A wind instrument whose ancient origin is in Northern India, the bansuri is a transverse flute made of hollow bamboo pierced with eight holes: a mouthpiece hole, six finger holes and a tuning hole. It is associated with Lord Krishna: the shepherd and the lover. It has a deep and warm tone colour. Its close resemblance to the human voice gives it a prominent role within the north-Indian classical instrumentarium, which ranges from instrumental music to vocal styles such as Dhrupad, Khayal and Thumri. Breath finds its own voice as it is blown through the flute, revealing a subtle, spellbinding song.
A French disciple of the legendary Indian flautist Hariprasad Chaurasia, Guillaume Barraud has become a key figure of the bansuri flute in Europe. After years of immersion and instrumental practice, he has made himself the spokesman of traditional music from India and led his audience in a rejuvenating musical experience. He has been performing at prestigious venues as well as in more private music circles.
In 2015, Guillaume appeared in front of three thousand people of the Indian diaspora at the Carrousel in Paris, performing in prelude to the speech of the Indian Prime Minister, then on official visit.
“Guillaume ushers in a potent challenge to the prevalent negative notions about the competence of non-native performers of Indian classical music. He belongs to an elite minority of foreign musicians who have absorbed the essence of this music and are able to reflect this in performance.” Arnab Chakrabarty