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Bertil Schulrabe is a drummer and percussionist having at his credit twenty years of experiment. Versatility, rhythmic solidity as well as a good comprehension of the musical forms make of him a musician in demand. He took part in about twenty albums, many of them in the ‘World-Beat’ category. Among the artists with whom he recorded, one finds : Nanette Workman, I Musici, Marie-Chantal Toupin, Annie Brocoli. On stage, he accompanied, among others: Nanette Workman, Jean-Pierre Zanella, Marie-Denise Pelletier, Sylvain Cossette. Andre-Marie Tala and Queen Étéme, two great Cameroon’s artists who worked in association with Manu Dibango, are also part of the people he worked with lately. Moreover, he was likely to accompany Celine Dion for a song when she made her special appearance during a concert of the musical ‘Femmes'.
Bertil, `eternal student', acquired a solid formation on drums under
the guidance of Philippe Keyser at the ‘Saint-Laurent College’
in Montreal. Polyvalence, technique, musicality, improvisation are
The percussion instrument that is closest to his heart for more than ten years is the Indian tabla. He studies since 2000 with the famous tablist, Partha Sarathi Mukherjee, with which he spent many hours during seven private intensive workshops in Montreal, Toronto, Leicester (England) and Bombay(India). Moreover Bertil has the chance to study and practice the art of the accompaniment of Classical Indian music with the master of the sitar, Ustad Shahid Parvez, during group classes he directs at his school (in partnership with Anwar Khurshid) the `Sitar School of Toronto'. The experience gained accompanying several classes of modern dance (ADMI, Jean-Pierre Perrault, Toronto Dance Theatre) as well as a basic training in `Approach of the music by the movement' enabled him to integrate a dance, movement-oriented aspect into his playing.
Among the outstanding facts, Bertil was awarded, in 2004, a grant by the `Conseil of Arts et Lettres du Québec' to continue his training of the tabla in India. He took part, in 1997 at the MIAC SHOW as a demonstrator for a new product of the Yamaha company. He played beside the master of the congas, Giovanni Hidalgo at a percussion workshop he gave in Montreal. In 1991, he gained in his category a Canadian drum contest organized by the `Just Drums' music store in Toronto. At the time of this event, he had the great opportunity to play on stage with Gregg Bissonnette (David Lee Roth). In 1990 he received a special mention when participating at the ‘National Big-Bands contest’ in Winnipeg, won by the ‘Saint-Laurent College’. He also recorded , in 1991, with this same Big-Band a concert for the radio of ‘Radio-Canada’.
Presently, Bertil is playing with Nanette Workman for her solo tour called ‘Nanette à l’Extrême' and with the musical ‘Femmes' (also featuring her). Recently he recorded for her last album titled 'Mississippi Rolling Stone'. He also accompanies a local artist, Amélie Veille, with whom he will record for her next cd. ‘Kleztory’, the group that he played with for a recording in partnership with the international renewed strings orchestra ,’I Musici’, will also hire him for their own recording. Recently he recorded with African singer Madou Diarra (Mali) and will shortly do a series of concerts with him.
Bertil is also dedicated to the composition for an album, in collaboration with Dominique Hekimian Madison (piano, keyboards), on which the Indian tabla will be the center point of the percussion sonority. He also works on the development of a drum method and teaches to private students.
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