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Well established on the international scene, and considered one of the foremost vocal groups in Europe, the Voice Messengers are composed of eight singers accompanied by a rhythm section (piano, upright bass, drums).
Beautifully served by the sophisticated and joyful arrangements of pianist and leader Thierry Lalo, the Voice Messengers form a veritable vocal big band, with singers standing in for horns. Voices are often treated as instruments in a writing style that sets up to three different sections in simultaneous counterpoint, calling to mind the energy, the color, and above all the spirit of the great jazz orchestras of Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Buddy Rich, and Quincy Jones.
As in an instrumental big band, the singers step up one by one as soloists, delivering their own interpretations of an eclectic repertoire that is a cocktail of rearranged standards, compositions by modern jazz musicians, and sections of musical comedies, sung in English, French, and pure onomatopoeia.
Under the simple yet spirited staging of Jean-Marc Hoolbecq, the Voice Messengers also interpret a selection of poems pulled from the great French classics (Appolinaire, Baudelaire, Verlaine…), and from authors as unexpected as Oscar Milosz or Marguerite Yourcenar. These texts, set to music by Thierry Lalo, bring another facet of exchange between jazz and the French language.