Video: How Jazz-based Cellist and Vocalist Helen Gillet Blends Eclectic Styles to Forge Her Own Sound
Words by: Jeremy Harper
Picture provided by: Helen Gillet
Video production by: roberthannant.com
Jazz-based cellist, singer, composer and improviser Helen Gillet grew up in Belgium, Singapore, Chicago and Wisconsin, but has set deep roots in New Orleans over the past decade and a half. The TEDxLSU 2018 speaker has has forged a path for the cello in the Big Easy music scene through performing her own eclectic mix of French, contemporary jazz, North Indian, blues and classical styles.
The native of Belgium launched her career as an improviser, singer and cellist with the North Hindustani vocal ragas of the late 90s, which introduced her to the world of improvisational jazz, funk, rock and French music — all of which are major components of her music stylings today.
She has performed extensively across the United States and Western Europe, collaborated with some of the biggest names in popular music and recorded music for several films. Her compelling live performances can shift seamlessly between layered loops of cello lines and rhythms to an understated French song from her Belgian childhood.
“I’m just me now,” she says in this short video. “I’m just playing my own music — and it feels amazing.”
Words by: Annemarie Galeucia
Video by: Wes Kennison
We thought things were moving quickly before, but as we race to March 3 the pace and the excitement (and maybe the mania) kicks in for our team. No one shares that more succinctly than our set and video aficionado, Wes Kennison. Wes took a break from his main gig as Launch Media Creative Director to give us a little tease about how the TEDxLSU 2018 experience will leave us reeling with amazing ideas and connections.
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Photos by: Ari Ross, Ian Andrepont, Chris Jeansonne and Melissa Thompson