Thursday, June 19, 2014

Gypsy Sacred Songs In Provence ~ "Hot, Sexy and Spectacular"

Powerful voices, energetic hand slapping and explosive foot stomping was the hallmark of the spellbinding group, the Sacred Gypsy Songs of Provence at Musee Batha today

A single clap and the five singers and musicians took the stage and belted out songs for a 90 minute energetic performance.

The gypsy song of Provence hinges on the Catalan, Spanish and Ladino languages. It is simple, uncluttered and inspired by the little-known gypsy traditions of the 15th Century.

Tchoune Tchanelas

The powerhouse behind this group is Tchoune Tchanelas, a gypsy singer, and with Gil Aniorte-Pez the two have produced an unusual repertoire which combines sacred songs dedicated to Sarah the patron saint of gypsy's and  music of the gypsy tradition of Provence and Andalusia as well as traditional, popular songs from southern France.

Gypsies or 'gitan' play a large part in Provençal life through their music and dance. The group is a formidable union of talent and their performance was full of power and passion. Tchanelas sings with drama and an intensity that grabbed the attention of the audience. But he' is by no means the only powerful voice in the group, the two other singers had their own formidable voices.

Gil Aniorte-Pez and Gregory Duveau

During the concert, the group was joined by a young gypsy dancer. Florencia Deleria is considered THE revelation of her generation in the Gypsy community. Dressed in a striking red dress, the gypsy dancer raised one arm, kicked back her left leg and exploded onto the stage in a Flamenco style dance. Her fiery feet movements and the frenetic hand clapping of the group triggered a powerful energy in the Musee Batha.

Florencia Deleria

It was a spellbinding and rich performance with the melee of music bringing the crowd to its feet.

The group has played 200 concerts but manager Philippe Thevenet told The View from Fez today's performance "is the highlight of four years together, to be here at Fez, an international festival with such a high reputation. It is an honour."


"The dancer was captivating. I couldn't take my eyes off her." Cynthia, Canada

"Such good energy. That was an amazing performance." Jean, Paris

'Hot, sexy and spectacular." Sue, Fez

"I've never seen anything like that. They had extraordinary range in their voices and I loved how they play their guitars. I really enjoyed myself." Maria, Manchester

Text: Stephanie Kennedy
Photographs: Vanessa Bonnin

Fes Festival ~  Saturday June 21

Jnan Sbil Garden 4pm: Ihsan Rmiki

Batha Museum 4pm: Mint Ely Warakane & Raza Khan

Bab Boujloud Square 6.30pm: Kadim Al Sahir

Bab al Makina 9pm: Buddy Guy

Sufi Night at Dar Tazi 11pm: Hamadsha of Fez

Weather: Much cooler - Max 28 degrees Celsius (82.4 Fahrenheit) 

Fez Medina Map

The View from Fez is an official media partner of the Fes Festival of World Sacred Music

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