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The Company

  • Introduction
    Sacré Tympan is a generous, energetic, quirky and inventive troupe that handles many musical languages as if they were explosives, presenting colourful, lively, yet sensitive sound images of our world. The group creates, produces and presents musical theatre shows and workshops aimed at 4 to 12 year-olds as well as concerts, shows and recordings for open-minded adults.

    Under Pierre Labbé’s direction, Sacré Tympan presents audiences with cheerfully provocative musical creations mixing different stage techniques. The creators tirelessly seek new territories and dramatic effects, switching happily between contemporary music, jazz and music using improvised instruments and objects. To this end, Sacré Tympan has brought together a friendly group of multitalented and inventive musicians, artists and craftsmen coming from different worlds who love taking risks. These masters of the present moment transform the stage into an atypical artistic meeting place bringing together audiences and their music(s!). Sacré Tympan was founded in 2005 and is the brainchild of Pierre Labbé, a composer, saxophonist, flutist and free-thinker, who also acts as the group’s artistic director and manager. Its repertoire already includes two workshops and three shows for young audiences as well as two shows for general audiences. Since 2005, the Tales from the wind workshop and the musical creation workshops organized by Sacré Tympan have delighted more than 5,000 schoolchildren in the province of Quebec. Since its creation in 2007, the group’s star show, Peter and the Louse (for 5 to 10-year olds) has been performed more than a hundred times all over the province of Quebec and in France (Saint-Pierre et Miquelon). This show was deservedly awarded the ROSEQ-RIDEAU prize in 2009 and is still in great demand. Since 2010, Sacré Tympan offers a stage version of the Tales from the wind workshop, performed by Pierre Labbé as a one-man show. Their latest production, Coat Stand Fables (for 5 to 10-year olds), was created in 2011 and was selected by the Conseil des Arts de Montréal (Montreal Arts Council) as a touring show for the 2012-2013 season. The show has been performed nearly fifty times and captivates its young audiences.

    Sacré Tympan’s first production aimed at general audiences, Ironquake, premiered at the OFF jazz festival in 2009, was selected by the Montreal Arts Council as a touring show for the 2011-2012 season and was a finalist for the 2011 Opus prize in the “Jazz concert of the year” category awarded by the Conseil Québécois de la Musique (Quebec Music Council). In 2012, the group presented a well-received second show called Vertigos. Sacré Tympan has produced two recordings: “Manivelle”, finalist for the 2010 Opus prize in the “azz album of the year” category, and Ironquake. The Montreal and Quebec Province Arts Councils show their appreciation of Sacré Tympan’s activities by awarding them annual subsidies. Besides the prizes mentioned above, the group was selected in 2012 in the “Ma Première Biennale” (My First Biennial) competition by CINARS (a Montreal-based organization promoting international exchanges in the performing arts).

  • Introcution (summary)
    Under musician and composer Pierre Labbé’s direction, Sacré Tympan presents audiences with musical creations mixing different stage techniques, establishing from the first moment with the public a contact which is carried beyond its sonic limits. Through their singular approach to music, at once rebellious, passionate and free, the creators travel between contemporary music, contemporary jazz, musical tale, improvised music and object theatre, and do not hesitate to provoke the spectators’ ears.

    • Two sections : young audiences and general public
    • Six original creations , three for young audiences and three for jazz
    • A total of 25 000 people have attended Sacré Tympan performances
    • Several hundred musical workshops have attracted 5 000 children
    • 200 performances : tours in Quebec province, in France and in Mexico
  • Brief history
    Twice finalist of the OPUS prize awarded by the Quebec Music Council, Sacré Tympan’s concerts and shows are recognized as innovative and open to all audiences, favouring direct contacts with their public, aged from 4 to 99.

    • 2007, Pierre et le pou (Peter and the Louse) (for 5 to 10 year olds), first show combining theatre and music. Roseq-Rideau prize.
    • 2009, release of “Manivelle” album, by Pierre Labbé’s 4TET (contemporary jazz)
    • 2010, release of “Tremblement de Fer” (Ironquake) album, by Pierre Labbé (for 13 musicians)
    • 2010, première of the stage version of Tales from the Wind (for 5 to 11 year olds)
    • 2011, première of the music-theatre show Coat Stand Fables (for 5 to 10 year olds)
    • 2012, première of Vertigos for 6 musicians (contemporary jazz)
  • Comments in the press
    Youth audiences

    • “Unidentified musical object! Wild, thundering, hilarious and seriously subtle, performances by Sacré Tympan company raise the bar a notch for young ears. And it is all the fault of Pierre Labbé, ever young at heart.”
      Aurore Lehmann, La Marelle magazine (Québec) 2012
    • “Faced with this jazzy magic, the audience exclaim their wonder, ready to laugh at their fears and taken by surprise at any moment.”
      Marion Gerbier, Voir, 2011
    • “Les Fables de la Patère is an original, highly imaginative piece. Short stories are told without words in brilliant, colourful fashion. With its zany characters, eclectic contexts and striking images, this is a sensational show!”
      Virginie Simard-Tozzi, cultural officer for Arrondissement de Saint-Laurent, 2011

    Jazz

    • “Undoubtedly demanding, their originality makes these compositions fascinating and thrilling.”
      Ironquake: Gilles Boisclair, SOCAN Paroles et Musique, 2011
    • “Whereas Labbé’s professional territory is above all Montreal, his music, through its qualities, its beauty, its questionings, its punctuations, makes him a musician of the world. Good or well, you have the choice.”
      Ironquake: Serge Truffault, Le Devoir, 2010
    • “Tremblement de Fer” was given more sustained and well-deserved applause for delighting and captivating its audiences.”
      Ironquake: Serge Truffault, Le Devoir, 2009
    • “A model of versatility and sense of narration.”
      Ironquake: Jazz Magazine (France), 2011
    • “Makes Richter quake on his scale!”
      Ironquake: Stanley Péan, Radio-Canada, 2010
    • “The least that can be said is that the inventiveness of this music will leave lasting traces.”
      Ironquake: Alain Brunet, La Presse, 2011
    • “Overall an adventurous CD that will, no matter how many times one listens to it, remain fresh as if listening to it for the first time.”
      Ironquake: Sylvain Richard, La Scena Musicale, 2010
    • “In a nutshell, Labbé awakens and sharpens the inquisitive parts of our mind. And that is tremendous!”
      Ironquake: Serge Truffault, Le Devoir, 2010
    • “One of the finest albums this autumn”.
      Ironquake: Désautels, Radio-Canada, 2010
    • “What an astonishing disk.”
      Ironquake: Réjean Beaucage, Voir, 2010
    • “Rather powerful arrangements, music at times heavy, but rather lively, supported by an excellent group.”
      Ironquake: Monsieur Délire (Québec), 2010
    • “The notable increase in audiences confirms some audience’s taste for jazz that is adventurous, stimulating, sensual, joyous in approach but by no means easy-listening.”
      Ironquake: Serge Truffault, Le Devoir, 2009
    • “Labbé pushes the envelope and lives his musical life on the edge.”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: Paul Serralheiro, La Scena Musicale, 2010
    • “Manivelle is a stunning release from this Quebecois mainstay.”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: Exclaim! (Canada), 2010
    • “Hope it will not take another six year for a new album by Labbé and his mates.”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: Vital #714 (Pays-Bas), 2010
    • “Music to keep you warm.”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: Mike Chamberlain, Hour, 2010
    • “One thing is sure, Manivelle is a celebration of music, jazz and others, from the first to the last note.”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET:  Serge Truffault, Le Devoir, 2009
    • “This is one of those unrecognized gems that will take some time to fully absorb all of the fine points and intricate ideas buried within.”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: Downtown Music Gallery (États-Unis), 2009
    • “It’s a treat to hear such a fully realized work from one of the city’s underappreciated creative forces.”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: Montreal Mirror, 2009
    • “Structurally seductive, ambitious in the complexity of his compositions…”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: Revue et Corrigée (France)
    • “saxophonist Pierre Labbé pulls off with the grace of Eric Dolphy or John Coltrane.”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: Splendid E-Zine (États-Unis)
    • “This music draws from the third stream of free jazz blended with chamber music.”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: Review in Outsight (États-Unis)
    • “… more tenacious than free, more idiosyncratic than “out.”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: Music For Tout le Monde, The Gazette (Québec)
    • «On remarquera particulièrement les transitions intelligentes et subtiles qui relient les différents modes musicaux.»
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: Lancements, SOCAN, Paroles & Musique (Canada)
    • “… warm and intelligent new music that deserves to be heard everywhere.”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: Vital (Pays-Bas)
    • “… give interesting insight into the uses of stringed instruments in today’s world of improvised musics.”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: La Scena Musicale (Québec)
    • “The result is generally cerebral while presenting exciting moments…”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: All-Music Guide (États-Unis)
    • “Astonishingly inventive and accessible, Pierre Labbé’s music will delight lovers of atypical rock and jazz.”
      Pierre Labbé 4TET: Le Noir compact, Mouton Noir (Canada)