Skip Navigation LinksHome > Humanities Department > Piecework: When We Were French

Piecework: When We Were French

The Cultural Affairs Committee and the Humanities Department of Clinton Community College,
in cooperation with the Foreign Language Department of Plattsburgh State University
and the Pays du Nord Chapter of the American Association of Teachers of French
proudly present

"Piecework: When We Were French"

Starring Abby Paige

A play about the French Canadian experience

Originally commissioned for the 2009 Champlain Quadricentennial Celebration in Burlington, Vermont,
Piecework: When We Were French is a one-person performance piece that honors the legacy of French-Canadian immigration to New England and explores how our stories, memories, and secrets make us who we are.

Between 1850 and 1950, hundreds of thousands of French-Canadians immigrated to the United States. Often traveling by railroad, they flocked to the industrial centers of New England in search of jobs, prosperity, and brighter futures for their children. Many returned home with the fruits of their labor, but many stayed, building churches, schools, and communities, and influencing local culture in ways that can still be felt today.

While Franco-American identity was once defined by a strong connection to Quebec, dedicated involvement in the Catholic Church, and of course, use of the French language, that identity evolved as our francophone ancestors adapted to their new home. What connections do their descendants feel to their heritage? Why do many Americans who don’t speak French, attend church, or maintain ties to Canada still consider themselves Franco-American? How has their family history influenced them? Is it possible to belong to a culture that exists only as a memory? 
Piecework explores how we remember, what we choose to forget, and how we piece together the present from the scraps that are handed down to us by preceding generations.

Friday, May 6, 2011, 8:00 P.M.

Stafford Center Theatre

Admission is free, but tickets are required and available on a first come, first served basis.
Tickets may be obtained at the Clinton Community College Bookstore,
Alpha Stereo, 332 Cornelia Street, Plattsburgh
and all Plattsburgh branches of Glens Falls National Bank.
Any remaining tickets will be available at the door.

Learn more at:

Piecework: When We Were French - About the Show