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A promising rendezvous

Cartoonist-singer-writer Serguei is presenting an exhibition-concert on November 22


A RARE encounter that leaves one gasping at the energy, the passion displayed, the at once disconcerting yet refreshing frankness — an encounter with Serguei, a cartoonist with Le Monde, a singer of songs that speak of love, death and one way tickets into the unknown, a writer of books and above all a `citizen of the world'.

Serguei (Serge Goizauskas) was born in Argentina of Russian-Baltic descent, yet forced to flee the land of his birth lest he too disappeared like some comrades during the repressive military regime. When he sought to flee the status of refugee in his adopted homeland, he discovered and then fell in love with the French language through the translation of the Bhagavad Gita. He was first published when he was 17 and now has six books and a music CD to his credit, not to mention several one-man exhibitions and shows. He chooses to constantly "surprise himself" for he states simply "without surprises one dies. It nourishes you."

It is therefore not surprising that Serguei's performance at the Alliance Française auditorium slated for November 22, 7 p.m., promises to be unusual to say the least. Titled an exhibition-concert, Serguei will showcase his many talents as he sings his compositions, accompanies himself on the piano, exhibits his art of a raconteur par excellence while his illustrations look on. An evening that Serguei calls an exchange, a dialogue to discover others and in the process discover himself and the surrounding world "with its troubled present, guilty past and uncertain future."

The first stop over of a tour sponsored by the French Embassy covering seven other cities in India, Serguei's performance was announced as the high point of the year-long Golden Jubilee celebrations of the Alliance Française.

Clad in white, with his colourful bandana, Serguei had the air of a laid back, twinkle-eyed pirate. As he unearthed the treasures of his portfolio, the clean and flat tones of his creations seemed to echo the simplicity of the unmixed music from his soon to be released CD. The music, shorn of all trappings, is indeed "flat and pure" as he termed it; exhibiting variety too, ranging from the melancholic French ode to capturing the essence in Spanish of his neighbour's cat, with some vibrant percussion pieces thrown in for good measure.

Seated at the Amethyst coffee shop, talking eloquently, we get a glimpse of an ultra lucid dreamer whose CD "Falistanie" speaks of a place, "which definitely exists, but not in this dimension quite unlike Utopia that does not exist at all!" Lurking behind the garb of a modern day pirate is a sensitive poet whose creative fingers wield a pen that is mightier than the bayonet, whose lyrics fill "the silence of the missing" and whose music is "louder than the sound of military boots".

Poet, artist, writer, creator, Serguei is a self taught, self made, true blue Renaissance man — an appellation he was surprised to discover suited him to a T. An agreeable rendezvous filled with adventurous possibilities awaits one at Serguei's Concert-Expo!

CHITRA KRISHNAN

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