As part of the two-week long cultural program to promote Francophonie, the Canadian embassy in Kuwait held a musical concert by ‘Les Portageux’, at the Sheikh Jaber Al Ahmad Cultural Centre (JACC) last week. Canadian Ambassador to Kuwait H.E. Martine Moreau, the coordinator of the Francophonie festivities, welcomed the gathering and thanked all embassies who participated in this year’s celebrations, including the embassies of France, Belgium, Switzerland, Romania, Lebanon and Romania.
"This year's theme of the International Day of La Francophonie is J'aime, je partage,' (I love, I Share) and this is precisely what we aim to do tonight. We love Quebec's culture and music and are happy to share it with you this evening," said Ambassador Moreau in her welcome speech.
The band members Julie Cossette, Yanic boudreau and Stephane Doyon gave a memorable performance in the elegant concert hall of JACC with the audience foot tapping, clapping and singing along on occasions. The traditional music sung was mostly dating back to the 19th century pioneer period in the French-speaking Canadian province of Quebec, a time before television and radio, when entertainment meant coming together for a night of song and dance.
Les Portageux, who hail from the Maurice region of Quebec province, presented traditional folk songs that were either transmitted from one generation to another or uncovered from archives. The melody, music and meaning of the wide variety of folk songs they sung were inspiring and interesting and were centered on such local themes as maple syrup, an ode to the caribou, French prisoners in the Tower of London, songs on hunting and even dealing with relatives who borrow money. The performers gave a passionate rendition full of energy and grace making it a truly entertaining three hour program.