Present from the beginning of Trobar (the poetry of the troubadours ), the sirventès is a protesting style that describes the violence of its century, the stupidity of powerful people and the fleetingness of human feelings. It is a difficult exercise where the poet makes a fool of the princes, laughs at the Church and questions the Creator, giving him friendly advices as well as merciless criticisms.
Far from the cliche reducing the “troubadour” to a tearful lover in his ivory tower, the sirventès sets the image of a poet-musician involved in his time, facing turmoil and war, beside his contemporaries. As he is the master of this art that he uses as a Lord, in the middle of the the great wars of his time.
Three musicians chose to honour – by developing them or being inspired by them – the original melodies deposited in the end of the XIIIth century by the last troubadours.
They will take advantage of their respective experiences fed by collaborations between oriental and occidental musics, popular and art musics, former and contemporary ones to investigate all the potentialities of the medieval Occitan monody.
Mastering digression and improvisation, they will also propose a courteous, intemperate and especially unexpected answer to those who know – like our troubadours – what music and poetry can do to help us easing the nonsense of the world.
Manu Théron (vocals)
It is in Southern Italy and in Bulgaria – where he lived for more than four years – that Manu Théron discovers singing, with the diligent company of interprets and traditional choirs. Decided to root the Occitan song in our Mediterranean world, he founded the group Gacha Empega, and Lo Cor de la Plana. Passionate musician he offers the originality of his interpretation to this renewed Occitan culture, that he shares on stage and through his teaching.
Grégory Dargent (oud – arrangements)
Electrical guitarist and oud player, composer, director, Gregory Dargent cultivates his musical and identical schizophrenia through improvised musics, Tuareg trances, jazz, Turkish maqam, minimalist musics, pop, Afro-American worksongs or French pop song. From l’Hijâz’Car to Babx, from the Berber singer Houria Aïchi to Camélia Jordana, from film music to contemporary choreographies, with the most acoustic oud or the most nuclear guitars, Gregory manages, accompanies, composes, sight-reads, questions, searches, makes a mistake, bounces, arranges, orchestrates and shares tirelessly his musical passions.
Etienne Gruel (percussions) :
he specializes exclusively in oriental digital percussion (daf, derbouka, tapan, cajon, reck, zarb). The oral learning of music with percussion masters and his many journeys shaped his playing and his sensitivity. Today he leads educational actions with different audiences and as a concert artist he is engaged in various artistic projects such as the Hijaz Car, Huria Aichi, the Safar trio, and the Grand Ensemble of the Mediterranean.