French orchestra performs musical diplomacy in Algiers

France's Alma Chamber Orchestra played the Radio Algeria auditorium on Tuesday under conductor Lionel Bringuier and the artistic direction of lead violinist Anne Gravoin, the wife of French Prime Minister Manuel Valls.


It was the first time the orchestra played in Algiers since its creation two years ago.

"It's a coming together. People can unite around music, listen to the same music together, and each person can experience it in a different way. That's why we make music. We'll give it our all for everything we play this evening," Gravoin said.

It was a first trip to Algeria for Lionel Bringuier, the orchestra's youthful conductor.

"I'm very happy and honoured to be here," Bringuier said. "It's the first time I've come to Algeria. And we played tonight in front of the Algerian public, live on radio – so the whole country can listen to us, even online."

Along with concert staples like Mozart and Beethoven, the Alma Chamber Orchestra played an Algerian piece.

"This has been a special moment," said Algeria's Culture Minister Nadia Labidi. "The orchestra has played us some of the greatest symphonies in classical music. It was a surprise to hear an Algerian score played, and I'm very happy with the performance. This kind of event allows French and Algerian musicians to come together."

Click on the video player above to see FRANCE 24's full report.


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