Home arts Performing Arts Lou Doillon at So Frenchy So Chic – Cancelled



Lou Doillon at So Frenchy So Chic – Cancelled

January 2014

  • Lachlan Aird

Unfortunate news. Lou Doillon has cancelled her Australian tour, including her So Frency So Chic performance. The singer has been hospitalised and will not be able to attend due to her illness.

Doillon said in a statement, “It is a heart-breaking decision (to cancel). I was really looking forward to visiting Australia for the first time but unfortunately my medical condition makes it impossible to travel. I really hope to be able to come back later.”

We intereviewed Doillon before the cancellation about her debut album Places. read below.

For Lou Doillon, the daughter of singer and fashion muse Jane Birkin and film director Jacques Doillon and half-sister of actress and Lars Von Trier muse Charlotte Gainsbourg, her famous family has provided a privileged yet tumultuous life. Doillon speaks with The Melbourne Review about her transition into becoming a musician with her debut album Places.

Places is a beautifully melancholic collection of songs that Doillon recorded in 10 days in a studio down the road from her home in Paris. It’s a simple and honest album, which is exactly what Doillon aimed to achieve. The last thing she wanted to do was “impress” anyone, which is why she chose to record in English.

“I love to be moved; I hate to be impressed,” Doillon says. “I didn’t want my music to go through this obsession that the French have to impress. Also, only the French would understand me and I had a desire – well, more a curiosity – to see how universal feelings could be. I realised that in many ways going on stage in a different place is like meeting with a boy for the first time. In a wonderful way, the snog is the same; it’s just how we get to each other is different.”

Melbourne will have its own chance to court Doillon on stage when she is here for So Frenchy So Chic on Sun Jan 12. Just over a year ago, however, this would not have been possible. For years Doillon kept her music a secret, with Birkin eventually fearing she was becoming “not mad – but slightly recluse”. It was a friend of Birkin’s – French musician Étienne Daho – who coaxed Doillon through a powerful emotional connection to share her music.

“In a way love is always what changes everything,” Doillon claims. “It was in the kitchen where I picked up my guitar and showed him some songs and he did the glorious thing of falling in love with me, in the musical sense. It was very sweet how he convinced me to record an album because he thought it was so odd how I wanted to keep my music as my private garden. He said the only interest in music is to share it. There’s something dreadfully wrong to want to do music that no one is going to hear. I thought that he was absolutely, fundamentally right.”

It seems strange that Doillon would be so private considering her well-established career as an actress and international model, being the spokesmodel for Givenchy and Anthony Vaccarello. As Doillon explains, “the real blessing” in her life is music, as acting and modelling just adds more layers to society’s misconceptions about her.

“I was raised with this very strange relation to the world. Since I was an infant I can’t go anywhere with my mum or my family – and since I was 15, with myself — without people stopping their conversations or hushing down because my family is a strange form of royalty in France. My mother was very kind and famous; she was loved by everyone, and so was Serge [Gainsbourg], and so is my sister Charlotte, but that was already a little bit too much. By the time I came along people didn’t want to hear about me and so, funnily enough, I was stuck in a weird teenagehood where I didn’t know who I was and at the same time everyone was looking at me. I’ve spent the last 25 years of my life trying to excuse myself for not being the person [people] thought I was or trying to be the person [people] think I might be.”

“The French being the French, and that’s what I love about them, the first thing they want to do is chop the heads off royalty – and that’s where I come along,” Doillon continues. “I can’t really reproach it; the whole world is getting worse and worse – and in France it’s especially bad. Daughters and sons of celebrities are favourite meat.”

It’s a vicious insight, embalmed by the recent news after this interview that Doillon’s half-sister and Birkin’s eldest daughter, Kate Barry, allegedly committed suicide by falling from her Parisian apartment’s balcony. The modern tragedy of the Birkin/Barry/Gainsbourg/Doillon empire is a complicated one. Above all the opulence and romance that they represent, there has hung a permanent shadow, which now darkens with Barry’s death. Within this context, it can help explain why Doillon has gravitated so strongly towards music: it allows her heady life to become simpler.

“I see many people trying so hard and I think they’ve just missed the point,” she says on fame and success. “It’s the same with anything in life. If it’s more simple; it will actually work.”

Lou Doillon will perform at So Frenchy So Chic at Werribee Mansion on Sun Jan 12.




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