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On the Road with Rupert
Rupert at the WOMAD
- Deuxieme Partie (II)

The Performance Next

On stage, Monsieur Denis Péan is simply dressed and could easily be mistaken for a businessman if you bumped into him on the streets. This is a man who is obviously immersed in the music he makes. He tapped at the keyboards, soaring away on remarkable solos and regularly stopped to accompany Richard Bourreau on the violin and Guy Raimbault on the accordion with his emphatic gesticulating, pointing off the stage into the sky as if announcing the arrival of some extraterrestrial. This is a man made for the stage as his assertive vocals punctuate or lead the harmonies of the Berber sisters, Nadia and Yamina Nid el Mourid. All the while the relatively unobtrusive Nico Gallard on percussion and the Carribean basslines of Nicolas Kham Meslien lay the substrata of Lo’Jo’s music.

And since I’ve brought up the matter of the Mourid sisters I’ve just got to tell you everything else. I sat there, totally entranced, transfixed by the pulsing energy that the two of them exuded… To be honest, it was Yamina I was ogling at. She is so 'yummylicious' that they should name a dessert after her. She’s so hot I could have toasted marshmallows on her. She oozes so much sexuality that they should bottle it and call it ‘Eau de Yamina’. I’m sure you get the picture. Don't get me wrong, Nadia is as womanly as they come but in an Earth Mother sort of way. When I closed my eyes I could hardly tell the difference between the two as they shuffled between lead and backup harmony. But I didn’t keep them closed for too long as I didn’t want to miss any of Yamina.

She wove a spell over poor old Rupert and quite definitely didn’t even know what she had done. She twirled, twisted, and spun around the stage just as Rupert’s head twirled and spun around with her. Sometimes she banged away enthusiastically at a drum or other piece of percussion and sometimes she played at a soprano saxophone. Other times she just clapped counter time ala flamenco style and whipped her shoulder length curls around as much as is possible with tight curly hair like hers. The crowd, along with Rupert of course, would whoop excitedly as Queen Yamina held court at the Green with the colonial elegance of the Fort Canning Center glowing behind them.

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