Thursday, May 26, 2016

Moune de Rivel Honored in Paris Suburb of Clichy La Garenne

Moune de Rivel (1918-2014) was one of the best known and loved performers of Creole music in the 20th and 21st centuries.

Moune de Rival - La Grande Dame de la Chanson Créole
CD cover - Frémeaux & Associés

Born in Bordeaux of Guadeloupian parents, De Rivel (née Cécile Jean-Louis Baghio'ode) was exposed to Creole music at a very early age and eventually traveled the world as an ambassador of this music. In her heyday, she excelled at singing, guitar, piano, painting, and acting, and she performed in several films. She lived in the U.S. from 1946-1948 and was reportedly the first French entertainer, black or white, to go to the States after the war. During her two-year stay, she attended the Julliard School and was filmed for the 20th-Century Fox documentary Night-Club Boom.

De Rivel performed at popular Antillean night clubs in Paris such as La Canne à Sucre and La Boule Blanche. She also performed at La Rose Rouge, the cabaret-theater operated by Senegalese dancer Feral Benga.

For a short time, she even operated her own night club - Le Perroquet au Nid - near the Champs Elysées.

Among her many awards and citations, de Rivel received the Medaille de la Ville de Paris in 1967 and was named a Chevalier des arts et des lettres in 1997.

The non-profit association AGORA KARAYIB recently honored de Rivel with a photo exhibition called "Les horizons créoles de Moune de Rivel" in the northern Paris suburb of Clichy la Garenne. All the photographs on display were taken by photojournalist Foto Forey Fumey.

The exhibit was first displayed on May 15 in conjunction with a cultural exchange on the theme of Creole traditions at the Salle Heidenheim at 6, place du Marché.

From May 17-22, it was displayed at the Galerie "12 Avenue des Arts" at 86, rue de Paris. We attended a reception held at the gallery on May 20.

"Les horizons créoles de Moune de Rivel" at Galerie "12 Avenue des Arts"
© Discover Paris!

Duke Ellington and Moune de Rivel
© Discover Paris!

Dozens of people came to the gallery to pay tribute to her...

Reception attendees
© Discover Paris!

including her niece and grand niece:

Grand niece (name removed upon request) and Eliane David (niece)
© Discover Paris!

Fofo Forey Fumey is the photographer whose work was shown during the exhibit. He followed de Rivel's career for decades and was present at the gallery's reception to talk about this experience.

Fofo Forey Fumey and his photos
© Discover Paris!

Journalist Marie-Michaël Manquat gave a presentation about de Rivel, introduced de Rivel's relatives and Fumey, video-ed the festivities, and served refreshments.

Marie-Michaël Manquat and Fofo Forey Fumey
© Discover Paris!

Moune de Rival died on March 27, 2014 after a long battle with Alzheimer's disease. Her funeral was held on April 1, 2014 at Notre-Dame-des-Champs Church in Paris. She is buried next to her mother, Fernande de Virel, in Montparnasse Cemetery.

Listen to de Rivel perform the song “Morne à l’Eau” from the album Joie et Nostalgie Créoles (Creole Joy and Nostalgia) by clicking HERE.

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3 comments:

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