Marina Beheretche
The Basque musical mix

Records 21.03.2021

When a violinist proud of her Basque roots decides to bring to life the musical creation made in Euskal Herria, it results in an album project unlike any other!

When Marina was a child, it was not classical music that we listened to at home, but a lot of rock, a lot of traditional music and, almost every day, world music. It was she who introduced classical music, with the violin concertos, into the ears of the family clan... Coming from a family well known in the Basque music scene - her father was the drummer Jean-Marc Beheretche, a member of famous folk groups in the region, such as Sustraia and Gazteok - Marina Beheretche started her life as a professional violinist with the Toulouse Chamber Orchestra. 

Euskal kulturaren lekuko: Marina Beheretxe from Euskal kultura - Basque Culture on Vimeo

Eight years later, in 2015, she returned to her roots: she was appointed concertmaster of the Basque Country Symphony Orchestra and teaches her instrument at the Maurice-Ravel Conservatory in Bayonne, the same place where she learned music, before perfecting her training on the Spanish side at the San Sebastian School of Music. At the Bayonne Conservatory, students can learn traditional dances and take theatre classes in Basque. Marina speaks Basque in her class with her Basque-speaking students. 

Since Marina returned to the Basque Country, she has been busy with projects: she is a member of the Ezekiel collective, with whom she normally gives many concerts. The 35-year-old violinist also travels around her region and plays in the squares of Basque villages with her partner, the accordionist Philippe de Escurra, who is also Basque to the core. In their small open-air concerts, the two friends give pride of place to pieces by Basque composers such as Jesús Guridi Bidaola, and to the festive and danceable music that is so popular with the Basques. Marina does not hesitate, when she concocts a concert programme, to mix styles - classical music rubs shoulders with the unavoidable traditional music, a heritage better known to Basque ears. In 2016, the violinist recorded an astonishing first album with the Arranoa Quartet: "4 Sasuak" where Vivaldi's famous Four Seasons are revisited in Basque style with Mixel Etxekopar's txirula (small flute) and mixed with the music of American composer Marc Mellits. A musical UFO...

In 2020, deprived of concerts and the sharing she loves so much because of the pandemic, the violinist had the idea of a new record that sings loud and clear about the mixing of music and brings together several artists from the French-speaking Basque Country around Basque musical creation. Violins, viola, cello, double bass, piano and traditional singers interpret new pieces composed by five artists: Nathalie Biarnès, Peio Cabalette, Joël Merah, Frédéric Gaillardet and Mixel Etxekopar. The project is called "Aztarnak", which means "traces" in Basque, and to finance the recording, Marina launched a fundraising campaign at the beginning of 2021 on the participatory financing platform Kisskisbank. 

The project has seduced Internet users since more than 15,000 euros have been collected out of the 10,000 expected. The Basque artist Arantxa Lannes will create the booklet and the illustrations for the record sleeve. The recording will take place at the end of October and the record and its artistic booklet will be released in early December 2021.  

Suzanne Gervais


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