The Maine Folque Co-op is excited to announce a two-day community residency happening in Lewiston early next month featuring the noted French-Canadian folk group Le Bruit Court dans la Ville (The Buzz Around Town). The members of this dynamic trio – fiddler Lisa Ornstein, accordionist/singer Normand Miron and guitarist/singer André Marchand - are legends of Quebec’s traditional music scene. (Scroll down for more info on them.) During their visit here they will offer workshops in both instrumental music and song, be the special guests at a Franco-American community soirée, and end their stay with a final concert during which a few of Maine's youngest folk talents (students in the Folque Co-op's youth music program) will have the opportunity to join them on stage.
Here are all the details...
Tuesday, Sept. 1:
3-5 pm: The members of the all-star French-Canadian folk trio Le Bruit Court dans la Ville (The Buzz Around Town) will offer advanced-level workshops in fiddle (Lisa Ornstein), guitar (André Marchand) and accordion (Normand Miron). Location: Franco Center, 46 Cedar St., Lewiston. Cost: $25 per person, $15 for students up to age 21. (Cost includes free admission to Soirée afterwards – see listing below.) Advance registration advised. Contact Cindy at (207) 782-0386 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
6:30-8:30 pm: a Soirée featuring the Quebecois folk trio Le Bruit Court dans la Ville. In the old-time Franco-American kitchen-party spirit, this festive evening will offer not only music but some fun-&-easy traditional French Canadian contra & square dancing. Joining Le Bruit in providing the music will be a mega back-up band composed of the participants in the afore-mentioned workshops (hold onto your hats, folks!). Location: Heritage Hall at the Franco Center, 46 Cedar St., Lewiston. Admission: $7, or for $8 more ($15 total) you can add on supper at 5:30 (menu: French Canadian meat pie, savory vegetable quiche, garden salad, pickled beets & dessert). Note: Meal reservations must be made by 8/27. Contact Cindy at (207) 782-0386 or email@example.com. (Advance reservations not required for the Soirée.)
Wednesday, Sept. 2:
1:30-3 pm: Le Bruit Court dans la Ville will lead a “chansons à répondre¨ song session; fluency in French not required - lyrics will be provided. Location: Lewiston-Auburn College, Rm. 170, 51 Westminster St., Lewiston. Admission: just $2 (includes discount to concert by Le Bruit later that evening; see below). Advance reservations not necessary. FMI, contact Cindy at (207) 782-0386 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
7-8:30 pm: Concert by Le Bruit Court dans la Ville. Location: Bates College's Olin Arts Center, 75 Russell St., Lewiston. Admission: $12 (two dollars off for anyone who buys their ticket at the chansons workshop listed above, or for members of DownEast Friends of the Folk Arts; please present your DEFFA newsletter at box office as proof of membership); $5 for students up to age 21. Advance reservations not necessary. FMI, contact Cindy at (207) 782-0386 or email@example.com.
Note: Le Bruit 's residency is supported in part through a generous grant from the DownEast Friends of the Folk Arts. Merci beaucoup, DEFFA! And thanks, too, to the Franco Center, L-A College and Bates College for their hospitality in hosting these events. (As they say, it takes a village...)
Le Bruit Court dans la Ville (The Buzz Around Town)
The members of this dynamic musical trio - Lisa Ornstein, Normand Miron and André Marchand - are legends of Quebec’s traditional music scene. Fiddler Lisa and guitarist/singer André first met as bandmates in La Bottine Souriante, the iconic trad super group which kickstarted Quebec’s folk music revival and which has won several Juno awards (the Canadian version of the Grammy) as well as countless other honors and accolades over the years. Normand is a marvelous singer and accordionist who grew up surrounded by family musicians in Lanaudière, the epicenter of Quebec’s folk music scene. As a trio, Le Bruit Court dans la Ville produce a music which is at once deeply-rooted, innovative, nuanced, and spontaneous. André’s meticulous accompaniment and gorgeous voice compliment Normand’s pulsing accordion, grit-and-polish vocals and irrepressible spirit, while Lisa’s fiddle combines soaring harmonies with fiery tunes until dawn learned over years of kitchen visits with old masters. More detailed bio info follows...
André Marchand is one of the leading figures in Quebec’s trad music scene. He began his musical career as a co-founder of La Bottine,Souriante, the group most responsible for kickstarting Quebec’s folk music revival. As a guitarist, he basically defined how to accompany Québécois music, drawing inspiration from Montréal jazz, American folk, and Irish guitar. His melodious vocals, inventive guitar accompaniment, imaginative compositions, atomic-clock foot percussion, and wonderful sense of humor make him an irresistible stage presence. From 1976 to 1990, André played all over the world with La Bottine. Since then, he has been a part of many well-known groups in Québec including the award-winning Charbonniers de l’Enfer (an a cappella quintet which exploded onto the Quebec scene in the 1990s) and the goodtime band Les Mononcles. He also has performed as a duo with American multi-instrumentalist and singer Gray Larsen. Nowadays, however, his first love is playing with Le Bruit Court dans la Ville!
Normand Miron grew up steeped in the traditions of his home village of Ste-Melanie, where traditional music and song were integral elements of daily life. Inspired by his grandfather and uncles, who were excellent musicians and singers, he took up the harmonica and the accordion at an early age. In the mid 1970s, he was in the inner circle of a group of musicians who started La Bottine Souriante and rapidly gained a reputation as one of the most respected and influential musicians of his generation. Many of La Bottine’s best-known songs come from his vast family repertory. Normand brings to the stage a musical grounding and a presence so full of life and joy that it is impossible not to get swept along. For the past twenty years, his dynamic singing and incredible musical swing on accordion and harmonica have enlivened some of Quebec’s top traditional bands, including Guignolée in 1990, Les Frères Labri in 1993, Les Charbonniers de l’Enfer in 1996, and Les Mononcles in 2007. He has traveled widely with these groups in the U.S., Canada, and Europe, and is an accomplished performer, teacher, raconteur, and bon vivant.
Fiddle virtuoso Lisa Ornstein is an outstanding interpreter of the traditional music of French Canada and Appalachia, blending compelling and inventive playing with impeccable tune choice. She’s also a tune hunter, the rare kind of fiddler who sifts through all the many tunes she’s learned at the feet of tradition bearers and pulls forth great gems that excite the imagination of her many followers. Befriended by North Carolina fiddle legend Tommy Jarrell while she was in her teens, Lisa quickly became an accomplished fiddler in the Round Peak style. A musical friendship with Franco-American fiddler Louis Beaudoin set her on a path to Quebec in 1978. When La Bottine Souriante — Quebec’s internationally renowned traditional supergroup — invited her to join the band, Lisa’s projected six-month stay began to stretch, eventually lasting a dozen years. Nowadays Lisa lives in Oregon and may be frequently seen at the Portland airport headed out for another Bruit reunion. Her performances are marked by finesse, passion, and stories which bring to life the people and places behind the tunes.