Saturday, 27 June 2009

Guitares en Cormatinois 2009

The website of La Tuilerie de Chazelle
Blog of La Tuilerie de Chazelle by Sue

Cormatin hosts two major cultural events each year; firstly the Festival Guitares en Cormatinois, and secondly Les Rendez-vous de Cormatin, a theatre festival at the Château de Cormatin.
The first (music) festival is in full swing at the moment. The first two concerts took place some weeks ago, and there are still three more to go. For the first time this year the Festival is spread out over a number of places. In previous years the festival was held in the church of Cormatin, a rather boring building compared to the treasures of Romanesque architecture that can be found in the area around us.
The first concert in the series, a classical concert by Emmanuel Rossfelder was in the beautifully restored church of Malay. This concert, with works by among others Tarrega, Villa Lobos and Bach, was coinciding with the Concours départemental de guitare, the guitar competition for Saône-et-Loire (71). Of course Rossfelder was one of the jurors, as was another outstanding musician from around Cormatin, the classical trumpet player Guy Touvron. Rossfelder’s concerts are always enjoyable, and the surprise of this recital was his own arrangement of some highlights of Verdi’s La Traviata.
Would you like to hear him? Click here to go to Rossfelder’s website
The second concert was an open air concert by a group from Lyon called Zancle. They played a repertoire of Napolitan and Sicilian folk songs. The group consists of four musicians, playing a wide range of guitars, mandolin, flute, accordion and different tambourines. Two of the four man sang as well. The concert was given at the Plan d’Eau in Cormatin. The Plan d’Eau lies at the edge of Cormatin, and consists of a small lake and a branch of the local river Grosne. In the daytime it is an ideal picnic place, but for this evening it was transformed into an open air concert hall.
What strikes me time after time with all the events in Cormatin, is that there is a small group of volunteers who takes care that everybody has a good time. The wife of the Mayor, Monique B., is always there, selling drinks, making wafers, preparing sandwiches; another one who is always present is Pascale P., a very energetic lady who in the daytime paints wonderful pieces of silk for dresses, and is also a council member of the city council. We do not know everybody by name, but for sure all the regulars were helping out, selling and checking tickets, moving chairs, setting up tables, etc.
The strange thing I have noticed about a lot of concerts here in France, is that the musicians tend to go on. More often than not there is no break in the middle of a recital, and concerts of two hours in one go are no exception. The Zancle concert was following this concept. After an hour Mme B. and her crew were getting a bit restless, which got worse when it got later and later. They were going to make wafers, hotdogs, etc., but no pause, no clients, no selling of drinks and snacks …. Anyway, finally the last notes sounded of this very enjoyable concert, and of course half the crowd turned around and headed for their cars. Luckily for Mme B. & Co there were some diehards, who stayed a bit longer for a drink, and there were even people who bought some wafers to to take away!
The last concert in this series of five takes place in the Romanesque church of our own hamlet, Chazelle, and we will certainly be there and write another review.

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