Sonerion means ‘traditional musicians’ in the Vannetais dialect of the Breton language, and refers to performers who typically animate the popular Breton Fest Noz community dances. Fest Noz is a Breton term that means ‘night party’ or ‘night festivities’. Fest Noz were originally dances closely linked to seasonal agricultural activities, but now they occur all year round - not just in Brittany but throughout Europe and even in North America.
We are an American group who play traditional Breton music in a style like that of contemporary Fest Noz bands in Brittany today. Whether through heritage, chance, or travel all of us have become immersed in this vibrant and unique musical culture, which was recently added to UNESCO’s prestigious Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. We look forward to sharing this music with you at a concert or dance.
In the typically Breton style in which we play, Fest Noz music might come as a pleasant surprise to some of those used to other types of folk dance music. It has a hypnotic, 'trance dance' feel, sophisticated harmonies and considerable punch and drive delivered by powerful woodwinds and a tight rhythm section of accordion and bass, combined with simple dances that are communally inclusive by nature.
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