About a thousand artists, from professionals to amateurs, are signed to the “Musiciens du métro” label to perform underground. A springboard for fame that benefited Zaz, Claudio Capeo, and the Arkadian band in particular.
The crowded Paris subway, the overwhelming pressure, the journey on the run in the corridors and the virtuoso of the musical saw capture the travelers. The label has been created for 25 years, singers and musicians have been performing underground. Some became stars.
Zaz, Claudio Capeo, or even the Arcadian group – who love the 12th line – performed their lines in front of the metro public after winning one of the 300 sesame seeds delivered every six months during auditions organized by the transport authority of the cities of Paris. RATP).
About a thousand artists, from professionals to amateurs, have signed up to search for the Musiciens du métro label, which was created in 1997 to manage a steady flow of singers and performers of all kinds, explains AFP chief Stella Sainson. label. “We don’t give up on anything, even if it’s a difficult instrument that resonates loudly like the djembe”Stella Sainson emphasizes the support of the three-member jury – all employees of the RATP – at the final hearing.
Arnaud Moyencourt, dressed in a dark gray suit but without a jacket, is seated with a portable pipe organ. Placing it on the monopod, he turns the crank, opens the perforated cardboard and sings a Bobby Lapointe song, one of the 400 titles he has. A man with a thick mustache comes to refresh himself; he was in the subway for the first time in 1992. Since then, he has performed regularly at the Denfert-Rochereau station. “She’s a character! She embodies the Paris of the past. I’d stop”encourages judge Sofia Tondinelli. “You really have to imagine:“Will this person be liked by the public, by his voice and charisma?” It’s great to be able to play on the subway, but sometimes it’s complicated because people are lost in their thoughts. It is important to know how to attract the attention of travelers.
Camille Millian, with long blonde braids and a blue dress, captivated the judges by performing a song by Whitney Houston for refreshment. “I met crazy people, this is one of my best scenes. Music is above all an exchange”, argues the Jura woman, who is working in parallel on the creation of her album. Equally relaxed, Riana Rabe fuses Mulan and Radiohead titles with her sultry voice as she accompanies herself on an electroacoustic pink ukulele for her second listen. “Mostly I’m a little afraid of people, but I’ve discovered they’re extremely nice when they’re not there to listen to me. Some have even told me that they had a bad day and felt better after listening to me. This is incredible!”says a shy young woman who interacts with some subway passengers.
But for some artists, this problem should not become a traumatic experience. – Alas, he is not ready! Start with Stella Sainson and her band after a performance on the ukulele by a young girl who is particularly reserved and fairly new to the instrument. The jury was also out on the 28-year-old Chinese violinist hiding behind her big glasses and schoolgirl looks. But Eli Jadelot, who read his texts – funny stories of everyday life – dressed in a wedding dress, got the sesame for the first audition. Dominik, a worthy follower of his uncle in the musical saw, Ukrainian Anna Leonid Byulakh, who plays the violin in children’s jumps, Abram Lacoste, an analyst who gave up everything for music eight months ago, Hugo Vaxelaire and his traditional nykelharpa are their ticket to perform in the corridors of the subway (trains and platforms are prohibited). . Not to mention Tommy Garino, a tall blonde who ticked all the boxes to become a star and started playing guitar after seeing people playing on the subway. “We can say that we knew him in the basements of RATP!”laughs one of the judges, Thomas Vitry.