Helen Gillet

helenspreadA musical performance by New Orleans-based cellist, vocalist, songwriter and improviser Helen Gillet
Date: Monday, November 22
Time: 7:00 PM
Admission: $5 (for two events)
A Paradiso Contapasso double feature closing with Beyond the Sphere: Getting Lost with Dante, an illustrated lecture with professor Nicola Masciandaro

Please join us on Monday November 22 for a return performance by New Orleans-based cellist, vocalist, songwriter and improviser Helen Gillet, whom music critic John Swenson has described as “among the most versatile and creative musicians working in the Crescent City.” Her eclectic work-a typical performance of which might include French folk chansons and original compositions in French followed by improvisational electronic music-draws from a broad assortment of influences, ranging from medieval music to contemporary jazz, cabaret to classical to the second line Mardi Gras Indian Orchestra. So come by tonight, fill up a glass of wine, and settle in to enjoy the lovely and eclectic sounds of Helen Gillet.

Helen Gillet (b.1978) grew up in Belgium, Chicago and Singapore before settling in New Orleans. She first studied improvisation in 1998 with North Indian Classical cellist Nancy Lesh. Gillet moved to New Orleans in 2002 and began performing with James Singleton (3now4rkestra), Johnny Vidacovich, Brian Coogan, Rob Wagner, Dave Capello, Jimmy Hobbs, Tim Green and groups such as the Improvisational Arts Council, the Naked Orchestra, Diesel Combustion Orchestra, the Arabic-jazz fusion group Mafouz and New Orleans New Music Ensemble. She performs regularly at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, Chaz Fest, The French Quarter Festival, and the New Orleans Noize Fest. She can be heard on a wide variety of recording projects, including the Ed Sanders 2007 “Poems for New Orleans” recorded by the award winning Mark Bingham at Piety Records. Other recent recording projects include James Singleton’s String Quartet “Gold Bug Crawl” (2008) and a ballad recording with the great New Orleans trumpeter Leroy Jones entitled “Sweeter than a Summer Breeze” (spring 2009). Her work was the focus of OffBeat Magazine’s cover story last February; You can hear some or her work at www.myspace.com/helengillet.

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