A Celtic Opera sprinkled with rap

A Celtic Opera sprinkled with rap


When Vincent Niclo wanted to concoct a Celtic opera album, he wanted to surround himself with artists of Breton or Celtic lineage. Twenty-five years after the release of the success The tribe of Dana, the rapper from Manau has agreed to resume his success in duet with the tenor .

Six weeks after its release, the album Opéra Celte by Vincent Niclo is number one in sales in France and still well positioned in the top 10 in Quebec.


“I was often asked for collaborations and new versions of The Tribe of Dana and I always refused,” says the founding member and leader of the rap group of Celtic inspiration Manau, Martial Tricoche. 

“When I received this famous piece from Vincent, I thought it was great. The opera on top of this epic story, it worked: I immediately said bingo, we've got something! » 

Not a rapper

Before contacting the storyteller, Vincent Niclo admits to having “had a lot of trouble” trying, among other things, to rap on his own.

” It wasn't going at all “, laughs the singer from Paris, who offered Martial Tricoche a rap opera version of his timeless title.

” Like everyone , I loved this song, but I didn't know if he was going to want to be open, continues the 48-year-old artist. We made an appointment, he liked it and when we said yes, I was like a kid. » 

« I immediately accepted!  » confirms the 53-year-old rapper, who launched, still with Manau, Fantasy, an “opera” album in 2015.

By combining their two worlds and adding Celtic music to it, the artists – who shot the music video for the song in one of the biggest studios in the Paris suburbs – speak to a wider audience and take their art further. . 

Beautiful setting  

Si Vincent Niclo – who charmed Quebec with his holiday album Le premier Noël togetherlast year – wanted to embark on a completely different style, it is because he likes to feed on repertoires that are distant from him. 

” Starting from scratch, choosing songs , put myself in danger, I love that. 

But why Celtic music? 

” I always liked it, he replies . Film soundtracks, series, video games, it's powerful, heroic and cinematic music. It is a beautiful setting to put mine in. »

Out of a desire to be reassured, the tenor “who has nothing to do with what is Breton or Celtic ” wanted to associate with artists known and recognized in the field. Thus, in addition to the duet with Martial de Manau, he collaborates with the guitarist and singer-songwriter of Breton culture Dan Ar Braz and the crew of the Celtic rock group Soldat Louis on Opéra Celte.

“ I needed the opinions of those whose universe it is, of icons of the Celtic world, explains the one who has been making a career in France for a decade. The fact that they accepted meant that I was going in the right direction. 

Among the 12 songs on this album, which will have required three years of work, are pieces sung in Gaelic , in Breton, English and French. Two new titles also: From Brest to Lorient and Kaer Eo Or Breizh. Covers of well-known pieces as well, such as Amazing Grace.  

Can we expect a Quebec tour for Vincent Niclo with, who knows, the Manau group? New friends hope so. In the meantime, Vincent Niclo is continuing his tour of the churches and cathedrals of Europe, and Manau is working on an 11th   very current ” offering. scheduled for fall 2024. 

” This is my best record in terms of writing and arrangements, says the leader. It will be a very beautiful album by Manau. » 

Celtic Opera by Vincent Niclo can be found on all platforms.