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Duo Calambur is formed by Blanca Prieto (baroque violin) and Rebecca Lefèvre (viola da gamba) in Brussels, emerging from an artistic collective called BlackSpot.

The duo has its roots in baroque music but is not confined only to this style. Duo Calambur do so called “musical calamburs” which implies to decontextualise, transform and combine pieces from different styles and periods. The duo also compose their own music,

make arrangements for the two instruments, work with free improvisation and create acoustic and electronic soundscapes. A performance by Duo Calambur is a collage with all these elements, creating a unique and eclectic universe.

In addition to creating for stage performance,

Duo Calambur explore the relationship between sound and image through video-making. 

Duo Calambur has performed in venues as SMOG, Festival Knust or La Cellule 133. The last projects took place in Coudenberg Sound Box Fest and Hectolitre Space, where the duo created made-to-measure performances specific for these two spaces.

Most of my childhood memories have music in them. I remember my parent’s record player always on,

with The Beatles, Camarón or Vivaldi. My parents say that I was always singing and dancing and that one day,

very seriously, I made the statement that I wanted to play the violin. I don’t know exactly why I chose this instrument but I remember that I wanted to make music. 

In spite of my academic background focused on classical music, I have always been looking for other musical and artistic experiences. That is how I discovered historical performance and free improvisation, which completely changed my conception of music making. Both required and allowed me to be involved in the process creation, encouraging me to look into my individual expression as a performer and revealing new creative and

artistic possibilities. 

One of them is Duo Calambur. Rebecca and I share our historical music background and the desire

to experiment fully: mixing repertories, improvising or composing crazy pieces. We have built a free creation space where everything can be deconstructed, mixed, twisted, rewritten to become something else, different and ours. 

The viola da gamba appeared in my life unannounced.

One day when I was 17 I knew I have to play this instrument. How that idea came into my head is a mystery. I didn’t really know what it was. I had not (consciously) heard or even seen the viola da gamba, but that it was my instrument, I knew. It took a few years before I got the chance to actually start learning. It was in Stockholm, in the school where I studied the cello, that I met the viola da gamba for the first time. It was love at first sight. The sound mesmerised me and the repertoire fascinated me. An intense period of getting to know each other followed, and the decision to devote my life to music and this instrument brought me to Brussels.

In Brussels I met Blanca and together we became

Duo Calambur. With Duo Calambur I feel free. Here I discover a new approach to music making. Instead of only relying on a score, we are writing our own music and mixing existing pieces with improvisation. I have more responsibility and personal influence on the content than I have in a traditional ensemble. Together we explore, experiment, try, fail, get surprised and create. It’s all very refreshing and inspiring! I develop new aspects of me – the musician, but also me – the human. Music/art infiltrate our lives and that is how it should be.

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