Age: 30 years old
Florence, alias Kimsar on stage, is a French singer-songwriter and ethnomusicologist. Her stage name comes from a pristine Himalayan village where she collected North-Indian songs for a PhD on the local music scene. She is currently developing several projects in the South of France: a solo musical theatre play adapted from the short story The Seed Giver, and the first album of compositions played in duet with drummer Léo Achard.
She sings with a natural and versatile technique, having learned from rock and pop music, French and Irish folk tunes, Renaissance music and Gregorian chant. She was trained at the Conservatoire in Paris and Aubervilliers where she earned degrees in modern flute, Baroque flute (traverso) and music theory. She has enriched this training with self-taught techniques gathered in jam sessions, choirs, summer schools and chamber music, by playing with various ensembles for ten years. Her past projects include French chanson, close harmony and Sufi fusion with renowned qawwali singers in Delhi.
She also co-founded a young Early Music ensemble dedicated to playing off-the-stage educational concerts and organised world music workshops with association EthnomusiKa. After her Master’s degree in Sciences Po Paris and her PhD from EHESS, she joined the outreach programme Passerelles within Festival d’Aix-en-Provence. She has since then left the organisational team to become a full-time musician, but she still teaches workshops and assists choir director Philippe Franceschi for participatory productions with Festival d’Aix-en-Provence.
Photo credit: Emmanuel Ruas