Barbara Weldens

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Barbara Weldens (April 17, 1982 – July 19, 2017) was a French singer-songwriter. After releasing her first studio album, Le grand H de l'homme (Man with a capital M), in February 2017, she died on stage the following July while performing at a festival.

Early life and career[edit]

Weldens was from Hérault and grew up in the circus,[1] where she learned juggling, acrobatics and trapeze.[2] She trained as a pianist at the conservatory in Sète, and earned a licence in musicology from the Paul Valéry University, Montpellier III in 2004.[3] In 2015 she won the Tremplin Découverte Chanson de Pause Guitare and in 2016 the Pic d'Or de la Chanson at Tarbes,[2][3] the young talent award at the 2016 Jacques Brel festival[1][4] and the prix révélation scène of the Académie Charles-Cros.[5][6]

Inspired by Jacques Brel, Weldens was a singer in the chanson réaliste tradition.[5] She often performed in a trio with Barbara Hammadi on piano and Marion Diaques on violin.[2] On 3 February 2017, with Hammadi and Diaques, she released her first studio album, Le grand H de l'homme (Man with a capital M);[1][4][6] one reviewer wrote of it as "a coherent, profound, [and] powerful whole",[7] and another spoke of the precision and balance of her lyrics.[2]

Death[edit]

Weldens was on tour and was performing in a church in the town of Gourdon in south-west France for the festival Léo Ferré when she collapsed on stage at about midnight on 19 July 2017 and was pronounced dead of cardiac arrest. She was 35.[1][4][5][6] An autopsy confirmed that she had been electrocuted; she normally performed barefoot and apparently trod on a defective piece of electrical equipment.[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d "Rising French singer Barbara Weldens dies on stage". BBC news. 20 July 2017. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Tous les arts entrent en scène: Fêtes et festivals du 18/07/2017 au 21/07/2017". La Dépêche du Midi (in French). 19 July 2017. 
  3. ^ a b "26-05-17: Agde Musica - Barbara Weldens - Le grand H de l'homme". Hérault Tribune (press release) (in French). 17 May 2017. 
  4. ^ a b c Roisin O'Connor (20 July 2017). "French singer dies on stage during concert age 35". The Independent. 
  5. ^ a b c Pascale Viktory (20 July 2017). "La chanteuse héraultaise Barbara Weldens meurt brutalement en plein concert" (in French). France Bleu. 
  6. ^ a b c "La chanteuse Barbara Weldens meurt en plein concert". Le Monde (in French). Agence France-Presse. 20 July 2017. 
  7. ^ Lewis Chambard (2 February 2017). "Le grand H de l'homme, de Barbara Weldens". Mediapart (blog) (in French). Le tout forme un ensemble cohérent, profond, puissant. 
  8. ^ "Lot. Décès en plein concert de la chanteuse Barbara Weldens: l'électrocution confirmée". Actu.fr (in French). 24 July 2017. 

External links[edit]