitehorse and Carcross will be among seven northern communities to have unlimited… Continue reading

Submitted/Yukon News file
Yukon RCMP’s Historical Case Unit is seeking information related to the unsolved homicide of Allan Donald Waugh, 69, who was found deceased in his house on May 30, 2014.
Yukon RCMP investigating unsolved Allan Waugh homicide

Yukon RCMP’s Historical Case Unit is seeking information related to an unsolved… Continue reading

A jogger runs along Millenium Trail as the sun rises over the trees around 11 a.m. in Whitehorse on Dec. 12, 2018. The City of Whitehorse could soon have a new trail plan in place to serve as a guide in managing the more than 233 kilometres of trails the city manages. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
2020 trail plan comes forward

Policies and bylaws would look at e-mobility devices

Snow-making machines are pushed and pulled uphill at Mount Sima in 2015. The ski hill will be converting snow-making to electric power with more than $5 million in funding from the territorial and federal governments. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
Mount Sima funded to cut diesel reliance

Mount Sima ski hill is converting its snowmaking to electric power with… Continue reading

Fossil finds at Mt. Stephen. (Photo: Sarah Fuller/Parks Canada)
Extreme hiking, time travel and science converge in the Burgess Shale

Climb high in the alpine and trace your family tree back millions of years – to our ocean ancestors

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Mask fundraiser helps make children’s wishes come true

From Black Press Media + BraveFace – adult, youth and kid masks support Make-A-Wish Foundation

Colin McDowell, the director of land management for the Yukon government, pulls lottery tickets at random during a Whistle Bend property lottery in Whitehorse on Sept. 9, 2019. A large amount of lots are becoming available via lottery in Whistle Bend as the neighbourhood enters phase five of development. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Lottery for more than 250 new Whistle Bend lots planned for January 2021

Eight commercial lots are being tendered in additional to residential plots

The Government of Yukon Main Administration Building in Whitehorse on Aug. 21. The Canada Border Services Agency announced Nov. 26 that they have laid charges against six people, including one Government of Yukon employee, connected to immigration fraud that involved forged Yukon government documents. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Charges laid in immigration fraud scheme, warrant out for former Yukon government employee

Permanent residency applications were submitted with fake Yukon government documents

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council this week

Most Read