Music Of The French Caribbean - Martinique
Label: ARC MUSIC
Format: COMPACT DISC
Ballet Exotic du Robert
Martinique, an overseas region of France, lies in the heart of the Caribbean archipelago as part of the Lesser Antilles between Dominica in the North and St. Lucia in the South. Columbus landed on the island in 1502 and named it Martinique. Until then, the island had been populated by Carib Indians who called it Matinino. Martinique was claimed by France in 1635 and officially annexed in 1674. The island is a mix of two main cultures, with the African at its rots and the Western contributing increasingly. Music and dance have always been omnipresent in the life of the Antilles people. Music accompanies almost all day-to-day activities. It provides the rhythm for work in the fields, cutting of sugarcane, etc. The drum is one of the island’s main instruments and the tambouye (drum player) enjoys special status. The Ballet Exotic du Robert is a non-profit company established in 1990. The group’s goal is to preserve the folklore of Martinique, to promote Martinique through its dances, and to share with people everywhere the pleasure of traditional dance. Their repertoire includes all the standards of Martinique music from ballroom dancing including the beguine, mazurka and the creole waltz, Caribbean beats such as merengue, compass, etc, to drum dances like the bele, bele pitche, and others.