Jazz legend Perret gets standing ovation in Kigali

Barely two weeks after Nigerian jazz musicians, Keziah Jones and Nneka Lucia Egbuna staged a thrilling show in Kigali, Rwandan music lovers were in for another huge treat this Tuesday.
Guillaume Perret brought the house down in a thrilling performance at Kigali Serena Hotel on Tuesday. The French music star plays several instruments alongside his saxophone. / Donata Kiiza
Guillaume Perret brought the house down in a thrilling performance at Kigali Serena Hotel on Tuesday. The French music star plays several instruments alongside his saxophone. / Donata Kiiza

Barely two weeks after Nigerian jazz musicians, Keziah Jones and Nneka Lucia Egbuna staged a thrilling show in Kigali, Rwandan music lovers were in for another huge treat this Tuesday.

Legendary French saxophonist and jazz player, Guillaume Perret also brought the house down in a thrilling performance at Kigali Serena Hotel. The free concert attracted a record number of revelers from all walks of life.

 

The 36-year-old jazz maestro, who rose to worldwide fame thanks to his hits such as Ethiopic vertigo, Kakoum, Circé and Chamo, delivered a terrific performance and got a standing ovation from the audience.

 

Jazz fans flocked the venue as early as 6pm and by the time the opening act Deo Munyakazi went on stage at 7pm, the venue was packed to capacity. The fast-rising traditional musician, Munyakazi thrilled the audience with his instrumental pieces and proved himself a force to be reckoned with as well.

 
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The fast-rising local musician Deo Munyakazi shares the stage with French saxophonist and jazz star Guillaume Perret at the concert. / Donata Kiiza

Finally when Perret appeared on stage, he showcased his incredible expertise on the sax as he belted out hit after hit. Clad in a pair of black jeans, a t-shirt and matching red snickers, the French singer was welcomed by hysterical cheers from the crowd.

He performed a mixture of all blues and jazz, with a blend of traditional, American and Ethiopian sounds to have a unique sense of style as he describes his kind of music.

Perret performed several songs such as, Inside song, Heavy dance and Birth of Aphrodite from his latest album dubbed, Free. Other songs he performed include Walk, Seduction, Cosmonaut, Pilgrim, She’s got rhythm, Inner jail, Susu and En good.

During the performance, an excited Perret could not hide his love for Rwanda: “I’m happy to be here in Rwanda with my fans and I loved their energy, their vibe and how they stood up to dance with me. I enjoyed my own performance and indeed if there is any other chance, I will come back here.”

The multi- talented saxophonist also exhibited his ability to blend his instruments with Rwanda’s traditional musical instrument “Inanga” in a joint performance with Munyakazi.

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The genius artiste creates different sounds on stage while performing. / Donata Kiiza

“I’m so privileged to have shared a platform with such kind of talented artist like Perret,” said Munyakazi, before adding: “I have realized that we need to play along with other instruments not only playing one kind of sound here in Rwanda so as to create a more unique genre for our fans.”

The show, that was organised by the Institut Français du Rwanda, ended at 9pm with the signing of autographs. People were also able to buy the singer’s new 12-track album at the venue.

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