Song + melee = trial transformed

Gérard Castet and Nathalie Barrouillet were yesterday morning at the school of Beaumarches for the official launch of the Plan Chant Choral 2022-2023.

Promote music and sport to children.

This 5th edition of the Plan Chant Choral will be associated in the Gers with the world of rugby. An idea that arose due to the upcoming sporting events linked to the 2023 Rugby World Cup. It is not surprising because rugby has accompanied the people of Gers in their daily lives since their childhood: in almost all the villages of the Gers there is a field of rugby. This team sport is an essential part of the local culture.

A plan that has a chorus. Song + melee = trial transformed “.

The Departmental Association for the Development of the Arts is involved in an ambitious plan to develop choirs during school time. In association with the Departmental Council, the Drac Occitanie, the DSDEN and the Canopé du Gers workshop, the Adda 32 is therefore launching the operation ” Song + melee = trial transformed “.

As a referent for the artistic field of Music, it is Françoise Lamarque who has developed partnerships with the various cultural actors and institutions.

To organize this Chant Choral plan around rugby, three zones have been defined throughout the Gers. A territory for each trimester where interventions will be carried out with a choir director. In this case, a choir director: Victoria Digon.

Harmonization mission: Victoria Digon Elsden, choir director.

From Masseube to Riscle, from Fleurance to Nogaro via Auch, or even in the Mauvezin, Gimont, Lombez and L’Isle Jourdain sector, it is Victoria Digon who will accompany school teachers in their learning of choral singing at young Gersois. She has a solid experience in the field of pedagogy for children’s choirs. A vocation that comes from afar.

It was from an early age that she learned to play the oboe and sing. Destining for a musical career, she quickly turned to choir direction. In 2004, she created and directed the mixed choir Condate to condom. Then she assumed the management of Little Singers at the Potent Cross with whom she toured France and Spain. Subsequently she founded and directed the youth choir variability, with which she distinguished herself during the festival splinters of voice in Auch, in June 2006, with “Carmina Burana”. In January 2010, she was with the Orchester national du Capitole de Toulouse, performing “La Damnation de Faust” by Berlioz.

After having been the assistant of François Terrieux, at the Toulouse choir SHARDS, it is with Adda 32 that she provides the artistic direction of the children’s choir ” Mainada “, since its creation in 2011. Thus, it has been years that she combines her work as a musician involved in the various primary schools of Gers with the choral direction within various Gers music schools, such as that of Jégun since 2015. She is also a member of the Auscitaine choir “Escale Vocal Musiques du Monde”.

Occitan to sing the oval: Eloïse Chadourne.

For this plane Song + melee = trial transformed », the Adda 32 also called on the skills of Eloïse Chadourne. Singer performer but also author and composer, her mission was to arrange and rework a traditional popular song in Occitan by including body percussion. This song exalting the passion for rugby will make the link between the different children’s choirs who will be involved throughout the Gers. All this work will give rise to restitutions, bringing together vocal practice and sports practice, during days that will be festive and which will be echoed in the Journal de Gers.

The voice, our first musical instrument.

Eloïse Chadourne is passionate about everything related to the voice: classical music, jazz, French song, shows for young audiences, folk… In 2014, she discovered the work of Jim Daus Hjernoe thanks to the training plan offered by Arpa Occitanie and she decides to leave to train in Vocal Painting and in the direction of rhythmic choirs in Aalbord, Denmark.

She creates the choir Voices Cult in 2016, she developed vocal practice projects in companies, and in 2018, she was accepted for a professional Master’s degree in choir conducting at the Royal Academy of Music in Aalborg.

Today, she shares her activity between her duties as a choirmaster and her career as a soloist within the group. Madamicella (Corsican polyphonies) and the trio Harmony Grances (pop/soul/gospel music).

Rugby, a meeting of cultures.

From September 8 to October 28, 2023, France will host the Rugby World Cup. This will be the tenth edition of this competition, which has been contested every four years since 1987. Twenty teams – including Chile – will meet on the pitch to offer us 48 major matches.

Sport and music are unifying.

The Gers schools adhere to the “Chant +Mêlée” initiative. While 12,354 1st grade students have just returned to school in Gers schools, nearly 1,000 children have already registered to participate in the operation led by Adda 32.

This Choral Singing plan associated with the practice of rugby is so popular that choices had to be made, taking into account the number of classes in schools and the distance between municipalities. Also, not all schools wishing to join the initiative will be able to benefit from the interventions of the choir director. But all schools will still be able to have access to all the educational tools made available by Adda32 (booklet + listening). On the sports side, the project provides for interventions with rugby technicians.

Leducational tools for the Choral Song plan.

For the “Chant + Mêlée” project, 14 songs from the traditional culture of countries where rugby is king will serve as a working basis for school teachers. The student choristers from Gers will therefore work on tunes from Wales, Argentina, Japan, South Africa, etc. The selection and editing of the scores were carried out by Victoria Digon.

Songs from other horizons such as “Tutira mai” (New Zealand), “Molly Malone” (Ireland), “Tofa my feleni” (Samoa), “Un chiodo” (Italy), “Shosholoza” (South Africa ), or “London Bridge is falling down” (England).

Under his musical direction, these 14 songs were recorded by professional musicians and technicians, to develop an educational tool commensurate with the project: Pascal Marrou on guitar, double bass and ukulele, and Mathieu Bézian as sound technician. This sound work was recorded on June 27 and 28, 2022, with the pupils of the Jules Ferry primary school in Condom, thanks to the implementation of interventions in schools with “Les Amis de la Musique de Condom”.

In Beaumarches, Gérard Castet sets the tone.

Mayor of the town for almost 40 years, Gérard Castet was yesterday morning at the Beaumarches school to attend a vocal practice session under the aegis of the music speaker Victoria Digon. He could not miss this official launch of the Chant Choral plan on Tuesday, September 13, 2022. For the occasion, he was accompanied by his partner in the Departmental Council, Nathalie Barrouillet, also president of Adda du Gers, always on the ground as close as possible to the Gersois and the Gersoises.

‘tātou tātou e’ (‘all of us, all of us’)

The students of one of the school’s classes were singing the first notes of a song that the rugbimen Tao Tapasu has known since his childhood: ” tutira may “.

Tutira mai nga iwi
tattoo tattoo
Whaia te maramatanga
Me te aroha e nga iwi
Kia ka tapatahi
tattoo tattoo

People are standing in a row
Each of us
Ask for knowledge
And the communion of all peoples
think like one
In all of us

The Marciac school is also taking part in this project.

During the afternoon, Françoise Lamarque and Victoria Digon went to the elementary school of Pardiac in the same way. There, the young students also practiced the Maori song that had been selected by the teachers of Beaumarches. Little more for the people of Marciac: they could also benefit from the musical experience of Hicham Sqalli, an AESH working at the school of Marciac who is also passionate about baroque choral singing.

To find out more about the “Chant + Mêlée = transformed test” operation, and all the other Adda32 projects:

Email contact:

And to know everything about the Rugby World Cup 2023:

Song + melee = trial transformed