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Hello Josee ,

Spring is finally upon us! The sun shines a little more brightly and warmly. Daffodils and crocuses are starting to emerge from the frozen ground and will be blooming soon. Golf season is about to start!

I am half way through my spring series of Beginners and Intermediate I lessons. After two years of teaching in front of a screen I must say I am hungry to return to in person classes.


Truth be told I never thought I would say that. There is NO question that online teaching offers many advantages for both the student and the teacher, but we cannot as teachers or club owners ignore that a lot of the benefits of learning and playing bridge come from the social interaction (curb loneliness, make new friends, be able to travel the world and always find someone to play bridge with, and so much more).


With this in mind, Doug Cowan and I were ecstatic to resume our Gentle Bridge games seven weeks ago.  You cannot see all the smiles behind the masks in the picture below, but we can tell you how wonderful it feels for everyone participating. Even our volunteers are loving the experience. If you scroll down you can find out more on how to join our volunteers team.


I am taking the summer off from teaching (online or in person) but am already working on what the Fall Teaching Model will look like. There will definitely be in person lessons resuming at Armour Heights. I am also looking into some form of hybrid model(online and face to face).

Your thoughts would be welcome on this. You are whom I wish to help – what does bridge education looks like for you? What can I do to help you grow? There is an opportunity below for you to "voice" your wishes.

Please click on this link and answer a few questions. I am looking forward to hearing from you. Your opinion matters!


Wishing everyone a healthy and happy Passover and/or Easter!

Enjoy this short lesson: Today's video is a small tribute to Eddie Kantar. The topic is deception in declarer play. How can you confuse the defenders, and make a 4S contract?

Just click on this link and always let me know if you have any questions:

Hint: On Youtube, press the letter F on the keyboard to watch the video in fullscreen.

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EDDIE KANTAR (1932-2022)


It was with great sadness that I learned that Eddie Kantar passed away on April 8th at the age of 89. Although I have never had the chance to meet him, I use his books and teaching manuals for all my lessons. Those of you who have taken my Thinking Bridge sessions have seen the wonderful material that he developed. If you have read any of his books, you will have also discovered his wonderful sense of humor. His generosity was without bounds.

I remember emailing him once (on Barbara Seagram’s recommendation) to ask for some hands on a specific topic. In a matter of minutes, I received much much more than I had requested with a note saying "I have also added some additional hands which perhaps can help you for future lessons." I sat there for minutes reading the email. The GREAT Eddie Kantar had replied immediately to me a novice bridge teacher.


Reading the tributes on Bridgewinners, it is clear to see that not only the bridge world has lost a great man but the world in general.


Enjoy this interview with Eddie Kantar (click in the image below, or here:

In Person Gentle Bridge is back!

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Welcome new, newer, and novice players!


Join us for easy going ‘supervised’ bridge where fun and learning are guaranteed!


Please make sure to check all details below:

Please Note: Registration is required to participate


  • Every Monday, 12:30 to 3:00 pm.
  • Address: Armour Heights Presbyterian Church - 105 Wilson Avenue, Toronto.
  • Map and directions:
  • Fee: $15 per person.


You can ask questions, use your cheat sheets, and ask for undo’s.


It’s a great way to practice bridge and make new friends. No partner needed. We will pair you with one or let you kibitz with our friendly players! 


Pre-Registration required by emailing Include name and contact information of your partner (if you have one).


More details will be sent upon registration.


We look forward to seeing you, 

Josée and Doug 

Our Gentle Supervised Bridge Game At Armour Heights Needs You

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After a 26 months hiatus, Doug Cowan and I have finally been able to resume our supervised bridge game for 0-20 MP players. Most of these players learned to play bridge online, during COVID. Every week a few new players join us. The word is out and participation has grown steadily each week. The energy in the room every Monday afternoon is contagious. This is not just a supervised bridge game; it is the first in person game in the area after two very long years.


Our players are learning and having fun, all this thanks to our volunteers!


What do you need to volunteer at the Gentle Bridge game at Armour Heights?


  • Being available on a Monday afternoon from 12 pm to 3 pm. Come once a month, come every week, once every two months, we need you.
  • You must LOVE bridge and be prepared to share your love with these beginner players.
  • You must know how to count your hand, open the bidding, respond, rebid, No trump bidding with Stayman and Jacoby transfers, overcalls, doubles, 2 opener and responder, and Blackwood. Not much more than that.
  • You must know basic “table manners” like welcoming new players at the table, counting your cards, saying “Thank you, Partner” and “Director, please!” We want to teach our players not only about bidding and playing bridge but share with them the etiquette of this game.

If you have answered YES to all the above then you are qualified to volunteer at our game.


Benefits of Volunteering


The benefits are countless. Here are ten proven benefits of volunteering. Maybe one of them will convince you to join us on Monday afternoons! 

              1.  Volunteering Builds Community

              2.  Ends Loneliness

              3.  Increases Socializing

              4.  Builds Bonds, Creates Friends

              5.  Develops Emotional Stability

              6.  Improves Self-Esteem

              7.  Promotes Longevity

              8.  Reduces Risk of Alzheimer’s

              9.  Leads to Graceful Aging

          10.  Volunteering Adds Fun to Your Years


What’s not to love about this list! 


If the above has convinced you, and if you would like to help the growth of bridge and these new players, please contact Josée Hammill, at


Games are held every Monday, from 12:30 to 3:00 pm, at Armour Heights Presbyterian Church - 105 Wilson Avenue, Toronto.


  • Covid protocol: The directors and all volunteers always wear masks. Players are encouraged to wear masks and all have been complying.
  • Only coffee, tea and water served. No food.
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From the BBO Archives

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Quiz – Play and Defense for Beginners #2

Sitting South how do you play this suit combination? Do you cash AK or do you play J to small diamond?

Click to Play ▶

Barbara Seagram will be running a fundraiser for Cambodia

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Please help us with our Cambodia projects. Donate now!


Anyone making a donation of $55.00 CAD or more may attend our upcoming online classes or just listen to the recordings and have the student notes.

Anyone donating $105.00 CAD or more will receive a tax receipt.




on MAY 4th & 11th: 3.45 pm - 6.00 pm

Actual lesson: 4.00 pm - 6.00 pm.

Come early for a fun visit and other information


Click here to register for the Zoom classes or just to donate for 2022





As Declarer & as Defender: Essential for Improving your Play



Improve your Declarer Play, Bidding & Defense


Attend at the time OR receive the recordings after the class along with the notes.


$55.00 gives you TWO lessons and the student notes to go with them.


OR donate more for our Cambodia fundraising.


There is a 5% credit card processing fee (approx.) applied. Patti and I absorbed this for years but now cannot manage to do that. To avoid this, you may send a check but the online donation is easier for us to manage as we need postal address and email address in order to issue tax receipts.


If you mail a check:




and mail to

Barbara Seagram

220 Lawrence Ave East

Toronto, ON M4N 1T2


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Brand new






$24.00 (reg $27.95 CAD $)

$20.00 (reg $21.95 USD $)

plus postage

or pick up from our home at 220 Lawrence Ave East







Buy online on our store OR email us and we will ship. or pick up in Toronto


Here's the link for CAD store:


Here's the link for USD store:



Since its publication in 1999, 25 Bridge Conventions You Should Know has sold more than 300,000 copies in six languages. It has become a much-valued learning tool and reference for everyone from social players to those who regularly spend time at their local bridge club.


But bridge has changed in the last twenty-odd years. Bidding has changed. Some of the conventions in the original book have fallen into disuse, while others have gained in popularity and importance. Many basic conventions have changed in subtle ways as bidding methods have developed. It is now time, therefore, to update this modern classic so that today's players can be in tune with what is happening and stay current.


This new edition has been thoroughly updated, while retaining the approach and features that made the original so popular. Each convention in the book has been carefully revised to reflect the way it is used in the modern game. Students are now universally taught to play transfers in response to a strong notrump opening, and the new edition reflects that change in several ways. Three chapters (Landy, Grand Slam Force and Ogust responses to Weak Twos) have been dropped completely in favor of Bergen Raises and the DONT and Meckwell defenses to 1NT. 




Games every Wednesday evening at 7:15 pm and Saturday at 12 pm.

If you would like to join these games or know of someone starting their duplicate bridge journey, email Lee at Fun time guaranteed! 


Instant Delivery - Learn on your own time!

NEW! Introduction To Declarer Play

Bidding is great and winning the contract even better. But if you do not know how to make a plan to make your contract then what good is that! In this 4 week course you will learn :

  • Counting Losers
  • Counting Winners
  • Ruffing losers in the Dummy
  • Extra Winners in the Dummy or in Declarer’s Hand
  • Long Suit Establishment (aka Taking Tricks with Tiny Cards)
  • When and How to take a Finesse and much more! 
  • Includes Eddie Kantar’s book - 2nd edition, revised and updated by Barbara Seagram.

NEW! Introduction To Defence

Have you noticed that you are defending at bridge 50% of the time? That is right! Did you know that being on Defence is the most fun you can ever have at the bridge table even when you do not have any points in your hand? Let me teach you how to have more fun and to gain respect from all players when you show them you know how to defend! 

  • Opening Leads against No Trump and Suit contracts
  • 2nd hand play
  • 3rd hand play
  • Signaling against No Trump and Suit contracts
  • And much, much more!!
  • Includes Eddie Kantar’s book - 2nd edition, revised and updated by Barbara Seagram.

NEW! Thinking Bridge – Plan Your Moves!


Whatever seat you are in, you have to be planning your moves. Let’s spend these sessions where we explore what it feels like to sit in any and all 4 seats, and think like an expert. Only time you will be allowed to relax will be when in the dummy’s seat. 

Complete set of different hands for each of the dates. You will love them!

Bridge Basics (for brand new players)


Learn the basic elements of the game of bridge: how to take tricks, how to work with a partner, how to open the bidding in a suit and in No Trump, how to respond, how to compete and more. This is an 8 week program.

 Intermediate I


For those who feel rusty and need a refresher and for those moving up from Basic lessons. Opportunities to play and practice online will be provided. Lessons are recorded and can be watched on your own time. This is a 7 week program.


 Intermediate II

Weak Two Bids, Strong 2 Club Bids, Slam Bidding, Cue-Bidding First Round Controls, Preempts, Unusual NT, Michaels Cuebids, Opening Light in 3rd seat, Balancing, End Plays, Cross-Ruff, Loser-on-loser play, Introduction to defence, ...and MUCH more!!

An 8-week course includes all recordings, PDF of presentations and practice hands for each week.


 Intermediate III


Intermediate 3 is a full course on Defence and Conventions!


  • DEFENCE: Third Hand Play, Second Hand Play, Suit Preference Signalling, Strategy on Defence, Lead Directing Doubles, Discarding. 
  • CONVENTIONS: Negative Doubles, Jacoby 2 NT as a forcing raise, Jacoby Transfers, Texas Transfers, Splinters, Roman Key Card Blackwood, Cue Bids, Slam Bidding and lots more! 


Learn to Play Two Over One

  • Learn the system that most of North America now plays. It makes it much easier to get to a better contract, easier to find slams on fewer values and easier to know when to stop in a part score.  Learn the forcing No Trump bid. 

A two day course + one additional hour of practice hands.



  • Lesson 1 - DONT over 1NT Opening Bid
  • Lesson 2 - Reverse Drury
  • Lesson 3 - Jacoby 2NT and Splinters
  • Lesson 4 - Reverse Bergen/Bergen Raises
  • Lesson 5 - New Minor Forcing/Checkback Stayman
  • Lesson 6 - Fourth Suit Forcing
  • Lesson 7 - Four Way Transfers

All lessons come with recordings and PDF of practice hands. 

How to orderPlease contact me for pricing and other details at, indicating the course you are interested in.