last update/mise à jour 03.12.03
PROJET BRASSENS' EDUCATIONAL ACTIVITIES
Formed in October 1997, Projet Brassens is an unincorporated non-profitmaking Association of professional jazz musicians, linguists, academics and language teachers based in South West England. We share an admiration of George Brassens, and we introduce and present Brassens' songs to anglophones from secondary school age upwards. We aim to encourage and develop the study of Brassens' work in schools, colleges and universities, to make his work better known in England and in the anglophone world, and to develop Brassens' work creatively.
It is regrettable that Brassens isn't better known amongst English speakers. People think that his lyrics are difficult even for advanced students, and for this reason his songs are rarely chosen within the educational curriculum. Some of Brassens' songs have been recorded in English translation, but we believe that translations can't transmit their subtleties because a large part of their charm resides in Brassens' genius for exploiting the musical and poetic qualities of the French language - you have to hear the songs in French to appreciate them fully. However, this approach implies that their meaning in inaccessible to many anglophones.
With sponsorship from The French Embassy in London, Projet Brassens developed ways to overcome the linguistic and cultural barriers which might hamper some English speakers from appreciating Georges Brassens' songs. At our concerts we perform the songs in French, accompanied by jazz musicians, in a cabaret style. For English speaking audiences we incorporate interpretations and explanations into our performance, in the form of English introductions to the songs, gestures and 'acting'. The musicians also interpret the songs musically, to help convey their moods and meanings. In addition, we publish booklets with English translations of all the songs we have recorded on our two CDs, including notes about the references within the songs, and about Brassens' imaginative use of the French language.
After several years of touring, we know that this approach works well. Audiences who have never heard of Georges Brassens are encouraged by the fact that we are English. Teenage students of French can relate to our modern musical interpretations of Brassens' songs, and are enthused by live performance. Accompanying live performances, we have also presented talks about Brassens to school and college students. Our work in secondary schools relates directly to the GCSE 'A' Level French curriculum.
More information for schools and colleges (text in French)
La une du Projet Brassens
Projet Brassens' page d'accueil...o0o...George Brassens...o0o...Projet Brassens Quartette
Projet Brassens' disque de début...o0o...Paroles et traductions...o0o...Partitions
Disques et mp3s...o0o...Activités éducatives...o0o...Photo galerie
Parrainez le Projet Brassens
Projet Brassens' front page
Projet Brassens' homepage...o0o...Georges Brassens...o0o...Projet Brassens Quartet
CDs & mp3s...o0o...Lyrics and translations...o0o...Scores
Giglist...o0o...Book a band...o0o...Photo gallery
Sponsoring Projet Brassens