Ronan Robert and company at the Théâtre de Cornouaille
An accordion plays swing

Ronan Robert Réunion (in concert)

Ronan Robert and his jazzmen played yesterday evening at the Théâtre de Cornouaille - it was something completely apart. For three years now the Ronan Robert Réunion group has woven new links between traditional and improvised jazz.

Ronan Robert likes variety. He was once accordion player for Carre Manchot, but after 15 years of fest-noz he decided in 1992 to expand his repertoire with Cocktail Diatonique, Yann-Fañch Perroches' group. Three concerts with Richard Galliano convinced this child of La Baule, and son of a piper, to move into the jazz arena. The lure of brass overtook him, and the diatonic accordion player has since created an eclectic group in which his accomplice Christopher Caron plays oboe along with five other jazzmen.

The result is an astonishing musical landscape, in which the accordion gives way to improvised trombone, then returning to swing, oboe and trumpet resounding, and then the drums take charge and soothe the tempo...Neither the jazz nor the trad sound dominate. "To start with, three years ago, each person attempted to define their individual stance, remembers Ronan Robert. The brass section in a chorus would go off in a tangent in their improvisation. Now, we have common meeting points, and we stay more within the confines of the written music."

Dominique Le Voadec's compositions and arrangements leave enough space for each instrument to get into their stride. This is a musical equilibium that was not easy to find for a group with no producer, and who got together only ten times a year. For the rest of the year the accordion player accompanies the singer Morwenna and performs at Fest-Noz. As he himself says, Ronan Robert is partial to variety...


Copyright Technopole Quimper Cornouaille France-Ouest 1999