They talk abous us
in Le Figaro :
D'Europe centrale à Broadway
A sophisticated sound with rhythmic precision and musical prowess. In the
hands of the Sirba Octet’s classically trained musicians (almost all of whom are members of the Orchestre de Paris), this klezmer and gypsy music flourishes, brightens and sparkles like a freshly cut diamond.
One of the most uplifting albums released in years. Tantz! is the most
accomplished of Sirba Octet’s works. […] A magnificent example of successful musical fusion. The whimsical nature of gypsy music and the precision of classical have never married so well. Surrender to its joyfulness where nostalgia is never far away.
Un contraste émotionnel typique de ces musiques, et un croisement entre savoir-faire de la musique classique et vitalité de la musique du monde, qui sont bien en phase avec les besoins de notre époque.
C’est d’abord un des disques les plus festifs entendus depuis des années. Avec Tantz !, les huit complices du Sirba Octet réussissent leur programme le plus abouti. [..] Magnifique exemple de synthèse réussie, fantaisie tzigane et rigueur classique ne se sont jamais aussi bien complétées. Laissez-vous gagner par cette joie d’où la nostalgie n’est jamais totalement absente.
The sophistication of classical meets the vivacity of world music. Emotionally contrasted, Tantz! is typical of its traditional roots but also perfectly in tune with our modern era.
Toute l’énergie tournoyante de ces danses populaires et du folklore yiddish, dont ils revisitent des thèmes emblématiques, exulte avec virtuosité, nimbée de l’élégance de la musique savante occidentale.
They have reinvented klezmer folk and classic gypsy music, turning moving
ballads into whirling dances […] Tantz! offers its audience a taste of the octet’s repertoire with its classical elegance, boundless energy and consummate lyricism.
As foretold by the Yiddish title and its exclamation mark, like a declaration of intent, Tantz! really gets your toes tapping […]. A first-class trip led by the
astonishing talent of every single musician.
The volleying cimbalom, the hiccupping klezmer clarinet, the giggling violins and the deep bumblebee drone of the double bass are performed as chamber music. A musical fantasia with an element of chaos that makes it hopelessly nostalgic of Eastern Europe.
A Yiddishe Mame
These pieces of music possess an ephemeral quality – the dreamy weightlessness of the calm before the storm.
A tour de force for the Sirba Octet – sophisticated arrangements executed
with astonishing freedom of interpretation.
The exceptionally talented musicians who make up the Sirba Octet […] gave a
colourful performance. […] They take us on an expressive and informative
journey guiding us with clever musical tricks. Letting the instruments the lead their renditions are at times nostalgic and touching, at times comical. The audience goes away with an indescribable energy and vitality.
Educational and artistic activities
The second Iurie Morar struck the cimbalom the young, chattering audience
fell silent. They stared curiously at the instrument and kept their ears wide
This project was run by guest musicians and young actors to teach the basics
of music. Together, artists and participants made up stories using a range of
musical moods heard throughout the session.
Jubilant and unconventional, the show revisits traditional folk songs and
really sets the stage alight.
[…] Yiddish Rhapsody lavishly pays tribute to the world of Yiddish music. […]
Swing numbers and tap dancing are in there as well, whisking the audience off at a frenetic pace.
There is more to Yiddish than the language. There is the music. This music is
the soul of the people, their culture, their history, their roots, their way of life and their way of singing about life. Amid smiles and tears, it rejoices in love and relishes life… Yiddish Rhapsody is a musical bridge between past and present, what we are and what we dream of becoming, like the family ties that bind us forever.
Du Shtetl à New York
Quand ces musiciens de l’Orchestre de Paris jouent de la musique juive ou celle de Broadway, on n’a pas l’impression d’une greffe qui aurait mal pris. C’est qu’ils arrivent à une synthèse rare entre la rigueur de l’instrumentiste classique et la fantaisie du musicien populaire.
The closing song Bei Mir Bist Du Scheyn is a real gem in which a traditional
tune blends with Isabelle’s modern vocals and explosive tap dancing.
When these musicians from the Orchestre de Paris turn their hand to Yiddish pieces and Broadway numbers, it doesn’t feel like an awkward transposition. They’ve achieved a rare concoction – the precision of the classical musician with the creativity of the amateur.
In musical theatre, we say, “Talk. And when words are no longer enough, sing. And when singing is no longer enough, dance.”
We all love Isabelle Georges and her mischievous streak – while she relates to
her audience and fellow musicians in a way that is both compassionate and
charming, she also throws in a few nods to Broadway (wearing top hat and
tails with a giant flower in the buttonhole for the dazzling I Got Rhythm).
Catherine Lara at the heart of the Yiddish soul
Catherine Lara returns to some of her most beautiful songs, well-travelled
melodies woven into wonderful arrangements where melancholy is never far
from childhood joys and love of life rubs shoulders with abject suffering.
With Au coeur de l’âme yiddish Catherine Lara – the rock chick in diamonds –
along with Richard Schmoucler’s Sirba Octet returns to her repertoire
(including La craie dans l’encrier, Nuit magique and Johan) for two live
shows at the Alhambra on 12th and 13th April.