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Alla francesca - Medieval Songs & Dances

Alla francesca

Pierre Hamon & Brigitte Lesne, directors

The Trobar & Joglar

with Jive Faury, Juggler 

12th-13th century songs in occitan - the old French language 

from the South of France - with instrumental dances



Medieval Jewish Songs from the North of France

Religious and festive songs from Jewish communities living in the 
North of France (Flanders, Picardie, Artois & Champagne)
 in the 13th century - sung in oïl and hebrew

Brigitte Lesne : voice, harp, percussion
Lior Leibovici, voice  
Pierre Hamon
Pierre Hamon : flutes 
Vivabiancaluna Biffi : fiddle 
Michaël Grébil : lute, percussion 

Brigitte Lesne & Pierre Hamon: Artistic Direction

2014 CD co-production with the European Institute for Jewish Studies in Paris



Non è tempo d’aspettare 

16th century Polyphonic songs from Italy (frottole)

Vivabiancaluna Biffi, voice, fiddle 
Hélène Decarpignies, voice 
Brigitte Lesne, voice, gothic harp, tambourines 

Artistic conception by Vivabiancaluna Biffi


The trio of vocal soloists, sometimes accompanied by bowed or plucked strings, 
sing of romance in the polyphonic “frottole" typical of the Italian Renaissance written by 
one of the most important composers of the beginning of the 16th century: 
Marchetto Cara (1470-1525)
Also Works by Bartolomeo Trombocino or Giovanni Battista Zezzo


Live Recording, August 2010, Paris, musée de Cluny




A journey to the origins of music – in Italy, Provence, Spain... 
The evocation of antiquity and Sephardic wandering - 
estampies, laudes, tarentelles, troubadours, and sefaradic chants. . 

Brigitte Lesne, voice, medieval harp 
Pierre Hamon, flutes, recorders, pipe and tabor 
Carlo Rizzo, voice, percussions


Jubilo cum carmine

Splendor of Royal Chapels

in Bohemia, Burgundy and England (15th c)

Sacred canciones from Bohemia 
Sacred polyphonies by Gilles Binchois (1400-1460) 
Anonymous polyphonic english Carols 

Musical directors: Brigitte Lesne / Pierre Hamon / Pierre Boragno 
Discantus ensemble: 9 female voices and bells 
Alla francesca & Alta: 6 musicians [shawm, bombarde, slide trompet, flutes, lute, fiddle, harp]

Dates and Fees available upon request 

Thibaut de Champagne et le manuscript du Roi

PARIS, Cluny Museum
April 29, 2011

excerpts from the premiere of

Thibaut de Champagne & the King's Manuscript

Brigitte Lesne – voice, medieval harp, psaltery-harp, percussions, direction 
Pierre Bourhis – voice 
Emmanuel Vistorky – voice 
Vivabiancaluna Biffi – fiddle 
Michaël Grébil – lute, cittern, percussions

Pierre Hamon

"Alla francesca brings together the flower of medieval music.”

—David Fiala, Diapason


Internationally recognized for the quality of its performances and the originality of its projects, Alla francesca specializes in songs and instrumental dances from the Middle Ages. Their performances, both lively and poetic, have reached maturity after many years of research and are intimate and always full of life and musical inventiveness.

Co-directed by Pierre Hamon and Brigitte Lesne and comprised of  up to ten musicians and singers, the ensemble experiments with different approaches to find the very best musical interpretation, historically plausible and respectful of original sources. The accent is put on instrumental techniques – searching for subtle playing and articulations adapted to dance music and a singer’s accompaniment – and on a specific vocal approach – based on diction, line and legato which support the rich poetic texts of this repertoire.

Alla francesca concentrates its research on the period from the 12th to the 15th century, thus offering a true musical voyage, a festive and poetic kaleidoscope, apparently simple or extremely sophisticated. The repertoire contains music from France (Oc and Oïl language, troubadours, trouvères, motets), Spain (cantigas, Llibre vermell de Montserrat), Italy (Francesco Landini, istanpitte) and from the whole of 14th and 15th century Europe (Guillaume de Machaut, ars subtilior, Guillaume Dufay, French-Flemish and English repertoire, and Spanish song books). Certain programs also adopt various musical traditions that took root in the Middle Ages (Sephardic songs, tarantella’s, arabo-andalusian music…). Indeed, while referring to musicological research and medieval documents (musical manuscripts, treaties, literary works, account books), Alla francesca also willingly embraces living monodic traditions, whether popular, scholarly, European or oriental and as well as research by instrument makers. Furthermore the ensemble creates concerts, lectures and performances including storytellers, actors, jugglers or the women’s vocal ensemble Discantus, thus creating a complete palette of medieval sonorities.


Alla francesca performs regularly in the most important festivals and concert halls in France and throughout Europe. The ensemble has also toured Australia, Azerbaidjan, Canada, Colombia, India, Morocco, Mexico, New-Zealand, Russia, USA, and Turkmenistan and has recorded with Zig-Zag territoires, Opus 111, Virgin Classis and Jade. Among numerous awards, Alla Francesca has received the “ Early music Diapason d’or of the year 2000 ”.



Brigitte Lesne