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    Music, speech and drawings intertwine in Line of Fire at The Alliance Française, as a soldier’s diary comes alive

    Alliance Française is always buzzing with activity. But March 11 is special, as renowned French illustrator and writer Stephane Barroux showcases an onstage graphic representation of his book, On Les Aura (Line of fire). Barroux discovered a notebook, hidden in a pile of garbage, few years ago in garbage— it turned out to be a soldier’s diary from the war in 1914.He saw the discovery as a sign and sketched the events in a graphic novel. The event will have Barroux accompanied on stage by French guitarist Julien Joubert. ‘‘I feel very comfortable because I play my own style, inspired by rock and blues. I use quite a lot of effects, loops and layers. I work on the atmosphere according to the story Barroux is reading. Then, when he draws, I push the musical parts further,’’ says Joubert.

    Both the artists share the same studio in Paris, so the collaboration came easily. ‘‘Barroux was asked by this famous French museum to do a public reading of his book and he asked me to join him on the musical part. The first rehearsals where all about long musical improvisations along with Barroux’s reading. So we defined the spine of the interpretation pretty quickly. Now we allow ourselves some improvisation,’’ says Joubert, who is also working on music for videogames while touring Delhi, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Thiruvananthapuram.

    While Barroux is coming to the city for the first time, this is Joubert’s third visit. He had previously played at Alliance Française in 2009 with the French rock band Kwak, and recorded in the city with classical singer, Priya  Chandramouli. However, this time Joubert hopes to spend time by the sea and traverse the city.

    At Alliance Française, on March 11, from 7.30 pm onwards. Free entry. Details: 28271477

    — Mrinalini Sundar

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