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October 27, 2015

French in Bangalore

Today I attended a concert of French chamber music at the Alliance Francaise de Bangalore. This institute regularly conducts French language courses and organises cultural events in its premises.

Due to flight problems in Paris Gauthier Hermann, the head of the group, landed late in Bangalore. The packed auditorium waited patiently. He was driven from the airport and directly walked on to the stage to begin the concert a little behind schedule. It was a fine performance by the musicians on the piano, violin and Hermann on the cello. The Brahms opus 8 was a treat that had the audience spellbound. The ensemble included a mezzo-soprano who rendered Spanish, American and Scottish songs - but surprisingly,  not a single French one!

On the way out, my attention was caught by  two young Frenchmen selling toasted sandwiches from a van parked in the compound. Named  "Le French food-truck", they have recently started operations in the city. Parking in a different locality every day, they sell freshly made Casse Croutes with a choice of fillings. I ordered one with bacon, mustard and bechamel. It was handed over in a neat take-away carton  with a smile and a cheery "Bon appetit". I carried it home for a delicious hot dinner.


Derek DSa said...

Sounds like good fun.

Does Alliance charge a fee for the concerts or like the Max Muller Bhavan of decades ago, offer the concerts free to the public?

Do they have only French artists or do they also invite performers from other parts of the world?


Rhoda D said...

Some concerts are free; some others are not.
No, they do not restrict their auditorium only to French performers. Indian artistes too are presented. Last year I recall a Swiss orchestra which performed there with Indian musicians from the Bangalore School of Music. Cultural plurality is their goal, I guess.

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